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  #1  
Old 06-21-2012, 07:48 PM
RuffinMedia RuffinMedia is offline
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Default Advice for distorted dialog tracks

I'm working on a film that has distorted dialog. The budget wont allow for an ADR session so I wanted to ask where I should begin in regards to fixing distorted dialog audio. I know I can remove 100% but something is better than nothing.

Plugins, techniques, tips, tricks?
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  #2  
Old 06-21-2012, 08:06 PM
Henchman Henchman is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

Draw out the square waveforms on the clipped audio with the pencil tool.
That works. Labour intensive.
But if they're not paying you for all the extra time, then they get what they get.
I'll fix a line like that now and then, when it's a word or two, on a line that it wasn't noticed on.
But I wouldn't be doing it on entire sentences,just because they're too cheap to ADR.
It ain't coming out of my time budget, that's for sure.
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  #3  
Old 06-21-2012, 09:01 PM
garnoil garnoil is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

It depends where the distortion occurred. If the distortion happened at the source and not in the digital domain (like over driving the mic or the pre-amps etc) you may not even see any "squared" waves in Pro-Tools. Sometimes totally distorted audio looks perfectly normal in Pro-Tools (no squared waves because it happened in the analogue domain) and therefore you can not un-distort it. If you actually see flattened waveforms in Pro-tools, you can draw out "some" peaks but if it is really bad, and throughout the film, there are other things you can try.

For distorted audio where you see squared waves in Pro-Tools you can try CEDAR studio de-clipper, the reviews of the new CEDAR Studio un-distorter are fantastic (I don't have it yet but I am about to get it) and knowing the quality of CEDAR, I would try CEDAR first. You can also try Izotope, using the un-clipper and also use de-crackle and de-click (Sonnox also has a good decrackle). The you'll need a good EQ (to EQ out some harshness and this is a word by word automating) and if it works out put a CEDAR DNS 1. If its fixable this would do it. Keep in mind that this is a "very time consuming process" that it can do magic but sometimes the location recording is beyond bad it simply can not be fixed. If you choose to restore you will also have to deal with the room tone!

It sounds like that the production approach to this film is really low end, first, they give you distorted sound (they should have caught this problem on set there is no excuse), and now there is no money for ADR?

Are you sure that the location sound was transferred correctly to video editor? and have you heard the location sound from the source (right from the digital recorder and not from the video editors timeline?)
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Old 06-21-2012, 10:38 PM
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BobbyDazzler BobbyDazzler is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

izotope RX2 DeClip is awesome! And RX2 is very reasonably priced
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Old 06-21-2012, 10:39 PM
RuffinMedia RuffinMedia is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

Declip did help alot however there are some parts that declip cant help. What else would you try?
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Old 06-21-2012, 11:40 PM
haowai haowai is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

agreed with henchman,pencil tool could save your day when everything else failed
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  #7  
Old 06-22-2012, 10:52 AM
Nathan W. Nathan W. is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

Izotope DeClip and CEDAR. I cannot stand clipped wave forms, the results can be mixed and unpredictable. If it's super clipped then you're pretty screwed if there's a little bit of clipping it's fixable.
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Old 06-22-2012, 06:54 PM
Postman Postman is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

Quote:
I know I can [not] remove 100% but something is better than nothing.
Quote:
Declip did help alot however there are some parts that declip cant help. What else would you try?
garnoil wrote
Quote:
It sounds like that the production approach to this film is really low end, first, they give you distorted sound (they should have caught this problem on set there is no excuse), and now there is no money for ADR?
ADR for some cost (and worth every penny IMHO) or accept some distortion for no additional cost. This is your client's choice to make because what you want, and what your client is willing to pay for, are now divergent.
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  #9  
Old 06-22-2012, 07:10 PM
lexaudio lexaudio is online now
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

If you are bringing the actor in for ADR, do it anyway as a backup.

Sometimes its just too distorted, or part is distorted. Look for ALTs and cut together a performance as well.
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  #10  
Old 06-22-2012, 07:17 PM
Henchman Henchman is offline
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Default Re: Advice for distorted dialog tracks

And all I can say is, don't care more than your client.
If they don't care enough to pay for ADR, then you shouldn't care more by spending A pile of time, for free, fixing it.

Remember. " lack of planning on your part, does not warrant an emergency on mine".
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