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September 2018

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Page 28 of 43 27 POST SEPTEMBER 2018 AUDIO TOOLS A udio pros are forever refining and im- proving their workflows, be it through plug-ins, software upgrades or new technology. Nowadays, if there's a chal- lenge a sound professional might face, there's a good chance there's a tool available to help them overcome it. This month, we asked a number of sound editors and re-recording mixers about their go-to tools and lesser-known gems. It was no surprise to hear about the use of plug-ins, particularly Izotope's RX for those working with dialogue. But there are many of other solutions out there too, some aimed at creative applications and others meant to improve workflow. Here, a handful of sound professional share their findings and excitement for gear that makes their jobs easier — and soundtracks better. Mark Lanza — Sony Pictures Sony Pictures' supervising sound editor Mark Lanza, MPSE, began his career working on films such as The Doors, Independence Day and True Lies, but has since gone on to work almost exclu- sively in television. His recent credits include work on Scorpion, Preacher, The Goldbergs and Electric Dreams, among many others. For the past seven years, he has operated out of the same room at the studio in Culver City, CA. His room is Pro Tools based, but his career in audio dates back to a time when Waveframe was the leading professional system for audio post. "That was back in the day, and there were a few competing systems," Lanza recalls. "Pro Tools was more for musicians back then. It wasn't designed for the post environment. But then they wound up taking post production seriously and getting a real push into the market, and it took over. Waveframe couldn't keep up. Pro Tools took over the market and the whole industry." Lanza says he knew he had to learn Pro Tools in order to stay current. A job on a friend's show was the perfect opportunity to gain experience. "I was a little slow, but it was really for me to learn the system," he recalls of the experience. "The next thing you know, I am a 'Pro Tools guy' and there's been no going back since. And I don't see Pro Tools releasing their hold on the market any time soon." Lanza works as both a sound supervisor and as a sound designer at different times, and has put together a collection of plug-ins that meet his different needs. "Sony [gives] me the big design projects, which is fun," he states. "I can do my own design and hand it off to editors and then supervise a project. So I go back and forth between needing plug- ins geared toward design and needing plug-ins geared toward dialogue." Some of his favorite plug-ins come from Krotos ( "I love their Dehumaniser and their Reformer Pro programs for design. "Tonsturm has Traveler," he adds. "I love that one. That's kind of new. And for dialogue I have Izotope RX. For cleaning up dialogue, that thing is magic. I love that." Krotos' Reformer Pro ($449) allows sound de- signers to design, automate and perform any sound in realtime. "You can take other sounds and replace them according to something you recorded with your voice or something that is prerecorded," Lanza explains. "If you have footsteps, you can replace them with anything — squish noises, mud, glass crunches…So if you have a number of small foot- steps and then a big one, it will put in a number of small glass crunches and a big one automatically. You can layer up to four different sounds at any one time to make a combination to replace the original, which is great." Dehumaniser ($399) is a powerful vocal pro- cessing tool that's well suited for creating a range of vocal effects — from monsters to robots. "You can take a human or any audio source," he explains. "It's great to do with an animal roar or a human voice and start processing from there. It's nice to use a human voice because you can act it out with your own voice and start processing it… You can drag in different modules and adjust the series that the signal goes through. Depending on how you link them together you can get a much different output. And you can tweak each individ- ual module, so it winds up being very powerful." Lanza says he has been shooting and cutting his own ADR lately, and finds Syncro Arts' (www. Revoice Pro very useful. "I used to use Vocalign and now I've upgraded to Revoice Pro...For dialogue, especially ADR, that is amazing." Revoice Pro ($495) is used for the adjustment and alignment of vocals, instruments and ADR. The latest version offers a simple yet powerful toolset for manually adjusting audio timing and pitch. Tonsturm Traveler ( is a doppler plug-in ($179) that allows users create pan-bys, as well as shift phase and volume. "It really makes it sound like whatever the study was," he notes. "And you can create all kinds of crazy pan-bys that go around the room and auto- mate all of that." Lanza says this is good for action scenes, as well as for flashbacks or drug-induced, weird scenes, like those he created for the 1991 Oliver Stone film, The Doors. "I wish I had this back when I was working on some of the other movies I had done, it would have been cool on The Doors movie." One last plug-in that Lanza calls attention to is 27 POST SEPTEMBER 2018 Bang Zoom's Gray and Rodman Sim's Sue Pelino Izotope's RX is popular for dialogue work. Electric Dreams is one of Mark Lanza's credits. Penteo Pro works well for upmixing.

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