Dorito's Super Bowl Ad

Last weekend I did sound for a commercial which is part of the Crash The Super Bowl contest. We shot 2 commercials, and turned them into 8 different cuts for the contest. Top 5 wins big money, grand prize airs during the Super Bowl on top of that.

Usually when I do sound, I'll mix and boom at most. Although for one of these commercials I did some foley and sound editing as well. I learned sound editing in Pro Tools but no longer have the program after graduation. Luckily I have learned a lot of great techniques in Soundtrack Pro recently and used the noise reduction tool along with normalize, EQ and compression when needed.

A few of our locations were real bad for sound, so we really needed some of those processes and effects too. Our first location was at Stop & Shop down the road from me. They were nice enough to turn off the music but the sound of the coolers in the produce section we were shooting in was terrible. A hum. A loud loud hum, from every section. They cant turn that off or their food may go bad. So we had to deal with it. Moving the action away from the worst parts and pointing the side of the boom towards the sound (pointing the tip parellel and away) was the best way to go. However, the hum is a low frequency and voice is also low frequency, making it very difficult to get rid of the hum in post. Fortunately our shots were pretty tight and the only person with dialogue there was a woman (higher frequency voice than male). So I was able to improve it in post for sure, but listening to it with headphones, especially next to good audio if no room tone, it still was rough.

Another tough location for sound was a bar we shot at. Football Sunday during business hours- not great for sound continuity. Although it was a private bar, so it could have been busier. Also, the center of the bar- behind the counter were the coolers and fans of course. They were extremely loud and low frequency. That was a major concern for me as to make sure I get the microphone in as close as possible and pointing it away from the source of the bad hum. Although that turned out to be the least of my worries. Practically every shot we did was as wide as possible on the 18mm lens and many were on sliders. So I really couldn't get in close to separate the male voices from the hum. And on top of that, the lights were causing me a lot of problems as they kept producing shadows from my boom and putting them in the shot. The shadows were closer to being in the shot than the microphone itself, so I really couldn't get close in there at all. I could have miked up the actors, but it was my understanding that me being in the shot was not an issue until after we started rolling; not enough time to set up wireless lavs on a speedy day like we had, plus the lavs are omni mics and would pick up a ton of background noise, as opposed to picking up mostly the voice.

Although I did have some easier locations (and some other difficult outdoor ones) I did create some portfolio worthy soundbites. I'll post when I post. But LIKE us on facebook and if we get into the top 5, vote for us!

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