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I need help with the audio sync concept.


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#1 precious nchanji

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Posted 23 May 2008 - 12:09 AM

I have never used a film camera before and i am confused on the whole concept of sound syncing.

I understand that some cameras have time code generators, but i don't know if these generators

are used to input time code on the film or on the slate. If it is on the film, then why is a slate still

placed in front of the camera and where does the slate gets it's own timecode? Also today, while

browsing the Aaton website i came across one of their film cameras called A minima. On the

website it says that this camera can sync video and sound without the use of a slate. I also want to

know how this is possible?
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#2 Nate Downes

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Posted 23 May 2008 - 06:59 AM

Simple, you crystal sync the camera and the audio recorder. The quartz crystal occilates at a specific frequency, and the electronics of both the camera and recorder sync themselves up to that frequency, thus they both run at the exact same speed, hence you can sync up audio with the film footage.
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#3 John Brawley

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Posted 23 May 2008 - 09:35 AM

I have never used a film camera before and i am confused on the whole concept of sound syncing.

I understand that some cameras have time code generators, but i don't know if these generators

are used to input time code on the film or on the slate. If it is on the film, then why is a slate still

placed in front of the camera and where does the slate gets it's own timecode? Also today, while

browsing the Aaton website i came across one of their film cameras called A minima. On the

website it says that this camera can sync video and sound without the use of a slate. I also want to

know how this is possible?



The traditional method is to use two bits of wood banging together to provide both an audible and visual method of syncronising sound with pictures.

One way of making it easier in post to find the audio take to match your picture take it to transmit the timecode via cable or radio transmitter from your audio recorder to a timecode display built into a slate, also known as a timecode slate.

Some more modern cameras have timecode generators built into them, which can actually record onto the film itself the same timecode that the sound device is recording. Panavision and Aaton use Aatoncode and Arri use arricode.

Aatoncode works very reliably and it means you don't have to use a slate, though many choose to continue to use one for several reasons. For starters, lot's of people get nervous about it not working so they use the slate as a backup.

The second important reason that people still use slates, is because it's a ritual that actors (and everyone else on set) have been getting used to for the last 80 years. It's the film making equivalent of "on your marks, get set, GO !"

It helps everyone focus on getting ready for a *performance*.

Arricode works far less reliably than Aatoncode and is very rarely used.

jb
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