AES Los Angeles 2014
Workshop W1

Thursday, October 9, 4:30 pm — 6:30 pm (Room 306 AB)

W1 - Loudness Wars: Give Peaks a Chance

Florian Camerer, ORF - Austrian TV - Vienna, Austria; EBU - European Broadcasting Union
Bob Ludwig, Gateway Mastering Studios, Inc. - Portland, ME, USA
Thomas Lund, TC Electronic A/S - Risskov, Denmark
George Massenburg, Schulich School of Music, McGill University - Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Susan Rogers, Berklee College of Music - Boston, MA, USA

Music production, distribution, and consumption has been caught in a vicious spiral rendering two decades of our music heritage irreversibly damaged. Today, new tracks and remastered ones typically sound worse than what could even be expected from compact cassette. As a pro society, do we just sit by and let that happen on our watch?

With us to discuss the most important pro audio topic today are Susan, George and Bob—the finest from music auditory research, production, and mastering—while Florian and Thomas are at the helm of two European initiatives to also help reverse the vicious spiral: EBU R128 and EU legislation to prevent early hearing loss from listening to personal music players. Another glimpse of hope is iTunes Radio with loudness normalization on by default.

More reasonable distribution will not and should not prevent engineers from squashing music for artistic reasons, but it will take away any “advantage” of being louder. Learn to live with it!

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AES - Audio Engineering Society