9 Replies Latest reply on Dec 30, 2011 7:45 AM by bogiesan

    Better way to sync sound for animation?

    twistedgenesis

      Okay, just did my first actual animation in AE and I have to say, there were some crazy workarounds I had to go through to find the audio points of interest and then animate to them, the project turned out half as good as I wanted.  Here's the link to the video, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=upm-rsBz1kE, anyone have some advice on a better way to do this?

        • 1. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
          Dave LaRonde Level 6

          Since you don't say exactly what those crazy workarounds were, it's difficult to give you advice.  Know that working with sound in AE is something of a crap shoot:  You need to scrub the audio for ultimate precision.  Turn on the caps lock key.  Scrub the audio.  Mark the places where you want things to occur.

           

          This is how people have dealt with audio in AE for nearly two decades, and I doubt you'll be able to change anything in a big hurry.

          • 2. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
            twistedgenesis Level 1

            Yeah, that was my workaround, nested comps and place markers.  I would think that they would have figured out something better by cs5.5, as AE is biggest in graphic animation.

            • 3. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
              Dave LaRonde Level 6

              Well, consider this: for as long as After Effects has been in existence, people have been animating to audio tracks.  It seems to work.

              • 4. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
                Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                I use markers in all the time to edit audio in Logic, Pro-Tools, Audition... every app that I use to edit audio. Markers in AE are easy. Press the . key in the numeric keypad then tap the * key on the same and your markers magically appear. J and K keys snap from one marker to another....

                • 5. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
                  bogiesan Level 4

                  Dave LaRonde wrote:

                   

                  Well, consider this: for as long as After Effects has been in existence, people have been animating to audio tracks.  It seems to work.

                  Second that observation and Rick's. These are not workarounds, they are how we work with audio in After Effects. Not sure what else you could possibly want besides the ability to listen to audio, scrub audio, display a waveform, and to set moveable and nameable marks. Trish and Chris Meyer have superb tutorials on finding, marking, using and designing for audio hooks.

                   

                  bogiesan

                  • 6. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
                    twistedgenesis Level 1

                    That would make it easier.  Thank you, I could have used that one before.  How do you approach animating mouth movements?

                    • 7. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
                      twistedgenesis Level 1

                      Yeah, that's crazy to think about...  JK, I think it could be better, just the way you said, but until then...

                      • 8. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
                        Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                        There about a million ways to do this. It all depends on the project. You can use the puppet tool and record pin movements in real time by simply pressing Ctrl/Cmnd and then dragging the pins around with your mouse. If you have an audio track you can hear it. (works best if there's a countdown in the audio so you can start on cue). I've used Trapcode Sound Keys to animate scale. I've use the built in Convert Audio to Keyframes assistant in AE to do the same. I've used time remapping and markers.

                         

                        You might want to check out this tutorial from Aharon Rabinowitz. It's just one of several techniques. If we knew a little more about your project we might be able to help a little more. Don't forget Google either. 

                        • 9. Re: Better way to sync sound for animation?
                          bogiesan Level 4

                          twistedgenesis wrote:

                          How do you approach animating mouth movements?

                          Depends on the animation style and the characters' presentations and your budget.

                          You can shoot real mouths and motion track them into the character.

                          You can use the seven to twelve basic phoneme mouth shapes and use a simple and superbly elegant expression to call up each image when necessary.

                          Film animators discovered long ago, like, umm 100 freakin' years ago, how to economize when animating. It has all been done, it has all been invented, it has all been perfected. You just need to figure out what you can do with your time and skills and stylistic needs. Easily researched. Just takes time.