Audio Post

Headphones for Filmmakers: My Impressions of 7 Headphones

In this episode, I share my impressions of 5 different headphones which I have used for production or post production filmmaking. We start out with a discussion about open vs. closed back design and impedance and why those matter when you’re choosing a set of headphones. As a bonus, we also cover two additional sets of headphones I use when I’m not making films.

If you’d like to learn how to make great dialogue audio for your film and video projects, please have a look at my courses including processing dialogue audio, recording sound, how to use the Zoom F8 and F8n, and how to get the most from the Sound Devices MixPre series of recorders.

Links to gear used in this video:

Sony MDR-7506 - My go-to headphones for when I’m recording

Beyerdynamic DT770 Pro 80ohm - Also very good when recording, super durable, a little bulkier in size

Sony MDR-ZX110 - When I give a director or producer a wireless feed of the audio, they get these with the receiver

Sennheiser HD820 - The most amazing headphones I have ever owned, but expensive and reserved for post production

Beyerdynamic DT880 Pro 250ohm - A very good set of open back headphones for post production, much more reasonably priced

Meze 99 Classics - Classy looking and good sounding “Lifestyle” headphones with low impedance for listening from phones and laptops

Sennheiser PXC 550 Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Headphones - My favorite travel and everyday headphones when I want isolation from the world

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K - I used this to record most of this episode

Panasonic 12-35mm F/2.8 OIS Lens - Used on the Pocket 4K camera

Copyright 2019 by Curtis Judd

Music Copyright 2019 by Cary Judd. Used with permission.

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are Amazon.com or B&H Photo affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!

Sound for Video Session: Q&A 9 Feb 2019

Its time to answer your sound for video related questions! For those new to the channel here, as part of my online school, we have question and answer sessions every few weeks. If you’d like to be notified when a new Q&A session is coming up, sign up for free at Learn Light and Sound. You can also preview several segments from my online courses on sound for film.

Here are the questions we covered this week:

00:07 Wireless hop to camera with Sennheiser G3?

01:10 Microphones for recording a concert?

02:18 Plugins for cleaning up background noise?

04:42 Room tone and sound effects? M/S Recording?

06:24 Stereo microphones for recording concerts?

07:17 Timecode from Zoom F8n to Panasonic GH4?

08:53 Remote Audio Battery distribution system and powering Panasonic GH5?

11:47 Why hasn’t the perfect recorder and microphones been developed yet?

17:07 Can I de-noise as the last step in my post workflow?

22:35 Audio, sound, film book recommendations?

28:20 If I have 2 UltraSync 1s, should I use just one or both for 1 cam shoots?

32:10 If my video will be H.264, does it matter if I use 48kHz vs 96kHz?

34:30 What are microdot cavaliers?

37:32 Person moves in and out of mic sweet spot, what do I do?

39:55 Will the new version of ARRI Alexa come with a boom holder?

40:10 What’s the difference between trim and fader?

42:58 Order of operations when processing dialogue audio?

49:12 Should I upgrade from RODE NTG2 to NTG4?

51:03 I’m getting older and my hearing is not good. How do I compensate?

57:42 Izotope RX, Logic Pro, Audition, and changing sample rates?

1:00:20 Powering a recorder. I have a 20 hour battery vest!

1:02:20 Audio repair software suggestions?

1:04:22 How would you cleanup this audio recording?

Here are a few previous sessions we references in today’s Q&A session:

Wireless Hop to Camera with Sennheiser G3 with Gregg Palmer:

Recording Live Concerts with Mike Strands:

Accusonus ERA-D Noise Reduction Demo:

Gear we discussed in today’s session:

Sound Reinforcement Handbook, 2nd Edition - Dense but very good reference for anyone serious about sound

Location Sound Bible - one of my favorites on recording sound for film. Dated info re: specific gear, but otherwise very good info.

Sound Effects Bible - good reference on recording sound effects. Dated info re: specific gear, but otherwise very good info.

Hearos - Ear protection for loud locations

Zoom F8n Audio Recorder

Zoom F4 Audio Recorder

Ambient Recording Timecode Slate

Schoeps Super CMIT Shotgun Microphone - with real-time noise reduction. Not cheap, but very effective.

