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View Full Version : Synching audio and video advice needed.



Fluoro
09-03-2013, 06:39 PM
I've been given some really poor quality VHS footage and separate audio to synch. There is no scratch track or slate or anything. And there are dropped frames.

I'm going a little crazy. I have not done this before and I find it really hard to tell sometimes when the dialogue is synching up. If there were no dropped frames it would be much easier. But I keep having to work out if it's drifted or not.

Is there any trick to this? If audio and video are one frame off is it really that noticeable because I'm finding it hard to tell. Maybe it's because the video quality is so bad the lip movements are hard to read. I think I get it spot on and then I skip ahead to try and find a dropped frame and that's where I'm not sure if I've found the spot or I'm just confused.

Is this something you get good at with time?

Should I be charging a client for this if my margin of error seems to be 2-3 frames.

It's just old footage of an actor from the nineties so I'm not sure it needs to be perfect. Probably just for her archive/showreel?

kgimedia
09-03-2013, 08:11 PM
I would cut the piece as needed then use Plural Eyes to get it right.

Dontshoutfilms
09-03-2013, 08:12 PM
Whenever I have to do this (and can't watch for matching waveforms,) I just try and go with my first gut reaction when I go through it, and I am usually able to tell if it is in sync or not. It takes a little practice, but if I stop it when it feels off, it usually is. If the footage is bad, I would think that it wouldn't be as critical, at least in the realm of a frame here or there.

Fluoro
09-03-2013, 08:27 PM
I would cut the piece as needed then use Plural Eyes to get it right.
Thanks but there is nothing for plural eyes to work with as the video has zero sound.

Fluoro
09-03-2013, 08:29 PM
Whenever I have to do this (and can't watch for matching waveforms,) I just try and go with my first gut reaction when I go through it, and I am usually able to tell if it is in sync or not. It takes a little practice, but if I stop it when it feels off, it usually is. If the footage is bad, I would think that it wouldn't be as critical, at least in the realm of a frame here or there.

Okay, thanks. This makes sense. It's doing my head in but I think I'm getting better at it with practice...

This is the hardest because it's a music video and the guy is probably doing a bad job of lip synching as well as the dropped frames and terrible image:
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scorsesefan
09-06-2013, 02:49 PM
If you can get your hands on the original VHS tape you can import it using a VCR with a TBC (time base corrector). This will playback the video more smoothly and eliminate many of the "hiccups" in poor/damaged footage.

Fluoro
09-06-2013, 05:36 PM
Thanks it was just a quick job to be finished within 24 hours. I got better at it with practice and the guy I did it for was happy with what I did.

One interesting thing from the exercise was looking at the quality of video footage that an actor would get of their theatre productions back in the late nineties: terrible!

Really we are so lucky with what cameras can do these days. Here are some screenshots of what low cost video looked like in the nineties:

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