Mike Minkler, multiple Oscar-winning re-recording mixer at Todd-Soundelux in Hollywood, has upgraded to the new Penteo 4 Pro plug-in that discretely converts stereo to 5.1, offering exacting control over sound image placement to create high-quality, natural-sounding surround.
Minkler explained, “I've used Penteo on almost every project for five years now. The new plug-in really shines. With a flick of a switch I can take a two-channel mix and get a quality 5.1 mix, which is a huge asset when managing large projects, but even more so when working on smaller, independent films that just can't afford more than a stereo source for me to work with.”
Penteo 4 Pro is 100% ITU down-mix compatible to the original stereo. The plug-in features an intuitive visual interface modelled after vintage gear, and offers six automated preset modes as well as advanced manual controls for fine-tuning.
“For years, I've been looking for a way to spread a two-track music mix into a five-channel music mix in the 5.1 world that we live in,” Minkler continued. “I've done it through various types of processing and panning and reverbs and delays and whatever we can find, some phase shift, whatever will help achieve that goal. When Penteo was brought to me by the designers, I was very excited to play with it. The beauty of Penteo is I get exactly what I want – or better – every time I plug it in.”
Penteo 4 Pro now natively supports Avid Audio eXtension (AAX) for true 64-bit processing. “Penteo produces such a warm surround mix, and we are thrilled that now Penteo supports Avid's AAX64 format,” said Ed Gray, director, Avid Partnering Programs. “Now sound designers will benefit by being able to run more instances and tap all the new features of Pro Tools 11.”
In addition to mouse-operated controls, Penteo 4 Pro supports multi-touch controls, allowing a sound designer to control more than one Penteo feature at once, thereby creating a natural mixing experience through simple hand contact. Penteo 4 Pro is designed for use with the Raven MTX surround console.
Although Minkler is known for work on recent major films like The Fifth Estate for DreamWorks and R.I.P.D. for Universal, he also works on bold independent films as well. “On lower budget films,” he explained, “When they don't have the budget to have 5.1 mixes that are all stemmed out properly, they give me two-channel mixes or two-channel stems. That's when Penteo really shines – I can take their two-channel mixes and give them what they couldn't afford before, which is the 5.1 mix. You can take a two-channel orchestra and make it into a 5.1 orchestra.”