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Is there a standard dB my songs should be?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by rcook349, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. rcook349

    rcook349 Guest

    Is there a standard dB (max, I guess) that my song should be at to be consistent with all other songs recorded/released?

    I.e. that when listening to songs and then mine comes up, the listener doesn't have to reach for the volume knob one way or the other.

  2. Codemonkey

    Codemonkey Distinguished Member

    Dec 11, 2007
    Scotland, UK
    The mastering engineer should take care of this.

    You're mastering at home? Well... fill the waveform until it distorts. That makes it about the same as everyone else.
  3. rcook349

    rcook349 Guest

    I'm just a newbie in my home setup. About to get a MacBook Pro and Logic and see what kind of trouble I can get into.

    You live in Scotland? I used to live in Ayr back around 1980 when I was a pre-teen. Now I'm in Colorado, U.S.
  4. Space

    Space Distinguished Member

    Jun 26, 2007
    Same thing applies :)
  5. Greener

    Greener Guest

    "I.e. that when listening to songs and then mine comes up, the listener doesn't have to reach for the volume knob one way or the other. "

    Want them to reach for the off button?
  6. Kapt.Krunch

    Kapt.Krunch Well-Known Member

    Nov 21, 2005
    Make all of YOURS the same levels as each other. You'll never get them to sound just like everyone else's.

    Pull up 5 or 10 different songs from 5 or 10 different artists and play them. Do they sound the same? Probably not.

    If you want it to sound as bad as the latest Metallica offering...do as Codemonkey said.:wink:

    And, there's a difference in "peak levels" anyway. If you settle at, say, -6...whatever, but you have some that are compressed to nearly a straight line, and some that are more dynamic....they will both peak at -6, but the compressed ones will be louder, overall, then the dynamic ones. But, the dynamic ones will probably sound better once you turn them up.

  7. Link555

    Link555 Distinguished Member

    Mar 31, 2007
    North Vancouver
    Read the bob Katz book, see the chapter about K level system. Adopt that.
  8. majormusic

    majormusic Guest

    Depends on your style of genre.
    Hip-Hop musicians should keep their instrumentals at -3 to -6 db BEFORE laying the vocals. If you need more help, message me. I'll help you out.
  9. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Mar 8, 2004
    Fredericksburg, VA

    I don't know if you understood the question. If you did, then your answer is even more scary.

    He's talking about root means squared levels.

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