My client is unhappy with the outcome of evening dance footage since we didn't use a recording of the actual music being played that evening. Instead we used clean music, the original CD recording of the particular songs.

There is no contract signed, but client wants the actual audio recorded by the camera that evening, since it reflects the atmosphere of the evening more. The audio is mostly blown out though.

What would you do, offer a partial refund?

  • 1
    Is it close enough that you can blend the clean audio with the ambient? – pojo-guy Dec 15 '17 at 20:34
  • to be honest the actual audio on main cam is not usable, its blown out, but have added the songs actually playing that time as we could understand the songs playing and we have synced that with their singing along with it.. the other camera has usable audio but we havent filmed as much with it as the main one. Anyway, im just looking for some advise as what you would do in this case, as he is complaining that he wants all audio. Now we never work like this anyway, even when audio during the dance etc is a little over to top we prefer to add that song ..he is just being very difficult.. – Ella Dec 15 '17 at 21:10
  • Does the client know that the original audio is blown out? Can you substitute clean audio, and add some room noise to it, so that it sounds like what the original audio should have been? – abelenky Dec 16 '17 at 1:50
  • Yes he knows that its blown out but he wants me to use that, at least that is what he says, im afraid that when he hears the blown out audio, he will make an even bigger problem. so i prefer to leave it like this. In cases where actual audio is not very clean, i am using a clean track, and nobody has ever complained, well there is always a first though.. in this case ive offered him to subsitute the songs played that evening but he is asking for raw footage which i will never give.. and i usually dont give. i could add some room noise but not sure if he will be happy with outcome. – Ella Dec 16 '17 at 7:19
  • what was the outcome in the end? – Zabs Oct 9 '18 at 14:10

I would suggest trying to combine the two audio feeds. If you layer the room audio with the clean audio, it will probably help make things more usable. Otherwise I would give the customer what they asked for. Ultimately, I don't think it is your failing to have had blown out room audio when there would be no good reason to use the room audio.

As an aside, you should also consider the legal ramifications of using either the room audio or clean audio. Unless you have rights to the songs being played, you are most likely violating copyright and if they go posting it online, there is a reasonable enough chance to find yourself sitting on the wrong end of a lawsuit, again depending on jurisdiction and how much attention the video gets.

  • hi, thank you so much for taking the time to answer .. im going to try how mixing the 2 audio feeds will sound.. if it still sounds horrible.. im just going to leave the clean audio.. also, this wont be posted online so no worry for copyright infringement. thank you! – Ella Dec 16 '17 at 19:08
  • In today's world you have to assume everything will be online eventually. Something to keep in mind for future projects. My daughter learned this on her first solo wedding job back in middle school, and made far less profit than she had expected. – pojo-guy Dec 17 '17 at 4:11
  • The way to go is record separate audio in the first place even if not requested/required. For an afterwards fixup I'd find where people are obviously talking and double-duck it in over the clean tracks. If you keep your takes under 20 seconds before you change to another view (then swap back, replaying or skipping a bit of the audio) then the output won't be instantly automatically detected and flagged for ©. – Rob Dec 18 '17 at 21:54

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