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Topic: Does anyone use Real Click tracks ?

  1. #1

    Does anyone use Real Click tracks ?

    We are learning about Click Tracks at school this semester and how the "Click Track" books work .
    Those books have hundreds of pages with corresponding times for each click on different tempos so you can plan direct hits in the soundtrack .

    For example : A crochet at 80.7 tempo is exactly 1.1 seconds ( or something like that ) . That way you would have a bar and a crochet so the direct hit comes on spot .

    I am wondering if they still use those books in Film Making since everything tends to be digital and frame perfect today .

    What do you guys know about this thing generally , have you ever used them ?

  2. #2

    Re: Does anyone use Real Click tracks ?

    Well I haven't really used them. Should I be?

    I don't see how being digital and frame accurate has much to do with this. It's just a method of detemining the right tempo to use to hit some points, and everyone uses some sort of method. With sequencers though, it's pretty easy to adjust the tempo. Maybe if I was living 50 years ago I'd be using a click book. It's a good question and I wonder how many actually do use one.
    Anthony Lombardi, composer

  3. #3

    Re: Does anyone use Real Click tracks ?


    I actually published "The Beats Per Minute Click Book" in the mid-'80s, and there are probably still a few hundred copies of it out there. But I stopped when programs like Cue and Click Track came out, since it was much slower to look up hits in a book. Nowadays Performer has a hit function built in, plus some if not all sequencers can beat in film frame tempos rather than just BPM. Even that's pretty much obsolete in these days of captured reference video, although there probably are some people in smaller countries still using physical streamers and punches.

    My book was based on the Carrol book "Project Tempo," which was in frames/sprockets (1/8th frames) per beat. The reason for my book was that people were starting to use sequencers, and they only beat in BPM in those days.

    When you say click track book*S* - plural - which ones are you talking about? Carrol's book is rightfully copyrighted and was very expensive (because it was computer-generated before personal computers came into being). My book is also copyrighted, so anyone who copies it is technically in violation too (not that I give a flying hoot).

    But I promise you they're not getting rich, because it's all hopelessly out of date. In a way I sort of miss click books, because the time you spent laying out a cue on sketch paper was a necessary part of the routine during which you had an excuse to rest your weary brain!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Dallas, Texas

    Re: Does anyone use Real Click tracks ?

    I still have a "tempo table" somewhere from years and years ago, probably from school, come to think of it.

    However, I think the most direct way to work these days is to picture, with a sequencer. Even if you'll eventually do a paper score and go with a live ensemble, it seems to me that having a mockup already locked to picture--even if it is a really basic sketch which isn't fully fleshed--allows you to get a lot more done. You're going to have to mock up just about anything these days. Even on the kinds of low-budget film projects I've been getting, it's an expectation that the director is going to be able to sit with you and hear your ideas flowing with the picture.

  5. #5

    Re: Does anyone use Real Click tracks ?

    By the way, UREI metronomes are crystal-synced, so their tempo accuracy can be trusted. The sequencers in those days ('80s) couldn't be trusted.

    However, I found that my Yamaha RX-15 drum machine was accurate enough for this, so slaving the sequencer to it would work!

    Nowadays MIDI is synced to a crystal via the digital audio system, so it should be accurate enough that you don't have to worry.

  6. #6

    Re: Does anyone use Real Click tracks ?

    Thanks to everyone for the knowledge , i really had to know because i found it very strange that such a method could be still in use today .

    This is how one of the assignments goes :

    Quote Originally Posted by School Assignment
    Using a tempo speed chosen from one of the following 4 pages, which have been taken from the click book , compose a musical piece that will contain three accurate "dead hits".
    The total length of music is not to exceed 30 seconds with the hits located at 7.58 seconds, 12.92 seconds, and 21.07 seconds . Remember that to achieve a succesful dead hit the occurence needs to be within 0.08 of a second......etc
    I find the comment in bold quite useful

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Batzdorf
    When you say click track book*S* - plural - which ones are you talking about?.....
    Nick i have no idea man , the printed sheets have only click tables on them

    Thanks again

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