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Songs too quiet when I burn to disc DAW Software
Old 21st July 2014
  #1
Gear Maniac
 

Songs too quiet when I burn to disc

I'm recording using Logic Express and an apogee duet. When I record and mix, my music will be fine as far as volume and watching the meter. However, when I bounce it to itunes and burn it to a disc it is too quiet.
How do I remedy this?? What should I do to make my music louder on disc? I used ot use HarBal which has a loudness matching function that I could use to make my songs as loud as a commercial track but I haven't downloaded that version of HarBal to my mac mini after I switched to mac from dell pc.

Thanks for any help in this matter!!
Old 22nd July 2014
  #2
Gear Maniac
Research Mastering. You will understand very soon.
Old 22nd July 2014
  #3
Lives for gear
 

It's not quieter on disc than it is in your DAW (Logic) you just have your monitors or duet turned up. When you play it in itunes I'm sure it still sounds the same volume.

The problem is it's not mastered. Your peaks are probably close to 0db but your RMS is likely significantly lower. You need a lot of compression and limiting.

I would suggest several comps and limiters in a chain each only compressing by about 1-2 db and no more. Compress 1-2db then make up gain by 1-2db then load another comp/limiter and do the same thing. Do that several times then put a hard limiter at the end of the chain and similarly compress only about 1-2 db with the output limit set to -0.5db.

IK Multimedia has a cool mastering software called T-RackS CS. I don;t think you can buy it on it's own (I may be wrong about that) but you can get it for sure as a part of the Total Studio 3 bundle. Funnily enough I just suggested this bundle in another thread . Anyways T-Racks is pretty awesome and I use it on everything I do. You can use it as a plugin within Logic...or as a stand alone application. I use it as a plugin on my master fader as a kind of mixing and mastering at the same time. But you can certainly bounce your mix and then pull the stereo mix into a new Logic session and pull up T-RackS as a plugin in that session or pull the stereo mix into T-RackS stand alone application. It has tons of metering also and different metering presets for different genres of music. Has a really nice RMS meter which gives you a nice reading of the preceived loudness vs just the peaks.

So you can pull up for example a "rock" preset and it'll show you generally where the RMS should be for that genre...same with classical, country etc.

Total Studio 3 – Is This The Right Solution For Your Studio? that's a review I wrote on Total Studio 3 which includes the T-RackS plugin/Application. If you are making music, it comes with a ton of great samplers and libraries also which may or may not interest you.

Good Luck!
Old 22nd July 2014
  #4
Gear Maniac
 

Thanks everyone!! I appreciate your help. Will compressing the whole mix alter the way my acoustic guitar tracks sound?? Could I just use the compressors and limiters in Logic Express?

I think the loudness matching function in HarBal was a limiter.
Old 22nd July 2014
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 

You'll want to do some reading on Mastering my friend. At least a couple hours to get started...
Old 22nd July 2014
  #6
Gear Maniac
 

I purchased IK Multimedia ARC 2 system a few months ago and I just realized they gave me a download of the mastering software you're talking about. I just need to download it and install and LEARN it.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #7
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RRCHON's Avatar
Why not just turn your volume up.

Are these tracks for yourself if so why are you trying to compete with commercial releases which for the most part are over-compressed, if you are making trying to make art with acoustic instruments just let it breathe.

I am not saying you shouldn't spend a few months training your ears and figuring out how SPL and loudness interact... I'm just saying it's a whole different ball game and that louder is not necessarily better. There are compromises to be made as with any other process.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #8
Lives for gear
 

Well that's awesome if you have it. Feel free to pm me if you have questions on how it works.

You may run into an issue downloading...as the one thing I HATE about ik multimedia is that they have a limited time frame where you can download things and ask you to buy $20 download credits for each product.

If you have past the download time limited...email support. I did and they were very helpful and renewed my 30 day download period...in which time I downloaded everything I purchased from them and saved them all on an external drive including the installer files...I suggest you do the same.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #9
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RRCHON View Post
Why not just turn your volume up.

Are these tracks for yourself if so why are you trying to compete with commercial releases which for the most part are over-compressed, if you are making trying to make art with acoustic instruments just let it breathe.

I am not saying you shouldn't spend a few months training your ears and figuring out how SPL and loudness interact... I'm just saying it's a whole different ball game and that louder is not necessarily better. There are compromises to be made as with any other process.
Well... one reason might be that the volume is roughly half of a mastered track. So.... when he forgets to turn the volume down after listening... what then? He puts a commercial cd in and blasts his ear drums.

