• Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
  • Started by Bill from November Sound
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Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
on: February 04, 2021, 22:00:13
« Last Edit: February 05, 2021, 12:19:47 by Bill from November Sound »
Hi Everyone,

There has been so much information coming about loudness and LUFS over the past few years.

Recently there has been a lot of people saying to master your music quieter and then YouTube will turn it up. Master it quieter, you'll have a more dynamic mix and then Spotify will turn it up.

They Don't!

okay ...  the Spotify app does if someone has it set a certain way .... but spotify website does not.

I have tested this .... I'm still getting my songs on Spotify playlists but I'd probably do better if my volume was more competitive. Get your stuff around the -14 LUFS and let them turn it down a bit.
THEY WON'T tURN IT UP!

example

"Friday" - Official Audio




shooting here for -14 LUFS

See how I have .4 dB of headroom there?    .... not too bad. 






the same track at the original master volume 




 see how I'm down 2.6 dB from where should be?





I hope that this is helpful to someone! There is a lot of misinformation out there!     :-\ 
Bill
Songwriter, Keyboards, Arranger, Producer & Engineer for November Sound

November Sound is based on the Mother, Father & Son musical trio of Melissa, Bill & Will. I'm the father so anything I post will have my wife singing and/or my son playing percussion.


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Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #1 on: February 04, 2021, 23:32:38
Thanks @Bill from November Sound  for the update. How did you produce these printscreens?
yeah,  The  Good Old Loudness Wars. We could have a separate board for that :-)

14 LUFS is a good target.
It also depends on the musical dynamics of your music.
If you are into classical music, or movie scores ( the last hour I am listening to this very pro sounding score frmo Dutch Film composer Merlijn Snitker
https://soundcloud.com/merlijn-snitker/sets/vliegende-hollanders-turbulent-skies (Do you know this, @LePlongeur  @Dutchbeat  @Pleudoniem  @Mar T. ?)  - then it would be wise to maintain a lower rate of compression.


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #2 on: February 04, 2021, 23:49:56
I have never been bothered with LUFS, and frankly, I have never felt the need. Possibly, if there is a ready-to-use tool that lets me adjust the LUFS with a click of a mouse, I might take it into account. Not because I care, but because someone told me it would be a good thing.
Pleudoniem: composer; bass guitarist; guitarist; singer; drummer; tap-guitarist - o, and yes... erm- a bit of keys. Open for collabs.
SoundCloud Page: https://soundcloud.com/pleudoniem


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #3 on: February 05, 2021, 12:17:01
I'm sure classical music has and always has had a different set of rules regarding dynamic range and compression ( or lack there of) @oorlab @Pleudoniem
But if one is making more commercial music they're going to want to have a volume in line with others.
If one is listening to a playlist and then a really quiet one comes up ..... it basically sounds bad

There is a lot of information on the internet saying YouTube will just turn your track up for you.
It won't. YouTube will only turn it down.
YouTube will not turn your track up.
If I can just save one person from making the mistake I did then I will be happy.

@oorlab  this is "stats for nerds" if on a pc you right click a video. Not sure how to get there on other devices. 


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #4 on: February 05, 2021, 14:31:24
@Bill from November Sound Whenever I click on a track or a video, I always turn down the volume anyway. You know how LUFS work, but I don't get the impression it is widespread among all the rest of the sound producing world. I usually get different volumes when I click on something, and sometimes the noise really blows out of my loudspeakers. So, to play it safe, I start low and push up the volume while listening. You may have a point for YouTube uploads though, because when  listen to a string of clips, I don't need to adjust the volume once I've set it. I do need to when I start the first one in the string.


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #5 on: February 05, 2021, 14:50:40
I never claimed to know anything about it really @Pleudoniem   :)   
I just see the "stats for nerds" shows the truth ... and I learned the hard way that YouTube doesn't turn things up.   :)     Oh well LUFS or no LUFS .... Maybe it'll help somebody somewhere.

It matters more for pop/ rock/ commercial music I'd say.


