NATICK, MA, June 13, 2023 — La Tina has been part of the thriving Colombian post-production landscape since it was founded in 2010. The studio serves both the international and domestic film sector, working on everything from large studio productions to small independent movies. Its latest addition is a second site built to meet the increasing demand for cinematic Atmos mixes, complete with Genelec Smart Active Monitoring.
The new studio complex provides the kind of content security that is demanded by the global film industry, as well as the technical tools to deliver the quality mixes that are expected. “We have a 42 square-meter 9.1.6 mixing stage, and plans for two smaller control rooms with 7.1.4 monitoring setups,” says studio co-founder Andrés Silva. “We also built a 40 square-meter live room where we record Foley, water and occasional ADRs and voiceovers.”
The decision to embrace immersive audio was one based on art as much as commercial demand. “We believe that sound for film is naturally suited to immersive audio. Even if you listen to a film in mono, there is always the concept of sounds that are ‘off image’,” explains studio co-founder Alejandro Uribe-Holguín. “With immersive sound this is a beautiful opportunity to create the new standards of film and cultural production. The sound in film is the part that literally touches the audience. We think of our work as the work of a ninja, so if it is done correctly, no one should notice it.”
“We have been working in 5.1 for over 10 years now,” adds studio co-founder Manuel José Gordillo. “The Atmos system was like a myth for us. At the time, none of us really understood how it worked, so this became a thrilling challenge. Once we saw that streaming platforms were interested in the format, then it became a natural step for our studio.”
Having made the decision to expand the business, the team at La Tina turned to Lucas Serrano of acoustic architecture firm Aqstica to design the new spaces, infrastructure and connectivity, with Alberto de la Cruz of local Genelec partner VCR Ltda supplying the equipment. “We wanted the Genelec monitoring system from the beginning,” states Silva. “It was a matter of having sufficient funds for it, and making sure that the importing schedule matched our building and production schedules. Happily, it all worked out.”
The 9.1.6 Dolby Atmos monitoring system on the mixing stage is comprised exclusively of Smart Active Monitoring models: three 8350 two-ways provide the L-C-R, while twelve of the more compact 8340s handle the surround and height channels, plus a 7380 subwoofer delivering the low frequencies. “It has been a real pleasure working with the new system,” says Uribe-Holguín. “One of the things we have found is that it sounds clearer. The signals and the loudness are distributed across all of the monitors, so they are not overloaded. It exceeded our expectations. But more importantly, our clients’ expectations. They are happy working on the new stage and listening to their content in such a high quality, comfortable and wide space.”
Calibration of the system was performed using GLM software. “We did the calibration a couple of times and it initially helped us to troubleshoot the connections in such a complex system,” reflects Gordillo. “Once we were all set with troubleshooting, we ran the calibration again and it started to sound beautiful. We have a sweet spot for our clients who usually sit on the couch in the front. Being able to calibrate for different listening positions makes GLM a beautiful tool for deciding how and where to listen to our mixes.”
With the new facility open and several major projects already coming through the door, the team at La Tina are enjoying the artistic advantages that their Genelec immersive solution is bringing them. “The Atmos system is great for action scenes and crazy panning, but it’s even better for quiet scenes and naturalistic designs,” observes Silva. “We’re really enjoying the transparency in silent scenes. When we place a muffled TV effect, it really seems like there is someone in the upper floor watching something and walking on our roof. We’re really liking this type of detail and sensation in quiet scenes, with quiet sound sources coming from all around.”
“Artistically we believe that there’s now another layer in creating the techniques of sound for film,” adds Uribe-Holguín. “It’s like learning a new language and being able to describe more with new words and tools. There are new layers and methods for using incidental effects and reinforcing a full effect genre, or for creating a technologically transparent mood for naturalistic approaches.”
The decision to add immersive capabilities has also proved to be a good one for the business. “We are constantly being asked for quotes, so we think it was a good commercial decision,” states Gordillo. “The film, music and video game industries are creating a big demand for immersive audio and it’s slowly starting to get acknowledged by mainstream consumers all around the world. We also see immersive audio creating new narratives and languages. Films in VR and point-of-view productions are right around the corner.”
For more information, please visit www.genelec.com.