But yeah. This isnt a louder is better or worse thread. He just wants to know why his tracks are so quiet.

Cheers!
Old 23rd July 2014
  #10
Lives for gear
 
RRCHON's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kraus View Post

But yeah. This isnt a louder is better or worse thread. He just wants to know why his tracks are so quiet.

Cheers!
I agree and have no intention into getting such a debate. Truth be known we don't even know what quiet to him actually means. Could be anything, but if he likes the way his tracks sound, they are going to change noticeably as they get louder.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #11
Gear Maniac
All mixes need to be mastered. A perfect mix only needs mastering to bring up the volume to commercial levels. Other mixes need eq fixes etc. all this is usually done by a trained mastering engineer.
just get a limiter if you purely want to get the level/volume up.. Import a commercial track and try get the loudness without sacrificing dynamics. I like sonnox limiter, slate fgx and Massey l2007 (cheap but awesome)
Old 23rd July 2014
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Korbin wrote: "The problem is it's not mastered. Your peaks are probably close to 0db but your RMS is likely significantly lower. You need a lot of compression and limiting. "


^^This^^ is why mastering has unfairly gained a reputation as a process to "make things louder". And those with that perception do not care who such demands are coming from - the paying client or elsewhere. They just wish it would stop.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #13
Gear Maniac
 

How nice, I downloaded the "free" version of T-Racks from IK and when I try to use it in my DAW, (LOGIC), it doesn't work right. It keeps making white noise about every 10 seconds. Have of the presets aren't even available unless I pay for them and the ones that are bring a bunch of noise with them. So much for IK giving me something useable for free because I purchased their ARC 2 system.

I really just want to have my recordings be as loud as a commercial recording so I don't have to turn my boombox up to full volume when I switch from a commercial CD to mine.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #14
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RRCHON's Avatar
Full volume seems a bit extreme. The white noise you hear is because you have DEMO, for some reason the processors you have, are not authorized. You could have a go at customer service, the IK processors are quite usable if you can get them out of the demo mode.

You could drop a short 45 seconds to 1 min sample so that we can all be on the same page. You would probably getter better more customized advice about your particular tracks, and you can get your levels higher without needing to resort to commercial loudness which is misleading because there is no standard value for how loud something should be, even on commercial releases loudness and perceived loudness changes dramatically.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RRCHON View Post
Full volume seems a bit extreme. The white noise you hear is because you have DEMO, for some reason the processors you have, are not authorized. You could have a go at customer service, the IK processors are quite usable if you can get them out of the demo mode.

You could drop a short 45 seconds to 1 min sample so that we can all be on the same page. You would probably getter better more customized advice about your particular tracks, and you can get your levels higher without needing to resort to commercial loudness which is misleading because there is no standard value for how loud something should be, even on commercial releases loudness and perceived loudness changes dramatically.
I'm pretty sure he's simply not using a limiter.

Massey Plugins Inc. Get the L20076 and give it a try.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #16
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stinkyfingers's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CAGuy View Post
How nice, I downloaded the "free" version of T-Racks from IK and when I try to use it in my DAW, (LOGIC), it doesn't work right.
you have to register w/ik (ie...have an account...ik authorization center)
then the free stuff will work without white-noise
Old 23rd July 2014
  #17
Gear Addict
 
Yumid's Avatar
 

Are you guys seriously suggesting he use compressors and limiters to bring his finished volume up.


Half the people in this thread suggesting he go master his song don't even know what mastering is.
Old 23rd July 2014
  #18
Gear Maniac
 

I've heard slate fgx is great for raising volume and making a track sound mastered and commercial. Has anyone used it here?
Old 23rd July 2014
  #19
Here for the gear
 
AlexFoust's Avatar
 

If you really like your mix, just pay someone local to you that can master. I am sure you can find a list of studios near you that do this for fairly inexpensive. And don't have the "I am too proud of my product for someone else to master it" attitude. I do not master my own music, and plenty of producers who are infinitely more talented than all of us outsource mastering. Look at it like another set of professional ears tweaking your music so it sounds its best!!
Old 23rd July 2014
  #20
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RRCHON's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by CAGuy View Post
I've heard slate fgx is great for raising volume and making a track sound mastered and commercial. Has anyone used it here?




