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Old January 7th, 2013, 05:56 PM   #1
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The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Les Mis is the most incredible audio experience I've ever had in a theatre.
Originally I was looking for the mics they used, then I came across this ..

Les Miserables, live singing.... - Current - Discussion Group

It took me nearly 2hrs to get through the posts and vids.

So I've made a list of the most interesting .. 20, 38, 39 60, (mic choices > 64 and earwigs > 68)
and 97 for some fun. See 104 for the crew. If you've only got 6mins, see 113 and ..


Enjoy.
Cheers.
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Last edited by Allan Black; January 8th, 2013 at 04:04 AM. Reason: oops mic choices at post 64.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 01:20 AM   #2
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

I'd agree. The sound was flawless. The only time I thought about it was during the rain scene. And that's what we want, isn't it? Transparency, so we can enter the story.

Not many days before, I saw The Hobbit in 48fps/3D. (Please, let's not derail the Les Mis thread with a Hobbit discussion), and by contrast, it was one of the least transparent films I've ever seen. It made the triumph of Les Miserables even more impressive in my experience.

BTW, even if you're the toughest guy on the planet, bring tissues. The whole theater was sobbing within ten minutes. And now, being conditioned with the experience, the trailer draws tears on cue!

Hathaway and Jackman MUST win Oscars for their performances. They were both sublime in their roles. And the quality of the audio really allowed them to shine through.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 03:05 AM   #3
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

I heard a track of "I dreamed a dream" on the radio yesterday and it was incredibly moving as it was the live performance from the film rather than a playback track done in the studio.

More here:

It is great that they have got the actors to act their songs rather than try to mime or do an over produced studio performance.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 11:53 AM   #4
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

So, if I wanted great sound like that, what mic would I put on my dSLR?

<evil grin, ducks and runs>

Perhaps I'll need to go see it after all...
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Old January 8th, 2013, 12:26 PM   #5
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun Roemich View Post
So, if I wanted great sound like that, what mic would I put on my dSLR?

<evil grin, ducks and runs>

Perhaps I'll need to go see it after all...
you need a big mixing desk to feed all the multitrack recorders and a rode videomic to get some ambient sound to sync to!

Seriously the principles would be the same but you would also need the human beings to do it properly and that is where most self shoot DSLR users fail at the first hurdle as doing proper sep sound is not a one person single mic operation!
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Old January 8th, 2013, 01:40 PM   #6
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Wow, amazing sound. Jon is spot on as usual. Les Miserable is a must see for anyone who films for a living.

Sorry but you will not get sound like that on a DSLR.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 03:05 PM   #7
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Not sound related, but watch the focus in the film. We're talking about closeups from a Steadicam of a moving actor with long takes and shallow DOF. The 1st AC was under some real pressure. One bad move and he/she could trash a golden performance. In fact, there were some scenes where you could see focus being lost just frames before a cut.

The boom op clearly needed to nail each take as well, but one can fix a bad boom move with gain and EQ, if not punch-ins. A critical job, but not quite as pressure packed as the focus puller gig.

Personally, I loved the look. Real film. Shallow DOF. Deep, warm colors. It really fit the dreamy, historical mood. "I dreamed a dream..."
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Old January 8th, 2013, 03:11 PM   #8
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Gary and Paul: that was VERY tongue in cheek... based on frequently asked questions here and elsewhere... I'm stirring the pot...
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Old January 8th, 2013, 03:48 PM   #9
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

I know Shaun but but my point is that the camera that they used to shoot Les Mis didn't do the sound either and just like a DSLR is not capable of doing decent sound.

And if they used a zoom whatever or a rode videomic with the same camera they still would not get the decent sound that you hear!

You can not change the laws of physics and the disciplines required to do good quality audio, period! and I bet they prepared and rehearsed till they were happy to go for a take rather than just slapping some kit onto the job and hoping it will sync up with plural eyes later!
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Old January 8th, 2013, 04:20 PM   #10
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Got it Shaun, we all need to laugh more every day, thanks.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 04:41 PM   #11
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

The co-operation, research and testing of the audio chain by consummate professionals, right through from the mics to the final result
before starting any filming, was the biggest factor in the success of the actual sound of Les Mis.

Just imagine recording 24 DPA lav mics in pouring rain, put most soundies in the Laughing Academy. I had a brief look in there once or twice, it's not nice.

As Simon Hayes says it's a once in a lifetime job. Well whatever he was paid will be quadrupled in coming years, just doing the speaking circuit.
Sound guys will pay just to shake his hand.

imo everyone in the sound crew will get an Oscar.

Cheers.
President of the Simon Hayes Fan Club.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 04:47 PM   #12
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Right there with you Allan. Nice to appreciate and see the results from the best.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 05:46 PM   #13
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Certainly is Paul, with all that mega gear involved on set and at Abbey Road, how about this for a contrast ..

the foley for Les Mis was done way outback in Oz, waaaaaaaaay outback About FeetnFrames | Feet'n'Frames | john@feetnframes.com.au

To get to the Oscars, John will have to take a horse to Adelaide, 757 to Sydney, then a Jumbo to LA.

Cheers.
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Old January 8th, 2013, 05:49 PM   #14
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Wow, cool location
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Old January 8th, 2013, 06:02 PM   #15
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Re: The Sound of Les Miserables ..

Mate it's hot as blazes out there .. 44C here yesterday and 53C (128F) on the court at the NSW Tennis Championships.
I offered to lay in some racquet and ball hits, but unlike the above, there's no budget :)

Cheers.
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