Dynamic range compression of classical music.

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by xenophon, Nov 24, 2014.
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  1. TheSonicTruth

    Now those results, both for Cleveland's #5 fourth movement(I own that CD!) and the above pop tune by Ferry, are more in line with what my ears are telling me!!! I understand that it's in Audition, but what is the name of that tool? Is it available as stand-alone, like Foobar2000?
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2017
  2. pinnahertz
    In Audition it's "Amplitude Statistics", you can scan a file or a selection within a file. It's not available as a plugin, but there are similar plugins for pro DAW software. I doubt there's much like it for Foobar, though.

    Yes, those figures should match your ears (mine too). Right tools for the right job.

    And all this from one of them nasty old engineers.
  3. TheSonicTruth

    Thanks for sharing that! :wink:

    And no, not nasty, just a little odd: the ones on GearSlutz really told me that. So I suggested that since we should just "use our ears" for producing audio, we should rip the meters out of daws and mixers, speedometers out of cars, and altimeters out of planes - 'use our eyes' to judge speed or altitude! LOL. I was banned from GS for that. Wonder if they miss their little Michael Moore of dynamics preservation? Joking!
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2017
  4. TheSonicTruth

    Seriously: On another note - does this throw the entire premise of that site, the 'Dynamic Range Database' into serious scrutiny? What if, instead of Foobar2000, which is practically the only measuring tool used on there, folks started uploading AS results on it? Would that be more telling as to what's been going on with original vs reissue vs remasters and remasters of remasters? And can it scan statistics for groups of songs, such as entire albums, as Foobar can?
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2017
  5. bigshot
    It’s an absurd statement, but hardly worth getting banned for. I’d suggest you take your analogy about speedometers and think for a moment how well you’d driving a race with just your eyes on the road as opposed to keeping your eyes fixed on the speedometer. If you can wrap your head around the pole you’d wrap yourself around by just depending on the speedometer, you’ll understand why I say ears listening to the sound of the mix will get you further than worrying about peaks.

    Besides, there are a bunch of different ways to avoid clipping. It’s not really an issue when you’re mixing.
  6. pinnahertz
    Because the DR meter in Foobar (and the TT DR meter stand-alone, the plugin, etc.) use an algorithm that is useful and accurate for what they are trying do: end the loudness war.
  7. TheSonicTruth

    Well, we'll just have to 'agree to disagree' on that issue - the one of clipping and peaks. I, on the other hand, generally like to avoid clipping through all stages of a project, and apply peak limiting, only if necessary, if the material warrants it or if a client really insists on a hot master.
  8. TheSonicTruth

    I'm sure that if you ran, through Amplitude Statistics, "Money For Nothing" from the original 1985 CD release, and then its remastered counterpart from more recently, the value in the Dynamic Range row would certainly be lower for the remaster than it was for the original, just as was the case when using Foobar DR.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2017
  9. pinnahertz
    I'm sure that's true, but Pleasurize designed the DR meter to be easily used, freely distributed, and conform well with the K system. It's purpose is different than Amplitude Statistics, and therefore returns different numbers.
  10. RRod
    Yes because the DR rating is designed with comparing different masterings of the same track in mind. But it's easy to come up with material where it screws up. For instance, a track with only one large peak but is otherwise quiet, or a track that is one big crescendo, and so on. You have to wonder about a dynamic range measurement that can go DOWN simply by adding in specific material.
  11. pinnahertz
    Your view of clipping and peak limiting is...well....limited.

    There are situations where the application of clipping does less damage than peak limiting because peak limiting applies a dynamic gain change which effectively modulates the entire spectrum, where clipping doesn't modulate gain at all, but can limit a brief peak inaudibly. The audibility of clipping induced distortion is a function of time and degree. Sort peaks clipped are not audibly distorted because the way we hear distortion takes time. There are many excessive uses of both, of course, and that's what the Loudness War is all about.
  12. TheSonicTruth

    I've always been of the impression that peak limiting and clipping are one and the same - at least when considering the audible results. The only difference being that one is not always intentional, and occurs when something is overdriven into something else. IE, electric guitar over driven to lend that classic grinding rock sound we are all familiar with. The other, limiting, can occur at full scale, or at any predetermined value below full scale, on individual peaks, or on the waveform as a whole.

    With that knowledge, I control the barber's scissors, versus my equipment by overdriving things.

    Like I said - agree to disagree.
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2017
  13. pinnahertz
    I invite you to expand your understanding.

    Peak limiting and clipping are totally different. Even within each there are many, many variables that affect the results and how they are used. There certainly can be unintended clipping, but not in the professional world. Intentional clipping can be effectively used without audible side effect, or with some pretty horrible side effects, and anywhere in between. For example, every radio station uses a broadcast audio processor, and they all use various kinds of intentional clipping, even classical stations.

    It's not that you clip, it's how you clip. These are all useful tools that can be used or abused, just like a chainsaw that could be used to save a life, beauty a property or destroy a rain forest.
  14. bigshot
    I can't imagine going into a mix and having issues with clipping. If I did, I'd get on the phone and find another mixing stage! Clipping shouldn't be a part of any mix.

    I suppose leaving all the decisions on compression to the mastering engineer is one way of handling it, but I usually like to have a little control of what it's going to end up sounding like, so for albums I like to do a rough mastering pass before I hand it off. We don't get the luxury of letting mastering handle things in TV. The mix we send is the one that airs.

    Compression is a very important tool. If you don't use it at all you end up with stuff that is hard to listen to. If you use it wrong, it can flatten out a mix. I guess it's like an axe. If you use it right, you can build a log cabin to live in. If you don't use it at all, you get to sleep out in the rain. If you use it wrong, you're Lizzie Borden. I prefer to use it right myself.

    As you know, hot mastering is part of the mastering process, not the process of recording and mixing. No one is going to bake clipping into their mix. I think he doesn't understand that.
  15. TheSonicTruth
    If you don't think clipping goes on at mix stage you're mistaken.

    And as far as what I understand and don't understand, you might be disappointed.
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