The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
How to get your song to match the loudness of comercial cd's? Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 30th December 2010
  #1
Gear Maniac
 

How to get your song to match the loudness of comercial cd's?

HI GS,

Is it possible to achieve same loudness with commercial cd's via mixing and mastering purely ITB?

Or do you need to run the song through analogue circuitry so u can get more headroom to match with commercial cd loudness?

Thank you for your time and advise.

Happy new year in advance
Old 30th December 2010
  #2
Lives for gear
 

I feel like someone MAY have asked this question before

Loudness when Producing and Mixing [Tips]
Old 30th December 2010
  #3
Lives for gear
 
MASSIVE Master's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Old 30th December 2010
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Ben F's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by shambles76 View Post
HI GS,

Is it possible to achieve same loudness with commercial cd's via mixing and mastering purely ITB?

Or do you need to run the song through analogue circuitry so u can get more headroom to match with commercial cd loudness?

Thank you for your time and advise.

Happy new year in advance
You can probably go louder ITB for mastering, however most MEs are concerned about the master improving the mix rather than destroying it, hence the analogue gear and less extreme processing.

As far as mixing loudness is up to the recording and the mix. ITB or OTB doesn't really matter, once again it comes down to sound quality. A distorted guitar will sound much louder than one that isn't distorted for example. Tracks with more space are easier to get loud then busy tracks...the list could go on forever really.
Old 30th December 2010
  #5
Lives for gear
 
sat159p1's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben F View Post
most MEs are concerned about the master improving the mix rather than destroying it, hence the analogue gear and less extreme processing.
Really?

I think that almost 95% records of popular music released in the last few years was destroyed in the last stage - mastering. And I don't think that's improving.

By the way. just listened to Grant Lee Buffalo's first 2 CD's: Fuzzy & Mighty Joe Moon. What a wonderful production. Sweet, open, airy sound, lot's of dynamics.
Old 30th December 2010
  #6
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sat159p1 View Post
Really?

I think that almost 95% records of popular music released in the last few years was destroyed in the last stage - mastering. And I don't think that's improving.
Yeah well, I guess that's just your opinion or something.

or.....:

Yeah, well that's because the same 5 or 6 guys mastered all those records, and they are all setting their gear on stun, trying to out-loud each other.

The rest of us don't suck like that.

Old 30th December 2010
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sat159p1 View Post
Really?

I think that almost 95% records of popular music released in the last few years was destroyed in the last stage - mastering. And I don't think that's improving.
Ha ha ha... You think people have the patience to wait until mastering to destroy their music?

The hot new trend is "death by mixing".
Old 30th December 2010
  #8
Lives for gear
 
echoRausch's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sat159p1 View Post
Really?

I think that almost 95% records of popular music released in the last few years was destroyed in the last stage - mastering. And I don't think that's improving.

By the way. just listened to Grant Lee Buffalo's first 2 CD's: Fuzzy & Mighty Joe Moon. What a wonderful production. Sweet, open, airy sound, lot's of dynamics.
bull****.
Old 30th December 2010
  #9
Lives for gear
 
sat159p1's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by editronmaximon View Post
Yeah, well that's because the same 5 or 6 guys mastered all those records, and they are all setting their gear on stun, trying to out-loud each other.

The rest of us don't suck like that.

That's the right point probably ;-)

We all speak about loudness war bla bla bla and we do the same mistakes like the "wrong guys" do. If the record company don't say their 2 cents about loudness, bands are forcing MEs to do "as loud as other commercial stuff is" CDs. So at the end of this game we have very very little dynamically mastered records. I bought a lot of them this year, mostly rock, just a few was GOOD. Jesus I miss the Nirvana, RATM and that golden years of rock when everything was like -12, -13dB RMS.
Old 30th December 2010
  #10
Gear Maniac
 
studioland's Avatar
 

-12 db of dynamic range WOW
That's a lot !

Check out pitbull or 50 cent ... you 'll be glad to see that you can go even further

I propose we directly aim at 0Db DR a new label of mastering quality and sell the Mastering button that anybody can install for free in any audio application

Let's make music ...
Old 30th December 2010
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Table Of Tone's Avatar
 

Verified Member
What an absolute load of bollocks!
Many records are destroyed before mastering and the rest are destroyed by the client asking the mastering eng to make it insanely loud!

The ME's always get the blame for it!dfegad
Old 30th December 2010
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

There's another forum where people submit mixes for "bashing".

If you listen to the "mixes" in the rock/metal category. The songs all start at -.1db and stays there the whole time. It's just a mess. But the engineer is all proud of themselves for not clipping the meter.

