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bob ludwig and loudness
Old 24th January 2009
  #1
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bob ludwig and loudness

Hello all, this is my first visit here in a couple of years.

I was just reading today about how Bob Ludwig tries to avoid loudness for the sake of loudness. A couple of weeks ago, though, I was reading a disclaimer on his site about a misquote from him in a magazine. It said something about how CDs are now 4-8 times louder than 15 years ago. He retorted something like "I said new CDs are about 10dB louder, that's twice as loud, hardly 4-8". Now he of all people will know 10dB louder is 10x as loud, not twice. It seemed as though he was somewhat in denial about the state of CDs. But to his credit, he did say he hopes Guns 'n' Roses new album will be the beginning of an end to the loudness war. I just hope he's right about that. Though GnR will never again have the influence they did in the 80s and 90s.

I've been mastering professionally for 6 years or so and have always struggled with this loudness thing. I really do hope enough people have spoken against it that things will start getting reasonable again. I was shocked when levels hit -6dBfs RMS. I thought "well it can't possibly get any worse than this" and now there's CDs averaging -3.5dBfs....completely unlistenable mush. I usually shoot for about -10dBfs RMS personally, I did 1 record at -6dBfs because the client kept asking for louder....I delivered what he wanted after some debate with him and at double my normal price. Then I said I'd never do it again. I DO hope MUSIC will come back and replace the metalic noise we find in stores.

BTW, what's with all the mastering engineers named Bob? Bob Katz, Bob Dennis, Bob Ludwig and some people call me Silent Bob.

Thanks for reading.
Old 24th January 2009
  #2
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really?

Quote:
Now he of all people will know 10dB louder is 10x as loud, not twice.
with all respect due, 10dB louder is not 10 times louder. 6dB louder is twice as loud.
Old 24th January 2009
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With all do respect, he's flat lined more than a few cd's. Maybe he's acknowledging now that louder doesn't equal better.

TW
Old 24th January 2009
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jdg
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Bob Olhsson, Bob Dennis, Bob Weston.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
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I may be wrong, but 6db is twice as loud but doesn't the ear perceive 10db as being twice as loud? Or something to that effect.
Old 24th January 2009
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I really hope some will see the light on this as well. Unfortunately, the customer is who usually dictates the loudness of their end product. Especially when the final mixes they provide are already compressed to hell and clipped, as it is.

Too many times I've mastered a project with a client bringing in the loudest CD's they could find to compare to theirs. Of course I want to produce the best product possible, but it seems it's more of a bad judgment/ears thing, and there's just no concern about it, for the most part.

When I first put on that new GnR album, I was astonished that it was actually mastered properly. I was thinking to myself, 'maybe it was mastered 15 years ago'? heh

RL is a true master at his craft. Hopefully the Big Machine will start to think a bit differently when it comes to how these records sound. It seems dynamics are dead and gone, these days. Makes the emotion of music pointless.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waltz Mastering ➑️
With all do respect, he's flat lined more than a few cd's. Maybe he's acknowledging now that louder doesn't equal better.

TW
With all due respect - to me Bob L. is one of the best example of an ME that does exactly what the client asks of him that I can think of. If the client wants smashed levels he can do it relatively elegantly (i.e. Foo Fighter's "In Your Honor"). Ask for pristine completely natural dynamics and he can give that to you as well (i.e. Nonesuch version of Henrik Gorecki's "Symphony No.3"). From all evidence that I've been able to gather - implying that he crushes dynamics on his own whims is seriously mistaken.

Best regards,
Steve Berson
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Never1 ➑️
I may be wrong, but 6db is twice as loud but doesn't the ear perceive 10db as being twice as loud? Or something to that effect.
While "twice" as loud is a matter of perception, it's generally regarded as 10dB.


DC
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
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"implying that he crushes dynamics on his own whims is seriously mistaken."

I really never said that he crushed thing's in a detrimental way. I've listened to "In Your Honor" many times, and other things he's done with a lack of dynamics whether in a good way or bad way, I did not say. Saying that, Back in the day, I had a few projects I produced mastered by Bob and I know he's one of the best, but not immune. With all do respect.

