Adjusting LIVE Output volume

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
topey
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Adjusting LIVE Output volume

Post by topey » Wed Mar 19, 2008 11:19 pm

Is there any way to adjust the output volume of live. As an example, iTunes playback is 200% louder than LIVE when master volume is in 100%.

With all the other audio applications the playback level is about the same with iTunes, but LIVE is like volume was turned to 45-55 %.

3dot...
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Post by 3dot... » Thu Mar 20, 2008 1:29 am

...you're silly....
stop being silly....

:P
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adventurepants_
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Post by adventurepants_ » Thu Mar 20, 2008 1:58 am

are you trying it with the same file in itunes and live? or are you comparing two completely different files recorded at two completely different levels?

Pitch Black
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Post by Pitch Black » Thu Mar 20, 2008 2:00 am

Have you got crap like Soundcheck or Sound Enhancer switched on in iTunes?
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Tarekith
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Post by Tarekith » Thu Mar 20, 2008 2:59 am

So weird, crazy tunes that have likely been overlimited in mastering playing back louder than a properly gainstaged Live song.


8O

topey
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Post by topey » Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:10 am

OK It sounded silly.

Probably I was misuderstood. I did not mean the levels of exported audio files, but the signals that different audio applications are sending to audio interface.

My guess is that LIVE sends 50 % weaker audio signal that other audio applications. I was wondering if there was a way to adjust that level of output signal in somewhere in the LIVE?

Or should it be done by some audio control application or extension plug-in?

adventurepants_
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Post by adventurepants_ » Thu Mar 20, 2008 5:00 am

we didnt misunderstand you, we realise that you dont seem to understand the difference between an audio player (itunes) and a production program.

there are literally tens of variables that go into what you perceive as "volume"


again, have you imported the exact same track into Live, and are comparing the volume of that with Itunes? or are you comparing the output of compressed and mastered song in itunes with the volume of a drum loop in Live?

topey
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Post by topey » Thu Mar 20, 2008 1:20 pm

Yes, you are right, that there is still much to learn in audio applications. Sorry if my non native english is not understandable.


Here is a link to some music, that I made while learning to use LIVE 5.2:

http://www.trstpaja.com/sampletrack.html

All the music is composed and arranged by me, and all the instruments are played, recorded, mixed and fixed in LIVE 5.2 by me. If there is used a synth, the sounds are created from the self recorded sample in simpler.


Probably my music is not perfect to every ear, but gives some kind of impression of my audio application skills.


Those musics could be done by someone who do not understand a difference between playback device and production program?


While doing those musics, LIVE became quite familiar with all it´s possibilities and variables.


But still I am wondering, that how come the output level is 50% from other applications, eventhough the master volume level meter is allready in red.


Isn´t the master volume the last variable in the sound proces chain?

So the question is: Is there adjustable variable between master volume and soundcard?


If not, the second question is:

Do you know any Mac Audio Control Application, that lets adjust built-in sound cards input and output levels between different applications?

Tarekith
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Post by Tarekith » Thu Mar 20, 2008 1:47 pm

You could try playing with the Audio Midi Setup in OSX:


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topey
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Post by topey » Thu Mar 20, 2008 2:59 pm

Thanks!

That is pretty close of what I am looking for.

If there was a third section "audio appliations" it was exactly what I needed.


Thanks anyway, I go on searching from google and version tracker a proper audio set up utility.

If someone has any other suggestions. thats OK, but not necessary.

Happy Holidays!

laird
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Post by laird » Thu Mar 20, 2008 3:14 pm

Pitch Black wrote:Have you got crap like Soundcheck or Sound Enhancer switched on in iTunes?
Don't ignore this helpful comment here!
Instead of turning up Live, why not turn down iTunes?!?!
It may _not_ be the ideal level you should be aiming for, for so many reasons... PB's suggestion being reason #1.

Robert Henke
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Post by Robert Henke » Thu Mar 20, 2008 3:18 pm

Hi topey,

Live is not more quiet than other audio apps. As others pointed out, there are many factors that define how loud a signal is, technically and perceptionally.

If ITunes and Live are both using the outputs of the same soundcard, then a signal that has a peak level of 0dB will have that level in both applications.

But there are many ways you can change the output level of an application.
If you play back an audio file in Live, with no effects applied, you have already three gain stages:

- the level settings of the clip in the clip view. It should be 0.0dB if you want to play back the clip unaltered
- the level of the audio track that plays back the clip. It should be 0.0dB if you want to play back the clip unaltered
- the level of the master output channel in Live. It should be 0.0dB if you want to play back the clip unaltered

You also have ways in ITunes to alter the sound and volume:

- the enhancer ( which is quite hidden )
- the EQ
- the output volume slider

If the enhancer is off, the EQ is off, and the volume is set to 0dB,
the same audiofile should sound identically in iTunes and in Live.

Cheers, Robert

topey
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Post by topey » Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:45 pm

Thank you for answering:




This is not a problem that needs to be solved right now, this is the problem that has been irritating me for two years, while I´ve been working with LIVE besides other audio applications not less than 1000 hours.




I am aware that there are very many variables that affects to the sound volume, but isn´t the master volume the last one of them?





When doing something with LIVE I adjust the master volume level so, that it stays green, but flashes red no more often than once in ten seconds.


That means, that if the each track has a output level well adjusted, the master volume is set up to 80%. Then 90% stays red 70% do not reach the peak level at all.




When master volume is set to that ideal level of "dancing around the peak" the signal that LIVE sends, is less loud than other audio application which I work with.


I use LIVE, Sound Studio, Roxio Toast, Garage Band, iTunes, Max, Quick Time, and Final Cut, and some other audio/video related app´s, in different situations for different tasks.



When sound levels are adjusted to ideal "dancing right under peak level" the output signal seem to not equal with other app´s.





So eventhough it might be a standard that all the app´s are sending same level signal to soundcard, I do have the need for adjusting those levels.





I am not talkin about DJ stuff, but using LIVE as a multitracker recording software for making music, soudntracks, and sound effects for short movies.





It does not matter how much I adjust the audio levels in LIVE, but the fact is that every time when I toggle between LIVE and other applications, I have to adjust the volume level of my loudspeakers/amplifier.

laird
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Post by laird » Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:53 pm

topey wrote: I´ve been working with LIVE besides other audio applications not less than 1000 hours.....
When doing something with LIVE I adjust the master volume level so, that it stays green, but flashes red no more often than once in ten seconds.
That means, that if the each track has a output level well adjusted, the master volume is set up to 80%. Then 90% stays red 70% do not reach the peak level at all.
Juding from the words you use, you should read up on
http://www.ableton.com/forum/viewtopic. ... +levelling
time to get a handle on dBfs, what mastering means, what heavy Compression+Limiting does to the "loudness" of a typical song downloaded off iTunes versus what you are working on inside Live.

andydes
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Post by andydes » Thu Mar 20, 2008 5:00 pm

You've still not said if you are comparing the same audio file between these applications. As an unmastered mix will always sound quieter than a commercial release. This is not a bad thing. Read up on loudness wars, it's discussed here a lot.

And the master volume flashing red every ten seconds or so is not the ideal setting. It should never go into the red. Keep clear of it.

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