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Vote on the solutions to the loudness war.... Dynamics Plugins
View Poll Results: Vote on Loudness Normalizatoin
No LN, over my dead body.
143 Votes - 41.21%
I want LN, with a consumer option to defeat.
137 Votes - 39.48%
I want LN required and undefeatable in all consumer gear.
28 Votes - 8.07%
No opinion, whatever will be will be.
39 Votes - 11.24%
Voters: 347. You may not vote on this poll

Old 3rd December 2009
  #301
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatrikT View Post
So you have FAVORITE records that are "destroyed".

I think you lost right there.


Regards
Patrik
How have I "lost"?

Yes, I have a mind blowing musical genius masterpiece that excels musically by an immeasurably vast magnitude, yet it sounds smashed. Every time I listen to Cygnus I wonder how much better it would sound if it wasn't pinned to the wall. Yet, it is a personal favorite album.

same with delouse in the comatorium

same with jane doe

same with blood mountain

same with lou rhodes: boom, even after I thought beloved one was so great sounding

same with ocean size frames

same with epic fits by pre (real trashy anyway, but could sound better with more than 0.001db crest factor)

same with californication

same with 65 days of static - fall of math

same with songs for the deaf and echo silence patience grace - even though those two albums "sort of" seem to defy physics a bit, they still could sound even better IMHO.

same with wolves in wolves clothing. you can hear that from punk in drublic even though the mix isn't as good, I still prefer the sound of punk in drublic!


These are all personal favorites.

And it goes on and on to the point of nausea.

I'm loosing the will to live with this argument, we're going round and round in annoying circles.
Old 6th December 2009
  #302
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tmcconnell's Avatar
 

pleeeeeeease!

LN impacts the sound... a lot. This impacts the intentions of the artist.. a lot. What's next? transposing the key? Adding distortion? I would be ok if the reproduction system had some sort of loudness adjustment (it odes). t
Old 6th December 2009
  #303
Gear Maniac
 

One solution to end the Loudness War: SUPRESS MUSIC!
Actually, companies like Chandler or Lydcraft should release high-end, classA music supressors...i'm sure some people would go "WOW, that silence sounds amazing! Listen to that beautifully articulated no-end! This device sounds so non-musical! i've never not heard harmonic balance like that!"

(true no?...this way nobody will complain anymore... :D )
Old 6th December 2009
  #304
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spasm_dtc View Post
One solution to end the Loudness War: SUPRESS MUSIC!
Actually, companies like Chandler or Lydcraft should release high-end, classA music supressors...i'm sure some people would go "WOW, that silence sounds amazing! Listen to that beautifully articulated no-end! This device sounds so non-musical! i've never not heard harmonic balance like that!"

(true no?...this way nobody will complain anymore... :D )
Although I favor LN, that was pretty funny lol heh
Old 6th December 2009
  #305
Gear Head
 

I personally never want to be a mastering engineer because record labels would force me to be sucked in.

I wont have any chance of even getting any of my electronic music on modern commercially successful compilations series because my tracks are not loud enough.

I know of other electronic producers who say the same thing.

So for those who say that the loudness war has not been hijacked by behind computer bullies are obviously wrong.
Old 6th December 2009
  #306
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8080JP View Post
I personally never want to be a mastering engineer because record labels would force me to be sucked in.

I wont have any chance of even getting any of my electronic music on modern commercially successful compilations series because my tracks are not loud enough.

I know of other electronic producers who say the same thing.

So for those who say that the loudness war has not been hijacked by behind computer bullies are obviously wrong.
ha ha - this reminds me of when a compilation CD had taken a track I had mastered (and the customer was very happy with) and sent it off to their mastering engineer so he could master my master. The result was a louder and far lower quality version than of the actual release (which I mastered), ha ha ha - what a waste of money.

Old 7th December 2009
  #307
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JALFK View Post
ha ha - this reminds me of when a compilation CD had taken a track I had mastered (and the customer was very happy with) and sent it off to their mastering engineer so he could master my master. The result was a louder and far lower quality version than of the actual release (which I mastered), ha ha ha - what a waste of money.

