Show 183 – Location sound and the zombie apocalypse with Ric Viers

This week we chat with Ric Viers about his new book The Location Sound Bible
and upcoming sound effects library Zombie Apocalypse.

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17 thoughts on “Show 183 – Location sound and the zombie apocalypse with Ric Viers

  1. Hey guys, first time commenting. Just wanted to say that I love the show (like a million people before me), and appreciate the knowledge and tips that you guys share on a weekly basis. I decided a couple months ago to start back at show 1 and work my way up, and I proud to say that I just finished show 100 a few days ago. I don’t know if I will be happy once I am caught back up to real time, or sad that I’ll have to wait now like every one else for a new show to come out. Either way great job guys, you have made this home recording gig so much easier for someone like me who is trying to learn everything from step one.

    PS. Is it weird that I hear Ryan’s voice in my head as I am writing this? I guess that is what you get after hours and hours of listening to Ryan read the comment section…

  2. I finally did it! I listened to every HRS episode! Sign me up for that diploma. 😀 The latest roundtable episode was one I never got around to before, but I did today. I’m probably doing a big Amazon purchase soon too, so I’ll definitely go through your link.
    I saw when Ryan originally posted sound mixer hell and I was laughing out loud. I’ve never dealt with anyone that bad, but I can definitely sense when people don’t know what recording is all about. There have been situations where I needed to thoroughly explain why a metronome was 98% necessary. That’s not a good time at all. “But you lose the feel, man. My grooves can’t be held down by a click, man. Let me march to the beat of my own drum, man. I need to express myself, man.” It’s terrible.
    Anyway, it was a cool show. I’ve been interested in film and everything it encompasses as of late, and the show tied in nicely with it.
    P.S. It never ceases to amuse me when Ryan recalls an episode number and knows what went on in it based solely on the number. Hahahaha

    Thanks again for a great podcast!

  3. Hey guys, love your work as always!

    I want to get a better vocal sound from my home studio. I’m currently using a Rode NT-1000 into my Apogee Duet, then into Logic.
    I am in the process of making acoustic panels to treat my room but I wanted to ask what single thing I could do to most dramatically improve my vocal sound? Is a reflection filter worth it? What about a channel strip? (and is a cheap one ok?) I was also considering buying waves plugins etc.
    What do you think should be my next step? (or do I need to do all of those things)

  4. Hey guys.

    (Apologies if this is a doubled post. I’m never sure if it’s my screenreader being ugly or if it’s pure user idiot syndrome when a post doesn’t…. um, post. )

    At long last, Circumstances have forced my typing fingers to post a comment. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining…. Oh wait…
    Anyways, this is that strange bird commenting for the first time. Yep, one of the three females enjoying audio porn as well as….

    Um, yeah. This is not the time to shatter other myths about females, so I’ll leave it at that.
    I do think it’s a damn shame that there aren’t more females getting into audio engineering; I wouldn’t mind having a number of fellow audio-porn bitches to shoot the shit with.

    thanks to Dezz for the JennyK shoutout, and of course I do want to mention the excellent mix course on Dezz is doing an amazing job. hell, if he can teach me, he can teach anyone.
    Strange eh? Jeez, I’m so relieved. the secret is out.
    Honestly though, learning that an HRS god have heard my weird ass podcast is all but absolutely terrifying. I live in constant fear now of sudden lightning striking me down and a booming voice shaking the earth around my feet; “D112!”

    I love the show and am only a few episodes short of all caught up . Soon. Soon I will have fulfilled my half-assed promise to the deiti of sound to hear them all.

    I don’t really do chickens. i do occasionally write songs about them. Does that count? they all have perfectly normal lyrics though so I thought it would be fitting to add a short quote:

    “Get away from my chicken Dude, get your dirty mind off my chicken dude. Get away from my chicken dude, get your sticky … out of my chicken Dude.”

    jenny, blind bitch with attitude, as well as weird bird on Studio chaotic, with a sudden violent hunger for brains. Now, that is, as always, perfectly normal.

  5. Oops. Forgot my question. Hahaha

    I was recently mixing one of the tracks from Shaking Through (thanks for recommending that website, Jon) and the drums were mic’ed using the mid/side technique. From what I understand I should take the side mic, duplicate it, pan them hard, and invert the polarity of one, correct? When I did this, the mid channel seemed to lean left a bit. If I inverted the polarity of the mid mic, it switched to the right side. Am I doing something wrong, is it normal, or is it just poor mic placement? Also, can you do mid/side with three mics? I was thinking a matched pair for the sides pointing away from each other, and one mic in between them. They would be out of phase before hitting the DAW, right?


  6. Hi guys

    I’ve done a bunch of acoustic treatment in my room but test tones reveal there are still standing waves and some frequencies way out of control. What do you think about using a graphic equiliser to cut those frequencies to “tune the room”? Not ideal, but maybe you could have a plugin preset or a hardware graphic set up for checking mixes? In which case, any recommendations on goot hard/software options?

  7. Not sure if you’ve already mentioned this, but at least I don’t remember you doing so. There is a new Golden Age Project product out, the D2, a large diaphragm dynamic which seems to be an imitation of the SM7b. Same frequency cut and boost switches and all, but a lot cheaper. It would be awesome if you could get a review copy of this. It might be interesting as you’ve spoken in favor of the Shure original mic, as well as the other GAP products. I can’t quite afford the SM7b in the foreseeable future, but the D2 is something I’m gonna get for an early christmas present for myself if it’s any good. If it’s not possible for you to review it in the show, I’m also very interested in the listeners experiences if anyone has any. Thanks for all the work you’re doing, love the show.

