Over the past several months our growing Audio segment has been adding key courses that aim to teach both the foundations of good audio practices as well as important audio software skills. This week’s featured five free movies were compiled with some help from our content manager for Audio, and lynda.com go-to Pro Tools author, David Franz, and focus on movies that are all centered around a very specific theme: improving the way you interact with your music, and the quality of the sound you create.
1. Recording audio in Pro Tools
In this excerpt from chapter four of Pro Tools 10 Essential Training, the aforementioned David Franz shows you how to create a new audio track in Pro Tools. While David takes you step-by-step through the process, you’ll also hear his real-world practical reasons for why one might choose one setting over another. Bonus: You get to hear David play the guitar.
Well-timed long delays (echoes) are an excellent way to fill in part of a song’s rhythm track. Examples of echo effects can be heard in current electronic music, classic rock, reggae, and many other genres. Where would U2 be without the sound of The Edge’s delay pedals? Where would Steel Pulse be without their delayed snare hits?
The reason echo effects work so well is their ability to stay in-time (locked to the tempo of the song) and their ability to create interesting rhythms that add dimension to the overall sound of a song.
When creating delay effects with long echoes, you can define specifically when echoes are heard in rhythm with the entire song. For instance, you can set echoes to repeat every quarter note or every eighth note. Or, you can get more complicated and create a unique rhythmic pattern by placing the echoes on multiple subdivisions within the groove of the song.
For this week’s Featured Five post, I’ve chosen five free movies from our library that emphasize efficient, organized, collaborative communication. Sometimes this means formatting your work so that people can find and use it easily, sometimes it means presenting your data in a visually organized way so that people can immediately comprehend it, and other times it means effectively using the features of your software application that are designed to help you track important collaborative notes. At the heart of it, it’s always about communicating in an organized way to make your work more efficient and your projects more successful.
1. Communicating effectively and efficiently with colleagues
Good organized communication is critical for collaboration. In this movie from chapter four of Effective Meetings, Dave Crenshaw discusses the importance of the one-to-one meeting, and why establishing one-to-one meetings can not only increase effectiveness, but efficiency as well:
2. Choosing your favorite images to share from a photo shoot
Lightroom is a great program for developing your digital photographs, but it also has a lot of pure organizational power that you can use to find just the right image you (or someone else) are looking for. In this movie from his new course Photoshop Lightroom 4 Essentials: Organizing and Sharing with the Library Module, Chris Orwig shows you how to use Lightroom’s built-in ability to quickly tag photos with picks, rejects, star-ratings, and colored flag labels. Then, once you have using notations and labels down, you can use your tags to quickly find the photos you want to share:
3. Sharing complicated information visually
Sometimes complicated information is best initially understood and communicated with graphics. In this movie from chapter one of Infographics: Visualizing Relationships, Shane Snow walks you through the infographic creative process and demonstrates setup on an infographic example that contains 24 entities, or ‘characters’ as he calls them:
4. Documenting your audio post-production session in Pro Tools
Creating a film or video with a lot of moving parts takes clear, documented communication. In this movie from chapter three of Audio for Film and Video with Pro Tools, Scott Hirsch takes you though the preparation and documentation process that makes a meeting between the film’s director, producer, music composer, and other creative forces effective. This meeting is called a spotting session, because its purpose is to spot exact points in the video where sound ideas can develop:
5. Making your web site accessible to improve human and computer communication
One main reason to have a web site is to communicate efficiently with others—and with web technology, that means being able to communicate across a multitude of platforms and interfaces in a language that is clear and easy for humans to understand. In this movie from chapter one of Improving SEO Using Accessibility Techniques, Morton Rand-Hendrickson demonstrates the communication benefits of implementing strong web site accessibility practices that will improve your SEO, and your human-to-human communication:
What other things have you learned on lynda.com about getting files, people, or entire groups organized? Are there any areas you’d like to see us explore in more depth?
Are you feeling inspired to explore more content? Remember, 10 percent of all lynda.com content is free to try. Just click on any of the blue links on any course table of contents page in our library.
See you back next week with five more free selections!
Noisy audio tracks are one of the most common problems encountered when producing video. Voiceover tracks, dialog tracks, background noise for a scene, and any other type of audio source may include unwanted hum, rumbles, or buzzes. Having high-quality audio is a major factor in producing excellent video content. So, what do you do if the audio for your video project is subpar and includes a lot of noise? Here are some tips on how to reduce the noise on your audio tracks.
First, it’s important to know that these unwanted noises are actually made up of harmonic tones, and to start reducing these noises, knowing what to listen for can help.
