Current Issue
November 2015

Jennifer Walden
Authored Articles
Audio: 'Crimson Peak'
Published: October 16, 2015

Over the course of his career, sound designer Randy Thom, at Skywalker Sound in Marin County, CA (, says he’s been lucky to work with a few directors who really respect sound as a collaborator, but none so much as director Guillermo del Toro. Thom, who likes getting involved as early as possible on a film, visited director del Toro on-set during the filming of Crimson Peak, a supernatural horror romance film about young horror novelist Edith Cushing (played by Mia Wasikowska), who moves into her new husband’s dilapidated, and exceptionally haunted mansion.
Dolby Audio: Offering a new sound experience for mobile games
Published: May 6, 2015

Most new Android devices are already equipped with Dolby Audio ( (supporting Dolby Digital Plus), and Android game developers can take advantage of those built-in Dolby audio-processing components to noticeably improve their game’s sound experience. And best of all, they can do it for free with Dolby Audio API for Android. To help explain how game developers and audio pros can use and benefit from Dolby Audio, Somatone Interactive's ( chief operating officer Adam Levenson sheds some light on mobile game audio and answers key questions about Dolby Audio.
Audio:'s 'Welcome to the Wayne'
Published: April 7, 2015

Each four-minute episode of’s Welcome to the Wayne (, with its rapid-fire jokes, action, and plot-points, seems to cover as much ground as a half-hour episode. The six-part digital series, created by Emmy-nominated writer and composer Billy Lopez, follows two 10-year-old boys, Olly and Ansi, as they explore the topsy-turvy world of their New York City apartment building, The Wayne. Beatstreet Productions Emmy award winning mixer/sound designer Matt Longoria says, “The Wayne is a fantastic, crazy place with lots of different, weird characters. In the short form we’re working with, the jokes come really fast.” Longoria and Beatstreet Productions sound designer Bobb Barito try to squeeze as much humor out of each episode as possible. Barito adds, “It’s our job to ground the insanity of the animation because there’s so much going on. The creator Billy has a crazy, high-energy vision and it’s up to us to make that relatable on the screen.”
Audio For Mobile Games
Published: March 9, 2015

On the train platform on your commute home from work, on the plane before take-off, at your nephew’s middle school winter recital, and even in the bathroom — yeah, I went there and you know you have too — everyone seems to be occupied with mobile games. And not simply as a means of killing time. These games offer stolen moments of self-indulgence, of escape, of risk-free interaction with strangers. Today, as users demand higher quality entertainment crammed into those 100MB download packs, these AAA games in the palm of your hand are delivering 3D-graphics, better game interfaces, and richly-designed sound (that doesn’t annoy, and doesn’t distort).
Audio For Games
Published: March 6, 2014

Building an interesting combat soundtrack is tricky because typically the gameplay is repetitious. There’s a lot of bang-bang-bang happening (or clang-clang-clang, depending on the era of the storyline). So how do you break the monotony? Offering players a variety of weapons is a good start, but that’s only scratching the surface. No matter the size of the arsenal, sounds need to change. Adjusting the EQ to account for perspective or adding reverb in spacious environments are effective changes that add variety and keep a game from sounding too gamey. Improving the game’s dynamic range also keeps the soundtrack from becoming stagnant, and it helps players from becoming sonically fatigued. These game audio pros share their combat game experiences, and how they build compelling combat soundtracks.
Audio: Mixing Web Series
Published: July 8, 2013

There are so many variables in mixing a Web series. It’s not an easy job. There are no set guidelines for levels. There are no set guidelines for encoding the audio — something the mixer has no control over. You spend tons of time getting a mix perfect and then it gets squashed during the encoding process. Frustrating!
Audio for TV Series
Published: April 18, 2013

We are a creative bunch, and the reality of our work is tight deadlines. The trick is to keep a balance between working quickly but carefully without sacrificing creativity. So how do we do that? 
Audio For Independent Films
Published: January 4, 2013

It can be hard to identify an indie film these days. Budgets can rival that of blockbuster films. Major indie films can have star-studded casts. It’s not easy to glean from a preview if a film is truly an independent film or not. The difference lies in the creative chain of command, and who has the final say over what makes the cut.
AUDIO SWOT: Sounds Good
Published: January 3, 2013

There have been some exciting changes in the audio post industry. In 2012, we had the introduction of 3D audio systems for feature films, such as Dolby’s Atmos on Brave and Barco’s Auro-3D on Red Tails. We’ve seen several new devices able to run applications and mobile games. And in December, the implementation of the CALM Act for TV spec.
The Sound of 'Les Miserables'
Published: December 14, 2012

In Post’s November 2012 article Mic’d Up, I talked with production sound editor Simon Hayes about the recording process for the musical Les Miserables, which is coming to theaters December 25. While we don’t cover the production side of things, the film took a very unusual approach to the soundtrack. The whole idea from the beginning of the project was to allow the actors to perform at their own pacing and then use those performances right through to the finish of the film.
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