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BurnabyJoe

It's time to end the "Loudness War"

42 posts in this topic

Yes. Some of the brand new tracks sound like they are clipping. I dont know why studios master the tracks like that, it sounds terrible.

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Even if you don't pay for music you have to be pissed off

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I hate to be the bearer of bad news (especially as I agree with you) but most people don't care and it's unlikely to change thanks to that.

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I enjoyed the irony of Songs For The Deaf (QOTSA) being in the examples of the Wikipedia article.

I hate it it when I get distortion on the drums when turning up a great song. I hope they curb the trend.

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The only time when I actually enjoy something being 'loudened' is with DVDs/TV/Movies.

I hate when I rent, buy, or download a movie, have to set my speakers to maximum volume in order to hear the quiet parts, and then face a thundering explosion of loud when the loud parts come in.

If I was going to watch on a home theater setup, it would be great to have the peaks and valleys all over the place, it does sound way better. However, if I'm on my laptop at 3am and want to watch a movie, it pisses me off to no end. My Lord of the Rings Extended DVD collection is the classic example. I literally cannot hear any of the whispering or talking, even with laptop set to max volume, yet the music and shouting and fighting is way too loud to be played in my apartment (my laptop speakers are actually fairly loud). Its like dynamics gone mad, and its really frustrating.

Most DVD players and computer movie players don't have a normalize function to fix this either (I can do it myself with Vdub and Audition, but its really time consuming).

Loudness is very useful for late night movie watching, particularly in an apartment. Its also good for music, people like to set their headphones, car stereos, etc. to a certain volume. With great dynamic range you can't set a particular volume, you are not in control of how loud your music is.

But the good, ol fashioned peak/valley does sound awesome. Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon is a great album, complete with a massively dynamic range that just oozes musical goodness from every orifice.

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It's annoying to me in that there is no consistency between old and new music. A standard should've been set long ago.

However, i believe new music is louder partly because there is way more sound being generated, period. By computers. All those vocal effects and background loops didn't exist in the past.

Even the ridiculousness of sampling and looping Public Enemies "Fear of a Black Planet" is quiet by today's standards. And that's kinda sad, considering the effort that went into Fear as opposed to most albums today.

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What you said makes sense, but it's interesting to note... the wiki article includes albums like Appetite for Destruction by Guns n Roses, Dirt by Alice in Chains, Songs for the Deaf by QOTSA, and Angel Dust by Faith No More - those are absolute CLASSICS!

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It's annoying to me in that there is no consistency between old and new music. A standard should've been set long ago.

However, i believe new music is louder partly because there is way more sound being generated, period. By computers. All those vocal effects and background loops didn't exist in the past.

Even the ridiculousness of sampling and looping Public Enemies "Fear of a Black Planet" is quiet by today's standards. And that's kinda sad, considering the effort that went into Fear as opposed to most albums today.

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I usually buy the remastered disc if my old copy was transferred from an analog source. I sometimes hear hissing when I turn the volume up. I do agree clipping is a bad thing, though. I used to normalize my audio to -95.0 dB, but now I set it to -92.0 dB. The audio on the actual discs, however, should be set to a lower volume to prevent clipping. There certainly should be some regulations in place.

My old Trooper album has this disclaimer on the back side.

allcdcoverstrooperhotsh.jpg

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The Doors - 1988

Wolfmother - 2006

RHCP - 1995

GNR - 1987

Linkin Park - 2003

Just examples of CD's from the 80's that sound great, and everything else since the early to mid 90's that has gone to hell.

loudness.jpg

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Last one:

1991 - Loreena Mckennit's the Visit (What a recording should sound like)

2009 - Metric's Fantasies (Goes to show this goes beyond hard rock and heavy metal) I have rap and jazz recordings that look like this wall of noise.

loudness2.jpg

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I bet most people on this board use the stock ipod earbuds.

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Yep..it's all gone to crap...

Your resident Audio Engineer...

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I am a audio engineer myself and I cannot help but shake my head every time I get a client who destroys their song by asking me to master it as loud as possible...great example of a horribe mastered Album is Eminem's latest one, great cd but man did they do a crap mastering job..too loud!

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I am a audio engineer myself and I cannot help but shake my head every time I get a client who destroys their song by asking me to master it as loud as possible...great example of a horribe mastered Album is Eminem's latest one, great cd but man did they do a crap mastering job..too loud!

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It's like night and day listening to a recording from recently and a recording from back in the day. I don't know about this loudness was but you don't have to be a genius to recognize that sound quality's been going downhill. I mean, I love loud music but that's to be achieved by better equipment on the part of we the listeners, not on the recording end where it's got to be about quality.

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How did I not know there was another Audio Engineer on these forums?!

If we get a few more we can start our own sub-forum with topics like:

Pre-Amps - Who makes the best?

and

Digital Consoles - No longer a total pain in the butt

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