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36 replies to this topic

#21 OFFLINE   satcrazy

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 10:40 PM

This has been an ongoing issue between broadcasters and the government for many years.

If you took a VU meter to any broadcast you will see that the commercials are already peaking at a slightly lower level than the program audio. Why it sounds louder has to do with the amount of audio compression applied. Commercials have their audio dynamics smashed to near zero, while the program audio dynamic range is much wider (which sounds softer to the human ear). It's also why noncommercial networks like HBO sound softer in comparison to commercial networks.


OK.
Who controls the audio compression?

I'm guessing the channel does, correct?

The reason I came to that conclusion, as I was watching History channel tonight, All commercials were at same level as the program I was watching, so I didn't have to make a mad scramble for the remote volume button.

Thank you History channel.

I also noticed the last dozen or so Dish commercials on various channels were lower than the program itself.

Thank you Dish.

Since I don't have to lower or mute, I am more inclined to at least sort of pay attention to them.

The channels that also have commercials with various volumes just get turned way down or muted [ along with the high decibel ones] so what are they gaining? The various volume also seems to indicate the advertisers dictate the volume they want from the channel that is broadcasting.

Just my observations.

Hope everyone had a pleasant holiday,

cheers

Tymekeeper- we're on the same page!

Edited by satcrazy, 22 November 2012 - 10:47 PM.


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#22 ONLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 05:25 AM

One thing i have noticed in movies and shows lately is the music and or sound effects seem to be louder than the dialog. I am always lowering the volume then raising it when people are speaking......


My favorite is when I have to back it up two or three times, each time louder, and I still can't figure out what the actor said due to background noise.


What's worse is when it's just nonsense background filler music that has nothing to do with the storyline and could be (should be) eliminated altogether. Shows like "The First 48" and some shows on the ID and Science channels are getting really bad about it.
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#23 OFFLINE   Grandude

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 11:49 AM

What's worse is when it's just nonsense background filler music that has nothing to do with the storyline and could be (should be) eliminated altogether. Shows like "The First 48" and some shows on the ID and Science channels are getting really bad about it.

I agree completely. This drives me crazy. I'm forced to turn on closed captioning to read the dialog which spoils the viewing experience.

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#24 OFFLINE   satcrazy

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 12:01 PM

I agree completely. This drives me crazy. I'm forced to turn on closed captioning to read the dialog which spoils the viewing experience.


+1

But,
at least most of the commercials I've seen have no CC when I have to constantly lower the volume:)

Edited by satcrazy, 23 November 2012 - 12:21 PM.


#25 OFFLINE   kenglish

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:17 AM

http://www.dolby.com...ment/lm100.html
;)

#26 OFFLINE   Hoosier205

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 12:52 PM

My guess is that some, not all, of you need to properly adjust your audio setups if you are having that much trouble with the dialog in these mixes.
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#27 OFFLINE   bigglebowski

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:05 PM

Do you think the bass is taking away from the vocals?

#28 OFFLINE   Michael P

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:50 PM

My guess is that some, not all, of you need to properly adjust your audio setups if you are having that much trouble with the dialog in these mixes.


There is little that can be done at the "end user's" location, unless they have a Dolby Digital set-up and can adjust the front center speaker separately from the other channels.

For those of us listening in "2.0" the only adjustment is to shut off the surround feature (if our TV's have that feature). 98% of the time the dialog gets washed out when the surround is turned on. I bet many who have this feature don't even know it's there or how to change it.
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#29 OFFLINE   Hoosier205

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:57 PM

There is little that can be done at the "end user's" location, unless they have a Dolby Digital set-up and can adjust the front center speaker separately from the other channels.

For those of us listening in "2.0" the only adjustment is to shut off the surround feature (if our TV's have that feature). 98% of the time the dialog gets washed out when the surround is turned on. I bet many who have this feature don't even know it's there or how to change it.


For the most part, those people listening in 2.0 are listening to mixes produced for 5.1 environments. It will bury the dialog more than it should be. Then you have people who do have a 5.1/7.1 setup, but they don't actually now how to utilize it properly.
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#30 OFFLINE   kenglish

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 01:50 PM

If the station or channel is not setting up the metadata properly, especially if it's vastly different from what the audio producer planned for, mix-down levels can be all over the place. (i.e.: Stations can, and often do, use their own metadata, rather than what was sent by the network or programming producer.)
Metadata can do everything from, describing the way channels mix-down, to how they are (volume, audibly) compressed on both surround and mix-down, to how the low-frequency audio is reproduced.

We use a box that does some "gain riding" and such, but NBC (and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir ;)) requires us to pass everything unmodified, so we switch it in and out of those modes via automation. The box just protects from over-level, uniformly across all channels, then.

#31 OFFLINE   satcrazy

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 11:02 AM

If the station or channel is not setting up the metadata properly, especially if it's vastly different from what the audio producer planned for, mix-down levels can be all over the place. (i.e.: Stations can, and often do, use their own metadata, rather than what was sent by the network or programming producer.)
Metadata can do everything from, describing the way channels mix-down, to how they are (volume, audibly) compressed on both surround and mix-down, to how the low-frequency audio is reproduced.

We use a box that does some "gain riding" and such, but NBC (and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir ;)) requires us to pass everything unmodified, so we switch it in and out of those modes via automation. The box just protects from over-level, uniformly across all channels, then.


This would then be the reason commercials on the same channel can have a vast difference in volume, correct? And also why some stations as a whole are louder as well?

Apparently the History channel can get it right, as I posted earlier.

Where is the uniformity?

#32 OFFLINE   Michael P

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 05:16 PM

Where is the uniformity?

Add to the confusion the "local insertion" commercials. On "cable channels" Dish inserts their own spots, on the local networks the local stations insert commercials. In both examples there is a chance for fluctuations (either up or down) in perceived audio levels. Keep in mind the key word is "perceived". From a strict technical point of view there is uniformity, however the human ear does not hear uniformly. Audio meters come in several variations (peak or average), neither can gauge perceived loudness. Even if a human were to sit at an audio console and monitor everything that is broadcast, that engineer hears the sound from his studio and not your living room/family room/bedroom etc. where the end product is heard. The acoustics of your listening environment also affects the end result.

This is an impossible situation, there is no way that a single audio stream can sound the same in every listening environment.
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#33 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 05:26 PM

Add to the confusion the "local insertion" commercials. On "cable channels" Dish inserts their own spots ...

DISH does this at the receiver level (as well as at the uplink) ... which adds to the complication. (Yes, some of those inserted ads are NOT on satellite feed ... they play from your DVR.)

#34 OFFLINE   satcrazy

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 02:24 PM

As if loud commercials aren't bad enough:

http://paidcontent.o...argeted-tv-ads/

[ yeah, HJ a little, ]

Hope this stays overseas....

#35 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 04:49 PM

Both DISH and DirecTV already do targeted advertising. :D
(Commercials played back on the customer's DVR to cover national commercials.)

#36 OFFLINE   satcrazy

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 05:01 PM

Both DISH and DirecTV already do targeted advertising. :D
(Commercials played back on the customer's DVR to cover national commercials.)


Ahhh

Didn't know this, as I don't have a dvr.

#37 OFFLINE   djlong

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 05:45 AM

I didn't think "Southern New Hampshire University" was paying for national spots :)




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