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when to normalise audio

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gribble
when to normalise audio
on Oct 2, 2007 at 7:20:54 pm

I have debating with a colleague the best time in the audio cleaning process to normalise a track to pull it into the acceptable decibel range.

Is there an industry standard workflow for cleaning audio for video productions?


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Matte
Re: when to normalise audio
on Oct 3, 2007 at 3:03:45 pm

[gribble] "Is there an industry standard workflow for cleaning audio for video productions?"

If there was, would we all have to follow it?

;-)


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HowDoYouDoThat
Re: when to normalise audio
on Oct 3, 2007 at 4:28:49 pm

In the field. Hire a professional audio tech and get it onto tape the right way from the start.

Also, when in the field, recored 1k tone along with bars and when ingesting set up to the 1k tone. And if your sound person did his-her job, your good to go.


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Ray Palmer
Re: when to normalise audio
on Oct 3, 2007 at 7:17:46 pm

For Voice over work in the booth, I normalise after I do a rough edit to remove any coughs, laughs or anything that is higher in level than the reading voice.


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Tim Ward
Re: when to normalise audio
on Oct 3, 2007 at 10:36:17 pm

I tend to normalize as one of the last steps, usually right after dynamics processing. I approach similarly to how I mix live: VOCAL MIC => CHANNEL-STRIP PRE-AMP => COMPRESSOR ON INSERT => ADJUST FADER LEVEL

tim


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Ty Ford
Re: when to normalise audio
on Oct 3, 2007 at 11:42:00 pm

There are more times when you don't want to normalize.

If all tracks are normalized to, say, hotter than -2 dbfs, you can ovedrive the internal mix buss.

I usually leave individual tracks alone if the peaks are -8 dB or higher. If I don't have my stereo master plugins correctly tweeked (which is seldom) I may normalize the master to -.2 dB .

Regards,

Ty Ford


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gribble
Re: when to normalise audio
on Oct 7, 2007 at 11:40:21 pm

Thanks for your replies.

Unfortunately being a charitable setup we don't have the luxury of a pro audio field producer. I have also read elsewhere that using a limiter is more effective and less destructive on tracks than normalising.

For TV broadcast we average our voicetracks to around -12dB.

Gribble
::: Time flies like an arrow but fruit flies like a banana :::


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basspig
Re: when to normalise audio
on Oct 13, 2007 at 2:36:37 am

What works well for me is to record at high bit depth with ultra-quiet preamps and normalize before conversion to distribution bit depth.

I'm in the middle of recording a concert by a major east coast symphony--we just finished setup this evening, which consisted of hoisting a custom-designed array of microphones for surround pickup, over the 4th row center, using aircraft cables. The recording is being made at 24/96 resolution, with orchestral peaks at -12dB. This covers any unexpected loud sounds without danger of clipping.

Since this program is going on to DVD, it will be downsampled to 16/48, and for CD, 16/44. In the final stage of conversion we'll normalize it to -2dB, typically.

When normalizing, it's highly desirable to do the process in 32-bit float, or 64-bit float, if available, as it reduces rounding errors and results in the least destructive effect on the sound quality.

Usually it is best to normalize first, then do any other things you need to do to the file, having the most bits allocated across the dynamic range. Watch the levels if you do any kind of EQ or compression with makeup gain and you should be fine.

Take care,

Mark & Mary Ann Weiss


http://www.basspig.com The Bass Pig's Lair - 15,000 Watts of Driving Stereo!
http://www.mwcomms.com
http://www.adventuresinanimemusic.com


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