TommygunZA

Pluraleyes Good or..not?

32 posts in this topic

I couldnt see a specific thread about Pluraleyes but I could see a lot of very sceptical posts about the softwares ability from around 2111/2012. I have worked with a lot of people (editors) who absolutely swear by it and when I do 5D work I can just give them the audio files and nothing else (it helps if times of day matches a bit) and I've not had wines or gripes. I did do one job here in ZA for an American company who insisted I got a big ass SD mixer (as well as top of the range everything which was hired at great expense) and we shot on some bigger Cannon cameras and the time code kept drifting and there is always the framerate issue.  Now enough time has gone by for people to know. if you have a scratch track on the camera are you soundies and editors happy with Pluraleyes results or are there still sceptics out there and if so why?

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Pluraleyes works great when other, better modes of sync aren't accounted for or available.  I can't think of a single editor who wouldn't prefer, in addition to scratch audio for waveform sync, proper slating procedures and time code sync.  Again, if production doesn't pay for/account for any type of proper syncing protocol, as long as there is some type of scratch audio they can make it work.

Pluraleyes breaks down in a lot of situations however.  Noisy locations where the audio waveform might vary significantly from your audio recorder and the camera mic nullify almost any advantage of waveform sync.

Scratch audio from your mix to camera is the best way for Pluraleyes to work.

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Pluraleyes is not a one faceted technique.  People who count on it working but only supply audio from a DSLR built-in mic will be very disappointed, especially if the shoot is in a noisy location or the camera is far from the talent.  People who have a scratch mono mix sent to the camera (by wireless usually) will have far better luck.  Even with a "good" Pluraleyes session all the audio still has to be eye-checked for sync, and to see if the app found the correct audio take for the picture.  (This last is rarely 100%.)  Know too that Plurarleyes will now (later versions) stretch or truncate the audio to get it to fit picture if it thinks there has been clock-rate drift: so the pgm is making changes to the sound.  Is that ok with you?  Most higher-end shoots I work on, that use cameras that can take ext TC, now do DaVinci Resolve TC auto-syncs.  This is much faster than PE (esp when a DIT is syncing for multiple cameras), seems to me to be more accurate, and allows the DIT to compile a TC accurate shot list as they go.  This does require GOOD accurate TC on all devices.  When that isn't possible (DSLR, GoPro and cheapo dinky cams) then PE is the way to go.

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I just did a shoot that was shot on 2 DSLRs.  I sent a scratch track to CH1 and TC to CH2 of each camera.  We also clapped a TC slate as we had a roving steadycam type camera thingy (DJI osmo maybe?) It didn't have audio or TC input ability. 

Post said everything synced perfectly from TC and the slate.  The scratch track just gives a bit of redundancy if the primary system failed.

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A little of topic but tentacle sync boxes and software is to me the best tool there is for dslr. ..I did a week long doco style shoot a few months ago with 2 a7s , and everybody was very glad to watch dailies on a laptop in the hotel room with both cam and sound synced less than 10 min after all media were backed up on a Hard drive..

Envoyé de mon SM-G920F en utilisant Tapatalk

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Tentacle mic audio is no better than the built-in mic in the DSLR.  Ok sometimes, not ok all the time.  An audio feed is ok all the time.  In this last case it was the Tentacle TC that did the trick, if they had had to do a PluralEyes sync with the Tentacle mic audio the sync would not have been nearly as easy or successful.

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Pluraleyes works great when other, better modes of sync aren't accounted for or available.  I can't think of a single editor who wouldn't prefer, in addition to scratch audio for waveform sync, proper slating procedures and time code sync.

Yep, if possible give both timecode and scratch track, it all helps. 

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Tentacle mic audio is no better than the built-in mic in the DSLR.  Ok sometimes, not ok all the time.  An audio feed is ok all the time.  In this last case it was the Tentacle TC that did the trick, if they had had to do a PluralEyes sync with the Tentacle mic audio the sync would not have been nearly as easy or successful.

No of course, the mic isn't great, but the TC is much better. There is no need to have a scratch track if you have a solid TC feed. Unless you absolutely need a scratch for other purposes.
Plus, the Tentacle software makes it really easy to sync any TC with the video

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14 hours ago, Constantin said:


No of course, the mic isn't great, but the TC is much better. There is no need to have a scratch track if you have a solid TC feed. Unless you absolutely need a scratch for other purposes.
Plus, the Tentacle software makes it really easy to sync any TC with the video

Exactly, and no cam ops would dare to complain about a Tentacle..as any decent wireless rx seems even to me awkward  to stick on a DSLR..

