universal volume for music, tv etc.

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by fbchurch2009, May 6, 2011.

  1. fbchurch2009 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    #1
    So I have had this question for awhile. How do cd producers and tv broadcasters get a universal volume? in other words, how do they make it so whenever you shuffle songs on your ipod or surf channels, you don't ever really need to change the volume from song to song or channel to channel? does that make sense? What standard do they use to do that? for example, whenever i mess around with garage band or something and export it as an audio file into itunes, I get a significant drop in volume compared to other songs. Just kind of curious?
     
  2. AdrianK macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    #2
    Good question, I assume they must set out to achieve a target average volume. As for who defines the volume, I can't tell you. I'd guess there's probably an "industry" standard for TV, however since DVDs and CDs vary in volume quite a lot, I highly doubt there's such a thing for them.

    This is just pure speculation, makes sense to me anyway.
     
  3. callmemike20 macrumors 6502a

    callmemike20

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #3
    A universal volume? Are you kidding?

    Every time I change the station or a new show comes on, the volume always needs to be adjusted. Nothing is ever the same.

    As for commercials, they used to always have a higher volume than the tv show for advertising purposes. However, I think congress recently made that alteration illegal.
     
  4. andalusia macrumors 68030

    andalusia

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #4
    When I'm producing songs in Cubase I try and get them as close to 0 Decibels without going over as possible. They tend to be a decent volume for this, and then they never distort :)
     
  5. AdrianK macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    #5
    I never do when changing channels, they're never substantially different, but yeah, ads are bitch.
     
  6. callmemike20 macrumors 6502a

    callmemike20

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #6
    It's never a huge difference, but it's noticeable.

    I think the biggest problem is music in TV shows. It's always louder than everything else.
     
  7. paolo- macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    #7
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loudness_war

    They sound the same because they all sound as loud as they can.
    The peak volume is the same but the audio signal is squashed by an audio effect, compression but not format compressing like wav vs mp3. So your garageband mix has the same peak volume but not the same average volume. Basically, it makes the loud parts softer and and soft parts louder, resulting in a sound that is the same level no matter how loud it "should" be in real life.

    I don't want to go into the specifics of why and how this is happening more and more and why it's bad as it's well written in the wiki article. But this is the reason lots of people find "music these days sound like crap". Because it is mixed to sound like crap.

    Actually there are people kind of lobbying to get a standard where producers would just mix the sound properly and let the software you are using to listen to music (iPod, iTunes, winamp, your TV, whatever) choose what volume it should be at so that all the music you are listening to sounds about the same. I really hope something like this goes through, lots of people don't realize how much were are killing the music. There are no dynamics in modern pop music. Percussions don't sound crunchy, guitars sound like white noise and you sure as heck will never find a soft passage in a ballad.
     

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