I finally got the motivation to get a small music video production setup together. I’ve only done technical test footage so far. I couldn’t find any other threads here specifically about this subject, though there are some members of this community that make excellent modular synth videos with hundreds of thousands of views on Youtube. Some of which I found before this forum.
I’m curious to see how broad this subject can go. I’m personally concerned with the cameras on tripods, fixed angles, synths in the foreground and visually compelling backgrounds aesthetic. But I’m also generally curious how people with more organization would do more elaborate productions.
I’m also personally interested in the DIY, free and open source vibes, so my setup is as much of that as I can get.
I have a Panasonic GH-1 mirrorless DLSR that can shoot 1080P at 60 FPS. It has an on camera stereo mic that’s not bad. The lens is a 14-140mm. I also have a 20mm prime lens that’s pretty fast but I haven’t messed with that with video.
For audio program material, my setup outputs from a Norns to the speakers, so I’m using the TAPE feature to record. Then I transcode the video with sound from the on-camera mic in VLC then import into Ardour along with the sound recording from the Norns. I used a percussive sound to visually align the onset, which seemed to work great! Then I exported the video from Ardour and uploaded to Youtube.
Things that threw me for a loop
- My camera records audio at 48K sample rate but the default for VLC to transcode is 44.1K
- The Norns records audio files at 48K
- Ardour by default will transcode video (with a very low quality) on export
For the audio problems, I decided to change the session rate in Ardour to 48K and not do any resampling. To solve the video problem, I used the “copy” codec to pass the picture through from the original imported file.
The result came together well. I can’t perceive any timing problems between sounds/gestures/lights. The ambient noise is still present along with the sound from Norns.
In the future I would like to do more live sampling with mlr and modular synths as input. IIRC, the TAPE feature on Norns does not mix sound from the input jacks into a recording. I’ll give it another shot though. All my A/V friends have recommended the Zoom H4 or H6 which looks like a wonderful device, though if I can get away without it for a while…i could hold off on dropping more doll hairs on gear.
Anyhoo, curious how everyone else makes their music videos.