Sound is pretty important in video production. When put to good use, language, sound effects, music, and even silence, can elevate your video dramatically. Bad sound, however, can ruin your video. And yet, audio is often left as an after-thought for post-production, which is crazy because no amount of editing magic can fix bad sound.
Neither can sound fix shoddy animation, slipshod editing or amateur camera work. However, when it comes to creating a complete audience experience – audio is arguably more crucial than video quality. Sound adds emotion and connects people to what they’re seeing. It supports each visual and every cut, and defines the overall mood and tone of your narrative.
Who needs a boom operator?
A corporate video is a serious investment. By all means, spend your entire budget on cool special effects and fancy locations but, unless sound is made a technical priority from day one, you’re wasting your time and money.
When choosing a video production company to work with, make sure they push the need for a sound technician from your first meeting. What sound kit do they use? If their standard approach is to just let the camera microphone do all the work, then walk away – fast. If budget is an issue, rather cut down on catering (nobody likes a stale muffin anyway) or content (look for any repetition and compress a couple of scenes into one).
Not only does assigning sound to an engineer mean that there is one dedicated person looking after audio, it means less stress for the rest of the crew!
At TopLine Comms, our video team understands the importance of sound in video production. Our production process is thorough, creative, and makes sure that our client’s message is both seen and heard. Here are some of our tips and tricks for getting the audio right:
- Invest in good audio equipment, and a talented soundie
- Monitor the audio while recording
- Choose a location carefully to minimise background noise (turn off computers, ACs and chatty people!)
- Check frequencies and levels – some people speak louder than others
- Triple check that the audio is fully synched with the video during the edit
- Make sure all audio points are marked for an easy edit
- Pump some iron (biceps are good for holding booms out of shot)
- Work with an editor who understands audio
Remember, when it comes to creating a memorable, immersive audience experience – sound is just as responsible, if not more, than the quality of your video’s picture.
If you’re about to embark on your own video adventure and want a team that understands the importance of sound in video production, speak to Jamie, our head of production, to find out how we can help.
Editors note: This blog post was originally posted on 6 September 2016. It has been rewritten to ensure accuracy and relevance.