Cedar DNS - hardware real-time noise reduction. Not cheap, but very effective.

Universal Audio Apollo x6 - Thunderbolt 3 audio interface which can basically replace a full rack of analogue audio processing gear

Copyright 2019 by Curtis Judd

Outro music from Artlist: Sunday by Rich Young Pixies - Amazing Journey. You can receive a 2 month discount on a subscription to Artlist, a subscription service for stock music you can use with your videos. Check it out at Artlist.

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!

Sound for Video Session: Loudness Normalize your Video Sound in Adobe Audition

How do you get loud audio for your video projects? What if the music is much louder than the dialogue or speaking parts? In this session, we cover the basics of mixing music and dialogue and show how to loudness normalize your video’s sound using Adobe Audition.

Please consider my sound for video classes available over at Learn Light and Sound.

Gear used to record this episode:

AKG C414 XLS large diaphragm condenser microphone - this is my new, main voice over microphone

dbx 286s Preamplifier and channel strip - new vocal processing channel strip. I’ve had a ton of requests for help setting this up so I had to add one to my collection so I can learn how to use it first.

Universal Audio Apollo x6 - Thunderbolt 3 audio interface used to take audio signal from the dbx286S channel strip, convert it to digital, and send to my computer for recording.

Copyright 2019 by Curtis Judd

Outro music from Artlist: Sunscape by Oliver Michael. You can receive a 2 week discount on a subscription to Artlist, a subscription service for stock music you can use with your videos. Check it out at Artlist.

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!

DaVinci Resolve Fairlight Overview Part 2

Mary from Blackmagic Design put together a two part series as an overview on how to use the Fairlight audio mixing panel in DaVinci Resolve. For those not familiar with DaVinci Resolve, it is a free application that allows you to edit, color grade, add compositing effects, and mix your video projects. Fairlight is the audio mixing portion. Long, but great information for those into audio post for film and video.

DaVinci Resolve Fairlight Overview Part 1

Mary at Blackmagic Design has put together a couple of Fairlight overviews to familiarize yourself with the Fairlight interface. For those not familiar with it, Fairlight is the digital audio workstation built into DaVinci Resolve which is a free video editing, color, compositing, and mixing app. Fairlight is the audio mixing portion and it has come a long way in terms of features over the last couple of years.

Sound for Video Session: Timecode Generators

In this week’s Sound for Video session, we take a quick look at several timecode generators available on the market today.

The table comparing the TC generators we discussed today.

Gear discussed/used to record this episode:

Tentacle Sync Sync E

Ambient Recording NanoLockit

MozeGear TIG Q28

MozeGear TIG QBIT X2

Timecode Systems Pulse Base Station

Timecode Systems UltrSync One

Timecode Systems UltraSync Blue

Timecode Systems SyncBac Pro (for GoPro Hero 6 & 7)

Betso TCX-2+

AKG C414 XLS Large Diaphragm Condenser Microphone - used to record this session

Sound Devices 633 Audio Recorder/Mixer - used to record this session

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Outro music licensed from Artlist: Call on Me by Kick Lee

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!

Sound for Video Session: Q&A 11 December 2018

In this week’s Sound for Video session, we answer your questions about production and post sound:

00:13 Isolating lavalier microphones

05:12 Which software to use for editing, mixing sound?

07:49 Can you use the F8/n as audio interface with F-Control?

08:56 Loudness vs Peak Normalizing

12:27 Default settings for Sennheiser G3?

13:37 Can you link the Zoom F4 & F8 to operate as one?

14:56 How to get “Radio Voice” with Audition?

18:07 How does the FCC frequency allocation affect you?

19:25 Sound Devices 688 and SL6

20:17 How does Sennheiser MKH416 compare to newer shotgun mics?

25:11 Dealing with ventilation/refrigerator that cannot be turned off?

26:58 Mixing foley?

27:41 How did I get a killer deal on these old Lectrosonics wireless kits?

30:40 How to mount timecode generator to camera?

31:47 MixPre: Meters and limiters

33:55 Are vintage mics overrated?

36:50 How do you get audio to a director?

37:18 Recommendation for enthusiast wireless mic systems?

