PDA

View Full Version : EXACT timing - film/tv/game composers, help!


Adambomb337
05-12-2005, 08:19 PM
I was wondering what program/sequencer you use for making music to an exact time/cue (prefferably where you can put in markers and your music stays in time to the cue points if you have to change tempo)

I tried using FLstudio, but it's not quite there yet...

Nayi
05-12-2005, 08:55 PM
I use FL and I didn't encounter any issues regarding tming the music with the pciture.
If you are still working with the midi tracks the music follows the tempo, but if you have rendered to audio, FL can use streching to match tempo changes.

Adambomb337
05-12-2005, 09:19 PM
I use FL and I didn't encounter any issues regarding tming the music with the pciture.
If you are still working with the midi tracks the music follows the tempo, but if you have rendered to audio, FL can use streching to match tempo changes.

I don't have a sample video to work with though. All I have is something like this:

00:00:02:13 fade in animation
00:00:05:19 Logo begins to appear
00:00:09:09 Full logo in view
00:00:15:03 END fade to black (no sound)


did you have to have detailed timing like this? how did you do it? I've only used midi so far.

Waywyn
05-13-2005, 12:17 AM
if you want to make music for tv/movie or whatever i would think of another sequencer than FL.

i know it is cheap and there is a lot you can do with it but once you got your hands on Cubase SX, Nuendo, Logic or Sonar it is a whole different world!

Sorry to say that but using FL as a sequencer for a pro job is like using GM Midi for the sounds.

Of course you can do everything with FL and also you could do a lot with GM sounds, but ... you know what i mean :)

ToddK
05-13-2005, 01:08 AM
I like Sony Vegas for video/sound.

Cause its super easy to learn.


TK

lovelysilence
05-13-2005, 02:11 AM
Hans Zimmer uses Ableton Live for scores. You have excellent stretching abilities there, for audio as well as midi as tempo.

Toxikator
05-13-2005, 11:56 AM
I'm an FL user myself, so take what I say with a grain of salt...

What exactly are you trying to do? are you trying to crunch a pre-programmed song file down to a particular time? I mean, a tempo change can be automated at each point if, for some reason, you didn't already program each part to fit.

If you're trying to fit, say, 8 bars into a certain block of time or whatever, just click on FL's clock until it displays overall time for the song (or pattern, whatever). Then, place your pattern in the playlist once. The space after it ends, select with the highlight tool. Now, adjust the tempo up or down so that the time the cursor is stopped on is the time you want. you'll have to hit spacebar twice after each adjustment (sorry, I know that sucks) and you might need to use the BPM fine tune, but there you have it. Once you get the correct tempo, copy the value, and at the beginning of the pattern, edit the BPM's events to be at that value for the pattern. This will match it perfectly.

If you have audio clips, no problem! before making any adjustments to tempo, select all clips which you'll need to change tempo and drag them out one cell and back in the playlist (Make sure to set your snap to "cell" so they don't get misaligned). Then, once you've determined your final tempo, change each audio clip's "timestretch" mode to elastiwue tonal (or drums, if you have percussive parts). Then, once the final adjustment is made, FL will perform the stretch. And Elasitque is probably one of the best-sounding stretchers you'll find, so it may take a minute or two.

Voila! It's kind of roundabout, I know, but it saves you a few hundred on a new sequencer. My real question is why do you bother. Do soundtrackers actually write each piece for a sequence in such a way that they end simultaneously? I mean usually the video is edited together with the soundtrack if that needs to be done, and if the soundtrack is ever interrupted by voices it can be pushed back so that it fits...

I can't really think what more you can do. I don't know of any program that can "stretch" an entire series of MIDI files and audio clips into one condensed time... Actually, if you've got the piece approximated to the right time (so that you don't have to stretch it severely), you could always render a 32bit wav (no dithering) and then re-import it and use FL's elastique "time" knob to make minute-second (and if you hold ctrl, frame) adjustments to lock an entire piece to tempo. easier, but you obviously can't re-edit it.

Well, I felt I had to defend FL in this matter as I find it quite capable. Comparing it to GM is kind of a cheap shot, as it's only major difference from Cubase or Logic is it's price tag*.

~Tox

*also some other useless junk like surround mixing (which you can still do, but only channel for channel), an integrated audio editor (might just be pro-tools, anyways audacity rocks and it's free and you can set it as your default editor inside FL so pfft), some MIDI sequence tools (like the ability to chop and stretch MIDI patterns, whichthe FL team is working on for 6) and the ability to record the sustain pedal (inexcusable IMO, but not worth the $900 for a new app)

Adambomb337
05-15-2005, 12:04 AM
Toxikator, thanks for all the tips! What I'm trying to do is write a piece from scratch that will fit in with those time cues exactly. I'm finding this really difficult to do... the only program I know of that has some features that gives you a list of cue points and allow you to adjust your score to the tempo and cue time frame is digital performer but I don't like that program at all

I think FL is a powerful too and I prefer it over anything else, but it just hasn't been in developement as long as logic and the others... someday...

thanks lovelysilence and ToddK, do you know anything more about abelton and vegas as far as timeing the music to picture? I've heard some good things about these too.