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Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #6 on: February 05, 2021, 18:31:06
Im over here just trying to figure out how LUFS relates to kdb but there just doesnt seem to be a consensus from what I can see.  It seems to matter most to the amatuer engineer if one is self mastering or using an A.I. service like Landr.  My buddy, who is a legit pro engineer, said that mixes should be -18 LUFS pre mastering.  But without a plug in that specifically shows the LUFS, he said that having my mixes at around -6db will work well for when I send my final mixes to the mastering engineer, who will set my tracks the proper LUFS for universal playback. 

Still seems overly confusing to me


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Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #7 on: February 05, 2021, 20:13:46
@Knate @Bill from November Sound  @Pleudoniem
interesting thoughts in the thread. My take on Lufs as a measurement of Loudness (on which books have been written that are worth while seeking out) is that as a home recorder you should keep your own final mix uncompressed. Then you're fine and good to go when you need to master (adjusting EQ and compression mostly) for a specific platform, stream, playlist, video, CD, or what have you.

@Knate  keeping your final mixes at -6dB indeed gives the engineer enough headroom to adjust filters and settings.

@Pleudoniem  - in your case - if you listen to all your tracks on SC and you notice one is lesser in volume then the rest, you could up that one a bit with compression, limiting and EQ-ing. But i wouldn't throw away the uncompressed original.

@Bill from November Sound  - stats for nerds showing the truth -  :yes:yes. But that could be a truth for youtube today. Who knows how it will work on soundcloud, tidal, bandcamp, spotify in the coming period. I know that European radio stations do their own Lufs adjustment before broadcasting. This is the technical specification https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EBU_R_128. Do you have such a norm in Connecticut?


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #8 on: February 05, 2021, 20:53:21
@oorlab I know, but I am not that bothered. If they like the song, they will up the volume themselves.  Sometimes I do adjust the volume when I happen to think of it and feel like it. I don't think it is very much of an issue anyway, as SoundClouders with varying volumes are quite commonplace.


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #9 on: February 05, 2021, 22:40:24
Spotify will turn up on the app if listener has it set that way.

Spotify will not turn up your music on the webplayer.

For people who get their exposure from playlists this is a big deal. 

For SoundCloud you can master really hot. It is different than all the others ... it is also lower quality audio.


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Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #10 on: February 05, 2021, 22:41:18
« Last Edit: February 05, 2021, 22:57:45 by oorlab »
@Pleudoniem  - rightly so - it shouldn't be bothering. If you were to make an album of songs, intended to be played in one run (best of Pleudoniem on bandcamp eg.) and 1 track would sound softer, that's when one would check the loudness.
If you are aiming for airplay on a radio station, it could be worth your while to master for radio specifically.

@Bill from November Sound  - I didn't know Spotify had a webplayer! Good to know. I have the app both on phone and PC , and never noticed a big difference in loudness, compared to albums I have on CD. Could be interestng to make one mastering, post it on bandcamp, youtube, spotify and soundcloud and listen for the difference. The question then would be, would you check it on earbuds, or neafield speakers? Or in a car?


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #11 on: February 05, 2021, 23:12:31
That's what I did @oorlab in my original post.
You can see it and hear it.
I learned the hard way ..... it'll be an expensive lesson when all said and done.
Hopefully I can save somebody with my experience.


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Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #12 on: February 05, 2021, 23:42:10
@Bill from November Sound  - maybe I misunderstood your original post - I see two links to youtube. I guess 2 different masterings (by you?).
 
But if you (or we for that matter) would take one and the same file (for isntance a Dutchbeat song) and post it on both SC, BC, Spotify, and youtube - then we could figure out which one is the best in terms of Lufs.

If you can share a link to "Friday" on Spotify, I'd be happy to compare it - both on speakers and earbuds


Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #13 on: February 06, 2021, 01:47:56
Oh sorry @oorlab .... right , the second quieter one is pro mastered but we shot too low. That is the exact one on spotify, iTunes, etc.
The first and louder one is my cranking it up a bit.
That way I could share the information here.


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Re: Loudness, LUFS & the Truth !!!
Reply #14 on: February 06, 2021, 10:24:57
That's what I did @oorlab in my original post.
You can see it and hear it.
I learned the hard way ..... it'll be an expensive lesson when all said and done.
Hopefully I can save somebody with my experience.

Yes, @Bill from November Sound I think that this is what sharing is all about.
We all LUFS you a lot. Thank you for posting.
Have a nice weekend.

Kind regards, Gus



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