Wild Sound means audio that is recorded without accompanying pictures. Technically it is "unsynchronised sound", meaning not synchronised with video footage.
In film and video production, wild sound is recorded so that it can be inserted into the video in post-production. This is desirable for a number of reasons, including:
- To help keep the background noise consistent between shots.
- To help set the mood of the scene.
- To accompany any new audio that is added to the scene.
If you are a budding video or film maker, it's a good idea to get into the habit of recording wild sound. At every location, spend a minute with the camera on your lap just recording the surrounding noise. You may be surprised how useful it is when cutting different shots together.
For example, if you are shooting a playground scene, try this when you edit the footage: Turn off the audio track(s) containing the original sound from the video shots, then add a single wild sound track over the entire sequence. You will notice that the shots tend to flow more comfortably without the changes in background noise. However you will also notice that some shots require their original sound, especially close-ups. Therefore the ideal technique is to mix the original audio for each shot with a constant background track. You will often find that the wild sound works best at a very low volume compared to the original audio.
The aim is to have the best of both worlds — consistent and synchronised sound.
Note: Think about your location when recording wild sound. Remember that it should be able to accompany any shot you record. You should stay a reasonable distance from anything which could make too much noise or be too obvious.