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Not at all.  I often do 4+ camera DSLR shoots with scratch RX on all the cameras.  Fast, easy and out of the cam op's way.  This has been the pref of most of my clients, for their own reasons.  If they want TC Mozegear TIG or Tentacle is the way go.

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well , ok, as they say there is more than one way to sync a cat..

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This has been the pref of most of my clients, for their own reasons. 

In that case of course do it that way. That's one of the other reasons.
But the most stable and reliable option is still a TC box

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Ok, let me jump in here.

First of all, hello. My name is Bouke, and I'm a software developer (as well as editor and multicam shooter.)

I'm around for quite some time, and some of you already know me.

Since the topic is now more or less about Tentacle sync, let me throw in some of my experience, as well as some shameless self promotion.

What I'm missing here is the more logical way to sync up.

Close to any cam has internal TC. (Ok, the Canon 5D MkII has not, but it has THM files that give subsecond accurate TC that I can use.)

So, if you have LTC on an audio channel, and the cam has normal TC, why go trough the extra data to create new clips? The more logical way is to set a new timestamp on your BWF files that match the video TC. (And yes, that goes up to a few samples accurate.)

This also means that on takes where there is no TC on the sound, the offset will be the same and there will STILL be a match found, and it will STILL sync!

This is lighting fast, and will be exactly the same for post production as you have actually slaved the cam to the TC.

My LTCconvert app. can do so.

https://www.videotoolshed.com/product/ltc-convert-auxtc/

And it does a gazillion things more not found in the Tentacle software....

 

Let me know if you want me to elaborate on this, or have specific questions. (Either here, or drop me a line.)

 

Bouke

 

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Woow! How are we suppose to get the crappy tc from the camera to the sound recorder ? Losing an audio and audio track along the way and maybe dealing with audio bleeding from the ltc..and others more reason to not do things the other way around...

Envoyé de mon SM-G920F en utilisant Tapatalk

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Hiya Bouke!

Constantin--I don't see how re DSLR shoots TC is more stable or reliable than a scratch audio track.  The DSLR internal clock is what it is either way, right?  Most of the folks I work with want to be able to do playbacks off camera on set and hear audio (not TC), and they find it useful in post.  Fave would be having both an audio feed and good TC (but no more stable).  Mozegear tried this with the first of the small TIGs (Q28) as well as their original larger box, but the audio had a lot of TC bleed in it and no one seemed to want this feature used anyhow.  Camera (or Tentacle) mic audio  on a DSLR is close to useless, or has been for me...

 

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2 hours ago, Bouke said:

Since the topic is now more or less about Tentacle sync, let me throw in some of my experience

Actually, not really. It's about using PluralEyes, or timecode. Not so much focussed on the Post- production workflow, but on the production workflow - scratch, TC box, nothing, slate, and so on. 

2 hours ago, Bouke said:

What I'm missing here is the more logical way to sync up.

Close to any cam has internal TC. (Ok, the Canon 5D MkII has not, but it has THM files that give subsecond accurate TC that I can use.)

So, if you have LTC on an audio channel, and the cam has normal TC, why go trough the extra data to create new clips? The more logical way is to set a new timestamp on your BWF files that match the video TC. (And yes, that goes up to a few samples accurate.)

This also means that on takes where there is no TC on the sound, the offset will be the same and there will STILL be a match found, and it will STILL sync!

This is lighting fast, and will be exactly the same for post production as you have actually slaved the cam to the TC.

My LTCconvert app. can do so.

https://www.videotoolshed.com/product/ltc-convert-auxtc/

And it does a gazillion things more not found in the Tentacle software....

So basically all your asking is why the Tentacle software's creating a new clip with audio (if it is doing that) instead of altering the tc stamp? 

 

2 minutes ago, Philip Perkins said:

Constantin--I don't see how re DSLR shoots TC is more stable or reliable than a scratch audio track.  The DSLR internal clock is what it is either way, right?  Most of the folks I work with want to be able to do playbacks off camera on set and hear audio (not TC), and they find it useful in post.  Fave would be having both an audio feed and good TC (but no more stable).  Mozegear tried this with the first of the small TIGs (Q28) as well as their original larger box, but the audio had a lot of TC bleed in it and no one seemed to want this feature used anyhow.  Camera (or Tentacle) mic audio  on a DSLR is close to useless, or has been for me...

 

If you transmit the audio to the camera wirelessly, there is always a risk of drop-outs or even lost audio, right? That could not happen to a TC box. And if you use the onboard, well, as you said, it's crappy and doesn't always work well with PluralEyes. 

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1 hour ago, Bouke said:

Ok, let me jump in here.

