Who We Are

 
 

Welcome to The Sound Manifesto. We're named after The Sound Manifesto - a public statement of the principles by which we work.

We provide professional sound recording services to the movie industry. Our objective is to promote a greater awareness of sound issues among moviemakers and to encourage them to spend more time planning for sound. Without planning, it's unlikely you'll get the best soundtrack for your movie.

But first, let us introduce ourselves and then we'll explain our rationale and how we work:

Director of Audiography , Sound Mixer, Boom Operator

Composer, Sound Mixer, Boom Operator

Eddy
Yang

Full budget productions can fix their mistakes

Most full-budget movies are recorded on a sound stage or television studio where many factors, particularly noise, are under full control. If the movie needs to be shot on location (away from the studio) then it's common practice to record the dialogue on location, treat it as a guide track and later use ADR to record the final dialogue in a recording studio. It's costly both financially and in terms of time, which is why this option is largely associated with full-budget productions.

Consequently, full-budget Directors habitually ignore sound, safe in the knowledge that it's all under control and any problems can be fixed. Given time and a full-budget, they usually can - hence that notorious phrase "we'll fix it in post".

Low budget productions can't

Most low-budget Directors have learnt their skills by studying and imitating the big guns, and if full-budget Directors don't appear to worry about sound then why should they? But when a low-budget director says "we'll fix it in post" then you know it's time to start worrying!

In the UK, the majority of movies are made on a low-budget. Many new producers and directors don't realise they can't work the same way as Hollywood. A low-budget Director can't afford to make mistakes when recording sound. Mistakes are made because low-budget movies are usually recorded not in a studio but on location - where they are subject to the full gamut of noise problems that accompany such a risky strategy.

Locations are always noisy

In low-budget movies, recorded sound is critical and there's little margin for error. Since ADR isn't a low-budget option then you rely on the location to act as your sound recording studio. So make no mistake; the quality of your dialogue equals the quality of your location .

Sound recordists can't eliminate traffic noise, overhead aircraft or background noise when recording in poorly researched locations. What's more, these noises can be impossible to  "fix in post" - because you're on a low-budget and you can't affort ADR.

All this adds up to one thing - if you're a low-budget moviemaker, choosing your locations is critical to the success of your project. So how do you choose locations that are less likely to ruin your movie?

Sound planning is cheap

The simple answer is sound planning (excuse the pun). This will at least reduce the probability that something might go wrong.

The most common mistake in low-budget moviemaking is to delay planning for sound until the last minute - which is usually principal photography, when locations are fixed and it's too late for the Sound Mixer and Boom Operator to have much influence.

If you're a low-budget Producer or Director then you'll need to plan much more carefully for sound than your full-budget counterpart. You literally can't afford to make any mistakes. That means the Producer should hire a director for the Sound Department before locations are even discussed, let alone agreed.

How we work

After working on several low-budget movies and experiencing the same problems time after time, The Sound Manifesto made an important decision; we decided to work exclusively on movie productions that hire a Director of Audiography at the start of preproduction.

Here's a summary of how we work:

Firstly we find a production where the Producer and Director are in complete agreement with our Manifesto and are keen to get the Sound Department on-board as early as possible.

Our involvement begins at the start of preproduction, when we supply your production with a Director of Audiography who manages the Sound Department and quality controls the entire audio process from preproduction to postproduction.

The Director of Audiography works very closely with the Director, Director of Photography, Art Director and Music Director.

In the production phase, we supply the Sound Mixer and Boom Operator, who are fully informed by the Director of Audiography . We normally create sound reports for each day.

In postproduction, we offer you a variety of optional roles and services such as Supervising Sound Editor, Sound Editing, Dialogue Editing, Sound Effects Recording & Editing, ADR Supervision & Editing, Foley Supervision and Music Editing - as well as liaising with the Sound Designer, Picture Editor and other technical staff on behalf of your production.