Let me start off by saying I’ve been using the plugin for a day and it is great.
Let me say second that I’m not entirely sure the plugin doesn’t ALREADY do what I’m looking for; but the manual doesn’t really discuss it so I’m assuming not… but here we go:
I am a dialog editor. We often get Boom and LAV dialog tracks which are about 1 foot apart and thus vary by about 40-70 samples between tracks. Sometimes sonically both work together to create the best sounding dialog feed and so they need to be phase matched to overcome the distance issue (pretty much just like overheads and close mics on a drum kit, but thankfully I usually only have one of each).
I normally do this by hand. The typical offset between boom and lav is 40-70 samples (At 48k, 1 foot variation is about 43 samples and booms tend to be about 1-2 feet further from the mouth than the lav in my experience) so it’s pretty easy to eyeball. After I eyeball it, I check my work on a correlation meter.
I’d love to find a plugin to do this for me but the problem with using plugins is:
I’m an editor handing off to a big mix stage so I can’t use inserts that correct phase real time and need to remain on the track as they won’t be imported.
I don’t want to lose my handles or render my edits in case they need to be tweaked on the stage. So I can’t print down and can’t render without handles.
I’ve recently tried the demo of Autoalign and really loved it because while it CAN work as an insert that will correct phase real time for you, it can also just analyze the phase and give an offset value in samples which you can then implement yourself.
Of course just having the exact offset in samples isn’t 100% helpful as there seems to be a current bug in pt that you cannot use shift (option-h) and move audio by specific samples, as it rounds it off to the nearest subframe when you try. So even when Autoalign tells me my audio is 42 samples out I can only shift it by 40 and then I still have to manually nudge it the last 2 by hand. So back to manual shift seems to be the answer for me for now.
Ideally someone would write a plug just like Autoalign that works as audiosuite; loads two channels, analyzes the offset of the selected area and once that value is determined lets you process one of the files to be shifted by the calculated amount but with handles defined (as is standard in audiosuite plugins now). Sort of how VOCALIGN audiosuite works now but instead creating a global offset for the clip instead of a variable sliding push/pull you get with vocalign.
It doesn’t seem autoalign works this way currently but since you already have the engine to do the analysis and calculate the offset it seems like a ‘relatively’ easy step to implement it as described here. And I know there are thousands of people who do what I do and could use a solution like this one. I would def be someone shouting from rooftops if a product could be developed for this marketplace.
I’d really love to discuss this further with you guys and maybe see if what I’ve posted makes sense and would be possible.