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Question about Audio recording.....


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#1 Nick Castronuova

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 06:36 PM

I was wondering how to sync up audio/dialogue with super 8 film. What I mean is, do you have to worry about crystal sync/60 htz, etc? Can anyone give me a brief rundown? Thanks.

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#2 Matt Pacini

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 07:31 PM

That's a big question, with lots of answers. You should list the gear you're using.

1. Cameras.
All S8 cameras are NOT crystal synced. Different brands float around at different rates. I tested a Bauer 750XL-S against a Nikon R-10, a Nizo 6050 and a Canon 1014XL-S, and they all floated approximately the same; about 5-7 frames per minute.
If you're doing short takes, you won't notice it, but any takes of dialog longer than say, 20 seconds, you will have to stretch or compress your audio in software to fit.
These cameras are as steady (or steadier) as anything that doesn't have a crystal sync modification, which will cost you around $500 if you want to do that.

2. Audio gear.
DO NOT USE ANALOG GEAR LIKE A CASSETTE TAPE!!!! Much to my surprise, those float much more than the cameras.
If you're using a digital format (DAT, MiniDisc, or any video formats (recording your audio onto the sound track of a video camera), it will be dead on, but again, you will probably be editing it in the computer afterwards to match perfectly. Sony SoundForge is great for this.

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#3 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 04 January 2008 - 11:41 PM

The goal is to get the recording speed to match the playback speed exactly for both the audio and the camera.

The problem with an audiocassette is that no matter what speed it records at the odds are pretty much 99% or greater that it will playback at a different speed. Now factor in a camera that films at an unknown speed and then is played back at a different speed. The syncing has just become exponentially more difficult.

So, if you at least know that the audio recorder will both record and playback at the exact same speed, you've made the job of syncing to a non-sync camera a bit easier, but not as easy as also using a crystal sync camera and transferring the film at the same crystal sync speed it was shot at.
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