Category: Community


My first full day in SF was quite an eventful one. I met up with Shaun Farley (from Dynamic Interference) to head up to Skywalker Ranch for the MPSE Sound Panel. We had some time to kill, so we headed over to Pier 39 because he was told there were some Seals that hung out over there. We got there, and sure enough, there were a bunch! They made all sorts of crazy sounds! Shaun had his Sony D50 with him and I had my Olympus LS-10, so we grabbed some (contaminated) recordings. Too many people around – but it was fun nonetheless. (Side note – went back there Sunday night with Nick Meade with a 702 and MKH60 / 30 M/S rig and boom pole. Much better results then.) I also might mention that it’s not the easiest thing to deal with these animals – very unpredictable, and lots of cross-talk between them. I tip my hat to Tim Prebble on his wonderful seal library – I now have a better idea how much work it must have been…

Pier 39 Seals

So we left the pier, somewhat deflated because of all the crowd noise in the recordings, but all was good. So we’re walking around and Shaun spots a submarine docked nearby with a “Submarine Tour” sign near it, and he says to me, “Hey, want to go get some submarine ambiences?” I figured, “hey, why not,” so we headed over, paid a few bucks each, and headed onto the sub.

Sub


I was one of those self-guided tours, and there was nobody else around, so we basically had this entire sub to ourself. We started recording ambiences. A few minutes later, Shaun realized that most of the buttons / switches / levers / wheels weren’t locked down, and made some killer sounds! So we literally recorded just about everything that we found. After all was done, we ended up spending about 1.5 hours on this sub, and only saw about 7 or 8 people the entire time we were down there. I haven’t gotten a chance to edit any of the sounds yet, but as soon as I do, I’ll put some samples up! Who knows, maybe it will become a HartFX library, if the recordings came out!

So we headed out over the Golden Gate Bridge to meet up with Nathan Moody (from Noise Jockey) before carpooling up to the Ranch. To quote Nathan, “I can confirm that there are unicorns and triple rainbows at Skywalker Ranch.” Enough said about that. Any more might ruin the magic around it. But about the MPSE event – amazing. Got to talk to Randy Thom, Gary Rizzo, Al Nelson, and many other awesome people! I won’t expound on the event too much, but I will say that it is definitely worth the 1 hour is takes to digest it. Michael Coleman over at Soundworks Collection had his crew there covering the event. You can watch the panel here.

MPSE Sound Panel


Afterwards, Gary Rizzo gave Shaun, Nathan and I a “nickel tour” of the facilities there, but swore us to secrecy about a certain few things, so that’s all I can say about that! However, a special thanks goes out to Gwen for allowing us to have Gary for another 10 minutes :-)

To top off the night, we had the first ever “Sound Guy Scotch/etc.. Tasting” over at Nathan’s place. I came out liking the “Brennivan” from Iceland the best. Cheers to Gunner from Euphonix for gifting that one to Nathan! Go pick some up if you can – very cool drink. The A.H Hirsch Reserve Straight Burbon Whiskey was very good as well!

Very cool day. Got to traipse around SF, Skywalker, and chill with Shaun and Nathan. Early to bed though, since the exhibits opened the next morning. Next up, some of the info I gathered there!

Wow! Tons of stuff going on this week! Big news from Avid, great stuff from many microphone companies, Izotope, and tons more!

The AES trade show floor was considerably smaller than usual, but there was a lot of cool stuff there. If you spent some time digging and talking to reps, inventors, presidents, etc… there was a lot of cool info to be gathered. I did my best at grabbing pics and info about topics and products pertaining to audio post and field recording / production audio. I’ll cover a lot of it here, but if there’s something I don’t cover that you’re wondering about, feel free to ask me if I happened to come across what you’re curious about!

129th AES in SF

I’m going to categorize my posts by topic, so there will be quite a few between here and Sonic Terrain.

Stay tuned – many posts to come this week!

