This entry may come across as tooting our own horn and a shameless plug for our services [and it is], but it really is a trend that needs some attention brought to it. It’s an epidemic: Video editors mixing audio.
It’s not that video editors can’t mix, some are quite good at it. Some electricians can do plumbing too, but wouldn’t you rather hire the professional trained for the job? As far as I can tell there are 3 main reasons why producers get their video editor to mix the audio for them.
Reason #1: Time
Time is money, and having to wait days for the audio to be completed is just not an option for most projects. We know this. But the truth is, 90% of our project mixes are turned around in 24h or less. Also keep this in mind: the time when the audio is away being mixed is time the editor can spend colour correcting, touching up titles or compiling credit rolls, instead of spending time on the audio.
Reason #2: Money
Didn’t I just say time is money? A video editor will take twice as long (at the same or more hourly rate) to mix what an experienced audio editor can do. (I won’t even get into the quality differences). Bringing back the electrician analogy: A trained plumber can, say, install a toilet in 1 hour. Why? because they install them every day. How long would it take an electrician to install a toilet? If you are paying the same amount of money for services, why would you have the less experienced and slower person do the job?
Reason #3: Ignorance
I don’t mean it in a bad way, but a lot of producers simply aren’t aware of what proper audio post can do for a project, or they don’t know what is involved, or they don’t know an audio mixer they can use (you’re here already, so that’s a good start). Audio is 50% of the picture after all…
I’ve talked to many video editors over the years and the overwhelming majority are of the same opinion: they don’t want to mix the audio, but do it because they have to. The editors I work with love being able to leave the audio alone and have me fix everything. So do your video editor a favour, stop getting them to mix your projects!