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Normalizing @ -24dB
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gmyerz
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Joined: 15/09/2011 02:53:24
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Hello,
I'm looking to see if I can verify that my audio track to my video is at an average of -24dB. I've heard that normalizing might do it. But if I can verify that the average is already at -24dB than I don't need to normalize. If I have to I will.

Any thoughts?

Thanks
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LMike
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I think normalizing deals with peak level, not average level.

Put the included Level Meter on the master bus, post-fader, and have a look at where you average levels generally are, the little kinda white marks moving around in the meters. From there you can adjust the master output level or dynamic range to get near the general average range you want. You may have to limit it a little if you want to control the average level as it tends to be a moving target depending on content at any given point.

Hope that helps.

P.S. Just curious.. why -24 average levels?
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gmyerz
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I'm producing a commercial for a client who wants to run it on ComCast. Their tech specs require that the average dB level be at -24dB.
It seems low to me but I don't know enough other to question it. Maybe it has something to do with the new FCC regulations that clamp down on those annoying commercials that seem like they're going to blow your woofers out. I'm not sure.

Thanks for your suggestion.

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gmyerz
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I'm a Prenoob.... where do they come up with these titles..... lol!
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LMike
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gmyerz wrote:I'm producing a commercial for a client who wants to run it on ComCast. Their tech specs require that the average dB level be at -24dB.
It seems low to me but I don't know enough other to question it. Maybe it has something to do with the new FCC regulations that clamp down on those annoying commercials that seem like they're going to blow your woofers out. I'm not sure.


Thanks. Makes sense.

I haven't done any business with or going to Comcast but a client / close friend of mine did contract them to shoot a music video for him a year or so ago. I think they charged him $5k IIRC. Until he did that I wasn't even aware that they offered that service. It might have been the public TV division or something, no clue.

I can't say the music video itself was anything all that great, but the video quality was really, really high level, it looked like film. If I had known he was doing that before it happened I would have attended the shoots just to see what they were using.

Thanks for your suggestion.


Not sure how much help I really was but you're very welcome.
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roblof
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Since you have the pro version and you are doing a commersial - Go to the project page and make sure that your audio conform to -24LUFS/LKFS. This will probably make him very happy.

If he didn't say anything then max peak (true peak, not QPPM!) must not be more than -1dBFS. Less is ok...

Normal metering can't be used with LUFS/LKFS since it averaged the complete program material and not some small window of i.e. 3 seconds.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 09/01/2013 08:05:15

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bedstrom
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gmyerz wrote:Hello,
I'm looking to see if I can verify that my audio track to my video is at an average of -24dB. I've heard that normalizing might do it. But if I can verify that the average is already at -24dB than I don't need to normalize. If I have to I will.

Any thoughts?

Thanks


Maybe you could use the Loudness Detection feature on the Project Page in Studio One. It has the LUFS/LKFS analysis built in. You might need to copy the video to a Song then assign the mix to a Project making sure all faders in the Song are at unity gain.
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bedstrom
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LMike wrote:I think normalizing deals with peak level, not average level.

Put the included Level Meter on the master bus, post-fader, and have a look at where you average levels generally are, the little kinda white marks moving around in the meters. From there you can adjust the master output level or dynamic range to get near the general average range you want. You may have to limit it a little if you want to control the average level as it tends to be a moving target depending on content at any given point.

Hope that helps.

P.S. Just curious.. why -24 average levels?


That's the level defined by the C.A.L.M Act in the US.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commercial_Advertisement_Loudness_Mitigation_Act

http://www.atsc.org/cms/index.php/standards/recommended-practices/185-a85-techniques-for-establishing-and-maintaining-audio-loudness-for-digital-television
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gmyerz
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I tried importing the mpeg into S1. No Go. I thought S1 was compatible with at least the mpeg codec. ?
Is there a list of approved codecs for S1? MPEG-2 should at least be one of them.

I took a safe guess on the average.... here's a link to the commercial I uploaded to ComCast. All they
can do is kick it back... maybe they'll give me an indication where the audio is as far as an average.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 09/01/2013 13:43:28

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LMike
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Thanks William. You guys are a relative fountain of good info.
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bredo
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In Europe it's the EBU that have set -23 LUFS as the target level, through the EBU R-128 standard.

http://tech.ebu.ch/Jahia/site/tech/cache/offonce/pid/1;jsessionid=C101853CF7708E8BA266A18DC206DA5B.jahia1

There's a lot to read up on, if interested

This is a delivery standard for audio related to broadcasting, not a mixing standard as many seems to think.
But the closer you are to the target, the less volume/loudness manipulation the broadcasters do to our mixes (when doing music production). The equipement will be installed on their side.
So if your mixes/music may end up on TV, radio, internet when ISP's adapt the standard and other streaming services follow, you can as well leave some headroom in your music.

That said, if a mix/master by todays standard are to be "loudness normalized" due to the new standard it will sound pretty limited and lifeless compared to mixes that have taken the advantage of the headroom allowed in the new set of rules.
No more chopped off transients in our mixes
Bredo Myrvang
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bedstrom
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Another related topic is iTunes Sound Check. If you turn that on, iTunes will normalize average volume to about -15db. It has a similar effect. all of these are positive trends that can start a movement away from highly compressed, clipped and distorted masters.

http://createdigitalmusic.com/2012/04/op-ed-what-do-mastered-for-itunes-and-sound-check-do-to-music-listening/
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Wilkesin
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The Toneboosters EBU plugin is my favorite to run in this situation. Very affordable. S1 gives you this functionality in the project page but if you just need a plugin to get it done...
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bedstrom
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Wilkesin wrote:The Toneboosters EBU plugin is my favorite to run in this situation. Very affordable. S1 gives you this functionality in the project page but if you just need a plugin to get it done...


I like the Toneboosters EBU plugin for this too. l would love to see more features built-in to S1 to address normalized volume issues too.
Bill Edstrom
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Follow my blog at:
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LMike
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This is all really good info, especially for those of us who don't have to commonly deal with those standards but may have to at some time in the future. The entirety of my work results in what would be considered "Music files destined for CD or the net" or similar so I've not had occasion to have to meet any of those broadcast standards.

William, maybe you should do a short demo vid showing how to conform an audio file to that -24 broadcast standard. That might be a very useful addition to your other training vids.

Thanks. Really good info guys.
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