Over the last 20+ years I have had the pleasure of recording & editing many vehicles for films, such as 1940s military vehicles for EMPEROR and a clone of Burt Munros V Twin Indian for WORLDS FASTEST INDIAN. The gangs V8 in BOY & the chopped & channelled ute in NUMBER TWO. A near death Citreon for TOY LOVE & 16,000 rpm racing gokarts for GAZZA SNELL. But also important are all the ‘normal’ vehicles that appear in films – the kind of every day vehicles that crucial dialogue scenes occur in & which get us from A to B…

In an ideal world we would get to do custom vehicle recording for every project, but sometimes limits on time, budget, access to vehicles or access to quiet recording locations can make this impossible, so what happens then? The frustrating reality is that it takes more time to edit vehicle FX when you do not have the right material, or enough of it.

We are now in preproduction to record an ongoing series of vehicle libraries.

Each library will aim to provide complete coverage of a single vehicle, including:

Onboard (recorded with stereo interior, mono exhaust & mono engine mics) with lots of variation. Onboard start, idle, away & accelerate & decelerate through gears, with steady state (& variations) for inner city & for open road freeway.

Exterior moves: passbys at various speeds, gradients, accelerating & decelerating. Up & stops. Start, idle & aways. Slow manouvres. U turns. Into and out of driveways. Reversing.

Props/elements: keys, gears, footpedals, indicators, doors, bonnet, boot. From INT & EXT perspective.

Extra elements: revs, revs with one or more spark plugs disconnected.

Tyres: Taking a similar approach to this gravel recording session we’ll capture specific close up tyre action: on tar seal roads, gravel, dirt & cobblestones/paving (but using a hybrid to avoid unwanted engine noise)

NOTE: I am aiming for film coverage, not game audio coverage. I want to capture & deliver enough material with each vehicle that relatively complex scenes can be cut with it, for feature films or TV series. So there won’t be any dynamo recording, this will all be recorded in exterior locations with quiet backgrounds. (I don’t mean any disrespect to game audio designers by this; it simply is not my area of experience, plus there are very, very capable people already providing such resources for game audio)

But here’s the thing: I need your help!

Rather than start with a character vehicle that occurs very rarely in films, what common everyday vehicle/s would you like recorded first? I have a short list & I will otherwise follow my instincts, but let me know your thoughts: last time you cursed the lack of decent vehicle coverage in your own library, what vehicle were you cutting? Use the form below to send me input & help me help you!

thank you!