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Encoded 5.1 mix lower than original
Old 19th April 2009
  #1
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
Encoded 5.1 mix lower than original

after encoding my 5.1 surround mix using Compressor ( Professional Dolby surround 5.1 setting ) and burnt a DVD-video. I noticed the mix is lower that my original mix in PT. Any idea ?? Thanks
Old 19th April 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
nlc201's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Two questions to help answer your questions....


1. How are you comparing the levels of encoded mix vs. PT mix? Are you running through a decoder? Playing it off of a DVD?


2. What's the dialnorm setting in compressor when you encode? I'll bet this is the culprit......
Old 19th April 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
1-I compare by playing back a DVD ( with my encoded 5.1 AC3 file ) via a calibrated desktop player that's hooked into my Dangerous monitor ST-SR where i can see its output on my WardBeck 5.1 meters. I compare many commercial DVD this way and the levels are about the same as my mix in PT.

2- The default setting in Compressor for Dialnorm is -27 dbFS, here's the full spec :
Format : AC3
Sample rate 48khz
Channels : 6
Bits per sample : 16
Data Rate : 448 kbps
Compression preset : Film standard
Audio coding mode : 3/2 ( L,C,R,Ls,Rs )
Bitstream mode Complete main
Center mix level : -3 db
Surround mix level : -3 db
Dolby surround mode : none
LFE : yes
Dialnorm : -27 dbFS
Old 19th April 2009 | Show parent
  #4
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minister's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Your PT is +4 dBU and your DVD player is -10dBU. How did you compensate for this? Line level shifter?

I never use compression on Compressor. Turn off ALL the pre-processing stuff.
Old 19th April 2009 | Show parent
  #5
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georgia's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
and set dialnorm to -31


cheers
geo
Old 19th April 2009 | Show parent
  #6
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🎧 20 years
minister

-The Dangerous monitor ST-SR let you to level match different inputs, there's a gain button that brings -10 to +4.

-what do you use to encode 5.1 surround ???

Georgia,

The default Dialnorm setting is -27 ( so this means a 4 db reduction ) and -31 means no reduction. Is there a reason for this ??? When i play some commercial DVD they dialog dances around 0 same as what i had on my PT mix...now does this mean that i need to mix 4 db hotter just to have it sit around 0 once it goes through Dialnorm ??
Old 19th April 2009 | Show parent
  #7
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minister's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by vudoo ➑️
The default Dialnorm setting is -27 ( so this means a 4 db reduction ) and -31 means no reduction. Is there a reason for this ???
Default is not always "best". -31 means the decoder will not adjust the level. It is explained in this Dolby document.

www.dolby.com/uploadedFiles/zz-_Shared_Assets/English_PDFs/Professional/18_Metadata.Guide.pdf
Old 19th April 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
minister,

the link does not work. thanks for helping.
Old 19th April 2009 | Show parent
  #9
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minister's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Oh, oops, well, copy and paste the link text. for some reason GS puts an extra before the address. or just remove that from your link window.

this is the link:

http://www.dolby.com/uploadedFiles/z...data.Guide.pdf

copy and paste that into a window.
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Neyrinck
 
pneyrinck's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
-27 is the default setting because Dolby chose it as the recommended dialog loudness level. It is normal in that case to have a DVD play back 4 dB lower than your mix because the dialog will be the correct loudness relative to other DVD's. The theory is that consumers adjust their volume to make the dialog loud enough for them to hear comfortably. If you want to use a -31 setting for dialnorm, be sure to mix the dialog to be at a loudness of -31 for the best listener experience when watching and listening to your DVD.

Paul Neyrinck
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
Paul,

My mix level in PT is about the same as most commercial DVD so i basically want it played back on DVD exactly where i have it mixed !!! therefore i guess i have 2 choices

1- from now on i should mix everything 4 db hotter so that once it hits the Dolby encoder/decoder with dialnorm set at default ( -27 ), the level will be where i actually originally want it.

2- but then, as others suggested, i mind as well set the dialnorm to -31, and mix the way i want

because the end result will be the same.

Correct me but, the way i see it, If the mix is great...why would anyone need/want Dialnorm to mess with it !!!

