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Ilari Sivil

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About Ilari Sivil

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  • Location
    Helsinki, Finland
  • Interested in Sound for Picture
  • About
    Crazy dedicated to sound, dedicated to crazy sounds
  1. ISO's vs. Mix Track

    I usually do a split mix when I'm going straight into a camera, which has been more often than I anticipated as of late. I've found that I'm generally able to assess the sound quality quickly by simply taking the other cup off my ear when I want to focus on either the boom or the lavs, but I might do occasional PFLs or headphone preset switching. When I'm doing a split mix, I'm often dealing with multiple speakers in an unscripted situation and I really, really NEED to know if the lavs get hits or rustle. It's the only chance I have of actually evaluating if what I have is any good, since it's likely I'll only get it once and the environments often chaotic enough to need the lav to be good as well. Checking playback can be a luxury on some gigs. :/ I haven't had the chance to do proper narrative stuff knowing what I know now, so I have woefully little experience mixing into a mono track. I'd love to practice, but I don't know how I'd do it. The ready stuff I've heard sounds like they've actually understood me when I've told them that it's boom left, lavs right. I totally get the dual mono approach, but I've yet to come across people who are that clueless. I guess it's just a matter of time.
  2. ISO's vs. Mix Track

    When I monitor a split mix, I try to get the levels so I'll have a stable-ish center image with the boomed dialogue in the middle. I usually do boom hard left, lavs hard right. Whatever comes up on the sides of the stereo image are inconsistencies, be it backgrounds or handling or rustle. Since they come up on the sides, they're really easy to notice because they'll be pretty distracting. If it's on the left, it's the boom, if it's on the right, it's the lavs. I guess it would be a good idea to mix the lavs a bit lower, but it feels like it would throw me off since the mix would "lean left" all the time.
  3. ISO's vs. Mix Track

    On the 633, I've had pretty good results with giving camera a boom track on the left and a lav mix done by Dugan on the right when I work from the bag. It's also nice enough to monitor and the meters do a good job of telling you what the automix is doing. I record pre-fader ISOs as well in case the Dugan acts weird, and if I'm going into the camera via wireless, I'll record the mix as well. I guess I'd miss the automix if I didn't have it, but I probably could have come up with ways to survive without it. Feels like it's worth the price of admission. I never got the hang of mixing when I was in film school and we weren't really properly taught the art. If I hadn't done good internships, I could have come out of film school thinking that a mix track is unnecessary. Just goes to show that nothing beats real world experience.
  4. The use of compressors in location sound

    I've found that the peaks tend to tickle the limiters set at the default soft knee/16dBu if I try to keep the VU at 0dBu on my 633, it's been sounding good thus far and the sound still retains enough dynamics to be useful in post. I'm not entirely sure if it's best practice, but I've worked with a couple of established mixers that don't seem worry too much about hitting the limiters a little bit. Lately, I've mostly been doing stuff where an editor will do audio post as well, so I haven't really received feedback on my tracks, I've just played them back at home to see how I've managed. The things I've done have sounded good when they're ready and I've checked them out, but I don't know how much has been done to my tracks, if anything. Now that I think about it, I guess I should give some of my recent tracks a spin to see how they handle in post...
  5. #metoo and sexism in general

    ...while they are precisely the people who need to understand these things. With great power comes great responsibility, and all that.
  6. Portabrace “Silent” audio bags.

    The price and weight are pretty attractive. It's weird that they don't have the rubber silencers on the side panel zips though, my Stingray has strings instead of metal tabs on those for silent operation. I like that this has 4 attachment points on top. If I were in the market for a bag, I'd definitely look into this one, happy with my Stingray Small for now, though.
  7. #metoo and sexism in general

    Bravo. That boom op would have had no business wiring up anyone. I really hope they learned something from that. I've also been thinking about this a lot. A couple of times talent have made me feel a bit weird, insinuating that I'd be somehow attracted to them or that wiring people up is why I got into sound. I also kind of hate it when other crew joke about that as well, I'm still a newbie and it's already gotten very old. Any kind of joking around when in wiring situations is a really delicate balancing act, I avoid engaging in any unless the talent takes the lead. I also ask people I haven't worked with before if they've had a mic hidden on them before, unless it's super obvious that they have. There was a good, civil discussion about this on the BOOM Operator-group on Facebook, definitely worth checking out, lots of stories and tips: https://www.facebook.com/groups/293491575232/permalink/10154970992095233/ As with all of these types of things, it seems to be harder on women. :/
  8. How often do you get clean lines on lavs?

    So did you get lavs and packs in there?
  9. Busting the frame.