And it's not just the mixing. It's the writing and arranging.

God forbid anyone in rock music actually have a quiet section in their song anymore.

Imagine what some record label exec would say about Bohemian Rhapsody today. "It won't sound good on an iphone speaker. Remix it"
Old 30th December 2010
  #13
Lives for gear
 
IIIrd's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Table Of Tone View Post
What an absolute load of bollocks!
Many records are destroyed before mastering and the rest are destroyed by the client asking the mastering eng to make it insanely loud!

The ME's always get the blame for it!dfegad
+1

"print that, we'll sort it out in the mastering guys"
Old 30th December 2010
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Red Mastering's Avatar
 

Verified Member
I've been listening to Czajkowski (Tchaykovske) for last few days...
Xmas vibe or sth...,
anyway those dramatic changes in dynamics made me feel dizzy and anxious...hehhehhehheh
Old 30th December 2010
  #15
Lives for gear
 
Jerry Tubb's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by MASSIVE Master View Post
or perhaps beating a herd of dead horses...

JT
Old 30th December 2010
  #16
its better to have a normal mix during mixing and then boost it in mastering.

Sometimes its better to have mix mixed in a loud way and then when mastered you can push it more.

ITB is cleaner and u can make loud tracks,

with analog it easily distorts and u have to worry about keeping your mix clean, sometimes its limited by distortion,

in digital its easier to push
Old 31st December 2010
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Table Of Tone's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by manman View Post
its better to have a normal mix during mixing and then boost it in mastering.

Sometimes its better to have mix mixed in a loud way and then when mastered you can push it more.

ITB is cleaner and u can make loud tracks,

with analog it easily distorts and u have to worry about keeping your mix clean, sometimes its limited by distortion,

in digital its easier to push
This is not entirely accurate!
You speak for yourself!

I can get my analogue chain to get a well recorded/mixed track louder/cleaner than any ITB stuff, if that's what I'm being asked to do!

Or, If I'm not being asked to make it super loud, It will still end up sounding better/nicer than if I use just an ITB chain.

Even the best ITB stuff (I have a massive arsenal of digital stuff) seems to lack a certain depth/glue/dimension, etc, especially when used without any analogue EQ/comp, not to mention good convertion.
Old 31st December 2010
  #18
Lives for gear
 
lord_bunny's Avatar
 

4db reduction a 2:1 on my bus compressor... a bit of soft clipping from a sonic maximizer and 1db of limiting seems to get my pop/rock mixes to -10 rms.

Even if i didn't use the aforementioned my mixes would be pretty full because I automate like crazy and use bus compression on certain elements... sculpt the different instruments.

Just work on mixing to make the song sound it's best... I think the loudness thing is pretty easy if you have a nice rounded mix happening.

I also don't push the mix/master as hard as I possibly can. Death Cab For Cutie is a modern commercial band and their work is quiter than some of my mixes/masters. God bless them for it to.

Having your mix sound good is what matters... getting a bad mix louder doesn't help anybody... a good mix quieter probably won't hurt the song.
Old 31st December 2010
  #19
Lives for gear
 
Red Mastering's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by lord_bunny View Post
......

Just work on mixing to make the song sound it's best....
absolutely!
Old 31st December 2010
  #20
Here for the gear
 
David Araujo's Avatar
 

[QUOTE=shambles76;6162037]HI GS,

Is it possible to achieve same loudness with commercial cd's via mixing and mastering purely ITB?

Even if you could dont! save the music!
Old 15th January 2011
  #21
Gear Maniac
 

How to get your song to match the loudness of comercial cd's?

My goodness , what a controversial topic! Can't seem to get a straight answer. Everybody seem to have opinions on either each side of the fence. I guess I got to learn this my self by actually doing an a/b comparison test (itb & otb)

All this loudness war is so damn confusing n irritating!!!
If it's such a frustrating issues , why can we just apply a law for loudness? Why can't we just put a fix RMS digit for commercial cd? Safe all this hassle of trying to proof what's write & wrong!
Since we all hear things differently how are we gonna come to a conclusion?!&@
Music mixing mastering is a creative process hence it's very subjective. Surely we must set some boundary in regards to how loud a cd should be? Maybe get AES to do something about it?
Old 15th January 2011
  #22
Lives for gear
 
lowland's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Table Of Tone View Post
This is not entirely accurate!
You speak for yourself!

I can get my analogue chain to get a well recorded/mixed track louder/cleaner than any ITB stuff, if that's what I'm being asked to do!