BTW, most of the commercial DVD i have, dialog is definitely dancing around -20 or louder and not -27.... so does this mean their original dialog mix is around -16 so once Dialnorm kicks in it's at -20.
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
pisser's Avatar
 
🎧 20 years
I would highly recommend spending some time reading some of the documents on DOLBY'S site in regards to Dolby Digital, AC3, metadata. LeqA measurements and Dialog Normalization. It is really hard to understand all the specifics of all the possibilities when it comes to DVD encoding unless you get deep into Dolby's brain
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #13
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georgia's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
set it for -31...

funny thing... even the "big" DVD's do this. Steve, or was it Tom from Dolby and I..
I don't remember it was a while ago,, anyway we looked at a few DVD's meta data... Lord of the Rings, and a couple other "big" films... all the DVD's metadata was set for -31..

Unless you mix and know exactly what your DIALNORM is from your mix. set the DIALNORM to -31. If you have a DOLBY Dialnorm meter ( hardware like the LM100 or the new software version) then check the DIALNORM level of your mix and match it.

but franky.. I set just about every Dolby encode I author to -31 now.. it's not worth the pain to do it any other way with the AC3 encoder s/w.

cheers
geo
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
loudness race

and again, a wonderful technology killed by loudness racers,

sad story....

btw, wrong dialnorm settings lead to misaligned dynamic range control parameters.

(for the 1% users of this great feature)

Bernhard
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #15
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
Thanks Georgia,

And you're right about the -31...i had one of the studio check a few of my '' big budget '' DVD that i use as reference, and indeed, every single one of them had the Metadata set at -31.
As i mentioned, i really don't see the point of worrying about Dialnorm, why not always set it to -31....in an ideal world, don't we all want our mix to sound exactly the way we delivered it.
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
Georgia,

I have these settings set this way, what do you think :

PROCESSING TAB :
Compression Preset ( i have it set at NONE )
LFE Channel Low pass filter : unchecked
Full Bandwith channel low pass filter: unchecked
DC filter : checked
Surround channels 90 degrees phase shift : checked
Surround channel 3db attenuation : unchecked

BITSTREAM TAB:
Center Downmix : -3db
Surround Downmix : -3 db

Thanks a lot
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Hello all,

Regarding setting Dialnorm to -31: If you are using any DRC, I believe the Dialnorm determines where the thresholds are set. So for example if you have a program with a measured dialnorm of -25, and you type in -31, the DRC will start to squash your mix 6 dB earlier than it ought to.

-Richard
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Jesse Peterson's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
OP has 90degree phase shift checked.. I have always been told to leave this one and RF overmod alone. Any comments?
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #19
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georgia's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by vudoo ➑️
Georgia,

I have these settings set this way, what do you think :

PROCESSING TAB :
Compression Preset ( i have it set at NONE )
LFE Channel Low pass filter : unchecked
Full Bandwith channel low pass filter: unchecked
DC filter : checked
Surround channels 90 degrees phase shift : checked
Surround channel 3db attenuation : unchecked

BITSTREAM TAB:
Center Downmix : -3db
Surround Downmix : -3 db

Thanks a lot
Here's a setting from compressor I use.

Audio Encoder
Format: AC3
Sample Rate: 48.000kHz
Channels: 6
Bits Per Sample: 16
Target System: DVD Video
Data Rate: 448 kbps
Compression Preset: None
Audio Coding Mode: 3/2 (L, C, R, Ls, Rs)
BitStream Mode: Complete Main
Center Mix Level: -3dB
Surround Mix Level: -3dB
Dolby Surround Mode: None
LFE Exists: Yes
Dialog Normalization: -31 dbFS
Copyright Exists: Yes
Original Content: Yes
Audio Production Information Exists: No
RF Overmodulation Protection: Off
Channel Bandwidth Lowpass Filter: On
DC Highpass Filter: On
LFE Channel Lowpass Filter: On
3dB Attenuation: Off
phase 90: On
Deemphasis: Off

cheers
geo
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #20
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
Thank you Georgia !!!
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #21
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by vudoo ➑️
Thanks Georgia,

