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Loudness Wars - Whose Fault? DJ Software
Old 5th January 2011
  #61
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ivoonline's Avatar
 

Who's Fault?

Maybe it was the L1, "pull the threshold.."
:(
Old 6th January 2011
  #62
Loudness Wars - Whose Fault?

I think it is not for the radio but because of the radio and the over processed sound that most people have grown used to. Remember the majority of music listening was the radio a ways back.
Old 6th January 2011
  #63
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12ax7's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by daez View Post

I think it is not for the radio but because of the radio and the over processed sound that most people have grown used to.

Remember the majority of music listening was the radio a ways back.
.
Radio Ready: The Truth

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Old 6th January 2011
  #64
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post

There is no volume control in a theater.


DC
Also, "In space nobody can hear you scream".

[I just felt like that kind of backs up what you were saying. ]
Old 6th January 2011
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sat159p1 View Post
This record sounds great on just anything
It's just a good record.
A great record for sure. As a matter of fact I just saw it on Broadway (with Billy Joe doing a guest stint in the cast again), The live sound was the best, since they made sure the vocals weren't overshadowed by the onstage band. eg The drums were naturally ambient.

But when I played the CD in my studio I had to turn the volume way DOWN to enjoy it all the way thru. Kinda reduces my system to sounding like a really good boombox. I think I measured the title track at -5 Dynamic Range.

Sometimes I do enjoy "blasting" ( ie regular volume) a hot track.
Dead Weather "I'm Mad" gives me shivers. But I just can't take any extended periods like that.
Old 9th January 2011
  #66
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cdog's Avatar
The best part of the thread was when Bob blamed MIDI for the loudness wars.

Gearslutz is just too funny for words sometimes. heh
Old 9th January 2011
  #67
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Table Of Tone's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ivoonline View Post
Maybe it was the L1, "pull the threshold.."
:(
I agree, especially when some mix engineers give their clients L1 listening copies!
The client expects the real mastering to be even louder!

What can ya do.....
Old 9th January 2011
  #68
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The Loudness War is so yesterday.

There are maybe 2 dozen "new" artists in total who have to worry about radio play and huge CD distribution.........and those two dozen artists (less than 1%), their producers, labels, etc can argue about how loud the master is.
Using the marketing methods that 99% of new artists are using to get their music heard, "loudness" is totally unimportant.

Other than listening in a car to and from school or the shopping mall, most kids don't even own a radio, and buy even fewer CD's.........so where's the "loud"?

It's all about YouTube and its derivatives.
My 13 year old and her friends spend their Friday nights using AppleTV to access YouTube music videos on the big screen, hours and hours and hours they watch and listen.....some of these tunes have never been played on a radio. (they remind me of me and my buddies sitting around a turntable 35 years ago on a Saturday night, listening to Atom Heart Mother over, and over, and over again).
Even a pop star like Justin Bieber achieved his fame by getting discovered on YouTube. My daughter and her friends knew who he was long before he had a major label deal.......they'd followed him on YouTube for months.

The artists my 13 year old and her friends enjoy maintain web sites where those kids can download the music to their iPods for free. The artists don't need "loudness" to sell their music because they're not selling their music......they're giving it away.
The artists monetize their art in other ways. They use YouTube to build a fan base.........they're not looking for money from my 13 year old in order that she can listen to their recorded output........and "loudness" doesn't matter.

These new delivery and marketing formats don't require "loudness", and those artists, producers, or labels still lamely focusing on "loudness" are only displaying their fundamental lack of understanding at what the music industry has actually become.

Thinking about "loudness" in terms of selling music is like thinking about major labels as being the focus of the new music industry.......when in fact the major labels are dinosaurs in their last gasp of existence..........as is the loudness war.
Old 9th January 2011
  #69
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blusound's Avatar
 

This morning i woke up an turned on my hi fi. I took a CD "Death Magnetic" Metallica!
WOW! My volume knob is at 1 but my speaker are screaming! Instruments seem they want to come out from speaker and sound on some track is noticeable distorted! Someone got crazy! I can't believe that!
Then i got coffee and i went out. I bought a newspaper. First news "Italy back to civil nuclear program"! Incredible! Second news "Another killed in Afganistan" Better do a little walking. But the air is very heavy here near the chemical pole.
OK I'll take the car to go to work. Mmmm it's rush hour and the street is full of cars. There are so many cars that seems the road could not contain them anymore! Someone on the right is trying to surpass me and someone over a scooter starts screaming over me!
Finally arrived at my studio. I go to the control room: 28 dB spl A weight! Yes peace! My first client is ringing:
- Hi Leo!-
- Hi tom, how do you do? -
- Fine. Did you hear the last Metallica "Death Magnetic"? It's great! And i want my disco even more loud!!-
- Ok let's do it!-

