Despite the very exact title, audio post production companies perform a wide and varied selection of services.
Firstly, audio post production generally refers to everything you do after the the material has been recorded. So, editing the audio takes from a shoot, perhaps. But audio post production companies would just be called audio editors if that was all they did. Audio post production means ensuring that all the audio elements in a production sound as good as they possibly can. In a film, for example, an audio post production companies would provide editing, digital sound processing such as noise reduction or effects like reverb. they will create foley. This is the art of recreating a sound to match the action in the frame. An example of. this is footsteps. To the uninitiated, it is surprising the amount of foley required in a modern feature film. Many modern films don’t actually use the recorded dialogue, preferring to do it later. This is called ADR, or automated dialogue replacement. The reasons are usually budget related. It’s cheaper to shoot a scene in a location that doesn’t need to be controlled completely. It doesn’t matter if exterior noise gets into the recording because it will be rerecorded in a controlled space. The actors watch the scene on a screen and voice what they see. Sometimes it isn’t even the actor who was in the scene. Here’s an interesting article on ADR Audio post production companies provide this service. In fact, Nostairway Creative did audio post production on a feature film last year that used the original audio for most of the scenes. However, two scenes were shot in very reverberant places – a corridor and a stairwell – so we recorded the actors in our studio revoicing the scene. It can be tricky, but technology is certainly our friend under these circumstances.
“If music be the food of love, play on.”
Audio post production companies don’t just do dialogue, foley and sound effects. Music plays a vital part in most audio post sessions. It is sometimes left to the post production company to choose the music that will sit under the other audio. In my experience, this will usually result in heated exchanges between the director and the post audio company. Music is a very personal thing to non-professionals and consumers. Choices are often made based on whether the director likes the music or not.
Literally creating a sound. Sound design is sometimes confused with sound effects or even music composition. But it’s really used as way of creating an atmosphere that music or effects would fail to do.
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