Waywyn, I've used cubase and logic a little and seen nuendo, but I prefer FLstudio over them all :) but I know what you mean. There's still a lot FL can't do yet but I think someday it will be able to do just as much and more...



Has anyone ever had to do this? write a piece from scratch and fit it into weird time cues like this without using any visual preference?


Does the composer make the music and then someone else fits it to the video? or does the composer do both?

Waywyn
05-15-2005, 03:55 AM
adam, i know. the fact you prefer FL over cubase, nuendo or whatever is a typical syndrome of that you are used to this software. the environment of cubase etc is kinda strange to you and in FL you feel sure. that's normal :)

but it is stil a fact that cubase and sequencers of the like are more professional. FL surely looks really cool and it also improved a lot but still ...

in SX 3 you are able to stretch audio parts in realtime, you can stretch MIDI parts and also you are able to do tempo curves and steps, time signature changes etc. so you are free to anything in terms of timing and tempo.

generally every sequencer will or can do the same over the time, but i still can't think of FL to be a serious and professional sequencer and i would never use it for big productions about 100 midi tracks, 90 min movies etc. and especially when you do audio recording and have to tweak little parts and stuff. it is really cool to grab an audio somewhere in the wave file and stretch certain parts like you would pull on a curtain to move.

howevery if you get used to a sequencer it is hard to change to another one :)

Daryl
05-15-2005, 04:55 AM
I tend to agree with the above. Cubase VST had a great feature which allowed you to type in the timecode and it would calculate the tempo required to fit in a specified number of bars (and beat, fractions of beats etc.). For some stupid reason it was removed from Cubase until recently, when it was replaced with a feature called Tempo Process (at the request of Hans Zimmer). This is the sort of thing that you need.

Daryl

RickD
05-15-2005, 06:40 AM
I was wondering what program/sequencer you use for making music to an exact time/cue (prefferably where you can put in markers and your music stays in time to the cue points if you have to change tempo)

I tried using FLstudio, but it's not quite there yet...

I use Digital performer. You can use as many markers as you need in the tracks overview window.

Rick

Adambomb337
05-15-2005, 02:32 PM
I tend to agree with the above. Cubase VST had a great feature which allowed you to type in the timecode and it would calculate the tempo required to fit in a specified number of bars (and beat, fractions of beats etc.). For some stupid reason it was removed from Cubase until recently, when it was replaced with a feature called Tempo Process (at the request of Hans Zimmer). This is the sort of thing that you need.

Daryl

That's the kind of thing I'm thinking of! Thankyou! I'm assuming SX 3 has this too then?

Daryl
05-16-2005, 01:12 AM
That's the kind of thing I'm thinking of! Thankyou! I'm assuming SX 3 has this too then?

I would think so. It actually came in on the last update of Nuendo 2 so I can't imagine that it would have been excluded from SX3. I would post a question at the Cubase forum to check if I were you.

Daryl

midislut
05-16-2005, 04:27 AM
Hans Zimmer uses Ableton Live for scores. You have excellent stretching abilities there, for audio as well as midi as tempo.


i dont think so !!

he uses Cubase as far as i am aware off

Rico
05-17-2005, 02:02 PM
There are pros and cons with FL Studio (as with any sequencer or program for that matter). FL Studio has several drawbacks (IMHO) when it comes to scoring (for instance), especially if You use a lot of VSTi with orchestral samples that have dynamic features (s.a. expression, etc.), but more on that later.

One annoying thing is that if You use the Video Player and also automate the tempo (to change every now and then), the video will be out of sync when You "scrub" or start playback from someplace else than the beginning. There might be a way around this, but I have not found it, and the problem is confirmed by the developers, but is inherent to the way automation works so it is not that easy to fix, apparently... The same problem appears with audio-tracks I've heard (I hardly ever use them myself) - might have been fixed in 5.0 though?

So in effect, this makes it hard to use FL for longer projects where You need tempo changes. If You don't need to sync with the video player, then it is easier, just take care of the audio tracks accordingly.

The other setback is that You can't draw automation for any midi-message in the piano-roll. This makes it hard(er) to automate things like expression, crescendos and what not on a note-by-note level. Good enough for some, not for me. Changes have been promised for a future update...

And then there is the debate on the audio-engine of FL being bad at lower frequencies, making a "mud" of the sound down there...

But at the end of the day, I still use it as my sole tool for making music and scoring short/amateur movies. I have tried to use cubase and others, but I guess I'm too stuck with the ease of use to change... :) (fun story; a friend of mine, long time user of cakewalk and cubase, tried FL studio for five minutes and then found cubase being "awkward" to use - he didn't change, just understood why I liked it so much :) )

Regards,
Rico

awpmusic
05-17-2005, 02:24 PM
in fact - you can write to picture with any sequencer - or without a sequencer at all - sequencer's weren't always around - they are just a tool and make life easier. You just need a little maths and you can work with anything - it's easier with the tools though - I use Cubase SX3 - I don't know FL Studio.

