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CDSoundmaster gain staging info?

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CDSoundmaster gain staging info?

Postby darren » Wed Feb 12, 2014 4:13 pm

Hi folks,

With Alexb, we know that the input to the library should generally be -18dbfs.

Does anyone know what we should be sending to the CDSoundmaster libraries, such as the CLC (bogen etc)?

Would be great to have an official list of where 0dbvu is achieved in various libraries.


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Re: CDSoundmaster gain staging info?

Postby RJHollins » Wed Feb 12, 2014 5:17 pm

should be the same as any hardware.

-6db Peak
-18dB RMS

are the general targets.
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Re: CDSoundmaster gain staging info?

Postby zabukowski » Wed Feb 12, 2014 6:57 pm

RJHollins wrote:should be the same as any hardware.

-6db Peak
-18dB RMS

are the general targets.


Speaking for AlexB libraries...

You should use -18 "peak RMS", which is not the same as average RMS. This is close approximation to 0dBVU, because dBVU and RMS can not be directly compared.

For example mix wavefile could have average RMS -20dB and peak RMS -15dB. You should attenuate level of this file for -3dB, to get -18dB peak RMS. Then check this file with VU meter - you'll see that needle will jump around 0 dBVU when the loudest parts are played. Of course, you should normalize it to -17 or more to drive Nebula input more.

This is the system NebulaMan uses for "input peak RMS normalization".

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Re: CDSoundmaster gain staging info?

Postby zabukowski » Wed Feb 12, 2014 7:10 pm

If we are talking about pure sine wave, then 0dbVU is equal to -18dbFS, of course. But this is not a very often real world scenario, so usually rules from previous post apply :)
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Re: CDSoundmaster gain staging info?

Postby darren » Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:11 pm

Hi

Thanks for the replies.

So, I'm trying to calibrate a template at the moment. Originally I was using a sine wave to do that.
Taking your advice, I instead used a fully mastered music track instead.. I made sure the needle was just touching the Zero mark on an instance of PSP Vintage Meter which had been set to -18dbfs on the rear panel reference level control.

So now, with average program material I'm hitting nebula at a peak of -18db.

If I go back to my sine wave then, of course, the needle get buried :)

Do I need to think about a mid-way point between this pure sine wave and the music track reference? Or should I go with the music track (peak) only?

Actually I found that using pink noise as a calibration signal gave me much the same results as my test music track .. though it's style/genre agnostic of course. So maybe noise is better way to calibrate generally?

Many thanks.
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Re: CDSoundmaster gain staging info?

Postby zabukowski » Thu Feb 13, 2014 3:36 pm

darren wrote:Hi

Thanks for the replies.

So, I'm trying to calibrate a template at the moment. Originally I was using a sine wave to do that.
Taking your advice, I instead used a fully mastered music track instead.. I made sure the needle was just touching the Zero mark on an instance of PSP Vintage Meter which had been set to -18dbfs on the rear panel reference level control.

So now, with average program material I'm hitting nebula at a peak of -18db.

If I go back to my sine wave then, of course, the needle get buried :)

Do I need to think about a mid-way point between this pure sine wave and the music track reference? Or should I go with the music track (peak) only?

Actually I found that using pink noise as a calibration signal gave me much the same results as my test music track .. though it's style/genre agnostic of course. So maybe noise is better way to calibrate generally?

Many thanks.


Haven't tried with the noise, but calibrating to the pure sine wave should be theoretically the most correct method ...

No matter what you do, you won't have optimal input in every scenario, because it depends on source material (mix, master, single tracks). I prefer adapting input level according to the (musical) characteristics of input signal.

For example, drum tracks are usually not suitable for RMS normalizing, because they have rather high peak and low RMS. If you normalize them to -18 peak RMS, you'll often overload Nebula. In this case you should use peak level as reference.

Anyway, this is the way i do it :)

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