Volume balance iTunes for a pub

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by thecritix, Aug 29, 2007.

  1. thecritix macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Location:
    West London, England
    #1
    Hi All
    My boss at work runs her music in the pub from itunes on a windows machine.
    the setup is quite good, music from computer out to the amp and around the pub... the playlists are also quite clever meaning we don't get stuck with the same music..

    the problem is that the songs are of such different levels. the itunes balance cannot compensate enough for this.. there are something like 18,000 songs on it so its not possible to go through and do these by hand adjusting the volume of each. is there a third party plug in like a compressor type of thing to make them all a bit more consistant?
    thanks
    nick
     
  2. chrisgeleven macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2002
    Location:
    Manchester, NH
    #2
    Go into the preferences and turn on "Sound Check"

    That will make sure that the loudest parts of every song are very close to the same volume.
     
  3. ScruffyTheMac macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 21, 2005
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #3
    VolumeLogic

    www.volumelogic.com

    Real-time compressor and equalizer, it does a superb job of making tracks sound consistent. They have versions for both Mac and Windows.
     
  4. Kingsly macrumors 68040

    Kingsly

    #4
    Arrgh! Attack of the killer stock photos! :rolleyes:

    If I can get passed the poor site design, this may be very handy for me! :)
     
  5. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #5
    I stumbled across that and installed it briefly. It uses the coreaudio (I think?) framework and acts at that level, so one of the great things about it is that, unlike some other products that plug into iTunes (e.g. Accubeatmix by Wild Oats), it actually does work with any iTunes media, including DRM'd songs.

    It seems to do a fairly good job compressing audio -- it seemed to keep the dynamic range in a very limited window. However, I noted that it only has a preset (e.g. reggae, rock, hip hop, small room, etc) option and a couple of other adjustments (overall volume boost, bass boost, and maybe one more). It doesn't really seem to have any traditional compressor controls that you can directly manipulate.

    It does seem nice, though, and it's very inexpensive. Plantronics is a pretty good name, too, so it's not some random shareware writer.

    One other suggestion might be... why not just get an external hardware compressor that sits between the Mac and the amp?
     
  6. ScruffyTheMac macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 21, 2005
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #6
    The 'preset' options mostly seem to affect equalization. For example, the 'general' preset seems to roll of the high-end a little (I use this on my surround-sound setup, which can sometimes be a little harsh). The 'rock' preset has more pronounced high end, and sounds very good on my living room stereo (which is a much better system).

    The 'drive' slider controls the amount of dynamic range compression; as you increase the compression the apparent loudness increases. For matching levels between random tracks (ie party shuffling), I keep this at the maximum.

    The 'bass boost' slider is self-explanatory. :) The presets + this slider let me get decent sound across many playback systems - I've used two different 'multimedia' self-powered speaker systems, a 5.1 surround sound system, a nice two channel stereo, and even a stereo clock radio.

    Several years ago, I tried using a dBx compander in the processor loop of my stereo to achieve the same result. I think volumeLogic works far better.
     
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #7
    Oh, is that what it does? That does seem to make sense. That would explain why I seemed to get such tight compression on the visual readout....
     

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