What is your avg max rms db

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by wizaynecarter, Sep 14, 2005.

  1. I usually end up between -5.5 and -7.0 is this about average?
    where do you usually end up?
    does it differ by genre?
  2. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Distinguished Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    Chicago area, IL, USA
    Home Page:
    That's insane. Are you sure about that?

    And yes, it differs from mix to mix.

    An "average" that has decent dynamics and decent sound for your average rock/pop tune? I rarely find anything over -14 or so that doesn't irritate the hell out of me (not that I'm not "gently forced" to go beyond that point quite often).

    I"ve NEVER heard anything over around -10 that didn't sound like a trainwreck.
  3. EricK

    EricK Guest


    I haven't paid too much attention lately, but do you know what the average major label release is coming in at? Seems to me that last time I surveyed a couple, they were at about -8 or -10 db RMS. And yes, I find those very fatiguing, and downright aggravating to listen to.

    I'm thinking about CD's by the likes of the Chili Peppers and Audioslave.
  4. i guess i worded it wrong..... my avg has been between-9.4 and -11.6 my max has been between -5.5 and -7.7.... are these numbers bad..... if so is there a way to set a plug.... maybe l2 or somthing to fix it?
  5. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Distinguished Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    Chicago area, IL, USA
    Home Page:
    I would think it would take an L2 a lot of work just to get *to* those numbers.

    Have you read your manuals...?
  6. lucidwaves

    lucidwaves Guest

    Its not hard to get there with a compressor then a limiter, but it sounds like poop of course and should be advised against. The highest I've ever been pushed to get was -10 on some material that was harsh and distorted in the first place (and easier to get away with the squashing I guess).

    I'd say my average is around -13 or -14 but it would be a whole different story if some jazz or classical recordings would actually come thru.
  7. TrilliumSound

    TrilliumSound Active Member

    Jul 29, 2004
    Montreal, Qc, CANADA
    Home Page:
    Average here is around -15 dB RMS. On one really nice Mix Rock project that I had last week, it sounded amazing at -15 but the client wanted it at -12dB and it killed the beauty of it and all the mixing engineer hard and talented work. :evil:
  8. I just checked the avg rms of 3 cds that I like with wave labs

    LAGWAGON lets talk about leftovers
    Max -6.06

    Weezer make believe
    max -4.84
    avg -9.93

    Fall Out Boy
    max -5.37
    min -17.04
    avg -10.18

    this is louder than avg?
  9. Vince Jaeger

    Vince Jaeger Guest

    Alot of metal albums these days are around -10 / -8db RMS through entire songs and its downright fatiguing...

    I've even heard some rock albums that are as bad (Coldplay) and worse (At The Drive-In)

    The most I can stand is around -12db RMS for metal...
  10. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Distinguished Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    Chicago area, IL, USA
    Home Page:
    Those are louder than average, but unusually typical.

    Keep in mind that those recordings are mega-buck projects with teams of seasoned professionals at every step of the production... "Maximum potential volume" is something that takes a fairly serious amount of planning from the pre-production level all the way up through tracking, mixing and mastering. Those are NOT the kind of levels that most "budget" recordings with rookie engineers can attain.
  11. gnarr

    gnarr Guest

    what tools are you using to "see" the RMS?
  12. EricK

    EricK Guest

    I use the Waves PAZ metering plugin.
  13. iq

    iq Guest

    My mastering results usually falls between -12 to -8dB rms.
    Something not pleasant when boosted over -8dB rms.

    I tend not to move the needle on my VU meter over the 0 dBVU for the average level.

  14. Rider

    Rider Guest

    i try and stay at -10. its not TOO squished but its loud enough. pretty much the way my music is, its solid sound anyway, DI guitars along with nothing but screaming, yeah. for my electronica type stuff.. i have no idea as reason doesnt have RMS meter, just VU and peak, but it probably rests around -15 to -11 at most now that i have mastering tools (yay for 3.0).
  15. I-Quality

    I-Quality Guest

    not that experienced but everything under 12-11rms is really insane to listen to.... a few songs and your head blows off miles away
    that's really too bad 'cause one of the cd's I prefer this year was the new Comeback Kid but what a pain to listen to....I was surprised it was "only" about +-10rms, makes your ears scream
    btw lowering average level means getting everything in the mix at the same level? or am I wrong? so if you limit the hell out of it you can hear each thing better (but worse in th end?) it's a question I've been wondering but I think I know the answer I just need confirmation ( I like to know the truth.....or what's anything near, I'm still seeking the truth of life but that is another story....youth, that's nice, I better use it while I got it ;o)

    I just thought about it but if your mix has a lot of bass, meaning something under 100hz, it is easier to go on lower rms levels, always carefully watch the balance between bass/highs.... for example if your mix has way too much bass and is at 5rms, lower the bass and you will see that the rms level will significantly decrease...
    damn it I really suck in english, sorry for my mistakes (grammar and soundwise)
  16. TheArchitect

    TheArchitect Active Member

    Mar 26, 2005
    The worst examples of over limiting I have heard that come to mind are Rush's Vapor Trails and the Velvet Revolver album. Both hurt my ears they are clipped so badly.
  17. Rider

    Rider Guest

    livin la vida loca is solid black just about. you almost dont see peaks as much as a waveform that looks like someones driving home with one too many beers (more like 20 too many).

    i was about to say what i-quality said, but since he did, saves me time. use a spectrum analyzer and match it with your RMS read and you can see how much headroom you have compared to how much you SHOULD have, it helps point out potential problems (NOTE: helps point out, its up to you to fix it on your own).
  18. iq

    iq Guest

    I hate 'clipping'.. they doesn't exist in some ears :?
  19. X-Rocka

    X-Rocka Guest

    who cares for numbers?!

    for rock music I turn it up just before it starts sounding bad (methinks this is mostly about -12dB rms avg), but depends on the mix I get.

  20. Clayjrjr2

    Clayjrjr2 Guest

    enlighten me.... not too sure what rms is....

    i've seen it mentioned near the abbreviation for decibles but i dont understand what it is.

    thanx in advance,


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