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Some news for the "Audiolevels on DVDs" discussion

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Peter Rixner
Some news for the "Audiolevels on DVDs" discussion
on Dec 24, 2008 at 2:20:28 pm

Hello :)

Regarding our discussion about DVD Levels, I have some results, that I would like to share with you.

I compared 6 DVDs for their maximum level and their dialog level. From that, there is the distance from dialog to maximum (which is in most cases explosions or music)

Hollywood Blockbuster 1
max -7 / dialog -18 / distance 11db

Hollywood Blockbuster 2
max -6 / dialog -15 / distance 9db

Hollywood Blockbuster 3 (elder production from 1970s)
max -11 / dialog -20 / distance 9db

German cinema production
max -9 / dialog -17 / distance 8db

US TV-Series
max -10 Heavy Limited almost all the time peaks at maximum

German Science Documentry
max -5 / dialog -8 / distance 3db

So I would come to the following conclusions:

- Fairly everything is possible :)

- It seems to be ok to bring the maximum to -6
(if you are brave – if not -9 is always ok)

- A dialog to maximum distance of 6-10db seems ok

- DVDs produced from TV productions are different to cinematic productions

So what do you think ?
Any comments or ideas ?

Merry Christmas!


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Ty Ford
Re: Some news for the "Audiolevels on DVDs" discussion
on Dec 24, 2008 at 2:44:13 pm


What a wonderful roundup! Thanks so much for posting this.

Was that a -10 for US TV? Just brick wall limited so the meter hits -10 and stays there?

I know Discovery has some pretty strict (and squished) audio requirements. I don't remember exactly, something like -14 to -18 for everything. They have an audio analyzer. If you submit and they find it out of spec, they kick it back to you.


Ty Ford

Want better production audio?: Ty Ford's Audio Bootcamp Field Guide

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Peter Rixner
Re: Some news for the "Audiolevels on DVDs" discussion
on Dec 24, 2008 at 3:00:27 pm


that DVD is a US TV Series, but as it is published in germany I don't know what they have done to the soundtrack.
This soundtrack is limited in a way, that extremely loud events are alway completely at maximum und dialog's peaks also touch the maximum very often.
I recorded all those examples and the visual waveform of that was obviously different.

But it seems clear, that cinema productions have much higher dynamic range than TV. Which makes sense to me.
I just expected them also to be more limited.


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