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Old March 31st, 2006, 05:08 PM   #1
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On Set Noise, whats' the secret?

Hello again,

I forgot to ask this question in my previous post. Check this clip out: http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...camera&pl=true Everytime I watch special features on DVDs and I hear the Director talking while the film is rolling instructing the actor(s) to do whatever he says or what not.

Well than how is it that we never hear the directors voice or other people voices on in the film?
What is the secret?
Or maybe they only talk during the Rehersal?

I know its a silly question, but I always wanted to know an answer to this :)

Thanks again,
Joey
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Old March 31st, 2006, 05:20 PM   #2
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Joey,

In major films, not much of the on-set audio is even used in the final film. Certainly ambient noise and foley is added to the mix in post-production. Also, any dialog recorded on-set is done with a shotgun microphone that is highly directional, it only picks up what you point it at. That dialog is heavily processed in post, eliminating any set noise. Further, lots of dialog is completely re-recorded during post-production.

Josh
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Old March 31st, 2006, 05:28 PM   #3
 
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It'll depend on the film, but bear in mind that a lot of work is done ADR, or Automated Dialog Replacement, also referred to as "looping." This is how many big pix are done, but the same holds true for smaller budget films too. Additionally, sets using wild audio will ask for quiet, and that's when the shoot begins. It's entirely scene dependent.
This article might help you understand it
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Old March 31st, 2006, 06:08 PM   #4
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also, when you see a director giving directions during a take, it is very rarely at the same time as the actor is speaking, as this can distract the actor and screw up their performance, the director will usually wait for a pause in the dialogue before delivering directions. A good soundman will always record some atmos tracks of the room noise and they will be mixed together in the edit, covering up the director's words
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Old April 2nd, 2006, 08:03 PM   #5
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Fellas,

Thanks alot for your comments. I was thinking of that its all done in post production.

Joshua: Does a shotgun mic only pick up the noise its pointing to? What about the noises where the shotgun is not pointed to will it pick that up also?

Douglas: I checked out the site, i think i need to register to read that artical so I will do that and I'll post a comment if i dont get some things.

Paul: Directors will mostly give direction during a pause in the dialog. What did u mean a good soundman will record some ATMOS "Atmosphere" traks of the room noises? Meaning like ambient noise in the room and then just cover it over the Directors words?

Fellas you all been a big help, I love posting questions on here I find it that I get such a great help. Thanks again and please by all means reply back to my posts if you have something to ad.

Regards,
JOey
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Old April 2nd, 2006, 11:44 PM   #6
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Joey,

Every microphone has a unique pickup pattern, from "omni" mics which pick up fairly equally from all directions, to "cardiod" which are directional pretty much from the front, to "hyper cardiod" which have a narrow degree of pickup front the middle front. There are also "figure eight" mics, but I never fully understood them. And each mic within a class will have a slightly varying pickup pattern (and response curve) that makes it unique.

Josh
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 12:52 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey Dee
Does a shotgun mic only pick up the noise its pointing to? What about the noises where the shotgun is not pointed to will it pick that up also?
The simple answer is yes.

Tomlinson Holman's book Sound for Film and Television comes with a CD. Part of the CD includes a mic demo meant as an introduction to microphone pickup patterns for first-year film students at USC: Holman, on a sound recording stage (the Spielberg Scoring Stage, IIRC), walks around a centrally-placed microphone and talks at it. ("Now I'm in front of the microphone, 0 degrees off its pickup axis. Now I'm to its right, 90 degrees. Now I'm behind it"... etc.) and you can hear his voice being attenuated as he moves into the microphone's least sensitive areas of the pickup pattern (or not, if he's got an omni mic set up). It gets quieter when he goes directly behind the shotgun, but disappears completely.

So if you're on location and using a hypercardioid (shotgun) microphone, that distant airplane/freight train/refrigerator/gas generator/goofball craft services girl that won't shut up during takes--these things are going to be more or less audible in playback. The best way to eliminate unwanted sound from your track is to nip it in the bud, at the source, during shooting. Control, control, control: which is why very early on, Hollywood invented the soundstage.
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 07:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey Dee
Fellas,
...
Paul: Directors will mostly give direction during a pause in the dialog. What did u mean a good soundman will record some ATMOS "Atmosphere" traks of the room noises? Meaning like ambient noise in the room and then just cover it over the Directors words?
...
Regards,
JOey
With almost any audio editing software you don't need to "cover" one sound with another. You can expand the timescale in your workstation and cut out almost any sound and replace it with another or with silence, replacing even fractions of words or sounds in between words.

ATMO is also called "room tone." Every location has its own unique "sound of silence" and a wise sound person will record a minute or so of it on the set. Every one just stands still, quietly, while it's recording. Then this is looped and run under the scene. True silence where a soundtrack has been edited is very disconcerting and unrealistic - room tone filling those gaps helps it all hold together.
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 08:10 AM   #9
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Regarding the impression that may have been given that much of the dialogue recorded on set will be later looped--looping is a last resort as it generally results in a less "true" performance, and every effort is to make production audio as clean as possible so that it will be heard in the final film.

Most soundmen I work with resort to shotguns only when they are forced to keep the mike a certain distance from the actors due to framing. When working in close they will use compact mikes like the Schoeps series to get the most natural sound.

As far as the original question, as a rule directors don't interrupt the flow of a take to call out directions unless there is a specific verbal cue that will later be replaced with a sound effect or something similar, although as you guessed there might be some direction given during rehearsal.
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Old April 3rd, 2006, 05:54 PM   #10
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Turn off AC. Unplug refrigerator. Shoot neighbor's dog.
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Old April 6th, 2006, 04:04 AM   #11
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And remember to switch the refrigerator back on after the shoot!
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Old April 6th, 2006, 04:36 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Jefferies
And remember to switch the refrigerator back on after the shoot!
And to help you remember, when you turn it off put your carkeys inside it! <g>
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Old April 6th, 2006, 07:29 PM   #13
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Thanks alot everyone.

I have been reading alot the past few days on this subject. Thanks alot and I will remember to turn off/on the freg :)

Charles: http://www.schoeps.de/E-2004/news.html this is a great site thanks alot mate. Which microphone would you recommend me to start with? I have a Sony DV camcordr trv19. Also just to get off topic for a second or two, with the camera that I have is it possible to shoot a cinematic look for a short film i want to make? I have Final Cut Studio i can get a plug in at 24fps also I can play with the gamma, contrast, colour correction with the softwares that I have on my Mac. I am saving money to get a Xl2 but for now I have been playing around with this cam.

here's the cam: http://www.dvspot.com/reviews/sony/t...ew/index.shtml

Joey

Regards,
Joey
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