Last week Max and I spent a couple of session recording and designing the groundwork for the sound effects in the Vauban Prime trailer sound replacement project. Our first session was a recording session in the C24 Studio, where we recorded a variety of source material including leather sounds, cymbal collisions, the foley box sliding across the floor, and more. These are all textures that will be layered together to create the final effects. We recorded these sounds with the Sennheiser 421, the AKG C414, and/or a Shure SM57 and took turns between roles of foley artist and recording engineer in order to get different perspectives on a performance of the same foley material. All of this freshly-recorded sound was recorded in 96khz in case we decided to time-stretch the material in our DAWs.
The session didn’t go all according to plan, however, as the C24 desk and the Fireface interface was not properly connected to the main computer (a problem we had not been advised of prior to the session), and a member of the technical team had to improvise a temporary recording setup for us using his laptop computer and a separate interface. Though this was a setback, we still managed to get all of our recordings done within our allocated time.
We managed to get some good sounds out of this session, including several interesting variations of cymbal collisions using different performance techniques, as well as some nice thuds from kicking the foley box with the side of my heel, which we got a particularly nice sound using the 421 mic. We also tried various performance techniques to do with the leather recordings, including holding the leather mid-air, laying one piece on the ground and folding it over on itself, as well as dropping one piece of leather on the other.
The whoosh sounds were a little more problematic, however, as the studio has quite a loud noise floor and the materials available did not provide a loud enough sound or an ideal tone. We decided that we would continue with the recordings with a high gain and try to resolve these issues through audio repair plugins and equalisation. I also decided to try blowing into one of the rubber tubes and waving the end of it rapidly from side to side in front of the mic, to see if I could get a sound or at least a texture for the vortex sound towards the end of the trailer, which I think proved as an effective technique and should be more appropriate once it has been processed in the design phase.
Our next session was in the MIDI Studio, where we experimented further with the synthesizers available to us, though we couldn’t replicate something as interesting as our original recordings from the start of the trimester, so we instead decided to spend this time brainstorming processing ideas for the screech of the Moa and some synthesized impact sounds.
There was another, two-hour session planned for this week, which was for recording the dialogue. Due to our unfamiliarity with the S6 studio and our short session time, we did not make adequate use of this session and have agreed with our voice actor that we will move the session to this coming Tuesday instead. This week we plan to finish recording and editing all of the source material and dialogue, as well as Max finishing the music for the project, and in the following week we will begin mixing in 5.1.