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The power of sound in video!

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Bert and Ernie. Han Solo and Chewbacca. Donald Trump and his wig. Some things just work better together. The same is true for audio and video. The right music and sound effects are often the only thing standing between your video and absolute greatness. So how do you make sure your video has that little je ne sais quoi? Don’t just play it by ear.

Sound expert Steven from Roundhouse listed three important elements you need to consider when creating a video. Let’s go!

The voice

...is not just a famous tv show. Finding the right voice actor has a great impact on the message you are trying to bring. Every voice has a certain color and every voice actor their range. Calm, neutral and articulate voices enhance instruction videos and technical tutorials, while bubbly, energetic voices are better for toys or cool events. P.S. If you can get Morgan Freeman to do it, get Morgan Freeman to do it. That man can make anything sound good.

The music

There’s a reason Ennio Morricone, James Horner and Hans Zimmer are more than just names to us. The right music dictates the mood and pace and lifts your video from ooh to ooh la la. You don’t want to introduce the next explosive startup with the sound of a mellow Ukulele jingle.

To find the right music for your video, there are a couple of things you need to do:

  • Find the right mood and emotion for your video. Once you decide how you want to make the user feel, it will be a lot easier to pin down the right song.
  • Start browsing your database. As you’ve already decided on the right mood for your video, you’ve successfully narrowed your search field from all the music in the world to a very particular subset.
  • Play the music and your video side by side. Don’t worry about mixing and sound effects just yet. Just make sure the music provokes the right feeling in your soul.
  • Once you’ve found the right song, make sure you have the rights to use the video and start editing.

Editing will help you get the pacing right. Despite what you might think, pacing is not just about speed. Every good story has a build-up and a release. The right music takes us on a rollercoaster ride through different emotional stages like excitement, tension and release, over and over again.

Sound design

Sound is the great manipulator. It can enforce and refine actions, highlight evolutions and shift focus to the things that matter. It makes videos sound real to us. Think of the cartoonish whacks you hear when people in movies get in a fight. If you’ve ever punched someone in the face before (not cool, bro!) you’ll know that a disappointing thud is all that resonates as a fist makes contact with a face. If we leave the more dramatic sounding whipping sounds out of the video however, the fight won’t look real to us.

As the great George Lucas once said: I feel that sound is half the experience. So huddle together, set up a sound strategy for your video and… keep it simple.

Want to know more about sound in video? I’m sure Steven will be happy to help. 

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Tags: Production