Fairlight Automation on Clip level

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Diede van Vree

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Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 2:33 pm

If checked the manual, but can't seem to find the answer.
I've got a BFC2000 in HUI mode to control the faders in Fairlight.
It works fine. However I can only apply the automation on a track level.
I wish I knew how to do automation on clip level, but cant seems to find to set in to clip level.
Anybody?
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Mattias Murhagen

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 2:48 pm

Devices like that typically adjust track automation, not clip automation.
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Diede van Vree

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 5:03 pm

Do you really think it is de midi controller?
In premiere I can select clip mode, so it works there.
So why should it be different with fairlight?
Any way to select clip mode at all even if you have a different panel?
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Charles Bennett

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 5:32 pm

It all depends on how much of the HUI protocol has been implemented in Resolve.
Clip Gain is not normally automated as it is usually a set and forget operation. Premiere is probably just switching the function between faders or clips.
When the protocol was created by Mackie, DAWs did not feature Clip Gain. Even my fully featured HUI controller for Pro Tools does not have a Clip Gain selection.
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Diede van Vree

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 6:29 pm

Charles Bennett wrote:It all depends on how much of the HUI protocol has been implemented in Resolve.
Clip Gain is not normally automated as it is usually a set and forget operation. Premiere is probably just switching the function between faders or clips.
When the protocol was created by Mackie, DAWs did not feature Clip Gain. Even my fully featured HUI controller for Pro Tools does not have a Clip Gain selection.


Ah. Thanks for your insight. I'm by no way a audio pro. Just and editer trying to get a basic mix to get everything audible in the offline. I'm tired of manually settings every clip times X amount of keyframes.
So mixing the clips with faders would give me the ability to set the levels of the music SFX and dialogue way quicker. With the possibility to still move shots around. Setting gain at tracklevel is would be useless in that case. Any changein the edit will mess up my mix.
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Charles Bennett

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 6:52 pm

You can raise or lower the clip gain without using keyframes. Just use the mouse to raise or lower the volume bar on a clip.
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Diede van Vree

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 7:16 pm

Charles Bennett wrote:You can raise or lower the clip gain without using keyframes. Just use the mouse to raise or lower the volume bar on a clip.


Yes I'm aware of this.
But if you want to mix dialogue and music, or if you want to makes changes in gain inside (longer) clips,, your still rely on setting lot's of keyframes. I know how to do it manually, just wish there was a way to use my faders on my panel. Would make the hole thing a lot quicker.
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Diede van Vree

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 7:26 pm

Here is the "switch" to control the levels of your clips instead of the tracks in premiere.
Very handy. Don't want to go to premiere. Just want to do this on fairlight.
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Will Howard

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 8:01 pm

Diede van Vree wrote:Here is the "switch" to control the levels of your clips instead of the tracks in premiere.
Very handy. Don't want to go to premiere. Just want to do this on fairlight.


That feature doesn't exist on DAW's that I know of. Best to make a feature request for this in the dedicated forum. Might be complicated to add, it could potentially double the number of breakpoints on each track which eats memory and processor.
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 8:13 pm

This is something i was also looking for for a long time. I knew it was there, but couldnt find it. it turned out it was there in resolve v12, but they removed it silently. Dunno why. Could be a huge time saver.
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Diede van Vree

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Mar 13, 2020 8:54 pm

Thanks Rick. If it doesn't exist no point in looking further.
I will make a feature request.
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Mattias Murhagen

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostSat Mar 14, 2020 12:15 am

Diede van Vree wrote: With the possibility to still move shots around. Setting gain at tracklevel is would be useless in that case. Any changein the edit will mess up my mix.


A well designed DAW will allow for automation to follow clips/events. This is the case in Nuendo and Pro Tools. So basically even though you end up writing various types of automation to dedicated automation tracks those automation points "belong to" the events they're "under", for lack of better nomenclature.

So any editing should allow for that automation to follow according to predictable 'rules'. It's essentially super-standard workflow in a DAW.
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Diede van Vree

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 7:29 am

Mattias Murhagen wrote:
Diede van Vree wrote: With the possibility to still move shots around. Setting gain at tracklevel is would be useless in that case. Any changein the edit will mess up my mix.


A well designed DAW will allow for automation to follow clips/events. This is the case in Nuendo and Pro Tools. So basically even though you end up writing various types of automation to dedicated automation tracks those automation points "belong to" the events they're "under", for lack of better nomenclature.

So any editing should allow for that automation to follow according to predictable 'rules'. It's essentially super-standard workflow in a DAW.