First of all, hello. My name is Bouke, and I'm a software developer (as well as editor and multicam shooter.)

I'm around for quite some time, and some of you already know me.

Since the topic is now more or less about Tentacle sync, let me throw in some of my experience, as well as some shameless self promotion.

What I'm missing here is the more logical way to sync up.

Close to any cam has internal TC. (Ok, the Canon 5D MkII has not, but it has THM files that give subsecond accurate TC that I can use.)

So, if you have LTC on an audio channel, and the cam has normal TC, why go trough the extra data to create new clips? The more logical way is to set a new timestamp on your BWF files that match the video TC. (And yes, that goes up to a few samples accurate.)

This also means that on takes where there is no TC on the sound, the offset will be the same and there will STILL be a match found, and it will STILL sync!

This is lighting fast, and will be exactly the same for post production as you have actually slaved the cam to the TC.

My LTCconvert app. can do so.

https://www.videotoolshed.com/product/ltc-convert-auxtc/

And it does a gazillion things more not found in the Tentacle software....

 

Let me know if you want me to elaborate on this, or have specific questions. (Either here, or drop me a line.)

 

Bouke

 

Do DSLRs output TOD/24hr and RUNREC? Through which port? I think I get the logic of what you are saying, although if you've paid for a TC sound recorder you'd probably want to use the cameras LTC to jam the recorder from (instead of use an audio channel). I've joked a few times about putting an RM TX on camera so I could hear what was going on (in the camera dept) but (if you really want to use up an audio channel on the recorder with something from the camera may be for bleed through reasons) you could send camera audio (top-mic) to the sound recorder for syncing with PE and this would have the advantage of being, at least occasionally, monitored for continuity. Although this is a different point from the 1 you are making and you already sell a product for a particular workflow, I'm still waiting for a TC and audio scratch track TRX system. Something with some functionality when used as single box (like a tentacle) but when paired with another 1 can TRX TC and Audio in either direction and manage a RUNREC situation. Until then it's tentacles or and RX on a DSLR and whatever they want on the proper cameras.

 

 

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Firstly, Thanks Constantin for unhijacking my thread from tentacle. Although all this info is an education for me. Date time stamp on the camera/audio recorder seems a good way to go but offset on 4+ cameras has got to be a pain? To Constantin, I believe Pluraleyes can handle audio drop out so its not a train smash. I think the easy way to go for multi (cheap) cam shoot would be send one scratch track from the mixer to 4+ receivers set to the same channel which may be what Mr Perkins is suggesting? It seems from posts that pluraleyes is a "good thing" and paired with decent audio (ie scratch track) even with drop outs it will match well....all I need now are 4 receivers that pick up my one transmitter.

Now you can return to the pros and cons of tentacle. 

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3 hours ago, Constantin said:

Actually, not really. It's about using PluralEyes, or timecode. Not so much focussed on the Post- production workflow, but on the production workflow - scratch, TC box, nothing, slate, and so on. 

So basically all your asking is why the Tentacle software's creating a new clip with audio (if it is doing that) instead of altering the tc stamp? 

 

If you transmit the audio to the camera wirelessly, there is always a risk of drop-outs or even lost audio, right? That could not happen to a TC box. And if you use the onboard, well, as you said, it's crappy and doesn't always work well with PluralEyes. 

I haven't had probs with scratch track dropouts--they are scratch tracks so perfection is not needed.  If someone wanted to do TC instead of audio I'd do it, but only after some discussions with the editor re: if they really want that.  If they do, and are hip to Resolve TC autosync, then off we go.

41 minutes ago, TommygunZA said:

Firstly, Thanks Constantin for unhijacking my thread from tentacle. Although all this info is an education for me. Date time stamp on the camera/audio recorder seems a good way to go but offset on 4+ cameras has got to be a pain? To Constantin, I believe Pluraleyes can handle audio drop out so its not a train smash. I think the easy way to go for multi (cheap) cam shoot would be send one scratch track from the mixer to 4+ receivers set to the same channel which may be what Mr Perkins is suggesting? It seems from posts that pluraleyes is a "good thing" and paired with decent audio (ie scratch track) even with drop outs it will match well....all I need now are 4 receivers that pick up my one transmitter.

Now you can return to the pros and cons of tentacle. 

It's worked very well for me, is what I can say, since the Dawn Of DSLRs.  I was skeptical of PE at first but many years of jobs down the road it is a major part of many workflows now.  Doing the same multi-DSLR thing w/ TC works too, but assumes a somewhat elevated skill level on the part of the editor.  I'm ready if someone wants this method, but so far no one has.

