Sunday, January 21, 2018

PluralEyes® – The answer for a multi-camera shoot?

Is PluralEyes® the answer for a multi-camera shoot?

In traditional movie making with film (not digital or video), sound is recorded separately from picture. The clapper is used to both identify the shot, scene and take to the editor and to provide the pop that is used to sync the audio later during editing. This is how it was done for decades.

Today, people shooting video cameras haven’t had to deal with this dual system because audio is recorded in perfect sync with video. Unless … you are shooting with multiple cameras that do not share timecode sync, or you are one of the innovative videographers and filmmakers today who are shooting video with a digital SLR, such as the vaulted Canon 5D Mark II, or 7D, and recording sound separately on something like the Zoom H4n recorder.

This can yield fantastic, feature film quality on a low budget. However, from a production flow standpoint it is a step backwards because it requires syncing picture to sound in post, just like in the old days.

If you’ve ever tried to sync separate picture and audio tracks in you NLE, you know what a pain in the tookus it can be. You end up searching for a matching visual or audio cue so that you can line them up to the exact frame, often slipping one clip back and forth, maybe just a frame at a time, until you achieve perfect sync. This can be extremely tedius.

The good news is that there is now software available to do this automatically; PluralEyes® by Singular Software.

As long as each of your multiple cameras is recording audio, regardless of its quality, this software will examine the audio waveforms and align the clips on your NLE timeline perfectly, based on the waveforms. It’s then up to you to select the highest quality audio track to be the main audio.

While at NAB, I was able to see this amazing software demonstrated and I was sold. For $149, it was no-brainer investment for me.

We’ll be producing an extensive series of videos next month in which we’ll want to sync multiple cameras over 36 different video modules. This would be a nightmare if done manually, but we’ll be using PluralEyes® and it will make this soooo much easier and more efficient. We will save ourselves days of tedius editing which equates to huge savings in our pocketbook. I’ll more than make up the cost of that investment selling only 1 DVD package!

PluralEyes® is available for EDIUS, Final Cut Pro, Media Composer, Premiere Pro, Vegas Pro. It has several processing options to deal with difficult audio tracks, and will even replace an inferior audio track with a high quality track, automatically.

How can you use PluralEyes® in your video business?


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