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Old 15th February 2010
Help with Dialnorm and Commercial Audio Levels!

This is the first time I have produced and edited together a spot for a local business and they want to broadcast it on our local cable stations. I was sent an email from the broadcaster specifying their standards and came across this section:

"Note: Voiceover should not be present before 5 frames in and after 5 frames out. Spot file audio levels should have an AC3 dailnorm of -24 or analog at -12 dB."

I've been reading up on dialnorm, and it is a bit confusing. From what I understand there are only a few things that can actually measure this. The LM100 and Dolby's metering plugin for ProTools, neither of which I can use / afford (I am currently using FCP and Cubase as my mixing and editing platforms). The commercial only has music (classical) for the audio track. Also, what is the analog -12dB they speak of? Is that dBFS or VU?

Basically, given my circumstances, what is the best way to achieve a correct level for local broadcast?

Thank you.