Today's advent calendar reveals part three of "Useful Tips From The BOOM Sound Designers"
David Philipp tells you more about his templates, favorite SFX, favorite plugins, a little secret and his daily work with SFX. Enjoy!
How does your project template look like?
I usually work in Pro Tools with my template of choice depending on which kind of project I'm working on. Normally I switch between three types: Game sound design, movie/ad sound design and boom sound design. The most significant difference is the track amount within the templates with the movie template containing about 40 mono and stereo tracks, the game sound design about 20 tracks and the boom one about 10. Every template has the same allocated reverb sends, master busses for music, sfx, dialogue, etc. and contains re-ecording busses so I can print stems very quickly and easily. Every track has its own (very steep) high pass EQ already loaded as I always want to get rid of the ultra low frequencies from the very start. Also the levels are set at -9db to give me enough headroom in my mixes. There's also a default master bus effects chain in place which usually changes as the project progresses.
A useful approach for designing a sound
I always try and think in layers. Whenever I find the suitable starting point/sound for my desired creation I will build it up from there. I tend to drag in several files from my library into the project, try if they suit my imagination and delete them if they turn out to be not as good expected. I make heavy use of the on board pitching, splitting and reversing of audio finder, which has become a major element of my sound design workflow over the last few years.
Useful FX that you use almost always to beef up your sound.
For the low end I tend to use historical fire arms and the black powder libraries. I don't think there's any of my "big impact" sounds which doesn't include a pitched down and processed version of the above mentioned construction kits.
I have a dedicated effects send to Waves Lo-Air which provides me with a low frequency boost if needed. I also have kind of a parallel compression bus in place (SPL twin tube or Fab Filter Saturn, UAD studer and LA2A) where I will send signal to if I desire more glue or crunch.
A little secret: I include a "steak sizzling" sound at least once in all of my commercial game and advertising releases. I think it's the most versatile sound effect in my library.
Your favorite FX plugin and why is it your favourite?
I currently make heavy use of the fab filter plugins, especially the Pro-Q, Pro-MB and Saturn. I love the Pro-Q for its clinical approach and interface, also the m/s processing comes in really really handy. The Pro-MB is an amazing plugin as it allows you to create frequency-dependant side chaining which really helps making room for certain layers to cut through. Saturn is a multi-band saturation plugin. Multi-band saturation.. Do I really have to explain it further?? Saturation for the nation!!
Pro Tools tip of the day
The three finger salute (kindly provided by my good mate and fellow sound designer Byron Bullock):
I often find myself automating the living hell out of the different parameters within my plugin windows. I used to just click the button to enable a certain parameter for automation within Pro-Tools which I am sure that most of users have done before. Not anymore:
ctrl + cmmnd + option (Mac) + left mouse click on parameter of your choice
ctrl + windows + alt (Win) + left mouse click on parameter of your choice
Aka the three finger salute. Chose "enable parameter for automation" and go wild!!
Thanks David :-)