Maybe you didn't cut it loud enough!
Old 7th December 2009
  #308
Gear Maniac
 

I've seen that too, with people licencing a track from our label - we provided a really good mastered version (out of the really fine mastering studio we use for years), and it seems they went for a cheap mastering solution to put it on CD (one of their buddies who probably thought he could do great with Logic and Ozone..at least i suppose that's what happened). The guy just squashed the already mastered file and i think he ended up using BIAS Peak's normalizing function just to top it off... zero dynamic range, squeeking highs, wooshy bass... Bottom line is that he probably did not even notice that it was already mastered...or he had no ears... I literally threw the cd to the trash after listening to it once.
Old 8th December 2009
  #309
Gear Addict
 
mischa janisch's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by spasm_dtc View Post
I've seen that too, with people licencing a track from our label - we provided a really good mastered version (out of the really fine mastering studio we use for years), and it seems they went for a cheap mastering solution to put it on CD (one of their buddies who probably thought he could do great with Logic and Ozone..at least i suppose that's what happened). The guy just squashed the already mastered file and i think he ended up using BIAS Peak's normalizing function just to top it off... zero dynamic range, squeeking highs, wooshy bass... Bottom line is that he probably did not even notice that it was already mastered...or he had no ears... I literally threw the cd to the trash after listening to it once.
That's an interesting question - how do most of you treat compiltions?

Most of the masters I get for dance compilations come in around RMS -5 to -6dbfs, but then there is always one (or two) tracks that are mastered 2-3db lower, where the A&R will expect me to 'bump up the level' - which is part of the reason why labels pay for compilation mastering, so doing nothing is no option.
I usually lower the bulk by max 1 db (as I found this is the maximum accepted) and try to raise the others as careful as possible, but I have to admit I never feel very comfortable doing either of the two...
Old 8th December 2009
  #310
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macc's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Aye ^ I take the same approach, had exactly that just yesterday.
Old 8th December 2009
  #311
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UnderTow's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JALFK View Post
You have taken my post out of context.

The reason this "statistic" supports my approval of LN, is because 100% of people won't be affected by the simple and effective solution to the massive problem our industry created, that had nothing to do with the consumer in the first place, which has lowered the standard of audio quality by a farcical magnitude.

Again, IMHO, people who do not support LN are either clinging to ill-informed beliefs, or profit from the slaughtering of music; and are not confident enough as mastering engineers to create superb results alone, without defaulting to playing the psychoacoustic con card to fool their customers into liking their stinking pile of cow crap master. dfegad

OK, a little over the top to get my point accross, no offense intended, but do you see which angle I'm coming from now?

You are so right. Lets have a Codex Volumentarius so we can have a New World Mastering Order by imposing a software algorithm on all music to give artists more freedom.

Nutter.

Alistair
Old 8th December 2009
  #312
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mischa janisch View Post
That's an interesting question - how do most of you treat compiltions?

Most of the masters I get for dance compilations come in around RMS -5 to -6dbfs, but then there is always one (or two) tracks that are mastered 2-3db lower, where the A&R will expect me to 'bump up the level' - which is part of the reason why labels pay for compilation mastering, so doing nothing is no option.
I usually lower the bulk by max 1 db (as I found this is the maximum accepted) and try to raise the others as careful as possible, but I have to admit I never feel very comfortable doing either of the two...
Well, since i have a bit of experience with that here's my point of view:
When we release a compilation, we partly use tracks that we already released and therefore mastered, partly unreleased stuff that has to be mastered first and sometimes tracks that have been released elsewhere and that are also alrady mastered. For the first category, unless our ME tells us something has to be done, they stay untouched excpet maybe for a simple level correction to match the rest. For the latter category, unless the track has been poorly mastered, we also leave it untouched - otherwise we request the unmastered file and master it again.

In the end, we as a label, never override the ME's advice. We will let him do whatever he thinks is necessary, but if we request something that will in his opinion not have a positive effect on the result, he will tell us straight and we will comply.

It is very important for us as a client that our ME talks with us and does not just say "ok, will do" to whatever we ask him - in the end he's the specialist, and we're lucky enough to have someone that we can really trust. It is also very important as a label to engage this conversation with the ME in order to obtain the best possible result and not end up with a loud but unpleasant end product. Plus, musicians don't like their tracks messed up like the exmaple i talked about before, and in the end they'll push the responsability of that kind of failure on the label and not the ME.
Old 9th December 2009
  #313
Gear Addict
 
mischa janisch's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by spasm_dtc View Post
Well, since i have a bit of experience with that here's my point of view:
When we release a compilation, we partly use tracks that we already released and therefore mastered, partly unreleased stuff that has to be mastered first and sometimes tracks that have been released elsewhere and that are also alrady mastered. For the first category, unless our ME tells us something has to be done, they stay untouched excpet maybe for a simple level correction to match the rest. For the latter category, unless the track has been poorly mastered, we also leave it untouched - otherwise we request the unmastered file and master it again.

