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Dialogue Editor Leveling advice
Old 18th September 2012 | Show parent
  #61
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Henchman's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by nathand ➡️
LOL, Seriously - that's what you're going with? As if every PT session you've received has worked flawlessly.

If you make an OMF/AAF right - in my experience it is perfectly compatible. Of course, just like when delivering a PT session, it has to be done correctly.
Actually, yes. I can't remember the last time I have imported from a PT session, and something wasn't right.

I do remember very clearly importing from OMFs or AAFs, and had missing regions. Regions not int he correct spot in the timeline, etc. the last time I used an OMf/AAF this happened to me. Regions were all over the place. Re-exporting didn't solve the problem, and I was hand synching stuff all over the place.

So yea, you better be delivering a PT's session to the dub stage if I'm mixing it.
Old 18th September 2012 | Show parent
  #62
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
Actually, yes. I can't remember the last time I have imported from a PT session, and something wasn't right.

I do remember very clearly importing from OMFs or AAFs, and had missing regions. Regions not int he correct spot in the timeline, etc. the last time I used an OMf/AAF this happened to me. Regions were all over the place. Re-exporting didn't solve the problem, and I was hand synching stuff all over the place.

So yea, you better be delivering a PT's session to the dub stage if I'm mixing it.
Will do. But then I'll watch you do exactly the same thing you would have done and get the exact same results had I given you an AAF.

Obviously the people giving you PT sessions are doing it correctly and the author of your OMF did not.
Old 18th September 2012 | Show parent
  #63
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by fsrenduro ➡️
I agree with you. There just seemed to be a lot of 'never do that' type of talk going through this thread and I just wanted to provide a counterpoint to that.

While I can't guarantee that my volume graphing didn't get wiped in every show, there are many I've sat through the predubs and final and know my graphing remained. If done properly it is of benefit not a hinderance. If there is a problem it can be removed from the section in less than a second. I'm not claiming to be doing radical mix type volume automation, rather I'm using it as a tool to smooth within a scene.
You have 15 years of experience under the gun and therefor know what does or doesn't fly. My Dialog Editors who have sat with me and we go over a reel then know what my expectations are. They do volume graphing as needed. I trust them after that.

Now everyone go back to the OP. Read his first post. Read it again. Maybe then you will see my hesitation on volume graphing.
Old 18th September 2012 | Show parent
  #64
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by dr.sound ➡️
You have 15 years of experience under the gun and therefor know what does or doesn't fly. My Dialog Editors who have sat with me and we go over a reel then know what my expectations are. They do volume graphing as needed. I trust them after that.

Now everyone go back to the OP. Read his first post. Read it again. Maybe then you will see my hesitation on volume graphing.
Well said. I'm moving on.
Old 18th September 2012 | Show parent
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathand ➡️
Will do. But then I'll watch you do exactly the same thing you would have done and get the exact same results had I given you an AAF.

Obviously the people giving you PT sessions are doing it correctly and the author of your OMF did not.
I was at the facility when it was output. Everything was set up the way it's supposed to be. And output after output was messed up.
Old 18th September 2012 | Show parent
  #66
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
I was at the facility when it was output. Everything was set up the way it's supposed to be. And output after output was messed up.
My apologies for continuing so off-topic...

So are you saying that ProTools does not support OMF/AAF import or that we may have found something you don't know how to do
Old 19th September 2012 | Show parent
  #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathand ➡️
My apologies for continuing so off-topic...

So are you saying that ProTools does not support OMF/AAF import or that we may have found something you don't know how to do
No, it was a case where n matter what, the IMF threw everything all over teh place on exports. Literally.

So, I don't trust anything other than a pro-tools session when I'm mixing in pro-tools.
If I was mixing in Nuendo, I would insist on receiving a Nuendo session.

I don't want to be wasting my precious stage time, fixing someone else's export/conversion problems.
Old 19th September 2012 | Show parent
  #68
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
No, it was a case where n matter what, the IMF threw everything all over teh place on exports. Literally.

So, I don't trust anything other than a pro-tools session when I'm mixing in pro-tools.
If I was mixing in Nuendo, I would insist on receiving a Nuendo session.

