New York Calling
Transatlantic film project using the new Nuendo 6 ADR Taker
Among the highlights of Nuendo 6 is the new ADR Taker System. With multiple video count-in techniques, up to 32 marker tracks, EDL list import and much more, Nuendo 6 offers a complete voice recording solution. Dimitrios Posukidis is mixer, recordist and dialog editor at the leading German post-facility Studio Funk. In the interview with Steinberg he talks about one of his recent ADR projects with Nuendo 6 — a transatlantic project with the New York-based Goldcrest Studios.
Hi Dimi. Thanks for taking the time for this interview. Please tell our readers a bit about yourself…
My name is Dimitrios Posukidis, I’m from Hamburg, Germany and have been at Studio Funk/postperfect since 2001. Before that I was a musician in several bands and worked for the HiFind website.
What is your role at Studio Funk/postperfect, and what services does the company offer?
I’m a mixer and recordist, and also a dialog editor for feature films (for more info visit IMDb). We offer a full range of audio services for video and film, including feature films for TV and cinema, dubbing, documentaries and corporate videos. That includes ADR/dialog recording, dialog editing, sound design, foley recording and mixing in all the standard industry formats. On top of that we also offer complete audio post production services and sound design as well as production of ads for TV, radio, cinema and the internet. Our music unit produces and composes music including jungles, sound logos and musical sound design. Studio Funk has facilities in Hamburg, Berlin, Düsseldorf and Frankfurt. We also cooperate closely with visual post production companies Optical Art and DELI PICTURES.
The ADR Taker System sped up the whole workflow substantially and made the process very smooth.
You’ve been working intensively with the new Nuendo 6 ADR Taker. What’s your workflow here? Can it replace a conventional taker system?
It’s ideal for my way of working. The csv import/export functions mean I can import ADR lists that have been prepared in advance into Nuendo, or, after checking the location recordings, I can export ADR takes – including TC, text, take number, reason and so on – into a spreadsheet that I can print off. The actors welcome having the script available on a monitor.
I handle the routing from the microphone on a mixer; I use a Yamaha DM2000. I have two cue mixes, one for headphones and one for the monitor in the recording room. Normally I record ADR without headphones, because the actors feel freer and it’s easier to get inside their roles and act. That’s essential for a good ADR recording. Depending on the situation I’ll use beeps, or transparent or black frames for a streamer. The matrix in the Nuendo ADR panel gives me a lot of flexibility for routing the signal to the cues and the control room. I’ve set up key commands for all the important commands like Preview, Rec, Review, Marker Trim, Marker Jump and so on, but I’m considering adding a push button controller for this.
The second Nuendo computer handles only the video, and is linked to my main computer using VST Link and can, if needed, display open or non-taked video for the director or editor. So Nuendo 6 can completely replace a traditional taker system.
You recently did an ADR session using a live connection to New York. Could you tell us a bit more about the background to the project and what the workflow was?
It was a US production, with a well-known German actor who was here at our studio, while the director was in New York. Most important was to provide a realistic reflection of the recording situation in Hamburg, which is only possible by using an efficient and flexible ADR setup. We arranged a two-channel ISDN connection to New York, over which we sent the audio and TC. I ran the ADR taker system here and sent the TC (23,98fps) via LTC from my Nuendo Syncstation to NY, so it ran in sync with the video playback there. I handled the routing to set up the communication between the actor here and started the dialog recording as normal. The fact that the taker, sequencer and video are in one package (Nuendo 6) and there are no other machines that have to be synced up means that we can work very quickly and flexibly according to the customer’s wishes. I was able to edit the takes, create new takes and offer combinations of location recording and ADR takes. That sped up the whole workflow substantially and made the process very smooth.
How did the customer in New York find working that way?
Because we were able to offer a process that was technically and creatively smooth with the Nuendo 6 ADR Taker, we got very positive feedback from the customer.
What other functions in Nuendo 6 do you find particularly valuable?
For me that would be the Linking function – for example the panners – in the new mixer, and of course the loudness track, that lets you keep tabs on loudness throughout the project.
Are you convinced of the Nuendo 6 ADR Taker?
Of course! I’ve done more than 20 ADR sessions on Nuendo 6. They weren’t all just ‘standard’ ADR jobs, we also had dubbing work for a big animated cinema feature. We plan to move our future ADR work completely to Nuendo 6.
Do you see any trends currently developing in the audio post world at the moment, in terms of production workflow, budgets or studio technology?
What I’m seeing is that that the internet is increasingly replacing TV stations as a broadcast medium. But because there’s no final ‘quality check’, like there is with TV stations, the quality is sometimes dubious. I think that the introduction of the R128 standard in broadcasting is a good sign. It means we can work more flexibly as far as dynamics are concerned and it mitigates the tendency towards competing in terms of loudness.
The fact that the taker, sequencer and video are in one package and there are no other machines that have to be synced up means that we can work very quickly and flexibly according to the customer’s wishes.