TW
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
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I've heard 6 and 10 dB quoted, but any definition of twice the perceived volume is very debatable. To me, 10 dB sounds about right when listening very, very quietly. When listening at higher SPLs, 6 dB or even less feels about twice as loud to me. That same effect is also true if a signal is bandwidth limited.
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waltz Mastering ➑️
"implying that he crushes dynamics on his own whims is seriously mistaken."

I really never said that he crushed thing's in a detrimental way. I've listened to "In Your Honor" and many times other things he's done with a lack of dynamics whether in a good way or bad way, I did not say. Saying that, he's one of the best, but not immune.

TW
To clarify my post - there are certainly a number of things that are in his credits that I think are definitely too crushed - i.e. "In Your Honor" and Bruce Springsteen's "Magic" come to mind immediately -
BUT:
My point was that as the levels he gives on masters he works on are wholey requested and approved by the clients. In other words: he's giving them what they ask for as best as he can do it - and if it was under his own druthers rather than theirs it's extremely doubtful that any of the masters that bear his name that are in fact crushed would ever be set at these levels.

Best regards,
Steve Berson
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 24-96 Mastering ➑️
I've heard 6 and 10 dB quoted, but any definition of twice the perceived volume is very debatable. To me, 10 dB sounds about right when listening very, very quietly. When listening at higher SPLs, 6 dB or even less feels about twice as loud to me. That same effect is also true if a signal is bandwidth limited.
10 dB is in average twice as loud. (from empiric studies)
6 dB is twice the level. (voltage or pressure)
3 dB is twice the level. (power or energy)
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Never1 ➑️
I may be wrong, but 6db is twice as loud but doesn't the ear perceive 10db as being twice as loud? Or something to that effect.
6 dB is not twice as loud but twice the level.
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #14
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Quote:
6dB louder is twice as loud.
Since the Bel is a base-10 logarithmic ratio, an increase of 1 Bel would be 10x the power (like the Richter scale). 10 deciBels equals 1 Bel so 10dB = 10x. That is NOT subjective but rather a mathematical definition of the term as written by the people who invented it. Every book I've ever read on acoustics or otherwise defines 3dB as double the power. Double the power means double the volume. Now percieved loudness is a somewhat subjective matter but either way you look at it, you bring up the level 6dB, you get double the voltage. But when you double the voltage, you ALSO double the current, thereby generating 4x the power.

Either way you look at it, a record that's 3dB louder than another (once the max level has been reached), the distortion quadruples, not doubles. So why quadruple the distortion for double the power? It's completely stupid and a pointless rat race where there's no winners, only losers.

Last edited by wado1942; 25th January 2009 at 12:25 AM.. Reason: clarification
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audio ergo sum ➑️
10 dB is in average twice as loud. (from empiric studies)
Thanks... As I said, I'm aware of 10dB being quoted as "twice as loud". I'm saying that I think that such a statement is very questionable, or overly generalising at least.

What kind of signal at what kind of playback level were the empirical studies in question done with? Those variables, to my ears, are a huge factor in relative loudness perception.

As I wrote before, in my experience, 10 dB sounds like a doubling of level to me when listening to music at quite low background listening SPLs. However, listening to a bandwidth limited signal at high SPL, a 3dB increase will be enough to make most people say "it's twice as loud now".
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audio ergo sum ➑️
6 dB is not twice as loud but twice the level.

ahhh yeah, that's right. I knew it was something of the sort. Every 6db doubles the level but our ears, depending on the program material won't necessarily perceive it as twice as loud.
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #17
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There are 2 different equations for decibels:

for dBSWL (sound power(wattage) level, the amount of sound energy from a source in all directions):
dBswl=10log(w/wref), where wref is 1 picowatt.

for dBSPL (sound pressure level, the acoustic pressure at a point):
dBspl = 20log(P/Pref), where Pref is 20uPa (the threshold of hearing)

Note that dBsil has a multiplier of 10 times a logarithm, where dBspl has a multiplier of 20.

