About me

Tone Manufacture is run by Michael F. Bates, whose credits you can see on his website or on IMDb.

I’m a sound editor and sound designer working from my own studio in South London, 20 minutes from Soho.

I’ve worked on feature and short films and documentaries and artist’s films.

For more details on my voice over services go here: tonemanufacture.com/voice-over

How I work

I understand that the process of bringing a film to life is a long one, so my goal is to create an inspiring, collaborative environment during sound post production.

The reason I am passionate about sound in film is that it holds so much potential for subliminal yet powerful treatment that can enhance the mood and tone of the images and performances it is combined with.

All environments – whether urban, rural or invented – suggest types of sound that can be worked with to create a compelling soundtrack or they suggest ways to invent the sound of a place.

I always try to record and create a collection of custom sound effects for every project to provide each film with a unique range of sounds.

The exciting part of the process is collaborating to discover which approach will work to bring the director’s ideas to life.

I prefer to be brought on board as early as possible, as this allows me to become familiar with the script, meet the other crew members and plan the sound post workflow to make the most of the resources available during production and post, in order to save money and time later on in the process.

I believe that better communication and understanding between production and post departments helps to ensure that budget and resources are spent on making your film sound as fantastic as possible. Many of the issues that are encountered during sound post can be solved by better communication between the production and post production crews, but this requires us to collaborate early on.

How I work, technically speaking

As I work in Pro Tools HD on a calibrated 5.1 surround monitoring system I can easily integrate into workflows at bigger facilities.

This means that it is possible to work on a project in the cheaper, less time pressured environment of my studio before taking it to a large dub stage to do the final mix. It also means that I can easily incorporate work from other sound post providers like foley and ADR studios.

Finally it means that I can provide sound effects editing, foley editing, dialogue editing and sound design services to other sound supervisors.

For a more detailed description of the specific services I can supply see below:

I can supervise the sound for your project, from pre-production through to the final mix.
When I supervise a project I can:

  • offer advice about sound during pre-production
  • find production sound crew
  • provide sound effects during picture editing
  • record custom sounds
  • tracklay sound effects
  • create custom sound design
  • edit dialogue
  • restore and rescue poor or damaged production sound
  • record & edit voice over & ADR
  • contract and supervise foley, re-recording mixers and other sound editors

Sound rounds out the world of your project, from the ambience of a quiet urban street to a new alien language to finding the perfect door slam to punctuate an emotional argument.

I have an extensive library of sound effects and by combining these with sounds specifically recorded for your project and using the latest digital tools we can create a rich and detailed track to complement your project and enhance its emotional impact.

I have a range of mics and recorders with which to record ambiences or effects outside of the studio.

I do this to create custom libraries of sounds for projects I’m working on. You can also hire me to provide sounds for your post production crew.

Hard to hear dialogue will very quickly turn off your audience.

I can prepare production sound ready for the final mix. Well edited dialogue, fully smoothed out and cleaned up, provides the base that all the other sound elements will sit upon.

Good dialogue editing can also help reduce the amount of ADR required by saving production sound that was thought to be unusable.

 I regularly record voice overs in my comfortable, well equipped studio which has also been used very successfully on lower budget projects to record ADR when the budget makes going to a big Soho studio unfeasible. 
 My studio is equipped with high quality 5.1 surround monitoring which enables me to pre-mix before taking the project to a bigger studio to finish the final mix or even on lower budget projects to finish the mix here.