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Old November 25th, 2009, 07:35 AM   #1
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sound for web

I am preparing a video that will only be used on the web. Where should I set my peak levels? adverage?
Can't seem to find a standard for this.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 09:49 AM   #2
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I don't believe there are any standards for this. I would just stick with being consistent peaking around -6 , average between -12 and -16. Not quite broadcast levels but not too hot either
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Old November 25th, 2009, 03:36 PM   #3
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If your levels aren't good on the site either remix it or just boost the final. But I'd check it against many other similar programs first. Be careful of over compressing it looking for more level. Cheers.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 08:08 PM   #4
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For the web, I think it's appropriate to push the levels. Many computer users don't have much bass response, so a multi-band compressor can be a nice tool to keep the bass hot enough to hear, but to keep it from overloading cheap speakers. Without a hot enough signal, it's possible that people will leave their levels too low, lose interest, and click away.

It really depends on your audience. If you want nice sound for a Vimeo audience, keep the dynamic range, and ask people to crank their levels in your intro post. If you are making a viral video that you want passed around to the lowest-common-denominator, compress the heck out of it. It will still have more range than any current top-40 hit.
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Old November 25th, 2009, 11:05 PM   #5
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What Daniel said. Our standards at miamiherald.com, during my time there, were peak at -6, with most levels falling between -12 and -6. This leaves headroom but keeps the audio at a consistent level for all the pieces we post and seems to work well with computer speakers. /Battle Vaughan
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Old November 26th, 2009, 01:30 PM   #6
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I assume that the Miami Herald video was almost entirely dialog with background sounds. Those levels seem exactly right.

I have to keep in mind that my main web project was an action hero spoof series, including trailers. We did stuff like this: Colonel Crush - City of Heroes Commercial with peaks always at 0 dbfs.

In the City of Heroes clip above, I mixed the blue/white superhero's voice to average about -12dB. The black-costumed superhero had a rough voice and got mixed at -6dB. Nominal music is about -12dB. Peaks are at 0 dbfs. It only gets crushed flat during the biggest explosions and effects.

The most fun part about this project was programming the choir to sing "Heroes. City of Heroes!" :)
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Old November 30th, 2009, 05:04 PM   #7
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Your target audience will determine the amount of compression feasible. A corporate website might require-6db, but a social site may mean pushing the limit close to "-0.2db". Some would disagree but that is what we all hear on these sites.

Thanks...
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