Because of the different multipliers, what is 'twice as loud' depends on what kind of dB you are using. With dBswl, 3dB is twice as loud and 10dB is 10 times as loud, as you would expect in a log scale. With dBspl, 6dB is twice as loud and 20dB is 10 times. (Here using 'loud' as a synonym for 'amount of power or pressure being measured', which isn't exactly correct but is close.)

Since we are generally deal in acoustic pressure (with a 20x multiplier) or voltage (dBv = 20log(V/Vref) ) 6dB is a doubling in almost all recording situations.
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
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Bob's under the same loudness pressure as all of us MEs... maybe more.

So far this year I've had several requests to make projects very, very loud.

I usually mention the trade off between loudness and quality, many understand the issue, but don't really care, just want it as loud as the top CDs in their genre, or iTunes, MySp*ce, etc... so I'll take it as loud as I can.

Doug Sax can sure get 'em amazingly loud and amazingly clean, something magic in his custom designed signal path, not the usual off the shelf stuff from music stores and audio dealers.

A CD I mastered a couple years ago for a certain ultra-famous Texas country singer got a lukewarm review from a notorious allmusic.com critic. Much too my suprise he said it sounded flat & lackluster or something to that effect. When in fact the mix engineer & I were just being conservative with the level, and not tring to hype the EQ with brightness. So as they say no good deed goes unpunished ...at times.

Cheers - JT
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Never1 ➑️
I may be wrong, but 6db is twice as loud but doesn't the ear perceive 10db as being twice as loud? Or something to that effect.
Old tests by Bell Labs in the 1930's determined 10 dB to be half as loud but actual preceived difference varies according to:

1. The SPL (loudness)
2. The ear hears increase in loudness easier than a reduction of louness.
3. The frequency spectrum of the sound.

6 dB is within a hair of being twice the sound pressure level pushing on the ear drum and twice as much votage once the sound becomes audio (RMS Voltage). Some times(if not all times) 10 dB will sound much louder than twice as loud.

Check my dictionary entry for Decibel:

The ratio of two levels according to a scale where a certain percentage change is one unit. [NOUN]

Useful Notes in using the Decibel Unit:
1. One dB represents approximately the smallest volume change which can be heard if listened for carefully. One dB represents an approximate change in pressure of 12%.
2. Three dB represents a small but noticeable change in volume.
3. Six dB represents a change in level of twice (or half) as much pressure.
4. A certain amount of dB represents a change of level (a change from what was before or from a standard level).
5. A certain percentage change in level will always be the same amount of change in dB.
6. Adding dB represents a multiplication of level.
7. 0 dB a is starting point in the comparison and does not mean no level.

Important Note About Decibels: It is recommended that you read all of the notes about the decibel as this is one of the most confusing terms in audio.

History and Original Use: The unit was originally invented by Bell Telephone Labs as the Bel and given its name after Alexander Graham Bell. The decibel is 1/10 of this original unit. The Bel unit was defined as a ratio of power levels of 10 to 1(ten times the power or one-tenth the power). In Telephones, amplifiers are driving speakers and doing so over long lines. To drive speakers there needs to be a power transfer. So if you are in the business of driving speakers, you will analyze how much power there is available and how much power was lost in getting the signal to the speaker.

What does Power have to do with Volume? More power means more volume can be achieved in the speaker but these two factors don't directly relate. Volume has to do with the amount of Sound Pressure there is.

The ear is a pressure sensitive device. Power (in an electrical circuit) is not just the pressure but also the flow. In electricity, the pressure is the voltage and the amount of flow is the amount of current. If you put twice as much voltage into a device (say a light bulb) there would be twice as much current; because both the voltage doubled and the current doubled, the power has been multiplied by a factor of four. In order to double the pressure of the sound pressure wave out of a speaker, you need 4 times the amplifier power to drive it. Does Pressure and Voltage Directly Relate To Volume? For all practical purposes, yes. Although the ear is not exactly pressure sensitive, it is closer to being pressure sensitive than to being anything else.

Many studies have been done regarding how changes in perceived loudness (volume) relate to level changes in dB. All of these studies suffered from problems in getting exact figures in that the personal opinion of listeners had to be consulted to get data for the studies.

