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Motor Boating

From Chace Audio

Motor boating refers to a rapid, amorphous audio anomaly sounding somewhat like flutter combined with a two-stroke outboard motor; it can occur when playing back optical sound tracks. Whereas perf buzz occurs when reading the edges of a film's sprocket holes along with the sound track, motor boating occurs when playing back the edge of the film frame on the opposite side of the track. Since the frame image is constantly changing, this anomaly varies in frequency response and is more difficult to process out than perf buzz, which sounds at a stable pitch due to the uniformity of the perforations' shape.

Motor boating sounds somewhat like projector noise rising and falling in pitch as heard in this audio clip.

Here is the same clip without motor boating for comparison.

Motor boating occurs when the optical track reader plays back not only the modulating sound track, but also the edge of the film frame.

motorboating.jpg