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Re: An experiment in repairing clipped audio

Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:09 pm

Possibly, I usually use MPCHC as a player and that has "normalize" as an option, but also value in percent so it's a sliding scale rather than an "adjust gain to 100%" checkbox.

There's a seperate "regain volume" checkbox which I assumed was dynamic range compression compensation which compensated for the temporal reduction in volume caused by sudden bursts of high volume.

I don't really know what I'm talking about as I never actually master stuff myself, but it would be a whole lot better to my ears if the mastering was done so that clipping of the waveform never happened (using machine logic rather than error-prone human decision making) and that the range compression prevented was equally applied tastefully so that the difference between the average volume and peak volume was a sensible amount defined by a standard amount, rather than completely random and usually not useful.
  • If there's no range compression you get mumbled quiet dialogue that can't be heard properly, and ear-splitting action scenes.
  • If there's too much range compression, everything sounds flat and things like whispering and talking aren't obvious without context.

Surely there's an algorithm that can be standardised, such that <range compression/normalisation> results in audio tracks with plenty of dynamic range yet the peak volume spikes are never more than 2x the average perceived volume. Nobody wants to be deafened, blow their speakers, wake the sleeping babies or irate neighbours next door - it's totally unnecessary ;)
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Re: An experiment in repairing clipped audio

Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:11 pm

Surely there's an algorithm that can be standardised

Stop using logic, seriously :) All that we discussed is and has always been technically feasible. But producers and the bands routinely demand that it be louder and louder. Thankfully those wars are now dying down thanks to Spotify and Youtube saying "screw it" and applying a normalization filter across the board.
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Re: An experiment in repairing clipped audio

Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:51 pm

Yeah movie soundtracks are a different matter; I was coming at it from the direction of music.

Obviously a movie can't keep the rustling of leaves in the wind, normal conversation, jet engines, and bomb explosions all at their proper relative levels.
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