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Topic: 16mm film in mono sound: How to mix for both stereo and mono?

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  1. #1

    16mm film in mono sound: How to mix for both stereo and mono?

    Hello,

    I'm working on a student film that will ultimately be dubbed in mono sound, as 16mm film only has one track for audio, yet the filmmakers told me to "do all your work in stereo for the DVD version," so I'm looking for advice for a healthy balance between the two. I've never worked in mono, so I dont know how much this will effect my work, but doing test mono compression in Logic shows that its a HUGE difference in quality of sound! Frankly, my stereo mixes sound a million times better!!

    So my question is, how do I best mix this project to avoid a huge sound change when it gets collapsed from stereo to mono? What should I be aware of in terms of stereo placement, effects, etc? Is my best bet to do two separate mixes, one stereo and one mono, mixing both from scratch? I've never worked in mono before, and would appreciate any advice I can get.

    Thank you in advance for sharing your expertise to this student composer.

  2. #2

    Re: 16mm film in mono sound: How to mix for both stereo and mono?

    Quote Originally Posted by JT3_Jon



    So my question is, how do I best mix this project to avoid a huge sound change when it gets collapsed from stereo to mono?
    It's a really obvious solution, but I'd make two mixes as I go along, your main one in stereo, and then a second once you've re-balanced for those big sounds that shrink down to nothing, the things that will inevitably stick out when they blended in before, and in particular you'll want to change the reverb balance - stereo reverb can react oddly to mono-ing. There'll only be a few things to do, but you won't be cringing when they show the film OR the DVD.

    Good luck with it!

    Barrie

  3. #3

    Re: 16mm film in mono sound: How to mix for both stereo and mono?

    Oh, another thing, when you are making the mono mix - if you have an external amplifier for your monitors and you can adjust the stereo balance (or mock this up another way) so that you're only hearing one speaker, I always found that you get a better impression of the mix that way. I'm not sure of the physics of that, but when I started doing stuff for TV we were always encouraged to do that to check for mono/stereo compatibility. It wasn't THAT long ago but some people were still watching on TVs with one 4 inch oval speaker of dodgy quality!
    I'd insist on two mixes being used. After all, if the DVD is an actual copy of the real deal (the film) then BOTH will be in mono.

    BB

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