Manchester-based RAS Audio Services has highlighted the power and flexibility of the SADiE PCM8 for television audio production by using it on the forthcoming third series of CBBC’s extremely successful ‘Prank Patrol’.
Produced by Bakermedia in Manchester and scheduled to air from January on BBC2 on Saturday mornings, the 10x30 ‘Prank Patrol’ follows the team of Barney and the Ninjas as they play elaborate pranks on viewers’ unsuspecting friends and family. Mummies come to life, aliens land, robots bust through walls...all of which is a far cry from RAS Audio Services’ core business of recording brass bands, choirs and chamber music.
“I used to work for Bakermedia’s MD a few years ago at another facility house, now defunct, and having re-established contact I was asked if I’d like to do the audio post for the forthcoming third series,”? explains RAS’s Richard Scott.
The combination of Richard’s experience and the SADiE PCM8’s features meant that RAS Audio was easily up to the new challenge. Not only did this include handling a huge amount of spot effects, but also dealing with the clandestinely recorded sound captured from the hidden mics as the pranks unfold.
“The show is very in your face and has well over 1000 spot effects in just under half an hour,”? Richard explains. “There’s a lot of topping and tailing to do and cosmetic editing of the dialogue, some of which is of necessity not ideally recorded. It’s also quite a complicated show; during the prank itself there will usually be up to 8 live mic streams, plus voiceovers, multiple effects tracks and two or three music beds. As a result I obviously valued SADiE’s very fast editing and processing abilities.”?
The PCM8 is an 8 input / 8 output system running full SADiE 5 software. Hardware comprises a PCI plug in card and provides 8 channels of line input and output as well as digital I/O. It also utilises the SADiE Series 5 hardware platform to meet the demand for more powerful high-speed processing of today's high-resolution audio formats up to 192kHz/24bit.
In terms of its audio workflow, ‘Prank Patrol’, is offlined on Final Cut Pro, after which Richard receives an OMF for the audio and a QuickTime movie for guide pictures. “I use SSL’s Pro-Convert to convert the OMF to AES31, which SADiE then opens directly,”? he explains. “I have the full SADiE video option, which directly plays the QT movie in its own window within SADiE. I mix the programme down in the box with some external processing onto a spare stereo stream, then convert to MP3 within SADiE to send for approval. I send the final mix as Broadcast WAV either on disk or via FTP, where it is then imported back into FCP for the online.
“So far we’ve had no issues at all with standards and sync, the master just snaps straight into place on the online system,”? he concludes.
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About Prism Sound
Founded in 1987, Prism Sound manufacture high-quality professional digital audio equipment for the International broadcast, film, music production, manufacturing and telecommunications sectors. The range now includes SADiE digital audio workstations and location recorders. Prism Sound also manufactures audio test and measurement products such as the DSA-1 and the dScope Series III audio analyzer.
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