In the end, we as a label, never override the ME's advice. We will let him do whatever he thinks is necessary, but if we request something that will in his opinion not have a positive effect on the result, he will tell us straight and we will comply.

It is very important for us as a client that our ME talks with us and does not just say "ok, will do" to whatever we ask him - in the end he's the specialist, and we're lucky enough to have someone that we can really trust. It is also very important as a label to engage this conversation with the ME in order to obtain the best possible result and not end up with a loud but unpleasant end product. Plus, musicians don't like their tracks messed up like the exmaple i talked about before, and in the end they'll push the responsability of that kind of failure on the label and not the ME.
You seem to run a fairly well organized label that also seems to care about sound. Let me tell you from my experience that this is not always the case...

Most of the time the deadline is already VERY close, it's not possible to get the Mix to make a (necessary) new master (since the artist has lost it, is on the road - whatever) and the A&R doesn't want to hear about any problems. Also, most of these projects have to stay within a fairly tight budget. I was just currious how other ME's were handling these sometimes VERY unsatisfying situations.
Old 9th December 2009
  #314
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mischa janisch View Post
You seem to run a fairly well organized label that also seems to care about sound. Let me tell you from my experience that this is not always the case...

Most of the time the deadline is already VERY close, it's not possible to get the Mix to make a (necessary) new master (since the artist has lost it, is on the road - whatever) and the A&R doesn't want to hear about any problems. Also, most of these projects have to stay within a fairly tight budget. I was just currious how other ME's were handling these sometimes VERY unsatisfying situations.
Well that's one of the points: A&R's who don't see that as important are imo not worth the title and should go into pure marketting instead.
As for the budget thing, and that's the beauty of it, our ME has a lot of other clients and he makes a living even if he doesn't have to spend more than three or four hours transfering our twelve-track compilation to CD and 3xVinyl. My point being, if you work with quality in mind from the beginning on (for example eventually lending your own home studio to artists who don't have your means to finish their mix etc. ...), costs stay low and everyone's happy. Actually our ME kind of educated us to that, sure we had quality and respect for the artist's work in mind from the beginning, but he tought us a lot about sound and how to get the best possible end product - and we were extremely lucky with that.
Old 9th December 2009
  #315
j_j
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Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow View Post
You are so right. Lets have a Codex Volumentarius so we can have a New World Mastering Order by imposing a software algorithm on all music to give artists more freedom.

Nutter.

Alistair
What are you on about, Alistair?

There is a law coming down the tracks at us from Barbara Eschoo of Ca that will regulate everything, EVERYTHING that ever goes on TV.

You want to avoid it, figure out a way to get the industry to deal itself.

You don't want an "NWO" solution? Then fix the problem before the NWO takes you over.
Old 9th December 2009
  #316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j_j View Post
There is a law coming down the tracks at us from Barbara Eschoo of Ca that will regulate everything, EVERYTHING that ever goes on TV.
Does that include Youtube?

Quote:
You don't want an "NWO" solution? Then fix the problem before the NWO takes you over.
Does that include under-developed computer ears?


Regards
Patrik
Old 9th December 2009
  #317
Lives for gear
 

Why is everyone so afraid of making the listener turn up the F****** volume?

It's the most empowering thing you could give them as consumers.
Old 9th December 2009
  #318
Gear Addict
 
mischa janisch's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Killahurts View Post
Why is everyone so afraid of making the listener turn up the F****** volume?

It's the most empowering thing you could give them as consumers.
Absolutely - no need for a LN algorithm to do this... Let humans decide, not computers!
Old 10th December 2009
  #319
j_j
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Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by PatrikT View Post
Does that include under-developed computer ears?
Perhaps you should be exact and precise about what this means.

Please, since you've suggested something, be exact and specific, with full and complete evidence.

