VivaTechnology 2019

VivaTechnology 2019

VivaTechnology 2019

Audionamix was thrilled to exhibit at VivaTechnology 2019, held last week at the Paris Expo Porte de Versailles. VivaTech is “the world’s rendezvous for startups and leaders to celebrate innovation together” and features the best and brightest of the tech world coming together. Vivatech attracts the highest caliber of people who are passionate about how technology can improve our world, and Audionamix was chosen to exhibit thanks to our innovative AI-based audio processing solutions.

French President Emmanuel Macron and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau both spoke at the start of the show, and dozens of other high-profile leaders spoke throughout the other days of the exhibit. Established companies like Oracle and Facebook were present as partners and exhibitors. Nearly 125,000 visitors were in attendance at this year’s event, which featured 13,000 startups, 3,300 investors and 2,500 journalists.

Audionamix was on site demonstrating our latest breakthrough in 4-stem separation technology, which uses deep neural network to separate songs into vocals, drums, bass, and remaining music. This AI technology is not yet available publicly, so it was exciting to see the overwhelmingly positive response from casual attendees and corporations looking to enhance their products with cutting-edge advancements.

We also introduced a brand new audience of tech lovers to XTRAX STEMS and Instant Dialogue Cleaner. Visitors to our booth were blown away, saying “I will definitely buy that!” and “Now I can finally create my own acapella!” We also spoke with an engineer at the major French TV channel M6, who said he uses IDC every day in his work there. From new friends to experienced users, the best part of showcasing our products is always connecting with the people who put them to good use!

Another highlight for the team was a talk by Yann LeCun (VP and Chief AI Scientist at Facebook, and second French citizen to receive the Turing prize). One of the inventors of convolutional deep neural networks, LeCun spoke about the implications of AI development and how to maintain talent in both public and private research. Our researchers felt that he validated the methods and approaches that they use when working on Audionamix technology.

During breaks from the constant flow of traffic at the booth, we saw walking, talking robots, incredible green screen technology that created a virtual newsdesk before our eyes, and even the Batmobile. We were honored to be a part of the show and meet so many great people who are working to improve our world through innovation and technology.

We look forward to VivaTechnology 2020!

Audionamix Professional Services Assist Remastered Baywatch Release

Audionamix Professional Services Assist Remastered Baywatch Release

Audionamix Professional Services Assist Remastered Baywatch Release

Separation Stories: ADX Technology in Action for Remastered Baywatch Release

Audionamix Services Specialist Stephen Oliver recounts his experience removing music from the blockbuster TV series’ worldwide HD rerelease.

With its water rescue action and eye-popping scenery, the smash hit show Baywatch has been broadcast in over 200 different countries, and watched by over a billion people worldwide. Its success spawned the star-studded 2017 feature film by the same name, and the original story and characters still have a dedicated fan base across the globe.

It’s no surprise then, that in 2018 the company behind Baywatch, Fremantle, started the process of creating a fully remastered HD version of Baywatch for worldwide distribution, including popular streaming platforms like Amazon Prime Video. The original series was shot on 35mm film, making it possible to digitize and clean the negatives for conversion to high-definition digital picture. This involved painstaking work by many talented people, and the end result looks fantastic.

On the audio side, the project presented another challenge: due to the popularity of Baywatch, many of the songs used in the original series have since become very expensive to license due to their commercial success. Licensing these songs for the remastered version would make the entire project cost-prohibitive.

To make the re-release possible, it was decided to replace over 350 songs with new, more affordable music, which allowed the project to get off the ground. This wasn’t a problem for the English version of the show, as the separate music, effects, and dialogue stems were archived and available, so the music stem could be easily be muted and replaced.

Stems for dialogue music, and effects. Each element is on its own track.

With stems available, the original music track can be muted and replaced.

For the foreign versions of the show, however, these separate stems were no longer available. The only audio available was the full master track with music, effects and dialogue elements combined into one, making it seemingly impossible to remove and replace just the music.

This full composite mix includes dialogue, music, and effects elements all combined on a single stereo track. There’s no way to independently control or mute the separate elements.

Enter the Audionamix Professional Services team, a group of audio experts working with proprietary artificial intelligence technology that aims to find and extract specific elements in a mix without processing or destroying the rest of the information within.

Using a patented process known as “Music Dissociation”, we were able to separate only the music from each scene, leaving the dialogue and effects intact. Music Dissociation works by teaching the AI the sonic fingerprint of the song, or source, in this case provided to us by Warner Bros. The AI then analyzes the full audio file and separates it into two elements, the learned music and the remaining dialogue and effects.

Armed with this technology, our team worked on over 400 clips from the show’s nine seasons, allowing for the replacement of music in the French, Spanish Neutral, Spanish Castilian, Italian, and German versions of the show.

In a perfect world one would perpetually have access to all of the elements that create a full mix, whether it be a movie or a song. But this world is complicated, unexpected challenges arise, and archives are often lost over the years. I’ve been honored to assist clients through these worst case scenarios to help them realize their visions for beloved shows, movies, and songs.

Turns out sometimes even the Hoff needs a helping hand.

