Definition of sync in US English:


(also synch)


  • Synchronization.

    ‘images flash onto your screen in sync with the music’
    • ‘Traditionally, stop-motion animation is done with a locked-off camera because moving the camera and the characters in perfect synch is quite a challenge.’
    • ‘The day is approaching when joggers will be able to run in perfect sync with their favorite music.’
    • ‘Worse, there's a stretch at the end of the film where the 5.1 totally breaks down and loses sync with the video.’
    • ‘The dialogue is in perfect synch and tone with the picture.’
    • ‘We did have to think about sound in a conceptual way, because there is no sync sound in that piece apart from the swimming-pool sequence.’
    • ‘A risk associated with typical methods that use variable-length codes is that if an error appears somewhere in the middle of the compressed image, then the decompressor loses synch and all the data from there on in is lost.’
    • ‘This was highlighted during a fantastic duet during the last half of the show; both instruments played for several minutes in complete synch with each other.’
    • ‘The foot tapping was in perfect sync to the sounds of the drum.’
    • ‘The agent sits there, transfixed at the sight before him, and as the music breaks down they change position before it starts up again, once again writhing in and out in perfect sync with their soundtrack.’
    • ‘They came in their long dark-green cloaks and golden armor, carrying perfectly polished bows and marching in perfect synch.’
    • ‘The reproduction carrier frequency is scanned at the converted step frequency width until a frame sync is established after the frame sync is detected.’
    • ‘No thirteenth month is inserted every third year as the Chinese do, in order to bring the calendar back into sync with the sun.’
    • ‘In over a month of usage I only had to re-capture two clips of video that did not have proper audio sync.’
    • ‘I decided definitely to shoot a film with sync sound.’
    • ‘There also seem to be audio synch problems and the image is not enhanced for widescreen televisions.’
    • ‘That one had an annoying stutter, apparently caused by the feature that lets it pause live TV à la TiVo, and occasionally the audio lost sync with the video.’
    • ‘When used with sync sound, the arm of the slate is dropped so that the sound of the ‘clap’ and the image of the arm dropping can be synced together to ensure that the dialog and the actor's lips are matched.’
    • ‘Even in the 1980s, when realism gradually became the cinematic mainstream, many films only had partial sync sound due to a shortage of technical personnel.’
    • ‘One triumph is that when people are speaking on-screen, the audio is in reasonably close sync with the video - still rare on phone-based TV.’
    • ‘Sonically, the Dolby Digital Stereo does a wonderful job of keeping the video game like music in perfect sync with the surroundings and all the voices are pristine and understandable.’


[with object]informal
  • Synchronize.

    ‘the flash needs to be synced to your camera’
    • ‘It's a digital music player that syncs music wirelessly over 802. 11b networks without leaving your car, your bag, or your pocket.’
    • ‘Now, syncing a cellphone with your Outlook could be useful.’
    • ‘Mics of this type can often also be synched to the zoom function on the camera, so they become more directional as the lens zooms in on a subject.’
    • ‘She syncs her laptop with her PDA at least once a day.’
    • ‘I work on the optical printer, a machine that slaves a camera and projector and synchs them to allow you to re-photograph a film-strip frame by frame, or repeat frames - any number of things.’
    • ‘The dialogue is synced correctly, but the ambience is all wrong.’
    • ‘He synched sound with film long before a singing Al Jolson wowed film audiences in 1927.’
    • ‘It's easier to punch in a news channel on the AM / FM radio to hear headlines, rather than go to the trouble of syncing your iPod with your computer before heading out.’
    • ‘When used with sync sound, the arm of the slate is dropped so that the sound of the ‘clap’ and the image of the arm dropping can be synced together to ensure that the dialog and the actor's lips are matched.’
    • ‘This step does the actual transfer of files from your PC to the iPod; it also syncs your local iTunes database on the PC to the one on your iPod.’
    • ‘Once it's set up, it makes syncing your player's contents much simpler - just plug in your device and it'll pair up exactly the stuff you want, without intervention.’
    • ‘And it syncs it with an iPod so you can keep the data up to date between your computer and pod.’
    • ‘Music studios traditionally have tape machines that can record up to 64 tracks, and multiple machines can be synched to make an unlimited amount of tracks available.’
    • ‘Once recorded, the program syncs the audio and video with the slides and creates a searchable index, allowing viewers to skip ahead or replay a segment.’
    • ‘Disc two is taken up entirely by the film's storyboards, synched to your choice of the English or Japanese soundtracks.’
    • ‘Today's Wall Street Journal had a story on syncing PCs and cellphones.’
    • ‘While the action on screen isn't synched to the music, it does help to convey the raw power of the track and works well.’
    • ‘If you spend $50, they will come with a clock that syncs itself to the U.S. atomic clock in Boulder, Colo.’
    • ‘Lynch added his atmospheric ambience and the dialogue was then synced.’
    • ‘If it finds them, it downloads them - and iTunes syncs them onto your iPod.’


  • in (or out of) sync

    • informal Working well (or badly) together; in (or out of) agreement.

      ‘her eyes and her brain seemed to be seriously out of sync’
      • ‘In sync with other news accounts, the New York Times had reported two days earlier that ‘the paper did not print any calls for attacks.’’
      • ‘Another factor in the persistence of auteurism is, oddly, that it's in perfect sync with what became called postmodernism, even though it came to its fore one and a half or even two decades before postmodernism.’
      • ‘Dissention in the ranks: At a joint press conference yesterday, the parties behind the policy detente were out of synch on the question of what the agreement means for consumers' fair use rights.’
      • ‘In sync with many others, he says the best preservation is to move the wine and pour it to customers.’
      • ‘In sync with the latest trend youth would be the target audience for the movie.’
      • ‘In sync with his cooking dogma is his steadfast managing style.’
      • ‘But the notion that design is out of synch or displaced in a museum context is a contradiction I have difficulty resolving.’
      • ‘To share life, we must spend time together and find ways to be in sync.’
      • ‘Currently we are completely out of synch with the rest of Europe.’
      • ‘These days he might find himself in the minority - his approach is out of synch with social trends that suggest parenting is a complex science to be taught by ‘experts’ and the state.’


1920s: abbreviation.