38:52 Is the Tascam DR-60DmkII still a worthwhile purchase?

40:56 I do both music and film sound, should I get the MixPre-10T or 10M?

42:27 Zoom F8: How do I keep the settings I make on the app?

43:45 Zoom F8 5.1 firmware update: What’s new?

45:00 How to record iso channels on MixPre-6?

45:39 Recommended recording apps for iOS?

47:38 How to setup the dbx 286s?

48:41 Is Izotope RX worth its price?

51:00 Which frame rate settings do I use for timecode?


Previous videos mentioned in today’s session:

Fairlight in DaVinci Resolve:

Loudness normalization:

Foley:

Comtek wireless audio for directors:

MixPre-10M vs 10T:

Gear discussed/used to record this episode:

Moleskin for hiding lavalier microphones

Joe’s Sticky Stuff - two-sided tape for attaching lavalier mics to clothing or anything else

Zoom F8n eight channel audio recorder/mixer. One of my favorites. Paid my own hard-earned money for this thing.

Zoom F4 four channel audio recorder/mixer. Basically the same as the F8n but no app control, monochrome screen, and bigger knobs. Paid my own hard-earned money for this thing.

Sennheiser G4 solid analogue wireless mic kit

AKG C414 XLS - used to record today’s session. I was recovering from a cold at the time, so this isn’t the best representation of the sound possible with this mic. We’ll do another demo with it once my voice is back to normal.

Sound Devices 688 - Pro level audio recorder/mixer. It is the price of an older used car but a good buy for those doing paid production sound work.

Sound Devices SL6 - add on wireless receiver slot system which simplifies powering and using larger antennae for multiple slot-in wireless receivers from your sound bag.

Sennheiser MKH416 - Tjhe legendary shotgun microphone for film & TV production.

Sennheiser MKH8060 new generation shotgun microphone meant to replace 416

Sennheiser MKH8050 new generation indoor dialogue boom mic meant to replace MKH50

Sound Devices MixPre-3 - great little recorder from the company that makes amazing pro-level audio recorders. But this one is a lot more affordable. 3 mic inputs, analogue limiters.

Sound Devices MixPre-6- great little recorder from the company that makes amazing pro-level audio recorders. But this one is a lot more affordable. 4 XLR mic/line inputs plus a 3.5mm stereo input, analogue limiters.

Sound Devices MixPre-10T- great big recorder from the company that makes amazing pro-level audio recorders. But this one is slightly more affordable. 8 XLR mic/line inputs plus a 3.5mm stereo input, 2 balanced and 2 unbalanced outputs, analogue limiters. etc. Great recorder. My favorite sub $2000 USD option.

Tascam DR-60DmkII great budget recorder (XLR inputs are good, 3.5mm not so good)

CEntrance Mixerface R4 audio mixer/recorder

dbx 286s channel strip - good for voiceover and live broadcast sound

Universal Audio Apollo x6 USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 Audio Interface - used to record the voice over for the screen cast

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Outro music licensed from Artlist: Awaken by Ethan Rank

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!

Sound for Video Session: Timecode Systems UltraSync Blue Demo

In this week’s session, we take a look at a wireless timecode generator you can use to make syncing audio and video from your mobile phones and tablets quick and easy: The Timecode Systems UltraSync BLUE.

The BLUE can send timecode to up to 4 devices at the same time and can also connect wirelessly to UltraSync generators attached to cinema cameras or professional level audio recorders.

At the time of this review, the compatible apps are for iOS, available in the App Store:

Apogee MetaRecorder (audio recording app)

Mavis (Cine style camera app)

Gear and links discussed/used to record this episode:

Timecode Systems UltraSync BLUE - Bluetooth wireless timecode generator

Sennheiser ClipMic digital - used to record the talking head clips into the MetaRecorder app

Electrovoice RE20 Dynamic Broadcast Microphone - used to record the voice over for the screen cast portion

Universal Audio Apollo x6 USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 Audio Interface - used to record the voice over for the screen cast

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Outro music licensed from Artlist: Keep an Eye by Back to Dream

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!

