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Sound Levels

Member for

21 years 2 months
I was listening to some of my tracks with my home stereo. I noticed when I turned up the volume with my favorite tunes the sound increased slightly. When I turn up the sound with mine it gets louder much faster. Is that have something to do with being professionaly mastered or is that a problem with my own sound levels or compressing?

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Member for

19 years 4 months

Kurt Foster Fri, 04/18/2003 - 14:00
Short answer Yes and Yes!
Longer answer. Your song has more dynamic range than the commercially released songs you are comparing it to. This means the quiet parts are quieter and the louder parts are louder. When you compress you bring these two extremes closer to each other thereby decreasing the ratio of difference between the two so as you turn it up the volume level rises less/slower. But it can be a baaaaad thing to over compress the overall mix. That is why we like to compress a little on each track, 2 or 3 dB @ 2 to 1 ratio, when we record, and then perhaps a little more, 2 or 3 dB at mix. Then we might add just a touch more, 2 or 3 dB on the 2-bus (mix bus) to finish off the whole process. This will slowly and gently bring the "real world" dynamics (120+ db) of your instruments and vocals into the dynamic range of recorded music at 16 bit 44.1. (90 dB). Kurt
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