This isn't really something you can buy your way out of.

If you just wanted to buy your way out of it.. get the full version of logic it comes with more than enough signal mashers and benders and a limiter and you can just slam your mix into and get them loud. The perceived quality of art might suffer, weather or not you'll notice the difference is up to you.

Slate-fg-x $200
Logic Pro X $200
Old 23rd July 2014
  #21
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CAGuy View Post
I've heard slate fgx is great for raising volume and making a track sound mastered and commercial. Has anyone used it here?
Sounding "mastered and commercial" is something you do with your ears as so kindly pointed out by Yumid.

If I understand the original post all you want to do is raise the overall level so you're not messing with the volume on your listening device. Correct? In that case any limiter will allow you to "raise" the overall volume.
Old 24th July 2014
  #22
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Yumid's Avatar
 

Please somebody end this threads life VIA shovel to the head
Old 24th July 2014
  #23
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RRCHON's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yumid View Post
Please somebody end this threads life VIA shovel to the head
+1
Old 24th July 2014
  #24
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kraus View Post
Sounding "mastered and commercial" is something you do with your ears as so kindly pointed out by Yumid.

If I understand the original post all you want to do is raise the overall level so you're not messing with the volume on your listening device. Correct? In that case any limiter will allow you to "raise" the overall volume.
How exactly do I use a limiter to raise overall volume? Sorry if that is a stupid question. I thought this was a forum where people could ask for help or advice if they didn't know particular things about mixing, etc. It's discouraging that people want to kill the thread when I am just asking for advice and help.
Old 24th July 2014
  #25
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CAGuy View Post
How exactly do I use a limiter to raise overall volume? Sorry if that is a stupid question. I thought this was a forum where people could ask for help or advice if they didn't know particular things about mixing, etc. It's discouraging that people want to kill the thread when I am just asking for advice and help.
Dont get discouraged. Some folks around here seem to go out of their way to make people feel that way. I'm sure that for the most part they are nicer in person..

Just do a google search for "audio limiter use" or something like that. There is plenty of information out there. Good Luck.
Old 24th July 2014
  #26
Gear Addict
 
Yumid's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CAGuy View Post
How exactly do I use a limiter to raise overall volume? Sorry if that is a stupid question. I thought this was a forum where people could ask for help or advice if they didn't know particular things about mixing, etc. It's discouraging that people want to kill the thread when I am just asking for advice and help.
Im saying to kill the thread BECAUSE of the first sentence of this quote.


Don't use a *^%^ing limiter to raise overall volume. The advice in this thread is garbage, thats why I said what I said.

You haven't given enough information for a real answer. For all we know you are recording in high definition headphones then saying its not as loud when you bounce it to an mp3 cd and listen to it on crap speakers.
Old 24th July 2014
  #27
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RRCHON's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yumid View Post
You haven't given enough information for a real answer.
That pretty much says it all.

It also seems you are after a fast solution that is 1 button push away from getting exactly what you want. This solution doesn't really exist - YET - so there are some things that need to be either explained, or demonstrated. The explanation would require some terminology which if you knew you would have already used, the demonstration would be to let us hear what you are talking about.

I mean I ask all I want about what wrong with my paintings, they just don't look as good as graceful as a Monet's or have the contrast of a rembrant... but until you can see that I'm drawing with crayons, you'll never know what the real issue was.
Old 25th July 2014
  #28
Gear Maniac
 

Yumid, you said to kill the thread BEFORE I made the statement about using a limiter to raise overall volume. Get it??? BEFORE!!!!

It would be nice if all the self proclaimed know it alls would take the time to help others instead of attacking them.
Old 25th July 2014
  #29
Gear Maniac
 

At this point, I just want to raise the overall volume. I will have my tracks mastered professionally once I have at least 10 ready. In the mean time, I'd just like to be able to listen to my songs in a boom box and have them be a normal level without turning the volume up full blast.
Old 25th July 2014
  #30
Gear Addict
Regarding the RMS comment earlier, does a loudness meter provide the RMS reading? I am running Cubase 7.5 and when I master I generally go off of limiting the loudest peaks by 2db so I still maintain some dynamics, and set a brick wall limiter to -0.1 db so that I never clip over 0db. Would it help more to watch the loudness meter during mastering rather than the normal meter that shows dB?
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