The results of the studies did show that the perceived change in loudness varied greatly (by some 30% difference) depending on the starting volume, the frequency of the sound and the complexity of the wave. [Howard W. Tremaine, The Audio Cyclopedia, Second Edition, pages 17-18] Furthermore, the greenest recording student listening to music played through a console with a meter can quickly discover that an increase in level of a certain number of dB is much easier to hear than a reduction of level by the same amount of dB.

Someone (or some people) interpreted test data and made a generalization that a 10 dB change in level was twice (or half) the volume and many texts compound this useless and deceiving assertion. In practice the 6 dB change for full fidelity music represents twice (or half) the volume better than the confusing 10 dB. It has good scientific basis in that twice the pressure is an increase in 6 dB.

The following is presented as factors supporting this:

1. For centuries, composers and conductors have used a formula that it takes four times the musicians to get twice the volume. If a composer/conductor wanted the violins to be twice as loud, they would specify 4 times as many. This is four times the power or a 6 dB volume increase.

2. If 10 dB is twice the volume, then 10 people talking (10 times the power) would be twice as loud as one person talking. Any day care worker can tell you that 10 kids are much louder than twice the volume of one kid. If 6 dB is twice the volume, four kids would be twice the volume of one kid; you might have a chance of a day care worker agreeing with you on this.

Modern Use of The Decibel Unit:

Statements such as "voltage ratios cannot be expressed in decibels because decibels are, by definition, a ratio of power levels," ignores the current use of the unit and published standard decibel notation. What is the case here is that the use of the term in the profession demands a new definition of the term. It is common in language for the manner that the word is used in society to be the final determining standard for what a word means and technical terms are no exception. When a technical term is being commonly used by professionals differently than the dictionaries say it should be, it is time for the dictionaries to be re-written.

When you were little, it's possible that your teacher would not allow you to use the word "can" in asking a question. She may not have let you leave the room until you said, "May I go to the bathroom?" She was simply trying to get you to use words correctly. Most dictionaries of today allow you to use the word "can" when asking a question - it is too common in society for the writers of dictionaries to ignore. The same kind of thing has happened to the decibel. Except for the final amplifier that drives a speaker almost all equipment used in recording and sound reproduction is voltage sensitive. A change in voltage gain is a change in level, something to be measured, observed and used by recording engineers and design engineers. The dB, as read on meters, as specified for the level in and out of equipment, and as given in overload levels are voltage levels. The units dBV and dBu are based on standard levels of voltage completely divorced of current in the circuit or power levels.
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superdisc ➑️
Old tests by Bell Labs in the 1930's determined 10 dB to be half as loud but actual preceived difference varies according to:

1. The SPL (loudness)
2. The ear hears increase in loudness easier than a reduction of louness.
3. The frequency spectrum of the sound.

6 dB is within a hair of being twice the sound pressure level pushing on the ear drum and twice as much votage once the sound becomes audio (RMS Voltage). Some times(if not all times) 10 dB will sound much louder than twice as loud.

Check my dictionary entry for Decibel:

The ratio of two levels according to a scale where a certain percentage change is one unit. [NOUN]

Useful Notes in using the Decibel Unit:
1. One dB represents approximately the smallest volume change which can be heard if listened for carefully. One dB represents an approximate change in pressure of 12%.
2. Three dB represents a small but noticeable change in volume.
3. Six dB represents a change in level of twice (or half) as much pressure.
4. A certain amount of dB represents a change of level (a change from what was before or from a standard level).
5. A certain percentage change in level will always be the same amount of change in dB.
6. Adding dB represents a multiplication of level.
7. 0 dB a is starting point in the comparison and does not mean no level.

Important Note About Decibels: It is recommended that you read all of the notes about the decibel as this is one of the most confusing terms in audio.

History and Original Use: The unit was originally invented by Bell Telephone Labs as the Bel and given its name after Alexander Graham Bell. The decibel is 1/10 of this original unit. The Bel unit was defined as a ratio of power levels of 10 to 1(ten times the power or one-tenth the power). In Telephones, amplifiers are driving speakers and doing so over long lines. To drive speakers there needs to be a power transfer. So if you are in the business of driving speakers, you will analyze how much power there is available and how much power was lost in getting the signal to the speaker.

