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Metered level peaks vs actual hearing level don't match?
Old 23rd August 2007
  #1
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Metered level peaks vs actual hearing level don't match?

Okay, so keep in mind I'm still learning this whole mastering thing.

So, I mastered a track with the peak volume matching my reference track. It seemed that the volume of the track was high enough in comparison to my reference.

The other day I finally got a chance to spin the tune out and notice that on the DJ mixer the track I mastered was peaking in the red with the channel gain knob at the same setting of the other track I was mixing in, the difference being that my tracks volume was actually lower, so I had to crank my channel gain in order to mix it in.

What am I doing wrong. I'm sure there's a bunch of things, but what would you say is the root cause of this? I'm looking for theory & technique solutions more then "you need to get this gear" type of answeres.

thanks.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #2
Gear Nut
 

Peak level has nothing to do with percieved loudness. The ear hears volume as an average so if waveform A peaks at a higher level than waveform B but waveform B has a louder RMS level, waveform B will most likely be percieved as being louder.

So you may ask; How do you get from waveform A to B?

Answer: There are lots of different dynamics methods to choose from depending on how you want the end result to sound: compression, limiting, some engineers clip the A/D converters. It depends on how you want it to sound.
Old 23rd August 2007
  #3
jdg
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peak vs avg (rms)
your eyes see peaks, your ears hear average

in short, compress the hell out of the sucker...

im sure more ppl will chime in with info
Old 23rd August 2007
  #4
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Given that the PA is good enough to handle the peaks, and if you had been on the dancefloor, you'd might have noticed that your song very possibly had more snap and punch to it. That's the big fallacy of the loudness wars. It's a softness war! The "not so loud track" did play fine - I guess- after you used the gain knob, giving your tune more effect on the loudspeaker system! Usually, the really "loud" tracks are, what is so nicely refered too as, "whimpy loud". It's only relatively loud compared to another track on the same medium, it's not loud per se - that's what the volume knob is there for. Often, these tracks sounds less powerful when blasted on a big sound system compared to more dynamic music. Compression, limiting etc will make the speaker system use less power to transmit a given loudness. In radio this equals bigger coverage, so it makes sense there. A big club PA is not a radio transmitter with a very restricted effect! It's a freaking monster of power - perfectly suited to reproduce dynamic music with massive peaks that punches through.

Sigh... Here we go again.. ;-)
Old 23rd August 2007
  #5
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lupo View Post
The "not so loud track" did play fine - I guess- after you used the gain knob, giving your tune more effect on the loudspeaker system! Usually, the really "loud" tracks are, what is so nicely refered too as, "whimpy loud". It's only relatively loud compared to another track on the same medium, it's not loud per se - that's what the volume knob is there for. Often, these tracks sounds less powerful when blasted on a big sound system compared to more dynamic music.
All true, but facts are nothing when pitted against human laziness. If a DJ has the option to play everything at one volume (11 ) and have it sound decent, or find the proper relative volume for each track and have it sound great, virtually every DJ will crank it to 11 and go about their business. Same for the majority of CD/MP3 listeners.
Old 24th August 2007
  #6
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Your RMS was lower, the "peaking in the red" may have been digital overs.
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