Today’s #6 Sony Vegas Zen Tip is all about how to synchronize separate Audio and Video files that were recorded using different devices.

In a more professional workflow, it is not uncommon that you may need to record your Video and Audio with separate devices. Every movie that has ever been made, has most likely used this technique. This is the same method I use to record all my face to face videos with you. It does take a lot of extra work to set up, however the benefits of having better quality audio are definitely worth it.

Camera and Audio Recording Equipment

I use a Sony A7s camera to record all my video and also have a Rode Video Mic Pro plugged into the microphone jack. However the audio captured by this microphone is not what you are listening to. The actual audio that you hear in the video, is being recorded separately into a Zoom H6 Audio Recorder using a Rode Lavalier Microphone . Because I’m in a room that has a bit of echo, this close up mic is much better to use than a mic 2 metres away on a camera.

The difficulty with this recording technique, is that you need to synchronize the good audio recorded into the Zoom H6 audio recorder, with the video recorded in camera. However, it is not that difficult at all if you use the correct method and create good sync points in the original files. On a professional film shoot they use a clapper board to create a time and audio sync point at the beginning of each take, which becomes a visual and audio reference used by the editor in post production.

How to Create Visual and Audio Sync Points

In a home studio setup, you can clap your hands 3 times to camera, after you have started the Audio recorder and Video camera. It’s very important to always remember to turn both devices on, otherwise you may be headed to the hospital after overdosing with Xanax due to an extreme freak out anxiety attack. There's nothing worse than doing a really good take on camera and then discovering later that you forgot to press record on the audio recorder.

Syncing Audio and Video in Vegas Pro With Plural Eyes

When you import the Video and Audio files into Sony Vegas Pro or Movie Studio Platinum, you will now see the 3 claps as large peaks in the Audio Waveform. This is what you are going to use, to sync the audio perfectly. There is also an amazing piece of software called Plural Eyes, that will auto-magically do all the syncing for you.

Watch this video now and I will show you exactly what do.

Compatibility

The information in this tutorial applies to all versions of Sony Vegas Pro and Sony Movie Studio Platinum.

 

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About Derek Moran
Derek Moran is the author of all articles on Movie Studio Zen.
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  • Your comment will be reviewed by a moderator before it is published on the site.
    Dave King · 16:10 21/02/2017
    Does Plural Eyes work well with music? Like syncing for music videos?
    • Your comment will be reviewed by a moderator before it is published on the site.
      Derek
      • Moderator
      · 18:27 21/02/2017
      It is the best Audio Sync tool I know of.
      If you have two different audio tracks recorded from the same event, it will sync them perfectly.
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    Ian · 07:43 14/03/2016
    This is something I've been having to do regularly with the work I do but I was curious about Plural Eyes - BUT I was then totally taken aback by the price of it! Manually the sync process is pretty quick and easy to do so I wondered why anyone would spend $300 on a plugin to do what is essentially a very simple task? I guess if you had a significantly large number of clips and audio you had to align on a regular basis it might then make sense.
    • Your comment will be reviewed by a moderator before it is published on the site.
      Derek
      • Moderator
      · 08:56 14/03/2016
      I waited a long time before I finally bought Plural Eyes, because of the price. When I did buy it, I waited until they had one of their MEGA sales and it was 50% OFF. If you subscribe to their newsletter, you will get notified when sales are on. I never buy anything at normal price.
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    kiwihans
    • Member
    · 06:47 14/03/2016
    Great tips (audio sync) I haven't seen your style of presentations anywhere else. Keep up the good work!
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      Derek
      • Moderator
      · 08:54 14/03/2016
      Thanks Hans
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    Vladislav · 06:16 14/03/2016
    Hi Derek, I'd like to recommend my freeware audio synchronization tool: auxmic.com

    It scans all the media and outputs time offset for clips, just drag all the files from your project to main window.
    • Your comment will be reviewed by a moderator before it is published on the site.
      Derek
      • Moderator
      · 08:53 14/03/2016
      Do you have a YouTube video showing this in action ?
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    Eagle Six
    • Member
    · 02:59 14/03/2016
    Hi Derek, like all your tips, value and simplicity, as they should be, great job. I like the subtle hint at the beginning, if you want better audio, use an audio device, not the camera audio, which are usually terrible. Of course if you want really great audio use a sound man on the crew!

    Not having a film crew or budget to afford a sound man, I use a Zoom. I like using a clapper board if a I have an assistant (sometimes I will do it myself if the cameras are hard mounted), as the clapper board provides a more distinct wave for syncing. When the board isn't appropriate.......as you suggest, I like three claps. And I ask that the talent clasp as hard as they can without hurting their hands.

    Also, at the end of the take, I ask the talent to again clap three times. In the event all cameras were not rolling at the start to capture the three claps, I may have it at the end as a backup, to save my butt. But, more importantly, if the cameras and audio recorder go out of sync during a lengthy take, I have an end point I can reference to do a secondary sync by adjusting the audio length to match the sync points.

    Best Regards......George
    • Your comment will be reviewed by a moderator before it is published on the site.
      Derek
      • Moderator
      · 08:51 14/03/2016
      Thanks for your great additional information !
      :):idea::woohoo:
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    Tammo · 02:49 14/03/2016
    Very enjoyable to watch. I like you sense of humour. Thanks for making these videos!
    Tammo
    • Your comment will be reviewed by a moderator before it is published on the site.
      Derek
      • Moderator
      · 08:49 14/03/2016
      Cheers

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