I don't want to be wasting my precious stage time, fixing someone else's export/conversion problems.
Whatever - i figured you'd stick to your bullet-less guns. For what it is worth, I've sent out 100's if not 1000's of OMFs that have been imported into ProTools without issue, but for you I'm happy to convert them to PT
Old 19th September 2012
  #69
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🎧 15 years
Nat, it's called covering your ass.
Prevent getting blamed for something that's not your fault.
Old 19th September 2012 | Show parent
  #70
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I've been receiving OMFs of projects with audio edits with volume graphing this week, and because of this thread decided to check out if the volume graphing could do anything for me (I usually keep a version of the project somewhere with all that intact but erase it all on the copy I start with). For me, the graphing on these projects was worse than useless. Much of the dialog was kind of under-recorded, but instead of raising the overall clip gain, the editor just raised the volume graph to +12. So much of the project dialog runs with my faders all the way open. Meanwhile, all the music had been brought in from CDs or a music server, and the regions were nearly full-scale. Thus the editor's volume graphing put my faders at about -50 for most of the project. So how do I mix a project where I have no room to go up on dialog levels, and next to no room to go down on music levels? By nuking the editorial volume graphing, using clips levels to "range" the base level of the regions so my mixer faders can start working at around a zero level, just like usual. I HAVE had situations where I was grateful for the level work done by the people upstream from me, but there haven't been many...

phil p
Old 19th September 2012 | Show parent
  #71
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🎧 10 years
I have been sitting on the fence watching this thread unfold for a while. What strikes me as obvious, is that everyone is stuck with the "old" PT workflow idea of actually drawing volume lines on the fader automation. Personnally, I hate that, mainly because I do rely on waveforms to have an idea of the level of the sound coming at me on the timeline, and fader automation can be set at -40dB without me seeing it making me do wrong pre-emptive moves. Volume automation? Nah, never for me.

However....

If we now shift the focus to "Clip Level" there is a whole different usefulness. Since our Fairlight days, and through our last 8 Nuendo years, we have been using clip levels to balance dialog editing sessions, as well as sound edit sessions. It's unobstrusive, allows the mixer (me) to see a waveform that is proportionnal to the level of the sound with Clip Gain inserted, and it can be reset in one mouse click or changed (in Nuendo) with a flick of the scroll wheel. And maybe the most important thing relative to how where this thread has gone, is that it is FAST to do. It is actually not taking much time away from the dialog editor at all, who can concentrate on his actual editing job without reaching for the Control Room knob every time a clip recorded too hot blasts him in the ears.
The faders stay just where they should be: at 0, which is how a well balanced and properly done dialog edit should play before the mixer gets his hands on it.
And I get to mix faster knowing that most clips are in proper level "zone" relative to each other. My ears do the rest.
Old 19th September 2012
  #72
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🎧 10 years
Well put Steven.
I find clip gain handles 95% of all level issues regardless if it's Dialog, FX or Music. And with Fairlight (and Nuendo?) it's a real time, non-constructive process (no renders) that can be applied to one clip or the whole project in a couple clicks. I particularly like the ability to pull down a hard 'S', for example. No plug-in to setup, no de-esser that messes with the feel of the rest of the track. (Besides, the mixer probably isn't going to want there anyway.) A quick, simple 2 frame fix, and I'm on to the next issue. And that change stays exactly where it needs to, even after a re-conform. I don't have to worry if automation is tracking through all the group/multitrack edits.
To me, that's editing, not mixing... but I may be all wrong with that thinking.
Old 19th September 2012 | Show parent
  #73
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🎧 5 years
The last 2 posts have nailed it.
Old 19th September 2012 | Show parent
  #74
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🎧 10 years
to the OMF point and PT sessions.

I can't remember when an adoption of new tech has happened so fast (PT10). Nothing more frustrating than getting a PTX session and only having PTF.

Also,

remembering to coalesce volume automation to clip gain after OMF import to keep volume graphing, and check the box to bring over plug automation. New Media Composer --> Pro Tools offers cross compatibility of plugs like reverb and eq, and while I almost NEVER use it outright, on a TV timetable, it helps to see where they (editors) were going with sound design ideas.
Old 19th September 2012 | Show parent
  #75
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🎧 15 years
Steven,
I use "clip gain" every day. It's a life saver. That is another reason why
I can go through a reel and quickly get all the dialog where it needs to be, through my chain and my speakers. Like I mentioned on a post above that I don't ever have faders bouncing around. With "clip gain" you can copy any volume automation over to it and the faders stay put. We used to use the "trim" plug in but it's not sample accurate like "clip gain" is.
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #76
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Brian Campbell's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
which is EXACTLY what I want. The correct mic.
So, instead of wasting time on leveling, use all of that time picking the correct mic. THAT'S what makes my job easier.
Better source, better mix.