And you're right about the -31...i had one of the studio check a few of my '' big budget '' DVD that i use as reference, and indeed, every single one of them had the Metadata set at -31.
The sample of discs that you've checked is not representative of the majority - most DVDs are at -27. I'd say that maybe one out of five that I checked was -31 (and, yes they are usually 'big budget'.)
Quote:
Originally Posted by vudoo ➑️
As i mentioned, i really don't see the point of worrying about Dialnorm, why not always set it to -31....
Because when you do the theatrical mix on a dub stage, what you get is dialnorm -27. If there's no budget for additional DVD mixing, -27 is what you encode it with. Even if you do DVD mix tweaks, it's easier to stay at -27, unless you are doing a complete remix.
Quote:
Originally Posted by vudoo ➑️
in an ideal world, don't we all want our mix to sound exactly the way we delivered it.
The mix at -27 or -31 (or any number) will sound exactly as we delivered it, the only difference is the dynamic range available.
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #22
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
Anyone here using the Dolby Media Meter ???Or Is there anything on the market ( other than the Dolby LM100 )that i can use on my output bus to monitor my mix in real time in different Dialnorm setting ?? This would be ideal...no more surprises this way.
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #23
Lives for gear
 
georgia's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
the new dolby media meter or the LM100 is basically it for Dialnorm.


cheers
geo
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #24
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
georgia,

I tried the exact compressor setting like yours and when comparing to my mix in PT the levels are still lower ( 4-5 db lower ), i especially notice it when there's music and SFX. Any idea how i can get the Dolby AC3 stream the same level as my PT mix ??? Thanks
Old 20th April 2009 | Show parent
  #25
Lives for gear
 
georgia's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
the new dolby media meter or the LM100 is basically it for Dialnorm.


cheers
geo
Old 21st April 2009 | Show parent
  #26
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by vudoo ➑️
georgia,

I tried the exact compressor setting like yours and when comparing to my mix in PT the levels are still lower ( 4-5 db lower ), i especially notice it when there's music and SFX. Any idea how i can get the Dolby AC3 stream the same level as my PT mix ??? Thanks
This is probably because of DRC - the music and SFX, being the loudest, get compressed the most. Turn off compression in DVD players menu if possible.
Old 21st April 2009 | Show parent
  #27
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
Danijel,

The DRC on my desktop player is off.
Old 21st April 2009 | Show parent
  #28
Registered User
 
🎧 15 years
So, dialnorm is set to -31, DRC is off on the player.... I don't see any other possibility other than that the players output is not calibrated. Even though you did the -10dBV +4dBu conversion, still, god knows what the player is outputting.
Can you make a test DVD with just a tone at -20dBFS? That should show exactly what is going on.
Old 21st April 2009 | Show parent
  #29
Registered User
 
🎧 20 years
thanks Danijel,

I just sent you a PM.
Old 22nd April 2009 | Show parent
  #30
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
good advice and while you're at it, also put a 0dBFS testtone on the DVD to see if it actually gets played 20dB louder than the -20dBFS ref tone. It wouldn't surprise me that some dvdplayers or their DAC/analogue circuits top off the loudest levels. For this reason it's not always a great idea to put Dialnorm at -31. Indeed the level remains the same as your mix digitally, but if the mix is very hot, then chances are that consumer equipment is not capable of reproducing it. Also the summing in the LoRo downmix will likely be not what you expect.
If your mix is playing more quiet than a comparable commercial DVD with the same Dialnorm setting on the same DVD player, than it probably IS more quiet. Vudoo, you say your mix is 4-5dB more quiet; I don't know what sort of project it is, but do you ever hit the ceiling (0dBFS) in your mix? Chances are that you are monitoring to loud while mixing.

Greetings,

Thierry

Quote:
Originally Posted by danijel ➑️
So, dialnorm is set to -31, DRC is off on the player.... I don't see any other possibility other than that the players output is not calibrated. Even though you did the -10dBV +4dBu conversion, still, god knows what the player is outputting.
Can you make a test DVD with just a tone at -20dBFS? That should show exactly what is going on.
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