Avid Pro Tools | S6 Puts 422 Glasgow In Prime Audio Post Position
written by Keri Middleton | August 19, 2016
In one way or another, 422 has proven that you truly don’t need to flock to London to win some top post-production business. With offices in Manchester and Glasgow, their experienced team of editors, colorists, dubbing mixers and VFX artists have put their hands to documentary projects for the likes of the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky, as well as ads for McCann and TWBA.
Two of 422.tv’s dubbing mixers, John Cobban and William Cory, are no strangers to this versatility, having worked on everything from independent short films to children’s sci-fi TV programs and high-end dramas. With their self-promoted “formidable range” of post-production facilities from Avid, we caught up with them and talked all things S6, Pro Tools 12 and their pro mixing career tips for future generations.
Tell us who you are …
As dubbing mixers, we mix and edit a variety of content for TV, film and corporate projects. We have worked on a real range of projects, from comedies like BBC sitcom Two Doors Down to CBBC sci-fi series Eve, which received an RTS Award for best sound. Recently, we also helped to complete the post on three feature films, including Pale Star, which premiered at the Edinburgh International Film Festival in June and received some great reviews.
Tell us about your mixing solution …
We use an Avid Pro Tools | S6 desk combined with Pro Tools 12. As you can imagine, our workflow always involves a large amount of editing as well as mixing, so we find that using the S6 alongside traditional keyboard and mouse operation gives us the best of both worlds.
What are the big challenges facing you as a professional post mixer today?
As a professional post mixer, it’s not enough to just deliver high-quality mixes anymore. For us, one of the biggest challenges is ensuring that we’re providing the correct deliverables to the client whilst keeping to deadlines. The fast-paced nature of the work we do means that at times, this can be tricky. But thanks to Avid’s powerful studio solutions, we somehow manage to meet expectation and keep a very happy customer base.
Could you speak about expectations for streamlining workflows and being more efficient in today’s industry?
In the current climate, jobs must be turned around extremely quickly. For this reason alone, it’s vital that our systems aid in the production of consistent mixes and deliverables, and don’t just allow us to work in the way that each of us prefers. Being able to interchange between studios seamlessly gives us a great advantage and gives us a head start in achieving this.
How has Avid helped modernize your workflows?
We made the shift to Pro Tools in the last two years, and we’ve found that the updated workflow has proven to be invaluable to us. As well as this, Pro Tools 12 allows us to bounce our mixes very quickly, meaning our content can be reviewed by clients and uploaded much faster than before offline bouncing was available. The move has been a huge step up for us, as it frees up more studio time and in turn improves entire studio efficiency.
What were the key requirements you needed in the Avid solution to have to solve your workflow challenges?
We were looking to have near seamless Avid to Pro Tools compatibility to create new and innovative ways of working within the audio industry. For such a compact console, the features of the S6 are so powerful and efficient. It really molds and complements our workflow here for audio post production.
What stands out to you as the most compelling features of S6?
One of the most standout features has to be the softkeys, which we like as we can now customize any key combinations. That level of customization is great for editing dialogue, as well as writing and printing automation. On top of this, the touch screen and overall improvement in the visualization on the S6 is great for navigating larger projects and fixing tracks to the main fader for writing volume.
Any advice you would give to students or young mixers who want to do what you do?
Our main advice to anyone looking to break into the industry would be to work on as many films for other students as possible. You need to work hard to ensure that you make yourself the go-to person for mixing a film amongst you peer group. Deconstruct a section of a feature film and rebuild it for the fun and learning experience. Ultimately you need to be three things: fresh, creative and keen to learn.
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