If a DX editor can't pic the best mic, he should find a different line of work.
Yes dial editor choose the best mic and when that mic is down 10 db the dial editor should bring the level up to match the rest of the scene. If a 'mixer' doesn't understand that he should find a different line of work. sheesh!

Oh yeah there's a feature in Pro Tools called Trim Automation, very handy for mixing.
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #77
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcwiz ➡️
Oh yeah there's a feature in Pro Tools called Trim Automation, very handy for mixing.
Used trim automation for nearly 10 years before "clip gain" was available.
The difference between them is "clip gain" is sample accurate while "trim automation" isn't even frame accurate. Stick with "clip gain".
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #78
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcwiz ➡️
Yes dial editor choose the best mic and when that mic is down 10 db the dial editor should bring the level up to match the rest of the scene. If a 'mixer' doesn't understand that he should find a different line of work. sheesh!

Oh yeah there's a feature in Pro Tools called Trim Automation, very handy for mixing.
And you have spent how any hours mixing dialog on the Dubstage?
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #79
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Brian Campbell's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
And you have spent how any hours mixing dialog on the Dubstage?
you're funny!
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #80
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
And you have spent how any hours mixing dialog on the Dubstage?
An ad hominem attack most of the time means one doesn't have a valid counter-argument.
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #81
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Henchman's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by kosmokrator ➡️
An ad hominem attack most of the time means one doesn't have a valid counter-argument.
If you go back and read the entire thread, you will see enough arguments, that I'm not going to regurgitate.
And when one makes statements like:

"If a 'mixer' doesn't understand that he should find a different line of work. "

Then they better be able to back them up with experience.
And since Brian has very little Dubstage mixing experience, he might want to revisit his post.
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #82
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Brian Campbell's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
If you go back and read the entire thread, you will see enough arguments, that I'm not going to regurgitate.
And when one makes statements like:

"If a 'mixer' doesn't understand that he should find a different line of work. "

Then they better be able to back them up with experience.
I've been recording, editing and mixing audio of all kinds since 1978 and I have spent a few years on the stage mixing dialogue and music. I've also spent many years editing dialogue and the mixers I cut for would not be happy if I stopped balancing the tracks. Each to his own I say. In these days of multi mic production tracks the levels from set are all over the damn place. Impossible to make a smooth cut without doing some level work. Difficult to even evaluate without it. (location 'mix' tracks are a generally a mess) Some tracks are so low that they need to be 'gained' to get in the ballbark. I've seen tracks that are 25-30 db down. I'm sure you wouldn't want me to send you tracks like that?
Talk to the mixer is the best advice.

p.s. I do like PT10 clip gain.
Old 7th October 2012
  #83
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🎧 15 years
I absolutely do want my tracks sent to me un-processed by gain.
I have no problem getting it unto the level I want, quickly. I have more than enough gain between my notch filter, my eq, channel fader and master processing chain faders. I think that's about an additional 70-80 db of gain, if I need I.
I don't want any of my dialog processed, because if on the stage an alt is requested, then all I have to do is copy the automation to that clip, and its pretty much there.
If its been processed in any way at all, wether its gain or anything else, I now have to spend time making that alt work. Wasting my time.
Had you read the entire thread, you would have read that leveling the dialog is the last thing I want a dialog editor to do. I'm sure working at Sharpe sound, you barely get enough time to deal with the edit, and removing pops and clicks, and finding the right mics.
If you have time after that to level, fill your boots. But I never use any of the DX editors automation when I mix. So, it's a waste of their time.
Old 7th October 2012 | Show parent
  #84
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Brian Campbell's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
I absolutely do want my tracks sent to me un-processed by gain.
I have no problem getting it unto the level I want, quickly. I have more than enough gain between my notch filter, my eq, channel fader and master processing chain faders. I think that's about an additional 70-80 db of gain, if I need I.
I don't want any of my dialog processed, because if on the stage an alt is requested, then all I have to do is copy the automation to that clip, and its pretty much there.
If its been processed in any way at all, wether its gain or anything else, I now have to spend time making that alt work. Wasting my time.
Had you read the entire thread, you would have read that leveling the dialog is the last thing I want a dialog editor to do. I'm sure working at Sharpe sound, you barely get enough time to deal with the edit, and removing pops and clicks, and finding the right mics.
If you have time after that to level, fill your boots. But I never use any of the DX editors automation when I mix. So, it's a waste of their time.
Yes I read your post and found it unusual that you prefer to work that way. Yes time is always an issue but in order to hear how a scene is working the levels need to match so I adjust as I go. If the mixer throws that away, that's his business. Like I said each to his own. Let's agree to disagree?
Old 12th October 2012 | Show parent
  #85
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🎧 5 years
How can a mixer, if using ones ears rather than relying on a visual indication that it's been volume graphed, categorically be able to tell if there has been any levelling of the dialogue? The, sometimes, huge variations in level between different takes, or indeed within the take itself, is something that we all accept as part of the process of mixing dialogue.
To alleviate myself of the tedious procedure of going backwards and forwards over a line of dialogue with wide variations in level and to try and get it into a manageable state, and to get the occasional word/syllable raised or lowered a little is something I prefer a dialogue editor (of which there seems to be a growing amount of) to do. That I can, and do, still make changes at the pre-dub stage is a given - but it has certainly helped me enormously and also makes the dialogue editor feel as though their contribution is more than being simply reduced to just taking clicks out and finding the occasional alt line.
Old 12th October 2012
  #86
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcwiz ➡️
Yes I read your post and found it unusual that you prefer to work that way. Yes time is always an issue but in order to hear how a scene is working the levels need to match so I adjust as I go. If the mixer throws that away, that's his business. Like I said each to his own. Let's agree to disagree?
Another main concern for me is editors who change the original intent of the producers. Currently I'm on a hour ling doc which has reenactments. They are at a low level on purpose. If an editor had levels these out, I would never have known about this and would have had a real issue in the playback. I need the original aaf levels because I just don't have time to listen to the reference mix for a hour long doc mix. The offline editors levels are never even close but I can tell from their volume automation what they intended.

