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Getting my tracks the same volume

Discussion in 'F.O.H.' started by warwickboy, Sep 15, 2010.

  1. warwickboy

    warwickboy New Metal Member

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    Hey guys heres the deal.
    My band are looking to put out an EP soon of our recorded songs, just to give away at gigs, that sort of thing.
    So I noticed between each song there is a big diference in volumes.
    Is there anyway I can get them all at the same volume, Maybe some software I can download or something like that. Freeware if possible, students are broke!
    Cheers
     
  2. RiF

    RiF Member

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    Get the unmastered versions. Put a limiter on the master bus followed by a meter plugin that shows average RMS levels (like the freebies Voxengo SPAN or Sonalksis FreeG). Get the loudest song and limit it to taste. Write down the RMS level (like -10 dB or so) that the meter plugin shows. Then go through all the other songs and adjust the limiter until the meter reads -10 dB RMS on those as well. This should line up the volumes of all songs for your EP.
     
  3. waltz mastering

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    To match song to song levels, you can't rely on a meter so much.
    You can have the same exact average rms reading between songs and still have very different perceived loudness.

    Use your ears to listen for key level between the songs...
    Things like the vocal level.. Kick, Snare... overall feel.. and sound pressure with the volume knob at the same setting...start of songs etc.

    There's no scientific method that will work as well as critical listening. IE: Your ears = Free
     
  4. Matthias King

    Matthias King The Machine

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    Some software, like Sound Forge 10 has several different meters, including one for perceived loudness. Between all the metering SF10 has, you could get pretty damn close with all your tracks.

    The alternative would be to "remix" your songs to some kind of loose template to get closer to the same master level in the mix stage, so that way, you won't have to limit some tracks a lot while only limiting other tracks a little. If they're all relatively close right out off the bat, then you won't have to limit too much and the sound of the disc as a whole will be more cohesive.
     
  5. RiF

    RiF Member

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    waltz mastering is right about the perceived loudness. The IK T-Racks Deluxe meter has a perceived loudness meter as well.
    But using RMS values is not all bad and it's simple and free ;-).
    You could also import tracks in your DAW in a single project and line up the loudness by going through them (solo each track) and adjust the individual volume so that each of them matches the one you have chosen as your reference song. Then render each track.
     

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