    Tried it once in front of a green screen, but it didn't work that well. Sure, the sound was good, but because there were moving, blue stage lights, the keying was apparently a pretty arduous job. The moving lights really messed with the keying, thinking back on it, it was pretty amateurish. The moving lights would have been an issue in any case, so it wasn't pinned on sound. Also, it was on a student film, so it was no major disaster. I had an OK from both the DoP and the director, who had also given VFX a phone call, so everything should have been good. Glad to have learned more about this before heading into the "real world". The lesson learned was that the people involved should really know VFX to be able to make good judgement calls on set. It may not be as easy as it's been made out to be in the articles about it. A moving background that's not going to be replaced could be a problem, let's say that there's a small breeze moving the tree branch behind the boom ever so slightly... Could be hard to notice, especially in a hurry. To succeed, you will need to have a good working relationship with a sharp-eyed DoP who understands VFX post production.
  10. Thanks for the insight! Bag drop is probably better, then. When you're doing bag drops, how do you manage multiple takes? The little experience I have from self-drive scenes indicates that the car might not stop at all between takes, so rolling and stopping could be problematic. A mixer I was interning for earlier this year would have everything wireless in the car and the sound van would be the follow car. He'd sit in the back at his cart and mix as usual. We'd get the shark fins on the front seat and I'd usually be responsible for aiming one of them, the boom op. One time in the same production, even the 1st AC got in the sound van with a wireless follow focus because the shooting car was so cramped. I've heard stories of people getting in the trunk with the bag, but I'd never want to do that personally. It's just for a show, so I wouldn't want to take that kind of risk.
  11. How often do you get clean lines on lavs?

    Most of the time, I get clean lines on lavs. I was lucky enough to intern on a series where I got to be totally responsible for lav placement, which taught me a lot about wiring! The mixer was strict about getting clean lavs and I always got to check how they sounded. I still have a lot to learn, though! My limited experience would indicate that it's more about the location of the lav than it is about the mounting. Concealers can help, but I feel like it's often possible to get a clean lav just by finding the right spot and mounting the mic with tape. Breathing room around the mic is good, but even when nothing is touching the capsule (or covering it entirely, which to me is ideal for the sound), layers of fabric rubbing against each other can still result in rustle. Something as simple as asking the talent to pull their shoulders back or to move their arms a bit and looking at where the lav is can help with finding the right placement, just see where the fabric either doesn't move or moves the least. It's also a good idea to look at mounting lavs in hats, when possible. Very little chance of rustle and a very natural sound, at least with DPA 4060s! Hiding the wire itself may be a bit trickier, though.
  12. I've been thinking about doing this as well, good to hear that it's a tried and true method! Does anyone have experience with using Wingman from car to car? Could be really useful to roll and stop recording remotely, but I'm a bit worried about reliability. I'm guessing that rigging the WM-Connect a bit more in the open would help, if possible.
  13. Lavalier outer jacket repair

    I'd put on some electrical tape as first aid, probably Advance brand since it doesn't gunk up that easily. A more permanent solution would be proper adhesive lined heatshrink tubing, but that might even require reterminating to get it on there.
  14. DIY camera snake?

    I was actually just making some adapter cables for a bandmate of mine and dealt with a similar problem, tried to fit a 6mm mic cable into an RCA-connector which was clearly meant for something smaller. The first one I did ended up pretty gnarly, I'm not going to have my buddy even pay for the parts. On the second one, I whittled down the jacket of the mic cable with a knife so I could fit the strain relief assembly on. I'll have to see how it does in field tests at band practice later on tonight... Feels like a bit of a hack and it's a bit ugly, but that's DIY for you at times. Thanks for the tip! I'm not sure if I want to deal with foil shields, though. I've never seen one of those on a cable, so I googled the issue and apparently a foil shield can cause cracks and pops if the cable kinks or is stepped on? The application I'm thinking of would have a bunch of movement if anything. The DA-202-4P has spiral shielding and is sold as AES-EBU-compliant and the diameter seems workable at 8.8mm, so I'll give sourcing it a look, thanks for pointing me at Canare!
  15. DIY camera snake?

    I looked at sourcing the parts, I'm thinking I might have to abandon the Sommer cable and AES-compatibility, as cool as it would be. The outer diameter of the Sommer cable I was thinking of is 10mm and the Neutrik NC7-XX connectors can only take 8mm outer diameters, and I don't think the strain relief would work properly with such an oversized cable for the connector. I'm now looking for an European source for Mogami W2931-cable, which would have an outer diameter of 8.9mm, pushing it a little, but not as ridiculously as the Sommer cable. Thus far it looks like the parts alone would be in the neighbourhood of 100€, so the readymade prices do make sense when one considers the time and effort it will take to assemble everything. This is going to be fun.