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To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too? (Read 1988 times)
chris west
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To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Jan 2nd, 2017, 4:15pm
 
Let's start the new year with an old grump of mine - audio quality. Anyone else think that To Walk Invisible, about the Bronte sisters, was a tough listen? Beautifully shot, an interesting storyline, but I really had to strain to catch much of the dialogue - and so did my wife, considerably younger than I. Is it any coincidence that it's directed by Sally Wainwright, whose Happy Valley had similar inaudibility problems. It seems to be her technique of "eavesdropping" on conversations between charatcers - very naturalistic, but problematic if the conversations are mumbled, or lines are thrown away, like in "normal" speech. But acting isn't normal - it's acting, isn't it? I thought the BBC was looking in to the whole issue of sound quality.
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Dickie Mint
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #1 - Jan 2nd, 2017, 6:39pm
 
The BBC has a whole raft of guidelines and requirements for sound, along with everything else to do with a production.  But seems highly reluctant to enforce them.  

The most obvious, common sense one, requires that someone not involved with the production (so therefore is not familiar with the dialogue) listens on domestic equipment in a domestic environment. Obviously never done!

For programmes not commissioned by it, the Beeb's usual excuse is a programme is bought in, and it therefore has no control over it.
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Burstner55
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #2 - Jan 2nd, 2017, 9:29pm
 
My wife and I had subtitles switched on as we almost always have when viewing these days. Not that we are deaf but we live in a modern semi and are scared stiff of annoying our neighbours and experience shows that the only thing that can be relied on now is that the sound levels will go up and down like a Blackpool fairground ride. But we both remarked that many of the brilliantly written and complex passages in TWI were gabbled and mumbled in such a way that few viewers could really have understood their real meaning. In other words the producer/director was ruining the author's brilliance.  What with that and then it being in a Yorkshire/Tripeshire accent few Southerners would have readily received we could well understand that there would be complaints. But as you say, nobody is listening to us! A recent edition of Countryfile had me tweeting a complaint to the programme because all the  Angrypresenters were drowned out by totally unnecessary  muzak. Nil response....what a surprise!
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Burstner55
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #3 - Jan 8th, 2017, 8:54am
 
And then, after turning off Taboo for much the same reasons, I spotted this: http://tradingaswdr.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/grrr.html
All I can say is "Hear Hear!"  Although Taboo also has the added distraction of what I shall call, for the sake of an appropriate acronym, Shaky Handheld Idiotic Television........
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chris west
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #4 - Jan 9th, 2017, 5:43pm
 
I wondered whether to watch Taboo, then saw comments about inaudibility, so I decided to give my blood pressure a rest. Could it be that some producers/directors/writers - or to give them their modern title "showrunners" (ugh) - have become sacred cows not to be touched by the likes of script editors, sound recordists, who actually might know what they're doing?
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WG
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #5 - Jan 11th, 2017, 9:59am
 
It's really odd this since it never happens on programmes(dramas particularly) from other channels. Major stuff from ITV ("Downton" comes to mind) seems to be fine.
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Burstner55
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #6 - Jan 11th, 2017, 1:29pm
 
Mmm, they"re not perfect. We are enjoying Halcyon but the jazz band has to be toned down to such a level that when speech returns it is inaudible...but in general ITV is much better and we rarely have cause for complaint with Endeavour/Lewis etc.
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Roundabout
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #7 - Jan 11th, 2017, 9:10pm
 
Quite right Burstner, wonder why that is??
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #8 - Jan 12th, 2017, 3:15pm
 
"Broadcast Tech" has a brief description of the picture and sound processes in "Taboo".

The short item is found here.
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Re: To Walk Invisible - Inaudible too?
Reply #9 - Feb 3rd, 2017, 8:34pm
 
Until the end of February... available on iPlayer..
"Another Mumbly Drama"

Here.

"Tracey Ullman's Show", first 30 seconds... makes the point.

Award winning inaudible television.

(UK Only).
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