Sounding Off

I’m north of 40 so it’s not surprising that I can’t read without my glasses and my hearing is losing some of its sparkle.

And I can’t help but wonder if some TV shows are being sound-mixed by 18 year olds or if they are, indeed, way off. Take Saturday Night Live for example. When the excellent Them Crooked Vultures played on the show about a year ago, to our ears the mix was really far off and lead singer Joshua Homme’s vocals were all but buried. Same goes for last weekend’s musical act, The Strokes. The performances on Wednesday night’s American Idol, which were pre-taped, sounded very muddy. Derek also hears what I hear so I know it’s not just me.

With so much technology at the fingertips of the production teams at these pricey TV shows I find it hard to believe that they would make such rookie mistakes with mixing sound. Perhaps it’s the difference between mixing live performances “for the room” versus for broadcast. I don’t know what the answer is but it’s certainly very annoying to watch glitzy shows in hi-def accompanied by the sound of a transistor radio muffled by a pillow.

1 thought on “Sounding Off”

  1. Although I’m not a big TV watcher, I can offer you a suggestion or two on how you can possibly resolve your audio dilemma. I’ll assume for the moment that the audio issues your experiencing are limited to only a couple shows and not all HD programming. If this isn’t the case then the first place to start is to insure that all your cables are properly connected because its not uncommon for DMI cables to loosen or slip out of their connector.

    If the above is okay, then I’d explore what other channels are carrying the desired shows and see if you continue to experience the same audio problem, for all channels aren’t the same. For example, I like to watch Saturday night hockey on CBC using the feed out of Calgary verses the Toronto feed because the sound quality is sharper and clearer than my local feed.

    The next option is to consider replacing your DMI cable and don’t cheap out on the cable if you take this approach. Many HD viewing/audio problems which occur with HD programing can eventually be traced back to the DMI cable. If the DMI cable your using came with your HD package, you can be assured that its not the highest quality component and should be left in the box it came in and buy yourself a good quality cable, the headaches you save will be your own.

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