2013/11/28 Giggler is the new iOS app in the Apple App Store that comes with a lot of Hollywood-style sound effects from various film genres which you can add to your own video clips. For the production of this app SampleRobot and WaveRobot were used extensively. We talked to Andreas Fuchs, Head Of Audio Production for Giggler, about sampling and new challenges of audio app production.
What is Giggler about?
Andreas Fuchs: Giggler is about the fascination of syncing sound to moving images. But this time you do not need experience and audio postproduction skills. With Giggler everyone can experience how videos become alive with new and unexpected sounds. With Giggler it is really easy to add a special sound world to a video clip. People are having a of lot fun with it. We get fantastic feedback from all over the world.
Which sound worlds are included?
There are typical Hollywood film genres like CARTOON, SCI-FI, HORROR, Sitcom and more to come in the future. From Psycho strings to Tarzan yell, laser guns to cheers and laughter, you will find a lot of cliché sounds to enrich any video clip.
What is your professional background?
My profession is film composer and sound designer. Some time ago I also contributed to productions in Hollywood. I work part-time at the Filmakademie filmschool in southern Germany as project adviser for the Film Music department. There I coordinate also the orchestral recording sessions for the students.
Talking about recordings, what is the origin of the sounds from Giggler?
The production was multifaceted. We worked with foley artists, ensembles and instrumentalists. The laughters for Sitcom derived from an orchestra, this time without instruments. Of course, we recorded some analog and digital synths for SCI-FI. It was really a total fun job to identfy sounds for each genre and then designing them on that professional film sound level.
Which were the challenges for the sound production?
We use references for most of our sounds. And they derive from the top Hollywood productions of the last decades: Star Wars, Psycho, Postergeist, Road Runner, Loony Toons... It's a long list. The real challenge was finding and understanding the sound essence of a specific film genre and then giving those sounds in an easy-to-handle way to the user. We found out that in some Hollywood scenes often two sounds are used in conjunction. The typical cartoon falling is combined with a crash for landing, for example. So we needed a way to make those different events syncable in Giggler. We came up with an idea to use a release-sample trigger borrowed from the professional sampling world. Now in Giggler if you push the dedicated sound button you hear the falling, if you push it again you will get get the crash. And all of this can be recorded live to the video playback.
How did you use SampleRobot and WaveRobot for your work?
All sounds are sampled from different sources, so it makes sense to have one sampling application where you can easily organize all assets. Since many of the sounds include loops we also needed an application allowing loop editing on a professional and high-speed level. For us SampleRobot including WaveRobot was the perfect match. I saved a lot of time tweeking loops, I saved a lot of In-App memory since I could use loops that are shorter but still without recognizable patterns and all loops turned out to be perfectly smooth.
Which special features of SampleRobot and WaveRobot do you use most?
It was important for me to have a visual feedback for the loop transitions. This is brilliantly done in WaveRobot. You can see in real-time how the loop connects if you move the loop markers. This is also very useful when zooming the waveforms since the overlay gives you always an orientation. Visual zooming is very fast and perfectly integrated into the workflow. I haven't seen this on any other application. Another pretty useful function is the real-time listening of loop crossfades without rendering, even with automatic loudness compensation.
You mentioned that new genres will come, which ones?
We let the users decide. There are some assets already produced for other Hollywood genres, guess which! There is one surprise genre in the production pipeline. All users will be informed in Giggler as soon as it is available.
Will there be new sounds for the genres that are available right now?
Definitely! There was already a Giggler update that contained a bunch of new sounds. Those sounds are free for all user who have downloaded the dedicated genre.
What's the price tag of Giggler?
You can download Giggler free of charge from the Apple App Store. The genre CARTOON is included. If you register with your email, you will get HORROR for free. SCI-FI and Sitcom are available for 2.99 $ each.
Thank you for the interview.