****** WE ARE ALL CRAZY MONKEYS!******
Best regards
Leo
Old 9th January 2011
  #70
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Taurean's Avatar
The Will To Power.
Old 9th January 2011
  #71
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Verified Member
The Apogee UV1000 NOVA button.
Mastering engineers wanting to stand out and convince
the record labels that louder is better and I can make your records
the loudest. It's not the just record execs fears it's the engineers' fears.
"Oh my God, that record Ted mastered blows mine out of the water!"
This is how we used to think. Today maybe not as much.
Old 9th January 2011
  #72
Lives for gear
Some good mixing engineer made a very good sounding, very loud(-able) mix,
which it has been mastered by a good ME in a way that it was loud AND good sounding.

Lot of artists, labels, producers as well as some mixers, and MEs thought that the secret of that success was in the higher RMS,
completely overlooking the "good sounding" part of the equation.. Why? Because loud is easy and it can impress the non-educated listener,
"good sounding' is much more difficult, good sounding AND loud is again, a very difficult result to achieve.

So since the last one is not achievable by everyone, most went for the easy element that could somehow
make their product ~closer to that loud and good sounding one: loudness.

Or at least this is the explanation I like to believe.

A big part of the audience didn't notice that was bad sounding, just went "wow! it's do powerful".. and there you have it.

Nowadays I find very hard to believe that someone other than the artist himself decide how loud the product must be, you can get tests,
you are able to pick mastering engineer all over the world easily, you decide..
How many production actually get directions on how loud the final product must be from someone else but the artist?
C'mon.. let's get real.. very few.
So today, it's the artists that wants it louder than ever.

While I do care about being at least at the same average level than the other pro productions in my genre,
just in these days I'm at the mastering with my album and I actually asked the (great) mastering engineer
to lay off the limiter a couple of db (he pushed it because I asked loud..) because I rather losing some RMS but keeping a good sounding record.

Because in the end, all it takes is for the listener to lower the volume, once he/she does that what do you have?
A squashed sounding record, but if it sounds good, it will sound good at low volume, it will sound good when one turns the damn volume pot as well.

Loud ain't bad if sounds good, and that is far from being easy to get.

my 2c
Old 10th January 2011
  #73
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Retinal View Post
A squashed sounding record, but if it sounds good, it will sound good at low volume, it will sound good when one turns the damn volume pot as well.
my 2c
My mileage varies on this -

turning down the volume on a good system to accommodate a LOUD recording reduces it to being little more than an expensive boombox.

It may still sound "good" , but it won't be great.
Old 10th January 2011
  #74
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12ax7's Avatar
 

Verified Member
.
I guess a lot of folks just don't get it:

The problem is NOT that these records are "too loud".

The problem is what is being done to these records in order to get maximum loudness.

The problem is what musicality is being sacrificed on the "Altar of Loudness".

Sure, there are good records that are all at one loudness, just like there are good records with only one chord.

But music is about SO much more than just one chord at just one loudness.
.
Old 10th January 2011
  #75
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeff_free69 View Post
My mileage varies on this -

turning down the volume on a good system to accommodate a LOUD recording reduces it to being little more than an expensive boombox.

It may still sound "good" , but it won't be great.
We're actually saying the same thing, probably I word it badly, but I do agree with you.. Good sounding over loudness for me all the way.
I'm saying that of a only loud album (where the good has been sacrificed for the loudness) won't remains anything once you turn the volume down, while a good sounding one even if it's not super loud, will still be good sounding whether one make the effort of turning up the volume pot or listen to it at low volume.
Old 11th January 2011
  #76
Gear Head
 

It's not nice to say or hear.

We are resopncible. As long as there ME's that say i will get it louder then anything else....... We are all stuck in a strut!. We need to get rid of these... Wishfull thinking!!
Old 11th January 2011
  #77
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12ax7's Avatar
 

Verified Member
.
We need to make change.
How do we make money when making change?
VOLUME!!!
.

.
Old 11th January 2011
  #78
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ax7 View Post
.
We need to make change.
How do we make money when making change?
VOLUME!!!
.

.
Never heard a smashed track on radio i think???

You are as much a consultant as an engineer! Educate my friend and you will still make money!

Not personally sorry. I have the feeling you are on my side. The former post about one chord music though... Has nothing to do with this... Although what you asay bout the music is true. It doesn't make it bad. Injured tracks does really make it bad ;-)

Last edited by Misja; 11th January 2011 at 05:07 AM.. Reason: Typo and i had something to add.
Old 11th January 2011
  #79
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12ax7's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Misja View Post

Never heard a smashed track on radio i think???
Started in radio engineering in '77.

Perhaps my little joke failed to cross some language barrier?
.

