Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

Audio Post Workflow with Final Cut Pro X and Pro Tools
Illustration by John Hersey

Exploring loudness and mixing


From:

Audio Post Workflow with Final Cut Pro X and Pro Tools

with Scott Hirsch

Video: Exploring loudness and mixing

Overall loudness of your mix is both a hot topic and a confusing one at best. The short answer to how loud you should mix is, well, it depends. In this movie I'll guide you through a few techniques to monitor and control the overall levels of your mix, so it'll sound right wherever it gets played. To see how loud our program volume is, let's make a Master Fader, type Shift+Command+N and choose Stereo > Master. A Master Fader is like a final level control and meter that our entire mix gets sent through.

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
please wait ...
Audio Post Workflow with Final Cut Pro X and Pro Tools
57m 55s Intermediate Jun 21, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Transferring audio from Apple Final Cut Pro X to Avid Pro Tools and back can be a tricky endeavor when Final Cut Pro X doesn't support OMF transfers. But X2 Pro Audio Convert is a program that can make this exchange quick and easy. In this course, Scott Hirsch demonstrates how to transfer audio utilizing X2Pro Audio—an invaluable workflow designed to help optimize and finish the audio of your Final Cut Pro video project.. He imports the audio into Pro Tools and then demonstrates how to make a Pro Tools template for future transfer projects. The course also includes some key EQ and noise reduction techniques that can take your audio for video projects to the next level. The final chapters show how to mix down the audio and export it back to Final Cut Pro X.

Topics include:
  • Preparing the Final Cut Pro timeline for export
  • Exporting audio
  • Importing audio in Pro Tools
  • Choosing sources and assigning tracks
  • Adding sound effects and music
  • Enhancing the audio with crossfades and noise reduction
  • Exporting audio from Pro Tools
Subjects:
Audio + Music Video Audio for Video Post Production
Software:
Final Cut Pro Pro Tools
Author:
Scott Hirsch

Exploring loudness and mixing

Overall loudness of your mix is both a hot topic and a confusing one at best. The short answer to how loud you should mix is, well, it depends. In this movie I'll guide you through a few techniques to monitor and control the overall levels of your mix, so it'll sound right wherever it gets played. To see how loud our program volume is, let's make a Master Fader, type Shift+Command+N and choose Stereo > Master. A Master Fader is like a final level control and meter that our entire mix gets sent through.

Next, let's insert a PhaseScope on the Master Fader. This is a plug-in that comes with Pro Tools, and it allows you to meter your levels as you work. Change the meter on the left to Peak and RMS. A Peak meter shows us instantaneous volume changes, while RMS--which stands for Root Mean Square--is more of an average of volume over time. Now I'll play a little bit of this program back, and notice the Peak meter is shown in green and the RMS level is shown in blue in this meter.

Check out the differences in the way the two meters interact when I play it back. (music playing) (male speaker: My name is BD Dautch, and I have Earthtrine Farm, where we've been since 1998, and we've got about 10 acres in Ojai, and it's all certified organic by--) These are two common ways to view your levels in a meter. So how do we control this in our mix? The short answer is with volume automation, like we saw in the using automation for volume and other parameters movie.

But we can use meters to give us a general ballpark range about where our levels are. The first thing to know about meters is that they never give you the entire picture. It's impossible to characterize how our complex hearing system experiences loudness through meters. But they can provide some useful information. I'll give you some guidelines for where program material tends to read on meters. The overall loudness of your mix will differ depending on what the intended venue is. If your project is destined for the Internet, you'll want it louder and have less dynamic range from quiet to loud, since most viewers will be listening on small laptop or computer speakers.

For a material destined for places like YouTube or the Internet, peaks in the range of -1 to -3 can happen. RMS will be around -16 or -17 for optimum levels. For Television and Broadcast, it will need to be less loud and may need to meet certain overall level specifications in terms of how loud it can be. Peaks are usually limited to -8 or -10. Sometimes audio engineers will use a limiter processor to do this, and the RMS can hover around -18 to -20.

For a movie theater, you can have the most dynamic range between the quiet and loud passages of the project. This is because the audience will be sitting in a quiet room with full range speakers. Film and theatrical mixes are going to be similar in general to broadcast mixes except, there is no limiter necessary. So in really loud passages, peaks can get up to -1 and subsequently higher RMS will happen in during these sections as well. Another more important thing to consider is that most professional audio engineers don't use meters too much.

They rely on their ears to tell them when it's too loud or too quiet. To do this, you have to calibrate your monitor system. You can find more information on calibration in the Audio for Video Professionals with Pro Tools course.

There are currently no FAQs about Audio Post Workflow with Final Cut Pro X and Pro Tools.

 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

join now Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Audio Post Workflow with Final Cut Pro X and Pro Tools.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Notes cannot be added for locked videos.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.