Thursday, May 24, 2007

Soundtrack Pro 2.0

Last night at the LAFCPUG meeting in Hollywood, we were treated to an in-depth demonstration of Soundtrack Pro 2.0 by Steve Martin of Ripple Training and Jeremy Roush, the editor of Reign Over Me. They used Reign Over Me as the demonstration project for this. First off, a big thanks to these two guys for doing this. It was the most amazing presentation I have ever seen at a LAFCPUG meeting.

Now, on to the good stuff

The integration with FCP is seamless. Send the project to ST2 - Answer a couple of questions in a dialog and away it goes. Nice.

Editing in ST2 is non-destructive. Let me repeat that: Editing in ST2 is non-destructive. If you are experienced with the old ST or other DA applications, this is HUGE. My last edit was in a destructive application where you end up with a million trims and bins and all kinds of crap. No need for that here. When you have clips in the work region, you have access to all of the media. You can roll the ends of the clips out into their handles just as you can with clips in FCP.

Lift audio and retain synch: Wow - very slick. Like a ripple delete but it re-arranges the audio to maintain synch.

Fades: The one thing an editor is doing constantly. in ST2, you place the mouse cursor at the head or tail of a clip and you get a fade tool - just click and drag to create your fade in. Additionally, crossfades are REALLY slick - a nice graphical HUD using curves to represent the crossfades - Very intuitive.

Multipressor: Compressor on steroids. You can specify 4 band ranges for the compression in real time and adjust them on the fly. Annoying BG noise? Just sdjust your bands until it's minimized and apply it. The effect shows up on the left hand pane with a checkbox so that you can turn it on and off - again, non-destructive.

Delta Projects: You have locked picture and your mix is done and the producer comes in and informs you of picture changes. You get a new copy of the FCP project with the changes. Now you get to re-do all the sound for this...Well, still true in ST2 but now you have a tool to mitigate the pain. A project merge function will take the old project and the new project and create a new 3rd project that ST2 creates where it has tried to reconcile the differences.

It creates a report describing what changes it has made and what level of confidence it has in the integrity of the changes. You can then review these and accept or reject each change as you see fit.

Record your keyframe changes: Open up the mixer panel, play back your project and adjust levels in real time while ST2 records the changes as keyframes in the project.

Surround 5.1: Bring up the 5.1 HUD and grab the 'puck' in the center of the virtual surround field and drag it to pan the audio anywhere in the 360o field. Oh yeah - you can record the panning here as keyframes just like you did in the mixer. Play these back and watch the puck move just as you recorded it.

Sounds: ST2 now includes a BUNCH of 5.1 royalty free sound clips and loops.

Other then that, there was nothing new =)


Allan White said...

I just saw this demo in Seattle day before yesterday - most impressive. The Delta/conform tool blows my mind; I'll have to play with that more to trust it fully.

They did a surround-sound demo where they panned the audio as you described - the room had surround and it was neat to hear them bounce around the room.

Grampus said...

The same thing happened at the Seminar I went to in London on Tuesday.

An excellent product!

B-Scene Films said...

The LAFCPUG demo did not have a surround sound setup unfortunately. But, it was not your typical dog and pony show. Unlike a lot of other demos that I had seen previously, this demo used a real life project that had real issues that the software was very effectively applied to.