Adambomb337
05-18-2005, 12:54 PM
I am seriously thinking of getting cubase now and just running FLstudio in it when I need it.

Has anyone used Nuendo? is this better?

midislut
05-18-2005, 01:02 PM
nuendo 3 and sx3 uses the same audio engine

go ask more info here:

http://forum.nuendo.com/phpbb2/

http://forum.cubase.net/phpbb2/

many experienced users there on both platforms and can guide you correctly according to your personal needs !!

Waywyn
05-18-2005, 02:05 PM
i dont think so !!

he uses Cubase as far as i am aware off

maybe he uses ableton for some stretching and editing on audiofiles but don't forget steinberg WROTE about that zimmer uses cubase. maybe just one week or so. i dunno. don't believe everything you hear :)

@adam: i think you will be set with sx 3 then. don't spend like lot of bucks more just to have some really high and media pro controls you barely use.

midislut
05-18-2005, 02:45 PM
dude, realy he uses Cubase bigtime !!

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/Oct02/articles/hanszimmer.asp?session=a56a136a0f9fe800dfa9e14cb40 1023e

Sean R. Beeson
05-18-2005, 02:46 PM
I use pen, paper, and math. 90% of the time the cues are right on, and the other 10%, they just need slight adjusting, and that's when I use a sequencer, to make sure the cues are perfectly timed.

Sean

lovelysilence
05-18-2005, 04:19 PM
i dont think so !!

he uses Cubase as far as i am aware off


Must have been a false rumour then. Sorry for that. I frankly was a bit baffled reading that he used Ableton, cause it's not your typical scoring sequencer, though a good program altogether.

Sean R. Beeson
05-18-2005, 04:28 PM
I actually just spoke with someone from Media Ventures, one of the assistants to a composer. The two sequencers they endorse are Logic and Cubase. I was suprised to hear this as well. I am not sure what Zimmer uses directly, he could use other sequencers, but that is what the composers there use.

Sean

Adambomb337
05-19-2005, 01:48 PM
Is Nuendo much better to work with if you're composing for film/tv than cubase? I want to use this sequencer for just producing music also and not always incorporate video.

If you have Nuendo, then you wouldn't need cubase?

it seems like nuendo would be the standard over cubase...

Daryl
05-19-2005, 02:10 PM
Is Nuendo much better to work with if you're composing for film/tv than cubase? I want to use this sequencer for just producing music also and not always incorporate video.

If you have Nuendo, then you wouldn't need cubase?

it seems like nuendo would be the standard over cubase...

Nuendo and Cubase are identical for music (with the exception of a few file import/export options) and most of the extras are for post production. It sounds as if Nuendo would be overkill for you.

Daryl

josejherring
05-19-2005, 10:16 PM
I thought I posted on this thread yesterday and today it's gone.

Am I loosing it or did I say something that was against the rules?

Let me know if it got deleted because of some violations of the rules. I don't want to offend anybody.

Basically I was just saying that the type of sequencer you use is almost all based on the type of music you do.

If you want a lot of midi capabilities for orchestra writing then Digital Performer, Logic, Cubase. If you use a lot of loops and don't care much about midi then Live or Acid.

Most people use a combination of music processors. I use Digital Performer with Reason as a rewire slave. I'd like to add Live to but for now I just use reason for loops.

Cheers,

Jose

ChrisBouchard
05-22-2005, 08:12 AM
I don't have a sample video to work with though. All I have is something like this:

00:00:02:13 fade in animation
00:00:05:19 Logo begins to appear
00:00:09:09 Full logo in view
00:00:15:03 END fade to black (no sound)


did you have to have detailed timing like this? how did you do it? I've only used midi so far.

Cubase & Nuendo can set the timeline to edit in this mode but if you know the frame rate your working to (and you need to know!) then you can work out the times in milliseconds, and use any music program.

asuming this is timecode:

00:00:02:13

hh:mm:ss:fr

hours:minutes:seconds:frames.


If it's 25fps (europe) then a single frame will last 40 milliseconds, so 00:00:05:01 is 5.040 seconds etc...
if it's 30 fps (USA) a frame will last approx 33.33ms etc..
so you can work out the exact length of each cue in seconds and milliseconds.
which is easily accurate enough to score to.

Neilfactory
05-22-2005, 12:02 PM
Cubase SE is very cheap!It's better for sequencing than FL.

Neil.

Rico
05-22-2005, 11:42 PM
What does "better" mean? No, really, I want to know what what makes it better... I know several thing that are better in cubase, but for me, I still found the ease of working in the piano-roll so much easier in FL so I don't want to get rid of it :(

/Rico