Tips for timbre matching wild & dubbed dialog at
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Old August 7th, 2007, 04:04 PM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Brookline, MA
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Tips for timbre matching wild & dubbed dialog

I think I can adequately adjust the amount of reverb, but how do you know which frequency bands need fixing? I use trial and error, but it only goes so far. I thought of comparing the frequency spectrums, but that idea ground to a halt because the wild track has lots of noise that mask the dialog (otherwise we would not have had to dub it in the first place).
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Old August 7th, 2007, 06:11 PM   #2
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Location: Camas, WA, USA
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One trick is to use a parametric EQ and set up a very narrow peak. Now move the frequency around during playback. You will easily hear which frequencies are being touched.

One technique is to find an offending tone. For instance, a recorded viola might sound very "nasal." After locating this tone with a peak, reduce the amplitude setting to form a valley and vary the width until it sounds right.

Also, if you want to boost some frequencies, use a very gradual slope. Sharp cuts are effective. Sharp peaks usually are not.

Also, don't overlook compression and expansion. If you ever try mixing a distorted guitar with an acoustic, you will find that the electric can be very flat (compressed), while the acoustic might have wild peaks and valleys. Put them together, and they might sound like oil and water - they don't mix. Compress the acoustic a bit, and the blend can improve substantially.

Just today my son told me about doing an outdoor shoot with a long shotgun - except during a few takes with the on-camera mic. After review, he was really shocked - the on-board audio sounded better! After a close listen, he realized that the camera's auto-gain was acting like a compressor on the on-board mic, and the overall volume was higher. He compressed the shotgun takes a bit and adjusted the gain. After that, the shotgun sounded MUCH better - and the on-board takes were still usable.
Jon Fairhurst
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