Or, If I'm not being asked to make it super loud, It will still end up sounding better/nicer than if I use just an ITB chain.

Even the best ITB stuff (I have a massive arsenal of digital stuff) seems to lack a certain depth/glue/dimension, etc, especially when used without any analogue EQ/comp, not to mention good convertion.
Good post, TOT. When I started out, for the first few years I had a good quality all-digital chain and was happy enough and good enough with it to get repeat business. However, nowadays with a combination of the best aspects of both analogue and digital I feel I've taken a significant step up, both in terms of loudness before obvious distortion and a more sympathetic and better-tailored result.

To the OP: you say you're taken aback by the diversity of opinion on the subject, but I suspect if you filter out some of the inevitable noise you get on a forum such as this and just concentrate what the people who ME for a living are saying (despite the anonymity it should be clear enough who they are), you'll see a much more balanced view.
Old 15th January 2011
  #23
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lowland View Post
Good post, TOT. When I started out, for the first few years I had a good quality all-digital chain and was happy enough and good enough with it to get repeat business. However, nowadays with a combination of the best aspects of both analogue and digital I feel I've taken a significant step up, both in terms of loudness before obvious distortion and a more sympathetic and better-tailored result.

To the OP: you say you're taken aback by the diversity of opinion on the subject, but I suspect if you filter out some of the inevitable noise you get on a forum such as this and just concentrate what the people who ME for a living are saying (despite the anonymity it should be clear enough who they are), you'll see a much more balanced view.
thumbsup

Thank you for your clear wise advise ;-) i shall do that and try it out myself to hear the difference. End of the day we should trust our ears
Old 15th January 2011
  #24
Lives for gear
 
Surbitone's Avatar
Old 15th January 2011
  #25
Lives for gear
 
SoundEng1's Avatar
I listened to a dance song that was mastered to -2.8 rms!
Old 15th January 2011
  #26
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundEng1 View Post
I listened to a dance song that was mastered to -2.8 rms!
Can you give a name? I doubt that is actually possible. At the very least, ANYONE would notice the distortion.
Old 15th January 2011
  #27
Lives for gear
 
SoundEng1's Avatar
Shakedown by Joan Reyes (Bass Kleph Remix)

2 meters up, RMS on Ozone 4 and TRacks 3, and they Both read different.

Attached Thumbnails
How to get your song to match the loudness of comercial cd's?-screen-shot-2011-01-15-3.16.46-pm.png  
Old 16th January 2011
  #28
ORC
Gear Addict
 
ORC's Avatar
Jesus! just give me a good mix, and I can get it plenty loud while maintaining an rms of -8db. This mix will actually play louder than one mastered to -3db rms. The -3dbrms crap will chew up an amp's headroom so quick you'll wonder where the music went. This especially applies to low headroom systems like car stereos and boom boxes.
Old 16th January 2011
  #29
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundEng1 View Post
Shakedown by Joan Reyes (Bass Kleph Remix)

2 meters up, RMS on Ozone 4 and TRacks 3, and they Both read different.

First impression: I've seen much, much worse in the mids & treble department. This actually has clean high end, just that the bass has been pushed to the max. Looks like soft clipping.

And it never crossed my mind that people here don't know what the RMS number means... RMS is calculated as average level for the whole track. I dropped it into Sound Forge and it reads -7.1 RMS. With "Equal Loudness Contour" off of course.

If you take it at any one sample of the song it's OBVIOUS that the RMS number will look funky. The fact of the matter is that -3 RMS is a pure sine wave, white noise is -4.8 RMS, and it's pretty much impossible to push anything else to that level let alone do it cleanly. Eminem's Recovery sits around -6 RMS on most tracks, most modern metal does too, and certain crap dance songs, that wouldn't have been crap if they weren't smashed.

If you notice, all smashed songs seem to contain mostly white noise in the highs. If the synth they used is also overtone rich, headache guaranteed. Maybe we should all mix some white noise in our recordings, that'll sure help them be loud.
Old 16th January 2011
  #30
Gear Maniac
 
Laarsø's Avatar
 

Looks like the red plasma line on the T-Racks meter(? --- the ones that are horizontally orientated) is hitting your -7.1 RMS reading, Th3_uN1Qu3.

P. S., I suppose you know that your moniker is numerology-laden with a 7 and a 4. Care to discuss? (j/k)




Cheersø,
Laarsø
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
Soulbrother / Mastering forum
34
Dj_at1 / Q+A with Kevin Killen
1

Forum Jump
Forum Jump