Like I said. I'm no sound guy. But that makes a lot of sense to me. When I send a re-edit to de sounddepartment I would image they didn't have to remaster all the levels. So is this 'sticky follow rule' also available under fairlight. Or anybody who knows a better workflow for that program, which doesn't end with: do your mix at the end.
Last edited by Diede van Vree on Sun Mar 15, 2020 12:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Charles Bennett

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 11:32 am

I tried a few tests with keyframing the clip volumes and also fader automation. I should say at this point that I do not normally use these features as I do all of my audio in Pro Tools, so may have missed something.
If using keyframes, you can edit and move the clips around and they stay with the clip. Fader automation, however, does not stick with the clip.
As Mattias said, this is no problem in the likes of Pro Tools. I also find having to put the playhead at a certain point, add a keyframe, and then move it clunky in Resolve. In PT you just click anywhere on the automation lane and it adds the breakpoint (keyframe) for you.
The keyframing on the audio is more intended to balance clips with each other rather than for mixing. I know you don't want to hear it, but it is quite normal to do the mix at the end. If an edit or clip is changed, then it is re-mixed or the mix automation is re-done at that point.

The one thing to bear in mind with Resolve, and Fairlight in particular, is that it is really designed for use with a dedicated controller, so operations with a keyboard and mouse can be less than ideal.
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 12:50 pm

Charles Bennett wrote:Fader automation, however, does not stick with the clip.
Resolve's UI doesn’t currently provide an equivalent to the Fairlight Audio Editor's Copy Segment key in the Range menu of the Edit megamode.

In PT you just click anywhere on the automation lane and it adds the breakpoint (keyframe) for you.
Option + mouse click the Clip Gain line to add a gain node at the mouse cursor position. The Playhead is only required when the Edit page's equivalent Mark menu command or the Inspector's Add Keyframe control is used.

Audio Track Automation data may also be entered at the mouse cursor position within the Automation lane via the Automation panel's dedicated Pencil and Select Range tools.
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 3:55 pm

Diede van Vree wrote:When I send a re-edit to de sounddepartment I would image they didn't have to remaster all the levels. So is this 'sticky follow rule' also available under fairlight. Or anybody who knows a better workflow for that program, which doesn't end with: do your mix at the end.


It's probably good if you figure out what the purpose of your leveling is.

It's not uncommon for editors to be surprised by a couple of things that happen fairly regularly; that we in the sound department erase levels, and that in a good room with good gear the audio from the edit doesn't sound nearly as "good" as the editor thought (or rather, there's a log of 'gunk' in the tracks that isn't audible in the average editor's environment). We don't just get rid of the leveling you do for no reason though, we do it because it either doesn't work or because it's just faster for us to redo it (or both of course).

So it's probably good if you're pressed for time to check with the person who takes over sound duties after you're done and have them tell you what they need and what they don't need. It's possible that what they need is a 'rough' mix that shows your intent, and that might be simply what ends up in a stereo mixdown (i.e. audio file) to go along with reference video. In other words make sure you don't waste time.

Of course, you obviously need to do some leveling to get your point across and to make people happy during your part of the process - and it also depends heavily on the type of content and time and money and so forth...
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 4:24 pm

Mattias Murhagen wrote:
Diede van Vree wrote:When I send a re-edit to de sounddepartment I would image they didn't have to remaster all the levels. So is this 'sticky follow rule' also available under fairlight. Or anybody who knows a better workflow for that program, which doesn't end with: do your mix at the end.


It's probably good if you figure out what the purpose of your leveling is.

It's not uncommon for editors to be surprised by a couple of things that happen fairly regularly; that we in the sound department erase levels, and that in a good room with good gear the audio from the edit doesn't sound nearly as "good" as the editor thought (or rather, there's a log of 'gunk' in the tracks that isn't audible in the average editor's environment). We don't just get rid of the leveling you do for no reason though, we do it because it either doesn't work or because it's just faster for us to redo it (or both of course).

So it's probably good if you're pressed for time to check with the person who takes over sound duties after you're done and have them tell you what they need and what they don't need. It's possible that what they need is a 'rough' mix that shows your intent, and that might be simply what ends up in a stereo mixdown (i.e. audio file) to go along with reference video. In other words make sure you don't waste time.

Of course, you obviously need to do some leveling to get your point across and to make people happy during your part of the process - and it also depends heavily on the type of content and time and money and so forth...



I'm no way trying to be an sounddepartment replacement. But I do think getting as much as possible done in the offline. Sounddepartment will start clean of course. Like you said to get the point across, making a Audible basic mix is part of that. You at least want everyone to hear what is being said etc. And I just think that too much time is lost in settings keyframes and mixing manually. The ability to use faders on a simple midi controller and adjusting the gain levels on clip level would make it much faster and flexible affair.
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 4:28 pm

I've yet to go through all the key commands that are available, but as far as you guys know are there any key commands to change clip levels of selected clips?

