Go Back   Cockos Incorporated Forums > REAPER Forums > REAPER for Video Editing/Mangling

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-06-2021, 06:43 AM   #1
kflanagan
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 7
Default 5.1 mix production and rendering for art installation info?

Hi

I've been searching around the Reaper forums and help videos for some starter info as to creating 5.1 mixes and rendering them. I have to create a surround-sound art gallery installation, and I thought the easiest (and most idiot-proof) format to present them with was a 5.1 speaker set-up and DVD player, even though there wouldn't be any visuals. What would be the best file formats to use?

Can anyone point me in the right direction? Anyone else done this?

Thanks in advance

Kevin
kflanagan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2021, 09:21 AM   #2
serr
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 10,589
Default

For audio only? FLAC as always.
Audio + video? Probably mkv. Check the available hardware to verify the formats it can play.

There isn't anything too special about mixing in 5.1 (or whatever channel format) in Reaper. Note that you can make 6 channel (or more) tracks. You can have whole 5.1 subgroups if you wish. Land on a 5.1 mix bus track or make the master bus 6 track channels and land there. Listen to reference mixes as you might do. If you haven't mixed a lot in surround, listen to a lot of reference mixes!
serr is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2021, 04:39 PM   #3
timothys_monster
Human being with feelings
 
timothys_monster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Germany
Posts: 993
Default

What listening environment will you be mixing on? An actual 5.1 setup or headphones?
timothys_monster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2021, 06:24 AM   #4
kflanagan
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 7
Default

I'd be working towards a 5.1 speaker setup in a gallery.
kflanagan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2021, 10:50 PM   #5
babag
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,055
Default

brightsign players have been what all of the installations i've been involved with have used. have sent to galleries all over the world. all of the galleries and museums understand them well.

i don't think you said whether you are making this as an audio/visual installation or whether it's sound only. the suggested use of the dvd player could imply either. i guess posting in the video forum suggests a/v but not sure. anyway...

my process has been to render out uncompressed or prores picture from my video software and a six-channel wav from reaper. then i convert the picture to x264 in ffmpeg. the six-channel wav gets rendered to ac3 in audacity (or ffmpeg). the two, the x264 and ac3, then get married using mp4box to a blu-ray compatible mp4 file that can be used for either blu-ray, a master for vimeo, or as a brightsign compatible file. i've used this workflow to make multi-screen surround installations. it avoids recompression.

babag

Last edited by babag; 10-12-2021 at 10:56 PM.
babag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2021, 08:09 AM   #6
kflanagan
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 7
Default

Hi
thanks - sorry, it wasn't a very clear question - it would be sound only, in a room full of sculpture. I was guessing a dvd player and the 5.1 surround speakers set-up would be the simplest for the gallery to deal with, rather than having to deal with any kind of mixing hardware?
kflanagan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2021, 09:07 AM   #7
serr
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 10,589
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by kflanagan View Post
Hi
thanks - sorry, it wasn't a very clear question - it would be sound only, in a room full of sculpture. I was guessing a dvd player and the 5.1 surround speakers set-up would be the simplest for the gallery to deal with, rather than having to deal with any kind of mixing hardware?
I'd think the easiest system would be a computer -> audio interface with 6 or more analog outputs -> amps/speakers of your choice. Just like a home/studio hi-fi setup. Discs get into error issues. Stand alone DVD players are sometimes crippled with copy protection gone wild schemes. (They can't copy it if they can't even play it!)

If the venue already has a 5.1 system set up using a DVD player or bluray player, that could be convenient to just roll with. Test it first!

AC3 is lossy Dolby encoded audio. You should avoid that! You'd have noticeable loss in the audio. These old encoding schemes were made to store surround in existing two channel containers of the time. Some of the lossy ones can be pretty altering. You could just play back lossless flac files. DVDA is lossless. DVDV only supports lossy surround audio. Bluray supports LPCM wav surround audio (no codec, nothing to buy) as well as the lossless versions of DTS amd Dolby. DVDV is the one to avoid.
serr is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2021, 01:44 PM   #8
babag
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,055
Default

i don't really disagree with what serr says here, at least in theory. the real and practical question that has yet to be answered is, what kind of gallery is this? are we talking the tate modern or a hole-in-the-wall in a mini-mall? is there an a/v staff to run the installation on a daily basis or is the receptionist going to be responsible for turning it on/off? i've done both and it can be an important consideration.

with the exception of using a computer, i agree with serr's offerings about gear. a brightsign player is, by far, the most idiot-proof way to run media, though. you plug it in, it plays. you unplug it, it's off. rinse. repeat. since you're asking about idiot-proofing, i'll assume we're more on the receptionist side of the scale than the full a/v crew side. if the gallery can put all of the audio gear on one circuit, they can just throw that circuit at the start, end of the day and they're done.

the other thing about brightsign players is that they actually do what serr suggests as they are, in fact, little, dedicated, linux computers. they just take all of the computery things out of the hands of operators and do them automatically. no desktop, no programs to run, no mouse, none of it.

the last thing i'd say is that galleries generally SUCK for sound. they are primarily visual environments. it's unlikely the environment in a gallery will be conducive to any listener noticing the difference between flac, uncompressed, or ac3. the acoustics and, possibly, background noise just won't allow for it. gallerists also like to play things quietly so as to not interfere with their visitors' mood. how much control do you have over things like levels? if this is a group show, i'm guessing not too much. you might want to consider a tailored mix for low level presentation if that's the case. i've had to do that to avoid quiet parts from disappearing into background noise while not overwhelming visitors with louder parts.

the above being said, in theory, serr is definitely right about flac vs ac3 quality. in practice, not so much. in addition, it's been some time since i made one of these. several years ago i did quite a few. since then, it's mostly just been sending them out so i don't specifically recall but it's possible that i actually did make my installations with wav rather than ac3 files. i'd have to check the specs again to see the file formats brightsign handles these days and i don't have those files in front of me any more.

lastly, i do agree about using something like a home theater system to set up and send the audio to your speakers. i've done that and it works well. i'd just put a brightsign player at the front end, especially if you don't have a dedicated a/v staff running the show on a daily basis.

babag

Last edited by babag; 10-16-2021 at 01:55 PM.
babag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2021, 11:19 AM   #9
serr
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 10,589
Default

Guess I wasn't familiar with the BrightSign products. Probably no argument! They look affordable. I didn't look up specs and everything. Of course you can set up a computer with only the apps you need in the dock or further, child/elderly mode where you have the one app you use auto launch and hold their hand. The new generation of media server products this is looking to be looks kind of slick though! Could be cheaper than a computer + interface too depending on what you might already have on hand.
serr is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-2021, 01:27 PM   #10
kflanagan
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 7
Default

Thanks guys - I think we're talking 'receptionist turning things on' level of tech support. It's a good gallery for visuals, Arts Council run; pretty elaborate lighting and such, but it has f-all in terms of audio gear. So much so that anything above a pair of little crap speakers they have installed will be my problem. That said, I'll investigate the brightside suggestion for future use if I invest in it.

And yes, the sound quality of the room is pretty boomy, as it's a typical white cube, with high ceilings and bare floors. The piece itself would be a background-ambient loop, local environmental sounds combined with a realization-recording of the sun's EM pulse, so pinpoint clarity (although always good thing) isn't that crucial. It would be nice to have it move slowly around the room, hence the 5.1 questions.
kflanagan is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:37 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions Inc.