Speak up, lad, what DID you mean.
Old 10th December 2009
  #320
j_j
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mischa janisch View Post
Absolutely - no need for a LN algorithm to do this... Let humans decide, not computers!
I'm not aware that "up" is a problem here. Do you have some evidence to show that's why complaints happen?
Old 10th December 2009
  #321
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What's the solution to fear?
What's the solution to brain chemistry during comparison?
To insecurity?

There is no solution in a general sense. Solutions are individual. As is loudness.

And I'm 100% sure that the really good MEs can do a loud record as well as a dynamic one, so it's not a ME issue at all, except to be prepared to serve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bob katz View Post
To attempt to solve it, or to leave the status quo.
There are other options than the 4 presented ... and they exist within conversation, one person to one person. Not dogma, rules, high tech devices, or quantification of musical taste.

Conversation. Education. Choice.
Old 10th December 2009
  #322
j_j
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucey View Post
Solutions are individual. As is loudness.
Well, to be pedantic, loudness perception seems pretty consistant across trained individuals without hearing loss.

But I'm with you on solutions, for the most part. I really do not want to limit artistic intent at all, but I think the present MAKE IT LOUD situation in recordings is in fact not only limiting artistic intent, but also actually destroying it almost completely.

Imagine, if you will, "The Wall" with a 3dB peak/rms ratio.
Old 10th December 2009
  #323
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j_j View Post
Well, to be pedantic, loudness perception seems pretty consistant across trained individuals without hearing loss.
I meant the choice on loudness, is individual. It's part of the process, the sound, the real world element. Dogma is never good. Freedom means 'mistakes' and bad taste (IMHO) can happen.

How many things can we "fix" or stop even with laws where we agree on the idea? Not as many as we think.
Old 10th December 2009
  #324
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mischa janisch's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by j_j View Post
Imagine, if you will, "The Wall" with a 3dB peak/rms ratio.
No need to imagine this - just listen to how it sounds on the radio...
Old 10th December 2009
  #325
Gear Maniac
 

omg, is it even remotely possible to have a discussion on this forum without the trolls showing up and getting into sterile semi-insulting discussions ?
Old 11th December 2009
  #326
j_j
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mischa janisch View Post
No need to imagine this - just listen to how it sounds on the radio...
I know. :wince:

I doubt that board rules allow me to express what I think of it. Board rules should not permit that kind of language, either.
Old 11th December 2009
  #327
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Is it possible that one day some young listeners will notice that the music they have to turn up the volume on sounds better for longer, and doesn't give them a headache and make them want to murder someone?

Could dynamic music become the next cool, with loud slammed to the wall CD's becoming passé, like 80's reverb, etc?

Just a thought.. I guess as far as the OP is concerned that puts me in the "over my dead body" group.
Old 25th January 2010
  #328
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow View Post
You are so right. Lets have a Codex Volumentarius so we can have a New World Mastering Order by imposing a software algorithm on all music to give artists more freedom.

Nutter.

Alistair
(Sorry for the delayed response, I didn't get a subscribe email until just now for some reason)

Alistair, I would suggest that a defeat-able LN is not similar to the Communist police state we live in, for one reason: it is user defeatable.

FEMA camp isn't user defeatable.
Old 26th January 2010
  #329
Gear Maniac
Does anybody here know anything about WHY louder sounds better to people generally? Is there any psychoacoustic theory about that?

My experience is that unless I subjectively level match two versions of a track when I do A/B comparisons I'm unable to judge them fairly - switching to the louder one almost always sounds pleasing and switching to the quieter one seems disappointing. It's only once I've level matched the two versions that I feel that I can correctly perceive the difference. Discovering this has been exceedingly helpful to me as previously I had been fooled by loudness increases into thinking the processing I was doing was beneficial when it wasn't - it was worse but also just a bit louder.

It seems that this apparently innate feature of human perception is at the heart of this Loudness Wars topic so I'd love to hear if there are any insights into why this happens in our ears and minds....


....regarding the Poll - I'm in support of a LN function which is on by default in iTunes, iPods etc. as it'll be helpful to the casual listener and dis-incentivize the production of squashed masters without altering the actual sound of any tracks (a point many posters seem to have missed). Serious listeners can switch it off anytime they like so what harm could it do?
Old 27th January 2010
  #330
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Red Mastering's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suade View Post
Does anybody here know anything about WHY louder sounds better to people generally? Is there any psychoacoustic theory about that?
unfortunately it exist
and confirms what we hear
at least we are not deaf ! after all
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