  8. Hello Gents,
    I have a new and distracting item on my gear lust list. It is the Boss RC-300 loop station which comes in at about $570. It allows a live player to create backing tracks on the fly, and more. Boss really seems to have figured out what such a performer would want and has delivered a nice package. I am looking at this pedal board to help me quickly arrange song ideas and hash out accompanying bass lines etc., and if it works out, maybe I’ll see if I can get some gigs as a loop whore.
    The question is: As I’m seeing quite a few artists like Ed Sheeran making significant progress using loop devices, I’m wondering if you’ve heard of anyone hauling one of these puppies into a studio in place of a back up band and what the ramifications might be.
    Oh, and twenty bucks says that Ryan made a comment following the words “nice package”. I will put that towards you mixing my stuff one day hommie.

    • JimB.

      I recently completed a session involving exactly this kind of setup: The artist was a looper, with song arranged in a way that made it impossible to record without involving the loop station.
      To get around the fact that the rc-50 could only supply a stereo mix, I took direct feeds to the DAW from her setup of instruments via mics and DIs, then fed the loop pedal a mix via an aux, so she could do her looping thing.

      That way, I ended up with clean, individual track for each source, of a live looping performance, which I could mix later.

      The routing ended up more complicated than that, but if you go from that basic principle you should get the best of both worlds.

      (Loop the chicken)

  9. Hey guys, something happened last week that made me think of the show. I was at my parents place with my kids hanging out in the back yard, when I realized that my 2 year old was missing. I went looking around the house but couldn’t find him. When I asked if anyone had seen him, his older brother answered casually, “he’s in the fridge”. That’s when I remembered the fridge that had been set out beside the house to be picked up by our local utility company. I opened it up and sure enough there he was. On a whim, I asked him to scream as loudly as he could and slammed the door. Sweet, beautiful, silence. I opened the door to find him still screaming quite loudly (no marshall stack, but still nothing to be scoffed at). My mind went instantly to the discussion about isolation on the show. Cheap and dirty redneck isolation box anyone? Anyways, keep it up guys. Ride on.

  10. GSAA,

    So I recently spawned a gingerling halfblood. How in the hell do you get anything done in the studio with your perpetually alarming vomit and poop factory?

  11. If one wanted to put together a sound library, what would yall suggest as a minimum set up. in my day job i have access to some unique sounding equipment, but my recording setup does leave much to be desired. Also what sampling rate and bit depth etc. would you consider reasonable if you wanted to be taken seriously if you wanted to sell it? Typically how much content would you need to call the sound library a sound library?

  12. Thanks for the mention guys, the comments made me laugh so much! I do listen to the show when I can, I certainly did when I started engineering but now have so many sessions on there’s barely even time to eat!
    Currently listening to the rest of the episode whilst doing mic maintainance, rock n roll.
    Being one of the few girls in audio isn’t annoying, use it to your advantage because people will remember you!

  13. Hello guys, GSAA.
    My music recording is a hobby really, one that I really love but I earn my money as a sound recordist and audio operator in the broadcast industry.
    It was therefore an interesting discussion with Ric. I would still be interested in the book as I believe you can always learn more about a subject, and you tend to absorb more when the subject you are reading about, interests you.
    My tricks of the trade beside the hardware that was mentioned as standard, would be the bits and pieces I use for mounting. Such as double sided tape, belts, mounts etc, beside the standard clips that were mentioned. Ric, I’m sure you would also admit that often you have to be resourceful and find other ways to put a lavalier microphone on someone…I mean a vertical clip works well for talent when they are buxom and are wearing a bra, if it is placed in the centre or the bra…there is actually a nice space of free air there and it sounds great, but if a female does not match this criterior in some way you have to get creative.
    Physical elements come into play a lot too..with wind, and of course the rubbing of any material , chest hair on guys etc directly onto the microphone surface can be very loud etc so I would say it is definitely an art to get right and takes practice. I have some good tried and tested techniques now. It’s also tricky but also somewhat interesting on the occasions for, say, a red carpet gala event that is being televised, when you have to find a way to put a wireless transmitter on a host in such a way that it and the microphone is not visable at all on camera. I have many neoprene straps that are good for around the waist or thigh which seem to do the job. I must admit to having put a transmitter on a Velcro strap around many a hosts’s upper thigh in my day and many of them would be considered pretty hot to the masses!…often those thighs don’t touch if you know what I mean…and that’s just the guys! (insert audio accent of “The Who” here!!). It just needs to be done, and usually there is little time so I give them the option…they can go away and do it themselves or I can do it…in which case it is up the skirt, around the thigh and Bob’s your Uncle. If you are professional about it, most talent are totally cool about it.
    Without wanting to go on about it too much here, in what is primarily a podcast about home recording, I would say that some parts of the job would definitely be considered pretty interesting with the variety of stuff you get to do.
    Thanks again for another great show.

  14. By the way, speaking of sound effects, are you all familiar with the “Wilhelm Scream”. .First used in 1951in the film Distant Drums it was been used in hundreds of films since, as a way for film sound fx guys to have a bit of fun and I guess to get the nod of acknowledgment from other sound effects guys in the know, for creatively getting the effect in their latest films.
    You would have heard if for sure…many of the Star Wars films etc contain it.

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