Documentary Sound Design

Making good stories great

one sound at a time

audio cleaning, designing, mixing, and mastering to give your cinematic efforts more impact

The Sound of Your Story – Crystal Clear

Beyond Balance is the post production artistry of Adam Johnson and a select team of sonic savants. We get the sound of documentaries ready to ship for various mediums of distribution.  Custom SFX, flawless dialogue cleanup, web and broadcast spec mastering, We love to turn scenes into memorable experiences for audiences everywhere.

Get the balance of your elements seamless, turning your scenes into experiences, and experiences into memories.



Multiply your finished edit length by $120  to get an accurate rate estimate. This figure covers the entire post-audio process for typical documentary elements.  Voice, Music, and peripheral SFX. 


Click “get started” to input your best email, and a short synopsis about your timeline and your project.  You can also download an NDA we’ve written to assure you with protection of your intellectual property.


Look out for our response in your email!  We can lace up all the remaining requirements there.  Billing is half upon receipt of your .AAF documents, and half upon completion to your satisfaction.

What’s In A Mix?

  • A perfect sonic balance of voice, music, and SFX
  • Custom SFX and Foley to match your scenes
  • Stems for easy repurposing or tweaks
  • Easy Collaboration and Review in Frame.io
  • Unlimited revisions for our work
  • Master for any medium of your choice – more available upon request. (eg: TV, Web, or a particular Festival Spec)
  • Locked-in flat rate pricing (no hourly guessing)
  • 5.1 Up-mixing available (optional)

We’ve got you, sonically speaking.

It’s our mission to make it easy for creators to get amazing and consistent sounding stories, every time.

Mixes That Translate

With so many viewing mediums nowadays it’s paramount to ensure your media sounds great across all systems.  With our calibrated setup you can trust that it will.

Custom SFX & Foley

Nothing paints life into a scene like sound.  With every documentary mix we provide custom foley and sound design to bring your scenes to life.

Dialogue Cleanup

Noise, birds, airplanes – oh my! There are so many pitfalls when recording on set.  Our promise to you after a decade of experience is that if it’s possible to remove then – we will.

Multi Platform Spec

We’ll discuss whatever specs you might need for your intended broadcast platform(s) for each project.  Multi-level masters are no problem.

Easy Revisions

View your master in context and easily leave-time stamped notes for revisions with Frame’s industry leading collaborative tools.  My guess is that if you’re here reading this, you’re probably already familiar!


Picture lock is set, the sound and colouring are mastered, and then boom!  A new edit is needed.  Our customers find it amazingly convenient to have access to the stems for quick tweaks, shifts in the edit, or cutting trailers.

Cloud Collaboration

You can send me your files with your favourite cloud storage app, and I’ll upload your master and stems to dropbox or another app if you prefer.  A simple and sweet, totally remote workflow.

Easy Flat Rates.

For a typical documentary format we use a variable pricing structure at $160/minute-of-edit-length in Canadian dollars. Just multiply your edit length by $160 to reach your estimate before tax.

Like Photoshop For Audio

Great storytellers make great stories.  And great storytellers deserve to be heard loud & clear.  Everytime we put a project on the line here at the factory we run your interviews through state of the art cleanup software called iZotope RX.   this software is like photoshop for audio – and it allows us to hand-tailor more intimacy and forward presence into your talent so they can be heard as you intended.

Hand tailored audio restoration to help your story-tellers be heard as you intended

Audio Restoration Samples

Nothing takes the intimacy out of your message like odd sounds from beyond the picture.  We use industry-leading audio restoration software in every mix to ensure that all the viewer gets are your storytellers – as you intended.

Room Cancelling

AC, fridges, light fixtures, oh my!  Almost every room has a “tone” it brings to the table..  

Noisy Lips

You may not hear them during the interview.  But the microphone sure does

Excessive S's

Microphones & Recorders absolutely LOVE to emphasize this harsh band of frequencies.

Ambience Matching

Is your perfect take a bunch of takes?  Ambience matching is the secret sauce.

Tone Matching

Similar to ambience matching, but I tailor the voice rather than the environment.

Environment Healing

Clicks & Bangs & Booms & Pops…They’re never ending! 
No Fear…  Let’s fix it in post.

Easy Revisions with Frame.io

Have you ever hired someone to mix your documentary and received your mixdown only to import it into your software, open up a notepad, and jot down all of your revisions with time-stamps beside your notes?… (then do it all again for round 2?)  Yeah…we think that’s ridiculous too.   That’s why we collaborate with Frame.io so you can listen to your sound and input your notes in context – right away – from any device.  We’ll send you that hi-res audio-only print once you’re happy.

Leave notes from any device, right on the timeline, in context with your film.

A Subtle Touch,  A Profound Affect.

Below are some short excerpts from short docs, documentary features, and sizzlers we’ve mastered over the years.

A Documentary About

MMA Fighting

This is a documentary about weight cutting in mma fighting leagues.  Our excerpt here showcases a sonic blend of vocal balance, music, and custom Foley SFX for punches, kicks, grapples, and a thrilling look into the mind of a fighter.

A Documentary about


Catherine & Duane are psychologists with decades of work in the field of trauma; particularly how it appears in relationships.  In this insightful documentary style e-course we showcase a blend striking, eerie, and domestic abuse sounds that bring the viewer into their world.

A Montage of


This project was super fun.  Every sound you hear other than the voice was sourced and designed here in the studio.  The whole shoot was MOS.  Each 1-minute spot is a multi=layered cake of both real foley, imagined atmosphere, and slamming sports FX. 



This a meaningful and touching piece about a medal-winning blind Canadian swimmer.  This excerpt features a balance of voice and music, as well as a montage of swimming foley both above and below the water.


Ceremonial Healing

In this documentary trailer featuring Gabor Maté we balanced short dialogue shifts recorded from all kinds of different sources with music and SFX supporting the story.  Sometimes it’s also about what you can’t hear anymore that makes the mix.



Low-end sweeps are fantastic ways to stitch edits together, especially when the feature is speeding through the forest on her bike!  This excerpt offers a cool montage of Bike sounds, motion FX, factory and machinery sounds, trash impact, and a lot of really smart people talking about really smart things.

A Montage of

Sound Effects

This is a short & fun montage of custom sfx designed for brand VFX and logos.  Partly real sounds, partly imagination, all good stuff.  If you have a company logo at the front or back of your doc, you can be sure we’ll craft a sweet and subtle soundscape to make it pop.

Born and bred in the great Holly-North;  Beyond Balance is the work of Adam Johnson and a trusted company of sonic wizards. 


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