.
Old 11th January 2011
  #80
Gear Head
 

A somewhat few years before me... I was way more sharp back then. In 77 i was six so just out diapers ;-). I guess it did. Now when you put my face in it i see though ....

Misja
Old 11th January 2011
  #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ax7 View Post
.
We need to make change.
How do we make money when making change?
VOLUME!!!
.

.
Did you just bust out an obscure SNL reference?
Old 11th January 2011
  #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheebs Goat View Post

Did you just bust out an obscure SNL reference?
(complete with link)
Old 11th January 2011
  #83
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I think 12ax7 hit the nail on the head: radio.

Not that it really directly affects us now adays (which is why the trend is sort of crumbling) but radio stations' competition for volume to improve the permeation of their broadcast signal in the air seems to have had an impact on what regular people *expect* to hear. Most notably of these: the people responsible to producing music listen to a song on the radio, think it sounds great and attempt to emulate it. Then it goes on the radio. A gradual cyclical increase of tolerance for volume? It's hard to pin point how to end this trend... but I think alternative listen venues are part of the answer (independent internet radio... maybe)
Old 11th January 2011
  #84
PDC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by therealbigd View Post
Hi People

Just a question that I've been pondering over for some time. We all know what the loudness war is and what's going on and how it harms music and all that. But what I wondered is - where does the pressure for loud masters come from?

Is it the audience, who want the best signal to noise ratio in their cacky music system? The label who are releasing the record alongside other loud releases? The band, who want the biggest sounding mix around?

My experience is that it's the band usually, but I can't understand why they're so keen to record their music in such high fidelity then trash it with a limiter.

I just wondered, from those regularly mastering - where do you find the pressure for loud mixes generally comes from?
It's all about marketing and getting money from simple minded people.

This started LOOOOONG ago. Broadcasters in the early to mid 1900s new about compression and used it. The Beatles were forced into playing the loudness war. The band the engineers did not like the compression and it's artifacts. Those sounds on the records are not what was intended, but was what they were forced to concede to. There are interviews around about that. Fact is, people will think whatever is louder and brighter is better. In CES, it is louder, brighter and more lights. People are generally stupid and easily swindled into ignorant purchasing habits without knowledge.
Old 11th January 2011
  #85
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by silverking View Post
The Loudness War is so yesterday.

There are maybe 2 dozen "new" artists in total who have to worry about radio play and huge CD distribution.........and those two dozen artists (less than 1%), their producers, labels, etc can argue about how loud the master is.
Using the marketing methods that 99% of new artists are using to get their music heard, "loudness" is totally unimportant.

Other than listening in a car to and from school or the shopping mall, most kids don't even own a radio, and buy even fewer CD's.........so where's the "loud"?
Hits the nail right on the head, if you ask me.

As an aside: most people blamed exclusively FM radio or the A&R's 5-cd-changer for the Loudness Wars.
Me? I also blame the damned listening stations at the Record Stores back then. Whenever my band released a new album and I got out-voted during the mastering process the "winning" argument was "I want our CD to sound as loud as the Foo Fighters' when a kid changes CD's at the listening station".

For some reason, my standard retort of "I don't know if we really want to be selling our music to a kid who can't operate a simple volume knob" was never warmly received... go figure.
Old 11th January 2011
  #86
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Greg Reierson's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrAbbott View Post
the people responsible to producing music listen to a song on the radio, think it sounds great and attempt to emulate it. Then it goes on the radio. A gradual cyclical increase of tolerance for volume?
Exactly. We all grew up listening to FM and the processing of the day. Then we went into the studio and created that sound. When our records were broadcast, the next generation did what we did and created THAT sound. I still get requests to make masters sound like they're on the radio...


GR
Old 9th February 2011
  #88
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Trakworx's Avatar
Interesting read. I truly hope you are right. If enough of the public were to embrace that technology, then perhaps a critical mass would be reached and my clients would stop wanting loud masters. Anxiously waiting...

.
Old 9th February 2011
  #89
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acorneau's Avatar
 

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Nicely said.

Ding, dong, the witch is dead!
Old 9th February 2011
  #90
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12ax7's Avatar
 

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.
I would like to believe that sanity would somehow become stylish.

I have always thought that the only way out of this quagmire was to allow the USER to somehow control the loudness (without a trip to the volume knob every time the track changed).

I really hate what all the squashing, squeezing, and slamming has done to the quality of records. And now this has gone on long enough that the newer (louder) stuff ends up determining the "default setting" of the volume knob in a lot of places. So when a "good" record plays, you might not even hear it in some environments.

...And the sad truth is that if you can't hear it, it really doesn't matter WHAT it sounds like!

Up until now, it is this sad truth has had us trapped in this quagmire.

If most users could just flip a switch, and make this war meaningless (without harm to the sound), it would be all over!
.
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