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Activity Forums Adobe Premiere Pro Timecodes not synching up

  • Timecodes not synching up

    Posted by Lena Andrews on February 28, 2023 at 11:48 pm

    I’m not experienced with using timecodes. The camera op assures me that the timecodes with the camera and audio recorder were set up correctly but the timeline never matches up when I create a sequence using metadata. I’ve watched a few youtube tutorials but can’t seem to get to the bottom of the problem.

    Joe Bloemer replied 1 year, 1 month ago 8 Members · 18 Replies
  • 18 Replies
  • Jerry Wise

    March 1, 2023 at 1:53 am

    Perhaps your time code is in non-drop frame instead of drop frame. Or vice versa.

  • Mads Nybo jørgensen

    March 1, 2023 at 2:16 am

    Hey Lena,

    Adding to jerry’s advice.
    Have you tried to drag both into a timeline, and checked the info panel to whether the timecode matches? (You may have to drag, one or the other clip, to get them to match up.

    But if the time-codes are vastly different, they’ll not match up.


  • Tod Hopkins

    March 1, 2023 at 1:42 pm

    You’ll need to give us more information. If you match time code at the start of a clip, are you saying the sound doesn’t sync with picture or that the sound doesn’t stay in sync? Have you tried ignoring code and syncing some other way? Try to describe what’s not working. A screenshot showing code might help.

  • Lena Andrews

    March 1, 2023 at 5:23 pm

    Hi Mads,
    We asked the DP to record scratch audio, multiple times, but he refused, so we asked about timecodes. We were assured that it was being done properly and now we are learning about how to efficiently sync with timecodes. Things just aren’t working. I’ll attach screenshots of a video file with its corresponding audio file.
    There are thousands of files and we just need to know if we can make these time codes work, as manually would be a nightmare.

  • Lena Andrews

    March 1, 2023 at 5:37 pm

    Hi Tod,

    When we create a sequence using the timecode it drops the audio miles away from the video, on the timeline. The DoP said it should just be a second or two out.

    It doesn’t drift out. The problem is the need to make the timecode work, for speed. Most scenes used a clapper board, so things can be manually lined up, but with some files being badly labelled and some missing, this is all a huge challenge!

  • Mads Nybo jørgensen

    March 1, 2023 at 6:12 pm

    Hey Lena,

    Did you pay the DP money for this job?
    If so, I would ask for a partial refund.

    When it comes “sync” there is never such thing as a “second or two out”.
    It either is locked, or not – in your case, sadly, it is not.
    If there is no guide audio on the video, then your DP has totally screwed you over.

    Regardless, this is a manual job.
    Did you use a hand-clap or similar at the front of each recording?
    Using that, will make life very easy for you.
    Otherwise, you’ll need to use your eyes and ears to do the sync.

    Only hope is that you are not on a tight deadline.


  • Lena Andrews

    March 1, 2023 at 9:33 pm

    Hi again Mads,

    Sadly the DP was paid, and by the looks of things paid too much for the job he did. I wasn’t on set but apparently the DP said that recording scratch audio was not the way professionals do it. We obviously didn’t agree. He was given a mic, recommended by a customer advisor for Red cameras, but he seems to have turned the mic audio right down so it isn’t useable in the edit suite. For some unknown reason he seems to have sabotaged the project. Making the editing process very difficult.

    This is a feature length movie, done on basically no budget. What budget there was went primarily to the DP and his ‘studio’, which was barely used, and half the time he didn’t even bring all the needed equipment to the set, or was late. I could go on listing the DP’s shortcoming and breach of contract, but I think you’ve got the picture!

    The clapper was used a fair but, but not every time as the DP would go off shooting things on his own and didn’t wait for the crew.

    Just trying to make the best of the mess we have now and I appreciate the feedback and suggestions.



  • Mads Nybo jørgensen

    March 1, 2023 at 11:11 pm

    Hey Lena,

    What a mess – so sorry to hear this, as this is not how it should have been.

    Many years ago I was the Post Production lead on one of the first ever Features shot on Digital HD – very similar problem with time-codes not matching. I got hired to fix it in the On-Line post. Back then my team were using HD-Cam Tape-deck(s) to find the right shot and in-point.

    If it helps, I can jump on a call with you to discuss, hopefully suggest options based on experience – find a way as to how you can quickly, but not entirely painless get through the sync process.
    There may also be an option on how you can address the financial situation.


  • Lena Andrews

    March 2, 2023 at 1:21 am

    Mads, we’d really appreciate your input.

    I’m the producer, based in England, and the director/producer/writer is in the US. He is the one who has started the editing process.

    How can we best contact you?

  • Mads Nybo jørgensen

    March 2, 2023 at 2:41 am

    Hey Lena,

    Snap, I’m based in Central London, UK.
    At least we are on the same time-zone.

    Feel free to connect on LinkedIN or email me: madsnj [at] hotmail [dot] com


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