Also just to reiterate, the very best dx edits I have ever gotten are from dx editors who turn off all automation while editing. This is across the board. When an editor starts leveling and spin other things that are not his job, I know I'll need additional time to mix the show. That's across the board!
Old 12th October 2012 | Show parent
  #87
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by brandoncross ➡️
Another main concern for me is editors who change the original intent of the producers. Currently I'm on a hour ling doc which has reenactments. They are at a low level on purpose. If an editor had levels these out, I would never have known about this and would have had a real issue in the playback.
An editor leveling these out would be foolish, but how different is it then having an editor who does match what was done in the AAF/OMF via volume automation and then have it wiped out by a mixer who doesn't want to use it?

There are many situations in which something done in the AAF/OMF by the editor has specific volume automation as part of a design element involving dialogue. To try and replicate it by any other method than using their volume automation is 'changing the original intent of the producers', no?
Old 12th October 2012
  #88
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nzl62's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
After 20 or so years in this line I find the simplest approaches work best.

1. Communicate ffs! Ask the mixer how he likes it. What he is happier sorting himself.
We are all under time pressure and no more so than mixers at the final point end of the production and they will have a process dialled inc track layouts, the lot
2. Now that clip gain is on PT 10 I use volume very rarely.
3. If you are going to fiddle with levels then you better bloody well have accurate meters and a good idea on what range you should be working in.

I import the volume automation from the editors, simply to see if there are any "muted" regions that ought to be ignored. I then make a duplicate of the omf/aaf and make these tracks inactive. I then blow the automation of the work tracks knowing that I can always reference the guide or the duplicated omf/aaf tracks if I get lost.

The biggest bane of my life are the polywavs where due to sloppy work flow, the channel assigns are dropped and you have to spend precious time working out which mic was what. Fortunately editors are getting a bit more on to it and there are some great post audio work flows on Avids site
Old 23rd October 2012 | Show parent
  #89
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Henchman ➡️
I don't want any of my dialog processed, because if on the stage an alt is requested, then all I have to do is copy the automation to that clip, and its pretty much there.
If its been processed in any way at all, wether its gain or anything else, I now have to spend time making that alt work. Wasting my time.
So would this mean that you apply noise reduction to dialogue at the mix stage and not during the edit? I'm editing a feature with fairly terrible production dialogue that requires a lot of fixing in terms of automated noise & reverb reduction, careful mic selection etc and I imagine that this would be quite a hinderance were it to be passed on to a mixer as their responsibility..
Old 23rd October 2012
  #90
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🎧 10 years
Even though I will gladly accept clip gain levels for a clip (but not leveling inside a clip ie. to change the dynamics of a line) I am clearly against noise reduction being done in an editing room. Most of the time an editing room monitoring setup doesn't have the "depth" perception required to be sure you're not removing too much background information.
You can only judge that properly ( for a film mix) on a mixing stage with cinema speakers and at the normal listening level.

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