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Thread: Podcast (Music similar volume/rms)

  1. #1
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    Podcast (Music similar volume/rms)

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    Hello guys!

    I will be short since I wrote so much, and the system kicked me off and I lost everything I had written.

    So, this is always a dilemma for me... How to make all track on the same track sound volume/RMS similar? What is the best way approach this?
    Theoretically I know (i think) what should be done, but in practice do not know how to achieve desired effect.

    Thanks in advance
    Best Regards, Pavel
    www.russianvoice4u.com ("Whisper Room", AT5040; StudioLive 16.4.2; MacPro)

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    I'm not sure what you really mean?
    If it's a series of you speaking, and you want them to sound the same, then that's not a level thing at all. Levels are easy. Pick your peak level and turn the master up to give the same level each time. Some people prefer LOUD, others a little more modest, and others probably through misunderstanding too low. They all sound the same if the listener alters their levels, assuming that the levels weren't so low noise crept in.

    The big difference is the mic and the mic distance to the mouth. For your products to sound the same, this needs to be the same. Then you don't stray far from your common eq.

    You have a choice to make about dynamics. Squash the life out it, or leave it totally natural. Again, a choice. If your recording space sounds rotten, then you really need to move in closer.

    If you are a bit uncontrolled in your approach, a limiter might help too, but only to catch the occasional accident. For speech, I tend to set my maximum record level to give me quite a bit of headroom, about 6dB in my case from maximum. For repetitive projects, I set them up from a template, so everything is the same as the last one, and it works for me. Mind you my common music stuff always starts from templates with the routing and common effects loaded in.

    If you record with no headroom at all, or maybe 10 dB, the only thing a listener needs to do is turn up or down. Personally I'm convinced that many peoples systems are mislabelled anyway, so I record a bit lower. There are of course pretty established standards from the BBC, commercial radio and guides from people like the blind organisations who distribute speech material, but most listeners are only interested in no distortion, natural sounding speech, with no weird room sounds or excess bass, wind or pops. Level is a knob turn or button push.

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    The scheme is simple:

    voice over --- song------voice over ------------voice over -----voice over -------song

    All songs share a track... All songs from different albums, artists etc... I want those songs to sound similar volume/rms wise.
    How I can level them all..


    I hope it make sense now.
    Best Regards, Pavel
    www.russianvoice4u.com ("Whisper Room", AT5040; StudioLive 16.4.2; MacPro)

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    Quote Originally Posted by balky View Post
    How to make all track on the same track sound volume/RMS similar? What is the best way approach this?
    Theoretically I know (i think) what should be done, but in practice do not know how to achieve desired effect.
    That's essentially the same as mastering an album. Pick your target RMS and adjust the songs accordingly. Some songs may need gain and limiting, others may just need to be turned down.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bouldersoundguy View Post
    That's essentially the same as mastering an album. Pick your target RMS and adjust the songs accordingly. Some songs may need gain and limiting, others may just need to be turned down.

    I know how to achieve it so that all songs for CD for example sound similar - it could be easily done in Adobe Audition.

    If I put a limiter on the track where all songs are, then it will limit the loud ones and the rest of them will stay the same. The ideal scenario is to make quiet ones louder and keep loud ones the same.

    Perhaps attack release need to be set a certain way... I am not sure.

    I put on that track with music "bluecat dynamics" plug in. It is a great plugin that I recently got, but still need to figure out how to use it to utilize all of its feature.
    Best Regards, Pavel
    www.russianvoice4u.com ("Whisper Room", AT5040; StudioLive 16.4.2; MacPro)

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    You don't want a plug-in, you want a set of ears. Bouldersoundguy summed it up - it's like mastering an album. The aim is NOT to squeeze every drop out of the system and have the limiter squash everything at the top end. That sounds dreadful. It's not even compression. If you are playing music tracks that have already been mastered, you do not want to squash the some more. On a typical CD album, you don't have every track the same level. The loud thrashing songs may well be loud, but the ballad in between will be quieter. Radio 3 and Classic FM both play classical music. The purists complain that Classic FM has a volume range of between f and fff, while radio 3 foes from pp to fff - which is much better on the ears, better for realism and rotten for listening in the car.

    I think you're getting far to fixated on chasing the dB. When I use a limiter, it's for catching those stray transients, not for brick wall limiting 0 which is a mega blunt tool for replacing common sense.

    In all honesty, you sit at the desk, you have a fader for your voice and a fader for the track, and you prod them. The quiet track gets a little push - but if you make a quiet track the same volume as a busy track it is wrong. A track with a solo voice and one guitar should not be the same volume as a 5 piece thrash metal band. If you adjust both to the same level on the meter, they will never match.

    This is why meter ballistics are important. The BBC have a selection of files - have a read of this BBC Academy - Technology - Why are trails and voice overs so loud? How I was taught.

    What you were talking about is maximising loudness, as in making everything sound loud. Making everything sound dreadful is my view of this. Most radio stations use a device called an Optimod - a radio designed compressed/limiter/dynamics controller. A very clever gadget that allows you to be Radio 3, Classic FM, or total mayhem - depending on what you want to do.

    You could get a behringer compressor/limiter and turn the knobs up until the red light almost comes on, and the output level will be pinned at almost FS, all the time. It sounds rubbish - nasty, horrible and unpleasant.

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    I never said anywhere that I want to squash it and make it LOUD.
    I said I want all tracks to have more or less same volume, so when I look at its graphical representation, I do not see extremely uneven picture.

    I attached a file. Take a look. This is what I wanted, but I hoped I could get even better results.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails sample-jpg  
    Best Regards, Pavel
    www.russianvoice4u.com ("Whisper Room", AT5040; StudioLive 16.4.2; MacPro)

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    Hey Balky,
    If you're not particularly concerned about the max volume, just turn down the tracks which are too loud.
    Use your ears to judge - That's what your listeners will be using.

    If the songs are commercial releases, you should really have to worry too much about them.
    They'll be mastered and ready for broadcast already.

    For the purposes of podcasting I'd probably set the audio tracks wherever you want them and have them as the benchmark - No additional processing - then work with your voice files to make sure they're on a par.

    If you're struggling to get the voice loud enough either turn down all the music tracks, or use compression and make up gain on the voice.

    Is that any way helpful?
    Quote Originally Posted by Grawlf View Post
    That's a tad too much terminology. What do you mean by 'mix'?
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    No VST can emulate that smell.

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    What I usually do for a simple CD mastering job is pull the louder tracks' gains down to match the quieter tracks' perceived (by me) level then add a mastering limiter on the main bus. I'll apply the mastering limiter until I feel the more dynamic audio suffers then back off.

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    My podcasts (I call them this way) won't be listened to like normal podcast would. It is for radio webcast. That is why I did not use maximizer hard on it. The broadcast software will do the rest.
    Thank you very much for clarifying some things
    Best Regards, Pavel
    www.russianvoice4u.com ("Whisper Room", AT5040; StudioLive 16.4.2; MacPro)

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