Many times in the past I’ve been asked if we have any impact sounds that can be used to beef up car and other vehicle crashes. Often I used to recommend they used a selection of our glass smashes and metal impacts and layer them up to get the right sound. But recently, I’ve had a few more questions relating to the same subject, so thought it might be a good idea to create some sounds just for this purpose.
I set about researching some techniques that would work and came across an interesting discussion online, with one of the participants suggesting chucking a load of glass in a metal tin and dropping, it, throwing it etc against various surfaces to get the desired sound.
So today I did just that.
I found an old tin of chocolates (obviously empty, I would have eaten them right away whenever they were purchased) and placed a small glass jar, an already broken drinking glass and also some small glass pieces I had saved from when our outside glass table was smashed in storm.
Placing the lid on, I knew I needed to seal it in place so it didn’t fly off while recording, sending sharp glass pieces into my eyes and all over the ground. I simple used some sticky tape to seal the lid to the tin.
Next I started experimenting with drops, throws, kicks and impacts on various surfaces. I also rolled the tin, tipped it up and moved it around. I found that recording the tin close up was best to avoid any reflections from surrounding surfaces and thus preventing any natural reverb from occurring in the recording (this was recorded in a yard close to a metal wall and a garage).
Once recorded I pulled the sounds into Adobe Audition and started playing around with limiting and compression, some EQ and also noise reduction. The first batch of sounds I edited naturally, adding no real processing or effects. But for the second batch I wanted a deeper, heavier sound, so for these I pitched the sounds down by 10 semitones and added a very slight reverb with a bright EQ, just to brighten it up, as when pitching sounds down, you often lose some of the higher frequencies.
The results are fantastic. Some of the sounds are just plain thuds with a great glass and metal sound, while others contain some glass debris tails, perfect if you need a slightly rougher sound.
Not only were these added to the main library as individual downloads (46 in total) but I created a pack too, which can also be downloaded for free here.