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  • coFane
    Posts: 121
    Joined: Jan 30th, 2007, 10:36
    Steve H's mastering tut
    In Steve's mastering tut he says that most pop songs have a dynamic range of about 5-7dB... What does that mean though? How could I determine the "dynamic range" of a track If I already know that it peaks at 0dB and I know the RMS volume? Thanks
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  • steveH
    Posts: 857
    Joined: Oct 17th, 2006, 05:19
    Re: Steve H's mastering tut
    Yo coFane! Dynamic range refers to the amplitude range of a given track from its softest parts to its loudest. I you insert a plugin like the Adaptive Limiter (or any meter) on an output channel strip you can see, in the pair of meters on the right, the dynamic range of your track (of any section of your track) by making note of the loudest part (in dBs) as apposed to the softest. That's the technical dynamic range. Most pop/rock music compresses (either by using a compressor or a limiter or both) the "dynamic range" into a very small loudness range of about 5-7 dB increasing the "perceived" loudness of the track. What is really happening is that the track really isn't getting louder because the loudest instruments are pretty much staying the same. However, the softer instruments in the track are being pushed up louder increasing the "average" loudness of the track. And we human beings, for some physiological reasons, feel more satisfied when the average loudness is increased! Compressing music started out for purely technical reasons: to keep needles from jumping out of grooves. But it was soon discovered that increasing the average loudness of a track, in certain types of music, sold more more records! Be well! Steve H
    Reply
  • coFane
    Posts: 121
    Joined: Jan 30th, 2007, 10:36
    Re: Steve H's mastering tut
    Steve, as a long time disciple it's an honor to hear from you! Softest to loudest, gotcha! I've been analyzing the new single from Linkin Park "waiting for the end" In judging it for dynamic range (using the multi-meter) should I be more concerned with RMS dynamic range or peak dynamic range? Which is the better indicator for establishing the specific "dynamic range" you are referring to? I've looked at a bunch of songs and you seem to be right about that most pop stays really high up there in loudness. This Linkin park song has a quite section (for 3 bars) that peaks the output fader at -14dB. Would that suggest this specific song has a dynamic range of -14dB? Thanks a lot Steve. I've been loving your mastering tut. I've seen ALL your MPV tuts!
    Reply
  • steveH
    Posts: 857
    Joined: Oct 17th, 2006, 05:19
    Re: Steve H's mastering tut
    [quote:]'ve looked at a bunch of songs and you seem to be right about that most pop stays really high up there in loudness. This Linkin park song has a quite section (for 3 bars) that peaks the output fader at -14dB. Would that suggest this specific song has a dynamic range of -14dB?[/quote] Well, it all depends. If the loudness part is 0dB then yes.
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