What does Power have to do with Volume? More power means more volume can be achieved in the speaker but these two factors don't directly relate. Volume has to do with the amount of Sound Pressure there is.

The ear is a pressure sensitive device. Power (in an electrical circuit) is not just the pressure but also the flow. In electricity, the pressure is the voltage and the amount of flow is the amount of current. If you put twice as much voltage into a device (say a light bulb) there would be twice as much current; because both the voltage doubled and the current doubled, the power has been multiplied by a factor of four. In order to double the pressure of the sound pressure wave out of a speaker, you need 4 times the amplifier power to drive it. Does Pressure and Voltage Directly Relate To Volume? For all practical purposes, yes. Although the ear is not exactly pressure sensitive, it is closer to being pressure sensitive than to being anything else.

Many studies have been done regarding how changes in perceived loudness (volume) relate to level changes in dB. All of these studies suffered from problems in getting exact figures in that the personal opinion of listeners had to be consulted to get data for the studies.

The results of the studies did show that the perceived change in loudness varied greatly (by some 30% difference) depending on the starting volume, the frequency of the sound and the complexity of the wave. [Howard W. Tremaine, The Audio Cyclopedia, Second Edition, pages 17-18] Furthermore, the greenest recording student listening to music played through a console with a meter can quickly discover that an increase in level of a certain number of dB is much easier to hear than a reduction of level by the same amount of dB.

Someone (or some people) interpreted test data and made a generalization that a 10 dB change in level was twice (or half) the volume and many texts compound this useless and deceiving assertion. In practice the 6 dB change for full fidelity music represents twice (or half) the volume better than the confusing 10 dB. It has good scientific basis in that twice the pressure is an increase in 6 dB.
Thanks for posting that, very interesting. To be honest, imo dB (only) as a measure is just not a good enough to make any generalisation here. For one thing there are a zillion factors that the statement "X dB sounds twice as loud" does not take into account to begin with. For another thing, a logarithmic scale is just not tracking close enough to how we perceive level. In a way, I'm surprised that we're stuck with a logarithmic scale, just because it works _better_ than a linear one. It's far from ideal yet noone seems to be bothered by it, even though the problems it generates have real life implications (think static weighing curves for dB measurements, being used for safety laws, for example).

I guess I'm just baffled that very coarse research done by only one company (or two, if you count AT&T) close to 100 years ago is STILL the only going standard for sound level scales, even though it so often clearly doesn't fit the bill.


Quote:
One dB represents approximately the smallest volume change which can be heard if listened for carefully
Hmm... I disagree with that though
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #21
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"It is recommended that you read all of the notes about the decibel as this is one of the most confusing terms in audio. "

i agree with that
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #22
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Sone - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

a doubling of the number of sones sounds to the human ear like a doubling of the loudness, which also corresponds to increasing the sound pressure level by approximately 10 dB,

Phon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

JT
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Tubb ➑️
Sone - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

a doubling of the number of sones sounds to the human ear like a doubling of the loudness, which also corresponds to increasing the sound pressure level by approximately 10 dB,

Phon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

JT
Thanks for the link. I have heard of Phon and Sone, yet here in Germany, all official measurements (for legal purposes, for example) are still done in weighed dBSPL.

Quote:
Originally Posted by from the SONE link
At frequencies other than 1 kHz, the measurement in sones must be calibrated according to the frequency response of human hearing, which is a subjective process.
DOH!

Quote:
Originally Posted by from the SONE link
To be fully precise, a measurement in sones must be specified in terms of the optional suffix G, which means that the loudness value is calculated from frequency groups, and by one of the two suffixes D (for direct field or free field) or R (for room field or diffuse field).
Reading this today seems like pretty basic research, only marginally better than static weighing curves. This was in 1936. What happened since?
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Tubb ➑️
Sone - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

a doubling of the number of sones sounds to the human ear like a doubling of the loudness, which also corresponds to increasing the sound pressure level by approximately 10 dB,

Phon - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

JT
When doing tests with music or pink noise, over full range loudspeakers, I find that more people perceive a 6dB change as "twice the volume" or "half the volume." When the Bel was established in the 1920's, I doubt anyone was conducting critical listening tests on full-range equipment. Try it yourself, and see what you think.

