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DBFS too low?

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Daniel Stone
DBFS too low?
on Jul 28, 2014 at 6:52:56 pm

We've been uploading our spots with an audio level of -24 LKFS. A spot just got rejected because, though it's at -24 LKFS, it's at -35 DBFS.

How do I fix something like this? If I raise the volume, won't my LKFS go up, too?

Thanks of any help.


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Eric Toline
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 28, 2014 at 7:33:04 pm
Last Edited By Eric Toline on Jul 28, 2014 at 7:37:20 pm

It seems you're mixes are a bit too low. See attached quote.

"Meanwhile, the target loudness is, simply, –24 LKFS for the anchor element. Given such a target, I would expect to see levels of up to –16 LKFS (maybe even higher) for the entire mixed program. It's unclear, unless you have the meter and the post-production time to do all the measurements and corrections. More importantly, there is potential for error to creep in at any point in the broadcast. We need to ensure that the original signal is at an appropriate LKFS level (approximately –16 to –20 LKFS for a –24 LKFS anchor element level). We then need to maintain that level at approximately unity gain throughout signal distribution and transmission.
- See more at: http://www.tvtechnology.com/inside-audio/0176/lkfs-amp-the-calm-act/208806#..."

"I push the RECORD button and hope for the best"


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Daniel Stone
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 28, 2014 at 8:49:48 pm

Thanks so much, Eric. Great article.

This might seem like a stupid question but how do I measure average dBFS?



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Eric Toline
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 28, 2014 at 9:22:15 pm

Measure it on what piece of equipment with what metering at what voltage? You have to calibrate your playback unit with a known source level to know where to put your reference point. A long, long time ago in another era we used professionally made calibrated alignment tapes.....but things were much simpler then.

"I push the RECORD button and hope for the best"


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Daniel Stone
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 28, 2014 at 9:42:03 pm

I see. More difficult than I thought.

Forgive me if I sound like a 10 year old, here, but I very much appreciate your help:

Our spot got rejected because the "Average dBFS" was too low (-33 db). Yet, the LKFS average was -24 LKFS (as measured by Premiere's Loudness Radar). I only have +/- 2 LKFS of room before the spot gets rejected for that. So, how do I raise the Average dBFS without raising the LKFS? Because once I hit -21.9 LKFS, my spot gets rejected.



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Eric Toline
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 29, 2014 at 2:00:10 am

Are you using any compression or limiting on the final mix?

"I push the RECORD button and hope for the best"


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Daniel Stone
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 29, 2014 at 11:47:29 am

I'm using a tiny bit of compression on the final. Just enough to level the VO a bit.

Do you think bringing up the level of the non-VO parts with compression and limiting is the solution?



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Eric Toline
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 29, 2014 at 12:21:08 pm

Anything you do with compression & peak limiting on the non VO parts is going to help. Try it, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. (pardon the pun)

"I push the RECORD button and hope for the best"


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Daniel Stone
Re: DBFS too low?
on Jul 29, 2014 at 4:18:20 pm

Ha, love it! I'll give it a try. Thanks for the help!



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