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  #1  
Old 08-31-2017, 08:32 AM
melloj melloj is offline
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Default Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

As sound designers and engineers at varying levels to those who have seen it, most are in agreement that the bank shoot-out at the end is noted for its realistic depiction of gunfire sound. It's come to my attention having got into a dispute on youtube regarding this and further research that it's an urban legend of sorts that Michael Mann decided that for the purpose of realism the gunfire is production sound as he hated the sound design the post guys attempted. This is further fuelled by production staff on the movie claiming this is the case.

As a practising sound engineer of 14 years and formally trained and practiced in audio post and sound design, I utterly dispute this claim. It's nigh impossible to capture such great audio with a boom during takes, it's difficult to capture dialogue. As long as there's a hole in my ass that gunfire is post sound. My thoughts are that they recorded live gunfire on a range and edited it in as they did on Saving Private Ryan. But why would they claim this when it clearly isn't true? Also I know that having been in the Army and having fired assault rifles, blanks are not loud enough. They're so insistent I'm beginning to doubt myself.
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  #2  
Old 09-01-2017, 04:15 AM
musicman691 musicman691 is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

It might be difficult to capture the sound but to make it usable witness what the production people do with the audio in the TV series Deadliest Catch. Those people can pull out sound (like dialog) like you wouldn't believe. It's all in how one uses the tools available. Yeah it's done in post but the words spoken by the crew on deck are what's recorded on deck and not as voiceovers back in the studio.

And as far as blanks not being loud enough that all depends on how the rounds are built. Changing the powder used can make a hell of a difference just as it does with real ammo. Talk to someone who does their own reloading.
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  #3  
Old 09-03-2017, 04:19 AM
melloj melloj is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

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Originally Posted by musicman691 View Post
It might be difficult to capture the sound but to make it usable witness what the production people do with the audio in the TV series Deadliest Catch. Those people can pull out sound (like dialog) like you wouldn't believe. It's all in how one uses the tools available. Yeah it's done in post but the words spoken by the crew on deck are what's recorded on deck and not as voiceovers back in the studio.

And as far as blanks not being loud enough that all depends on how the rounds are built. Changing the powder used can make a hell of a difference just as it does with real ammo. Talk to someone who does their own reloading.
It's a fair point but there's a difference between capturing and processing dialogue and cinematic sound fx. I've seen many episodes of deadliest catch and whilst the sound team do a top job, I'd suggest the crew are lavved up.

As for blank ammo, to my knowledge it is the round rifling through the barrel that gives a weapon that huge thump. I've stood feet away from a soldier firing a Diemarco rifle live. I (stupidly) uncupped my ear defender to see how loud it actually was, there's no comparison, it was truly deafening to the point it ruins your day. Blanks don't do that.

I would go with a mixture of location sound supported by post processing and fx. But pure location sound tweaked with a bit of eq and compression? I'm not convinced. It's just too cinematic. And why didn't they do this for Saving Private Ryan? All real gunfire just recorded on a range which takes expertise to do properly and edited in later.
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Old 09-03-2017, 01:09 PM
musicman691 musicman691 is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

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Originally Posted by melloj View Post
It's a fair point but there's a difference between capturing and processing dialogue and cinematic sound fx. I've seen many episodes of deadliest catch and whilst the sound team do a top job, I'd suggest the crew are lavved up.

As for blank ammo, to my knowledge it is the round rifling through the barrel that gives a weapon that huge thump. I've stood feet away from a soldier firing a Diemarco rifle live. I (stupidly) uncupped my ear defender to see how loud it actually was, there's no comparison, it was truly deafening to the point it ruins your day. Blanks don't do that.

I would go with a mixture of location sound supported by post processing and fx. But pure location sound tweaked with a bit of eq and compression? I'm not convinced. It's just too cinematic. And why didn't they do this for Saving Private Ryan? All real gunfire just recorded on a range which takes expertise to do properly and edited in later.
No one on Catch is lavved up (watch when they put on their gear and you'll not see a mic or belt pack/transponder) and even if they were the mics would still pick up all the ocean and wind noise going on. Lavs and belt packs wouldn't take the beating the boat crew deals with.

As to the sound of the rounds in the bank shot remember that a lot of the sound depends on the room and surface therein. Banks can be reverberant as hell.
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Old 09-04-2017, 02:33 AM
The Byre The Byre is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

Not only is it obviously post, but it is too 'soft' to be anything else. It really does sound like recorded on a range, as the softness comes from being at a distance. The real thing, close up is far sharper.
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Old 09-04-2017, 01:18 PM
melloj melloj is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

I've been around enough live and blank gunfire and although I'm not a pro I've enough equal recording and post experience to tell the difference. To me HEAT is too perfect and tailored to be location audio. I've also seen enough outtakes of location gun firing scenes in film to see the poor quality sound of blank ammo on set. The problem with non audio people is they've never seen a work print. One could never appreciate the work that goes into audio until they do.
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Old 09-05-2017, 08:08 PM
smurfyou smurfyou is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

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Originally Posted by musicman691 View Post
No one on Catch is lavved up (watch when they put on their gear and you'll not see a mic or belt pack/transponder) and even if they were the mics would still pick up all the ocean and wind noise going on. Lavs and belt packs wouldn't take the beating the boat crew deals with.

As to the sound of the rounds in the bank shot remember that a lot of the sound depends on the room and surface therein. Banks can be reverberant as hell.
Of course they're using lavs. See https://www.asoundeffect.com/this-is...ch-is-created/

Also camera mounted 416's or something similar.

About this scene, who knows with Mr. Mann. But gunfire recorded on set with blanks usually sounds like crap. Maybe he wanted it mixed in with the FX for some reason. And so begins the urban legend.
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Old 09-06-2017, 03:47 AM
musicman691 musicman691 is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

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Originally Posted by smurfyou View Post
Of course they're using lavs. See https://www.asoundeffect.com/this-is...ch-is-created/

Also camera mounted 416's or something similar.

About this scene, who knows with Mr. Mann. But gunfire recorded on set with blanks usually sounds like crap. Maybe he wanted it mixed in with the FX for some reason. And so begins the urban legend.
Maybe the captains are lavved up but I doubt the deck crews are - like I said a lav and belt pack won't take the pounding those guys take. Like I said - watch when they dress up in their gear or are sitting around the galley - no lavs or belt packs.
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Old 09-06-2017, 12:28 PM
Artis Artis is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

Looks pretty straight forward said: "As there are no sound mixers on the boats all of the sound is captured via camera mic and lavalier microphones. The first pass is to select the the most usable audio and bleep the considerable amount of profanity." Imho that means, ship crew have been well educated how to wear lavs properly and invisible. And I think production understands ultimate price and a lot of lavs die there. Hard to image someone swinging boom pole there.
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Old 09-06-2017, 02:31 PM
musicman691 musicman691 is offline
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Default Re: Gunshot sfx in the movie HEAT

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Looks pretty straight forward said: "As there are no sound mixers on the boats all of the sound is captured via camera mic and lavalier microphones. The first pass is to select the the most usable audio and bleep the considerable amount of profanity." Imho that means, ship crew have been well educated how to wear lavs properly and invisible. And I think production understands ultimate price and a lot of lavs die there. Hard to image someone swinging boom pole there.
You're missing the point of lavs and belt packs not being able to survive what those deck crews go through. I don't believe the Discovery crew carried that much in the way of backup/replacement gear. It's not a matter of wearing the equipment properly and invisible but survivability. Ever been on a boat heaving to and fro in those kinds of seas? Try Barnegat Inlet in NJ during high seas. T'aint pretty and things really take a licking.
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