-Ben B
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben B ➑️
When doing tests with music or pink noise, over full range loudspeakers, I find that more people perceive a 6dB change as "twice the volume" or "half the volume." When the Bel was established in the 1920's, I doubt anyone was conducting critical listening tests on full-range equipment. Try it yourself, and see what you think.

-Ben B
To be honest, I find changes in loudness to appear more extreme with bandwidth limited material and I believe that this is true for most people. Going by that, Bell should have gotten lower results than you on a full range system. I really think your observation is primarily down to listening level... To my ears, at higher SPLs, increases (and decreases) are felt significantly more drastically than at low SPLs. Try it, I'd be interested to see if you agree.

EDIT: Relation of direct and indirect signal will have a strong effect on it too, I guess. Maybe 10dB seems so high to many of us because we're listening in studios and not in empty, untreated laboratory rooms.
Old 25th January 2009
  #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wado1942 ➑️
Hello all, this is my first visit here in a couple of years.

I was just reading today about how Bob Ludwig tries to avoid loudness for the sake of loudness. A couple of weeks ago, though, I was reading a disclaimer on his site about a misquote from him in a magazine. It said something about how CDs are now 4-8 times louder than 15 years ago. He retorted something like "I said new CDs are about 10dB louder, that's twice as loud, hardly 4-8". Now he of all people will know 10dB louder is 10x as loud, not twice.
Actually, according to the scientists, 10 dB is approximately twice as loud. Somewhere between 6 and 10 dB is perceived as twice as loud.

10 dB increase requires 10 times the amplifier power (100 watts is 10 dB more than 10 watts) so that's probably where you got confused. Requiring 10 times the power just to get twice the loudness points out how important it is to have a high wattage amplifier!

Signed,

Noisy Bob
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #27
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from a dsp point of view,

it's easy to view 6db differences as doubling or halving since to make a signal 6db louder you double all points of the wave i.e. multiply all points by 2...

or conversely halve them to get 6db quieter.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chopstic*** ➑️
from a dsp point of view,

it's easy to view 6db differences as doubling or halving since to make a signal 6db louder you double all points of the wave i.e. multiply all points by 2...

or conversely halve them to get 6db quieter.
but the discussion is about human perception,
unfortunately wiki is not the definitive source for points of bickering!
damned if I know where to steer you to though.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chopstic*** ➑️
from a dsp point of view,

it's easy to view 6db differences as doubling or halving since to make a signal 6db louder you double all points of the wave i.e. multiply all points by 2...

or conversely halve them to get 6db quieter.
well to be precise factor 2 would be somewhere around 6.02 dB or so, have to look it up.
For manually adjusting levels that is irrelevant. But for programming DSP it is not.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob katz ➑️
Actually, according to the scientists, 10 dB is approximately twice as loud. Somewhere between 6 and 10 dB is perceived as twice as loud.


Signed,

Noisy Bob
And here we have the problem. "Loudness" is susposed to measure the intensity of the sound to the ear, BUT it's a subjective subject (consultuing opinions) and any authorative test will tell you that this varies depending on circumstances (eg, The Audio Cyclopedia). Any assertion that "twice as loud is ___ number of dB" is destined to be more wrong than right. However, we all have a right to our opinion.

To my ears, what is read on a VU meter as % change of RMS levels sounds about right to my ears as that much change in loudness. (-6 dB = 50%) This may well be that it's because I've used the VU meter so much, but you will never convince me that ten trumpets (or any other sound source) is only "twice as loud" as one - I'm not buying it, regardless of whatever a text may say.

The bottom line is that it doesn't really matter. What we have to do is develop our ears so that we can perceive level changes of 10 dB, 6 dB, 3 dB and 1dB (as well as other dB changes both up and down). Then we can mix and master much better.

Take Care

Bob
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