bass/lead volume comparison/adjustment question

Discussion in 'Working with Sound' started by petrrr, Sep 19, 2022.

  1. petrrr

    petrrr Kapellmeister

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    so lets say

    bass is currently at -15db

    and lead at -10db

    and i like the volume balance between the two instruments

    now...
    lets say i decided to make everything a bit louder

    do i need to raise the lead or bass more in proportion to the other so that the balance remains the same?

    i remember there is a study about the ear that says at differnet volumes u hear low frequencies and higher frequencies louder/softer or something

    so this is why i am asking

    thanks

    QUESTION
    EDIT: If i am gonna adjust things proportionally, what proportion should i use?
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2022
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  3. mk_96

    mk_96 Rock Star

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    That will depend heavily on the listener's conditions (what volume are they listening to music, what device, etc).

    This is actually where LUFS and all that stuff comes from. There's something called "weighting curves", which is a way to approximate measured levels to something more similar to what the human ear should perceive. Each of these curves relate to a loudness level perceived by the listener, A-weighting for example is based on the perception of 40dBSPL @ 1Khz and how much SPL you need by frequency to match that loudness.

    There are many of these, and what LUFS use is K-weighting, which is very similar to A-Weighting in terms of bass loudness, but if the listener is litening to music louder than that then it all goes to hell.

    Then i, the listener, will turn the volume down and the ballance will remain the same :rofl:

    Since it depends so much on the listener, if you want consistency the best you can do is make sure everything sounds nice on the frequency range that remains roughly the same regarless of listening level, which is roughly between 350Hz-10KHz. That doesn't mean you have to constrain yourself to that frequency range of course, it's just sort of a "safe zone" that doesn't fluctuate that much
     
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  4. xorome

    xorome Platinum Record

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    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equal-loudness_contour

    If your listening conditions are really quiet, your bass needs to be a lot louder than something higher up in the spectrum to be perceived to be just as loud.

    If your listening conditions are really loud, your bass doesn't need to be that much louder (or louder at all) to be perceived to be at the same loudness as something higher up in the spectrum.
     
  5. RobertoCavally

    RobertoCavally Platinum Record

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    Ofc ppl percieve sound produced at the same measured (dB SPL) level as much louder at 3500 Hz then at 35 Hz

    Have a look at the Equal loudness contours

    [​IMG]

    That would imply you indeed should care to adjust proportionally. But as you can see curves get flatter if the listener cranks up the volume (that's why there's the louder sounds better thing). I think there are just too many variables to draw some sort of math/technical rule.
     
  6. obi-juan

    obi-juan Member

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    Do you mean the Equal-loudness contour in general?
     
  7. petrrr

    petrrr Kapellmeister

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    yes!
     
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