When you add plug-in effects to your tracks in Pro Tools (EQ, compression, reverb, etc.), your computer needs a little bit of time to process the tracks through the plug-ins. This processing is also not instantaneous. In relation to the other tracks in the Pro Tools session, the track literally plays back a little later than when it was originally recorded. That means, the tracks are no longer time-aligned.
To solve this issue, you can utilize Pro Tools’ Automatic Delay Compensation (ADC). ADC figures out what track has the most delay caused by plug-in processing (including the small amount of delay caused by using busses in your signal routing), then automatically delays every other track to match up with the longest delayed track.
For instance, if your largest amount of plug-in delay equals 1000 milliseconds of delay, then a different track having only 10 milliseconds of delay will actually be delayed an extra 990 milliseconds to align with the other track, so they both are delayed by 1000 milliseconds.
There are several settings for ADC in Pro Tools. Watch this video from the Pro Tools 10 Essential Training course to hear more about the differences between the offered ADC settings.
During a mixing session is usually the time when you’ll need the largest amount of ADC. You’ll likely have plenty of plug-ins that will be causing various amounts of delay on different tracks. Watch the following video to see how to implement Automatic Delay Compensation best in a mixing session.
As part of our focus on audio training expansion, the lynda.com audio segment is pleased to announce the release of a new type of interactive exercise file that brings the author directly inside your Digital Audio Workstation.
In all of our new Foundations of Audio courses, we are now including Get In The Mix interactive exercise files (affectionately called GITMs) that are available to all lynda.com members. GITMs are native, high-fidelity project files purpose-built for your Digital Audio Workstation (DAW). The author uses instructional video and audio tracks to walk you through the session or project, referencing listening examples in the DAW timeline. The author shows you how to effectively use digital signal processing plugins such as compressors, EQs, and delays, by leveraging the DAW’s built-in mix automation capabilities. The result is that you can watch as the authors turn the knobs and tweak the settings of plugins in your DAW in real time. Simply download the relevant GITM .ZIP file from the lynda.com website (located in the exercise files tab on the course’s page), open up the 24-bit session file in your DAW, and press play to follow along with the instructor as they demonstrate how to master a variety of audio production techniques.
GITM files are currently available for Pro Tools and Logic Pro users, and we are looking into rolling out GITM files for additional DAWs in the near future. The GITM sessions are free to any lynda.com member and include, in addition to the author-led training, musical material at the end of each session/project file in the form of practice tracks that you can experiment with on your own.
In addition to the Get in the Mix sessions that all members have access to (about 6-10 GITMs per course), Premium members of the lynda.com Online Training Library® also have access to all of the raw audio example files (WAVs) that are used throughout the GITM-equipped course. These raw audio files include listening examples and real-world audio demonstrations that illustrate production concepts, and can be imported and played within any DAW.
For those who don’t want to use the Get In The Mix files within a DAW, just watch the Foundations of Audio course movies within the lynda.com course player like normal. The course movies designated “Get in the Mix” will automatically play the author’s tutorial demonstration, and you can still stop, start, and rewind as necessary (What’s the difference in a nut shell? GITM exercise files are interactive and play in your DAW; watching the course movies designated “Get in the Mix” in the standard lynda.com player just gives you the instruction—no DAW needed.)
Ever wanted to know how music gets edited into TV shows and movies? In Music Editing for TV and Film in Pro Tools, Skye Lewin shows you how putting music under picture is both an art and a science.
In this course, Skye will discuss how to edit and maneuver audio in Pro Tools, edit music to picture, create alternate audio edits, conform an edit to a picture if the scene has shifted, perform special effects, and use QuickTime to present edit revisions. He also discusses ways to utilize navigation, viewing, editing techniques, and key commands to speed up your editing process so you can focus more time on being creative.
The video used for demonstration in this course is a short film entitled Eli, starring David Anders (Alias, Heroes, 24, Once Upon A Time) and the music used is from composer Simon Hunter (CSI, Burn Notice, Iron Man trailer, Fast 5 trailer).
Pro Tools, the industry standard digital audio workstation, offers users a number of new features in its latest version, Pro Tools 10, including clip gain, real time fades, the ability to bounce your songs directly to your iTunes library, and the ability to share your music directly from Pro Tools with SoundCloud.
Avid has included some new plug-ins and made enhancements to its existing plug-ins, even adding a new plug-in format called AAX. There are also new importing and exporting features, audio engine and disk performance enhancements, extended system capabilities, added support for more file formats, and some interface and nomenclature changes.