Sound for Video Session: Edit/Mix Room Tour 2018

After several requests and despite my prior objections, this week’s episode is a virtual tour of my mix/edit room. This is where I edit all of my videos, edit and mix the sound for these videos, and generally work. I hesitated to do this because I don’t want anyone to think that you have to have expensive tools to edit and mix good sound for video. You can start with a basic computer and set of headphones. Once you’re getting paid to mix and edit sound for video, then it generally makes sense to invest in some tools that will help you get the job done more efficiently.

Please consider my sound for film courses.

Gear and links discussed/used to record this episode:

Sennheiser MKH 8050 Supercardioid boom microphone

Oktava MK-012 Cardioid boom microphone

Schoeps CMCmk41 Supercardioid boom microphone

Furman PL-8C Power Conditioner

Universal Audio Apollo x6 Thunderbolt 3 Audio Interface with 5.1 surround monitoring

Focal Solo6 Be Powered Reference Monitors (Speakers)

Mackie 802VLZ4 Analogue Mixer

Sony MDR-7506 Closed Back Headphones - my first choice for when I’m recording/mixing on location

Beyerdynamic DT770 Pro - my second choice for when I’m recording/mixing on location

Beyerdynamic DT880 Pro Semi-open Back Headphones - my first choice for reasonably priced mixing headphones

Sennheiser HD820 Closed Back Reference Headphones - My favorite very expensive headphones for mixing

Golden Age Project Pre-73mkIII - A modern day copy of the Neve 1073 preamp. All analogue. Fuzzy and warm

Golden Age Project R1 Active mkIII - A reasonably priced ribbon microphone with a smooth high frequency roll-off which I like for recording voiceover and harsh instruments. Smooth

Electrovoice RE20 Dynamic Broadcast Microphone

Allen & Heath SQ5 Digital Mixer/Audio Interface

Blackmagic Pocket cinema Camera 4K - used to shoot this episode

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Outro music licensed from Artlist: Keep an Eye by Back to Dream. Artlist provides high quality music tracks for your film and video projects. You can receive two months off an Artlist account by using our link: https://artlist.io/artlist-70446/?a_a...

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!

Dialogue Editing for Film Demo

Editing the dialogue sound for your film and video projects can seem a little daunting, especially when you have two or more actors, each with a wireless lavalier microphone plus a boom microphone. How do you edit all those tracks? Do you just keep the boom and lavalier mics? Won’t it sound richer if you do keep them all?

It turns out that it generally will sound quite a bit worse if you keep them all and the main reason for using both lavalier microphones and a boom microphone is to give yourself options to use the best sounding mic in for each dialogue line.

In this demo, we show the basics on how to start a dialogue edit using Adobe audition. In this demo, we exported the edit of the film from Final Cut Pro X.

If you’d like to learn how to make great dialogue audio for your film and video projects, please have a look at my courses at my school including processing dialogue audio, recording sound, how to use the Zoom F8 and F8n, and how to get the most from the Sound Devices MixPre series of recorders.

Links to gear used to record the film and this video:

XToCC - app to convert XML from Final Cut Pro to XML that Adobe Audition can use:

Electrovoice RE20 - The mic I used to record my voiceover for this tutorial

Universal Audio Apollo X6 - Microphone preamp and Thunderbolt 3 Audio Interface used to record my voiceover for this tutorial.

Aputure COB120dmkII - Key light for lighting Amanda

Aputure Light Dome II - Newer version of the big soft box with faster setup and gel holder

Lupo Superpanel Full Color 30 - RGB 1x1 panel light for Lighting Bridget

Audio Ltd A10 Wireless Microphone System - Used for Bridget and Amandas lavalier microphones

Countryman B6 Lavalier Microphone - Bridget’s lavalier mic

DPA 4160 Lavalier Microphone - Amanda’s lavalier mic

Sound Devices 633 Audio Recorder/Mixer - Field recorder used to record the film sound

Sennheiser MKH 8050 - This is the boom mic used to record the film

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Music Copyright 2018 by Cary Judd. Used with permission.

Ethics statement: Some of the links above are Amazon.com or B&H Photo affiliate links which means that if you click on them and buy, I get a small commission. You don't pay more by clicking these links than if you just went to the retailer’s web site on your own. I use the proceeds to buy additional gear to review and help you improve your sound, lighting, and video. Thanks for your support!