After about 8 weeks of non-stop work, I’ve finally launched HartFX.net! I have my first library for sale starting today, my Industrial library! I posted a demo a week ago, but here it is again, for good measure :-)

Check it out over at HartFX.net !
HartFX

Excerpt of the library description from the site:

It’s HUGE. As in almost 24gb of sound. All in 192k/24b. If you played all of the the files back to back, it would take you over 5 1/2 hours to listen to it all. And that’s not even the cool part.
This is kind of a unique library. I recorded with a number of microphone (up to 8 at times) into two Deva V recorders (a single one didn’t like recording 8 channels of 192k/24b!). Then in post, I mixed and matched different mics to make the baddest, beefiest sounding tools I could. But the cool thing is that I’ve also included the separate mics on their own, all time aligned and all, so you can do your own mix, or just chose one perspective you like for a specific sound. So there are over 1000 sounds, but sometimes you have 5 different perspectives of the same sound. Completely customizable! It’s all labelled in the metadata too, so you can search by how many feet the mic was from the sound if you’d like, or from Close, Medium, or Far Perspectives.

I FINISHED IT!

My Industrial sound library, that is. The Complete HD version is 23.54GB! That’s HUGE!!! 281 files, over 5.5 hours of sound! I will be releasing it very soon, so check back for details in the next day or two. For now, here’s a demo of some of the sounds from the library!

INDUSTRIAL 001 Complete HD Samples by Colin Hart

Let me know what you think!

I’m proud and privileged to be able to announce the launch of a new field recording site, Sonic Terrain! The site is the brainchild of Miguel Isaza (author of Designing Sound) and Co-founded by Nathan Moody (author of Noise Jockey). I was very flattered when they asked me to be an official contributor and editor on the site, so you will be able to find a number of posts over there from yours truly. The site is going to be a wonderful addition to the online sound community!

Excerpt from Sonic Terrain:

Sonic Terrain will be a portal for the art, science, and craft of field recording. It will aggregate information and publish exclusive content focused on sounds recorded outside the studio. Topics will be cross-disciplinary and focused on the use of field recordings in a variety of contexts, including sound design for visual media, music, fine art, scientific research, phonography, and much more.

Mission Statement

This site will encourage users to not just hear the world around them, but to listen to it, record it, and reflect upon it. It will serve as a media outlet and educational resource for field recordists and anyone interested in the sound of the world around them: laypeople, sound designers, sound mixers, multi-media artists, musicians, scientists, researchers, acoustic ecology conservationists, and more. These disciplines will be united and cross-pollinated to expose all users to aspects of sound and recording they may not have considered.

What’s Inside?

Here you will find a lot of things, Including interviews with all kind of sound recordists, sound designers, musicians, researchers, sound artists, stories from recordists in the field, tips, tutorials and guides given by sound pros, challenges and homework, news about gear, accessories for recordists, workshops, events, and more.

The site is launching today! Head over to www.sonic-terrain.com to check it out!

David Sonnenschein – author, scholar, sound designer, and friend of mine – is hosting a 6 week webinar series. I’ve attended a number of his seminars in the past and they are wonderful. I was able to present some of my work during one of the sessions and got live feedback from David as well as many of the other designers attending online. It’s cool being able to get feedback from other professionals in that manner.

Anyways, here are the details for the series:

SOUND DESIGN FOR PROS – Free Intro Webinar Aug. 24
presented by David Sonnenschein, author
Sound Design: The Expressive Power of Music, Voice and Sound Effects in Cinema

Live and interactive on Tuesday Aug. 24, 9-10:30am PST
Recording available to view anytime after Aug. 24.
FREE Registration here: sounddesignforpros.com/webinars/

This free Intro Webinar will give you an overview of topics essential for the creative, professional sound designer that will be covered in detail in the upcoming six-week webinar series beginning Sept. 8. You will see and hear audiovisual demonstrations that will stimulate your auditory mind and sharpen your abilities to produce powerful soundtracks. We will also have an open chat for your questions related to sound design.

