Please introduce yourself and tell us how you got involved with sound design.
Hi, my name is Saro Sahihi, CEO of SoundBits. I have been involved with audio production since 1999, starting with music production. After an appropriate audio education and years of experience, I developed my skills more and more in recording and designing sound fx. Today, SoundBits provides sound design and editing for film and games and creates high quality SoundFX libraries. I create many different kinds of sounds by recording from scratch or sample manipulation.
What sparks inspiration for creating a new sample/preset library?
There are three possible way this happens. Sometimes, mostly when I am doing something totally different, BAM, there is that idea of a new sound or library. Or I am inspired by hearing or seeing anything which gives me the idea. Like this huge hammering drill on a construction site I was walking by which inspired me for the new impacts libraries I am currently working on. Sometimes it happens when I am working on a sound library and getting an idea of sounds that would perfectly match or complement this library.
Would you care to share any of the tools of your trade?
Yes, of course. My DAW of choice is Steinberg's Nuendo, sometimes with Ableton Live rewired to it. I love the possibilities in Nuendo espacially for post production and sound design, like the automation features, cycle marker export, ADR, MediaBay and so much more. Pro Tools is nice and I am teaching it at SAE Institute but it's way back behind Nuendo. The second most important tools for me is iZotope RX4 Advanced. I can't imagine how I ever worked without it.
To name some must have plugins for my everyday work: FabFilter Pro-Q 2, iZotope Ozone 5 Advanced, AudioEase Altiverb 7, Maag EQ4, NI Transient Master, BlueCat MB-7, NI Guitar Rig, Waves Vitamin, Rbass and Maxx Bass, D16 Sigmund, Ohmforce Ohmicide, NI Massive, SugarBytes Effectrix. For speakers I use Event Opal. Some of the best speakers I have ever heard. For recording in the field I use a RODE NTG-3, NT5 + ZOOM and Tascam recorders. In the studio it's a Brauner VM1, RODE NT2000 and NT-2A.
What's the one piece of gear you would love to have in your studio?
What is your sound design process? Do you start with a sound in mind or do you play around and see what comes out?
Both! I mostly start with a idea in mind. Knowing my tools, the desired sound is made quickly. Then I often start playing around a bit. It's all about cleaning, cutting, layering, pitch-shifting, automation, reversing and mixing. And some FX of course.
Which of the libraries you have produced is your personal favourite?
The list is long. Many were sold exclusively to Samplephonics or SoundIdeas. Follow this link to view and listen to the most of them: http://soundbits.de/artist-category/all-soundfx-libraries
What would your ultimate sound design gig be?
Working on a Sci Fi/animation full feature movie. Or working with Ric Viers on a sound effects library.
What are some tips and tricks for a budding sound designer who's looking to start in the business?
Just do it! And listen very carefully to your whole environment. Know your tools! Nothing is more annoying than having a sound in mind but not knowing how to get there. Have a perfect understanding of digital audio. Don't forget to fool around. And then, get creative.
What music are you listening to right now?
There is no specific genre. Mostly electronic, much debstep/complextro stuff. But also rock and hiphop.
What's next for SoundBits?
At the moment I am working on several libraries:
This is three libraries: Simple is a construction kit to build your own heavy impacts and cinematic hits or just to use in your movie or game productions for anything that hits anything else. Processed is just what the title says. Designed features heavy impacts, hits and crashes.
Scrapes & Scratches
Scrapes, scratches and grinds with different material in different styles
You know the transitions from Cinematic Hits & Transitions, yes? This is even more trailer-ready with heavily designed sonic cinematic transitions.
Parallel to that I am working on, Screams & Shouts 2. Still missing some female screams. Then there will be a new library for Samplephonics, but I can't get more in detail right now.