If there are then a 'simple' solution is to assign a key to increase/decrease clip level and then use something like a contour shuttle to send out those values as you turn the wheel (assuming you're not already using one for actual editing of course). This way while you're not able to use an actual fader to do the job you can use another tactile feedback device to do it.

Or just use keys on the keyboard.
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostMon Mar 16, 2020 12:45 am

Mattias Murhagen wrote:I've yet to go through all the key commands that are available, but as far as you guys know are there any key commands to change clip levels of selected clips?

If there are then a 'simple' solution is to assign a key to increase/decrease clip level and then use something like a contour shuttle to send out those values as you turn the wheel (assuming you're not already using one for actual editing of course). This way while you're not able to use an actual fader to do the job you can use another tactile feedback device to do it.

Or just use keys on the keyboard.


That’s where the Desktop Audio Editor comes in handy. The jog wheel is great for setting clip levels while playing. Overkill for this situation obviously...
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostWed Mar 25, 2020 7:25 pm

I've just discovered this same issue. Weirdly automating key frames at clip level was there in version 12 but was then removed.

Here's the YouTube clip explaining how it used to work


I'll give an example of why it matters so much to be able to do this record automation on the keyframes at clip level – as with Avid, Premiere and FCPX. Recently we worked on a feature length film that went to several film festivals WHILE the edit was still live and we were still editing the running time down. So we did the first sound mix for London Film Festival, and then removed a further 8 minutes by the time we premiered at SxSW a few months later, and we had removed another 4 minutes by the time HotDocs Toronto came around.

Each time we fine-tuned our edit, we retained the sound mix from the previous pass, but with Fairlight's track level automation, this would mean that any time we tightened an edit, or removed a sequence altogether, the track level changes would now apply to a completely different sequence, and the sound mix work would be destroyed. A single edit on any production will destroy the track-level automation mix.

So for us, this would have meant doing a completely new mix, while we were racing against the clock to get the master finished to screen to a full theatre audience. Every second counts in that situation, and a full new mix would have taken a couple of days to be ready for an audience.

If DaVinci is to be a serious professional tool, then it needs to reflect the real situations that we run up against.
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Apr 16, 2021 5:21 am

I use a Mackie MCU pro (I actually have 2 as one can be dedicated to My RME Audio interface’ Total Mix software.

I also would love to see clip level automation in Fairlight. I don’t see how it can really be an audio finishing system if you can’t adjust at the clip level, where I’m often setting key frames manually.

To me, the track level automation is for fine tuning and balance with other tracks.

It also might sound better getting the clips to deliver the data’s fullest bit depth possible and then more subtly cutting or boosting at the track or buss level.

Does anyone know of the fairlight desktop mixer allows automation (not just levels) for clips?
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Charles Bennett

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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostFri Apr 16, 2021 11:58 am

As you've found, you can add keyframe automation to clip levels by holding down the Alt key and clicking on the volume line in a clip to add keyframes, and then moving them where you wish.
I regard clip level as a tool for balancing clips against each other and tweaking peaks, etc. I always mix using faders and automation.
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Re: Fairlight Automation on Clip level

PostTue Apr 20, 2021 12:19 pm

paultom wrote:I've just discovered this same issue. Weirdly automating key frames at clip level was there in version 12 but was then removed.

Here's the YouTube clip explaining how it used to work


I'll give an example of why it matters so much to be able to do this record automation on the keyframes at clip level – as with Avid, Premiere and FCPX. Recently we worked on a feature length film that went to several film festivals WHILE the edit was still live and we were still editing the running time down. So we did the first sound mix for London Film Festival, and then removed a further 8 minutes by the time we premiered at SxSW a few months later, and we had removed another 4 minutes by the time HotDocs Toronto came around.

Each time we fine-tuned our edit, we retained the sound mix from the previous pass, but with Fairlight's track level automation, this would mean that any time we tightened an edit, or removed a sequence altogether, the track level changes would now apply to a completely different sequence, and the sound mix work would be destroyed. A single edit on any production will destroy the track-level automation mix.

So for us, this would have meant doing a completely new mix, while we were racing against the clock to get the master finished to screen to a full theatre audience. Every second counts in that situation, and a full new mix would have taken a couple of days to be ready for an audience.

If DaVinci is to be a serious professional tool, then it needs to reflect the real situations that we run up against.


Turn on "Automation follows edit" in the fairlight/automation drop down menu
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