* Master theory and application of your audio craft to become an in-demand professional
* Discover tools and tricks to find an expressive voice and maximize your creativity
* Impact the audience effectively on intellectual, emotional and visceral levels
* Build successful communication skills with job-hiring producers and the post team

WEBINAR TOPICS
1. THE INTELLIGENT EAR – Listening Modes, Sound Qualities and Bipolarities
By deconstructing the listening experience into discrete elements, the grammar of sound design language gives you access for clear and powerful communication.
2. PLUG-IN POWER – Size, Distance, Speed and Non-Physical Reality
Understanding principles of real world acoustics and palette of subjective auditory experiences offers you enlightened use of digital processing tools.
3. RULES OF the BRAIN ROAD – Psychoacoustic Principles and Applications
When the curtain is lifted on how humans process auditory information, you master the art of sonic illusion (creating and hiding) as essential tools in sound editing.
4. SONIC TIME-SPACE CONTINUUM – Soundscapes and Sound Spheres
Creating an effective cinematic space depends on familiarity with your physical and social environment, and the knowledge of how to psychologically orient yourself through audio.
5. AUDIO BUILDING BLOCKS – Constructing Sound Events and Sound Objects
Mastering techniques of sequencing, layering and mixing will infuse sonic fragments (sound effects, words) with meaningful messages (sound phrases, sentences).
6. PEOPLE, PLOT AND PASSION – Narrative Structure and Sound Mapping
Bottom line, how can sound help tell your story? By understanding dramatic elements of character and emotion, the map can guide you to creative and impactful decision-making.

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David Sonnenschein’s book is legendary, and the interactive webinar which presents and analyzes examples of the theory, truly brings the material to life. – Nathan Moody, NoiseJockey.net

David gives a lot of fantastic theory and examples about the emotional and technical side of sound design with detailed explanations, presentations and audiovisual material. If you enjoyed David’s book you will love his webinars. – Miguel Isaza, DesigningSound.org

David Sonnenschein is without a doubt an expert on sound design for film, television, and multimedia projects. His impressive knowledge and easy-going personality make his classes both informative and enjoyable. – Joel Krantz, Sound Editor/Mixer and Author, Pro Tools Post Production Techniques

———————–

If you can’t make it to the live event, you can watch the recording anytime after August 24. Registration is the same for the live and recorded webinar.

This free event is an intro to a six-week webinar series that will begin on Sept. 8. For more info go to sounddesignforpros.com.


I hope to see you there!

Tutorial Series

As many of you know, aside from doing my freelance work, I teach production audio and SFX recording techniques at Full Sail University about 8 – 10 days out of the month. I am constantly working with high end gear, and writing tutorials on how to use it. One thing that I have noticed, and that many of my students have mentioned, and I’m sure all of you know, is that there are very few resources out there on production audio. If you want to know how to sync timecode wirelessly between a Deva V and a Sony EX3, you have to find a forum and hope someone else has done it and knows how to. If you want to stripe TC onto your 5D from your 744T so you don’t have to manually sync in post, how do you do that? Or something like building a custom rig where the backup recorder isn’t dependent on the primary recorder.

So basically, I’d like to write a series of tutorials on these topics. But I don’t want to just aimlessly write them and hope that they’re useful to someone somewhere. I’d like to take a survey of who needs to know what, and start from there.

So ask away! What do you want to learn? What do you have trouble with in the field? What pieces of gear do you have trouble syncing up? What problems are you looking for solutions to?

Social Sound Design has quickly become my go to place for all of my sound design questions. It is a great forum. One of the things that makes it truly great is the high concentration of professionals who actually know what they’re doing, aren’t afraid to say they don’t know, and aren’t afraid to ask for help. Also, there is a complete lack of flaming there. I used to frequent some of the other sound forums out there, but I just can’t stand the flaming or derailing of users’ threads. SSD is completely different. It is a very professional, courteous environment.

I’ve been a member for a bit over 3 months now. There have been some great questions and some great answers. I’d like to take a few minutes to list some of my favorites.

You Know You’re a Sound Recordist If…


Foley Recording Musts


What would sound sound like at the speed of sound?


Listening to Your Own Work


Video Files, Frame Rates and Codecs Oh My


What Does A Boom Operator Do?


Got Any Stories About Dangerous Recordings?


There are so many more good ones. Obviously I won’t post all of them – that would be silly. There are some great resources on this site. Ones that are very difficult to find elsewhere. It is also promoting the overall trent of “Sound Community” where designers are getting together and sharing resources. Great stuff going on here!

A big thanks has to go out to Andrew Spitz, the creator of this site! Such an awesome job dude! Check out Andrew’s blog as well, {sound + design}

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