Separation Stories: Jay Graydon and Bill Evans talk TRAX Pro and remastering “Airplay”

Separation Stories: Jay Graydon and Bill Evans talk TRAX Pro and remastering “Airplay”

Separation Stories

Jay Graydon and Bill Evans talk TRAX Pro and remastering Airplay

 

Musicians and audio engineers around the world use Audionamix software every day to create, remix, and restore. Recently, Grammy-winner Jay Graydon and engineer extraordinaire Bill Evans used TRAX Pro to help in the remastering of a classic album.

Jay Graydon laying down tracks in the studio

Jay Graydon on how TRAX Pro helped solve a remastering challenge:

David Foster and I are Airplay, and recorded an album by the same name in 1979. It went Gold in Japan and continues to sell well around the world. The record company recently asked that I remaster the mixes for an upcoming re-release, but there was a problem: the vocals needed remixing…and the multi-tracks weren’t accessible.

The song, “Stranded” needed the most help. On the stereo mix, I’d added major EQ in the low frequency area (120 shelf) as well as rolling out EQ at 2.5 k area. But this left the vocals too low! So, I asked Bill if it would be possible to extract the vocals from the mix.

Tom [Price] and Bill worked on it, and I received the finished audio of the instrument track along with three vocal tracks. When playing the music and the vocal tracks together, it matched perfectly with the original. BUT then it was time to hear what happens when bringing up the vocal level…I brought up the vocal level between 1 to 3 dB using automation in Pro Tools and I WAS AMAZED…IT SOUNDED PERFECT, MEANING NO ARTIFACTS WERE HEARD!!!!

 

The full story of the re-mastering of Airplay (with audio examples of the before and after for the song “Stranded”) will be posted on my website (www.jaygraydon.com), as well as where to get the re-mastered version of Airplay [to be released by SONY].

— Jay Graydon

Bill Evans and Tom Price in the studio with TRAX Pro

Bill Evans on using TRAX Pro for creating the vocal separation tracks:

When Jay asked me about doing this, I was intrigued and a little nervous—Jay is renowned for having some of the best ears in the business. Not to mention David Foster. And I had no idea how to separate multiple vocal tracks to the degree he needed…no one I spoke to had heard of it being done. But I figured if anything could handle the heavy lifting, it was Audionamix tech.

I spoke to Steve Oliver at Audionamix, who was kind enough to discuss their technical approach to the problem. I was hooked, and we dove in. Jay created MIDI guide files for the vocal melodies, and my assistant Tom used TRAX Pro to produce the three separate vocal separation tracks, as well as the instrumental tracks. He (and TRAX Pro) did an amazing job, and TRAX’s post-processing tools helped further improve the results (particularly in removing high-end drum bleed that coincided with vocal consonants).

If there was only one vocal track, we’d have been finished. But the three vocal tracks still needed to reassemble, simultaneously, without frequency cancellation. So Tom used a spectral editor (SpectraLayers) for post-processing on the frequency overlaps, and the project was complete.

It was a privilege to work with Jay Graydon, and I look forward to working with him (and TRAX Pro) in the future!

— Bill Evans

Webinar Recap: “In Depth With TRAX Pro 3 SP”

Webinar Recap: “In Depth With TRAX Pro 3 SP”

Webinar Recap: “In Depth With TRAX Pro 3 SP”

Thank you to all who attended our very first Audionamix Webinar “In Depth with TRAX Pro 3 SP” on October 3rd! We had a great turnout and everyone who joined was enthusiastic about the technology and learning how to take full advantage of its features. If you weren’t able to attend, or if you want to watch it again, you can view a recording of the webinar here.

TRAX Pro 3 SP Webinar

We started with an overview of TRAX Pro 3 SP and showing how its speech separation technology can be used to troubleshoot many different issues in post-production. We reviewed:

  • Reducing and removing noise from production recordings
  • Separating dialogue from score for re-balancing or replacing music
  • Using the melodic separation features to turn down a vocal from within a song

webinar screens

After learning how TRAX Pro SP can solve some of these common issues, we had an engaging Q&A session and addressed a lot of thought-provoking questions from our attendees. Many questions focused on features of the spectral editor, so we will be hosting a spectral editing webinar in the future, giving us the chance to go in-depth with one of the most important and complex features of TRAX Pro 3 SP.

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Another big appreciative THANK YOU to all of our webinar attendees! As the Product and Technical Support Specialist for Audionamix, I spend a fair amount of time going back and forth with individuals via email. It was such a treat to interact with so many of you in real time and to get a chance to showcase the ins and outs of our most powerful software. We look forward to the next session, so keep an eye on the Audionamix website and your inbox for more details.


Do you have ideas or requests for future webinar topics? Please send us a message at support@audionamix.com.

The History of Digital Audio

The History of Digital Audio

Thanks to Philippe Chambin for including us in his marvelous and comprehensive “History of Digital Audio” post on Quora.com!

So what’s happened in the 21st Century so far?

Audio recordings can be de-mixed, to isolate individual instruments! Something that I considered a Holy Grail of Audio in the ‘90s. A French company by the name of Audionamix has a software called ADX Trax that just shows how far we’ve come since the early days of DSP…

Philippe takes us on a journey from the earliest digital audio recorders, to CDs, to mp3s and up to the modern wonders of today’s audio technology. Head over to Quora to read the whole piece!