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It's worked very well for me, is what I can say, since the Dawn Of DSLRs.  I was skeptical of PE at first but many years of jobs down the road it is a major part of many workflows now.  Doing the same multi-DSLR thing w/ TC works too, but assumes a somewhat elevated skill level on the part of the editor.  I'm ready if someone wants this method, but so far no one has.

Well, I guess we've had this discussion before here, and the consensus was then, too, that both systems work pretty well.
In my world an editor who doesn't know how to handle LTC should not be an editor. Depending on your editing software it's relly just as easy as using PluralEyes. Or even easier (and cheaper) if you are using any of the syncing programs mentioned in this thread.
For me it is safe to assume that the editor know how to handle any TC workflow, but I'd be risking my job if I assumed a PE workflow.
Granted, I very rarely see a camera without a TC input these days.

I did do a job, though, some time ago, where we were shooting with two DSLRs, one outside a building, the other inside. Despite what I just said, they wanted to use PE for syncing and insisted they didn't need any audio from my recorder sent to the cameras. But they did want those two cameras to align, both were shooting the same thing. But that was impossible. Then we went to a show, one cam backstage the other in the audience. Again, very difficult to handle with PluralEyes. But, admittedly, there is always a fool who won't listen to reason

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Well, that attitude about editors wouldn't get me far around here!  And they are def farther up the food chain than me, so I do what they ask for!

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Well, that's not my opinion (and I don't tell'em), but what I've heard and seen

- and to be fair, I should have said assistant editors

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@ Constantin.
Yeah, sorry I’ve hijacked the thread, but to my understanding there is consensus that TC is to be preferred over Plural Eyes.

So, should we create a new thread?


@ Callou & Daniel
Not sure if you fully understood me.
The idea is to connect the LTC  to an audio input of the cam, if the cam does not have a proper TC input.

You all know that LTC is in fact an audio signal? (Although LOUD, you probably have to attenuate.)

This LTC can come from the Tentacle hardware, or wired/wireless from your TC out on your recorder.


This way the LTC on the cam matches your BWF.
Now say the cam’s internal TC at rec start is 01:00:00:00, and your recorder starts at 01:00:01:00, there is a one second offset.
My software knows this offset, and can set a new timestamp of 01:00:00:00 on your BWF files. This is altering just a few bytes, and post can now sync just as they always do when both video TC and BWF timestamp match.

Yes, the DSLR’s have run rec TC that drifts a lot, but that isn’t a problem for syncing.
(The lack of gunlock on long takes is an other issue, so in all cases shoot short takes, or be happy with the 4 gig file limit on a lot of DSLRs that will generate multiple clips anyways.)

@ Philip (@ Callou)
Bleeding of TC into the other channel should not really be a problem. First of all, the other cam sound track is probably just a scratch track, and it ‘should’ not bleed if you don’t put the LTC too loud. -25 dB is loud enough, even on a 16 bit recording.

Then, you do NOT need to fill the entire take. A few seconds in the beginning of the video recording is good enough.
I have a client (Sound guy) who made a simple switch to choose between LTC and scratch audio.
When he knows the cam is running, he simply presses it for a couple of seconds to send TC, and after that the signal becomes scratch audio. My software analyses the first XX seconds  (you can tell it how much) of the video and will find it.
Dropping out is not really an issue, as it only needs a few frames of decodable LTC.
And those don’t have to be adjacent.

To all:

By all means, use your BWF recoder as master TC if you shoot on a DSLR. (Well, IMHO have the audio recoder be master always, no matter the cam, unless you are in a studio with a master TC gen.)

My software does NOT target a specific workflow, but it assumes you have LTC on a sound track. That can be on the camera, or even on the sound recorder (Yes, there are people working with Marantz / Zoom etc. without proper LTC out, using Jumpstart or alike on a stupid phone / old Ipod gives them a master clock accurate enough.)

My software allows to output dailies in original codec or Prores, it can even do audio patching, it is smart enough to know when there are multiple sound takes for one video take and so on.
Besides creating new video with the desired audio channels, it can also (as I started with) change the BWF timestamp to match the video, or in case the video is in QuickTime (.mov) format, set the TC of the video to match the BWF.
(And this is just a tip of the iceberg :-)

Does this makes sense to you all?

Bouke

 

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So, should we create a new thread?

Yes. And it should go into the manufacturers & dealers section and then it could be about your software.
Hardly anything you wrote has any relevance to this particular thread. You are just shamelessly self-promoting your product (as you put it).
You are highly regarded around here, don't spoil that by putting commercials in unrelated threads.
Seriously, though, do start that other thread as I may have a couple of questions

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