Need Help On How To Boost Volume Of A Song

Posts 1 - 25 of 28
  1. 1084268
    blxckcxsper : Sun 20th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Hello guys!
    So I have a little problem that I've been trying to fix for ages but I've never been able to :/
    Everytime I export a song from GarageBand (ain't got no money for another software) its volume is always way lower than anything else in my iTunes.
    Here's one of my tracks so you can have an idea:
    I hope someone will be able to help :P I just want to know why it's doing that and if there's anything I can do to fix it.
    Thank you!!

  2. 631823
    Mahloo13 : Sun 20th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Most likely you don't master your songs up to the volume of the commercial releases. Most of the commercial released songs follow a certain loudness standard when it comes to overall loudness, perceived loudness etc.

    PM me and I'll master one of your songs and after that give you a complete overview of the chain used. Might be more useful than trying to write and explain everything here. Otherwise let me know and I'll detail a process to get a song mastered.

  3. 998072
    InverSound : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    You might have the "normalize" button activated.

  4. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    normalize would be a good thing in this case. It would use the available headroom to make the song louder, or lower the volume of the song if it is clipping (going past 0.0 dB).

  5. 998072
    InverSound : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    normalizing a song that is above 0db will cause it to be reduced to a peak of 0db, so your song will actually get less loud when you process it.

    but, if the song is peaking like -5Db then normalizing will in fact bring it up in loudness to 0db.

    this happens to me when i try and export a song that is loud as fuck like +10 db peak and try to normalize it, it might make the dynamic range bigger (or louder across the board) but it reduces the actual loudness of the song. ;)

    i use ableton and when u normalize a song theres no option to increase or decrease the peak level, it always peaks at 0 db, this I guess is why people dont use ableton to master, that just occurred to me...

  6. 111346
    Planetjazzbass : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    If your using levels of +10 db's for a master track you've lost the plot I think and thousands of people master in Ableton with excellent results.

  7. 998072
    InverSound : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    you're right. I guess I don't know what I'm doing.

  8. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Normalizing has no effect on the overall and relative dynamics, no matter what level you are outputting. It will either raise or lower the volume depending on the maximum level's relation to 0 dB. If you are putting out +10 dB then your song is clipping and will sound pretty awful, albeit loud. If you are putting out -6 dB you have a bunch of headroom which can be used and normalizing will make your song louder without doing any actual mastering and without effecting the dynamics.

  9. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Actually, I take that back... If you are putting out +10 dB normalizing will affect dynamics in a way, because without it you are essentially feeding your song to a clipping limiter, whereas normalizing will lower all elements of the audio by 10 dB.

  10. 998072
    InverSound : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    " If you are putting out -6 dB you have a bunch of headroom which can be used and normalizing will make your song louder"


    There is no clipping in ableton. But my songs are usually around +6db, theyre def over 0db lulz, but with massive compression, i use 6 multiband compressors. Plus a couple more compressoers on each track. I dont use limiters or normalizing th9ough. Nomalizing imo is like using a limiter and it flattens and kills your sdynamics. Someone who knows what theyre doing wont use normalize or limietrs,

  11. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Agree to disagree I guess. "no clipping in ableton"... where did you hear that?

  12. 998072
    InverSound : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    i use ableton so my knowledge is all from my own experience, i dont go by what others say. so i didnt hear it from somewhere, it doesnt matter how loud i turn up the volume in ableton it doesn;t clip, but cubase will clip Iused to use cubase

  13. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 21st Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Heh, well I opened up ableton for the first time in quite a while ( since it's pretty much junk in my opinion). put some kick drums in there, ran it through a compressor. output a wav file... BANG clipping. You have one song on your profile, so where is the history of this experience you speak of? There is clipping on ableton just like any other DAW. I realize you have youor own way of making music and all, but I think you are giving misleading advice which could be damaging to others. Do you ever play your finished wav files in an audio editor? Look at the meters turning red, that's clipping.

  14. 998072
    InverSound : Tue 22nd Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    There is no clipping in ableton. But my songs are usually around +6db, theyre def over 0db lulz, but with massive compression, i use 6 multiband compressors. Plus a couple more compressoers on each track. I dont use limiters or normalizing th9ough. Nomalizing imo is like using a limiter and it flattens and kills your sdynamics. Someone who knows what theyre doing wont use normalize or limietrs,

  15. 186161
    Spivkurl : Tue 22nd Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    I love echoes

  16. 998072
    InverSound : Tue 22nd Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    firstly, you are attacking my online reputation, i don't appreciate that, and I don't appreciate your bullying attempts. I have a reputation to uphold online, I am the face of my record label and I am a legitamite business and a legimitate artist. this is an online music community that doesn't need bullies. I don't want to argue with people, I just want to state my opinoin on this thread, you seem to want to start a argument...sorry buddy, I am not dropping down to your level. you are just trying to contradict my knowledge and opinions and bully people who have different opinions than you....what are your professional audio engineering credentials? I don't pretend to have any but I'd like to think I have a good grasp on making quality sounding modern-era music.

    second, "youve only got one song on here! "-i have plenty on my actual record label on JUnoDownload, go listen to them, you have a lot of songs on here but quantity does not trump quality, have you ever even attempted dto produce a professional level modern trance song? as opposed to just fooling around with software and carrying on a hobby? it's not easy and it's especially tiring when musical hobbyists think they have some sort of magical authority over others becuase they flood a site with tons of their redundant songs

    third: this excplains clipping well for people who dont understand what it is

    last: you seem like a troll, so I will stop feeding the troll after this post.

  17. 631823
    Mahloo13 : Tue 22nd Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    DIGITAL clipping happens in any DAW but due to the advances in technology most likely it will only happen if you go RED on the Master buss and you could always turn down that master fader, although it is good practice to keep conservative levels throughout the session.

    What does that means that most likely if any of your channels go into the red and you bring the master fader down a bit the distortion caused by clipping will disappear. Now in order to create some distortion you'd have to go pretty high in the red above 0dB. It's just how DAW's work nowadays, advances in technology have made it possible to clip every single track yet still have a clean master(with certain limits of course, I'm talking about moderate going into red situations here).

    With all that in mind I still advise people to keep a low level on each track as that gives you a lot more options when it comes to mixing (because plugins might distort operating with such high levels) and secondly if you are running outboard gear most likely it will sound like crap and your signal will be to hot for the gear.

    Back on the subject of the thread I'm not looking to attack anyone but normalizing will just bring the highest peak of the song to 0dB while the original poster said he wanted the songs to be close to commercially released songs, for that you need way more than just normalizing and in fact normalizing should be avoided to make room for the EQ, Compressors, Clippers and Limiters that will process the shit out of that song to get it up to a consistent RMS level that matches the commercial standard RMS levels.

  18. 186161
    Spivkurl : Tue 22nd Apr 2014 : 8 years ago


    I apologise for making you feel this way. This is indeed the first time I've been referenced as a bully or a troll, so I've obviously changed recently. Again, I am sorry.

    If you look into things, you'll see that amongst my songs posted here are the #1 and #3 most commented trance songs on Looperman.

    I have been a musician for more than 20 years. I have taken college courses to learn electronic music production and synthesis. I built my own analog modular synth. I circuit bend vintage gear to make sounds no one has heard. I record to reel to reel tape sometimes. I play guitar, bass, piano, organ, and I do vocals. So no, I don't just mess around with software to get my sound. I have mixed and mastered for some of the best electronic producers on this site. I am currently learning how to get professional quality stereo piano recordings. I am working on my 10th solo album right now, and while I don't think all of my songs and albums are good I am proud of what I do.

    So again I am sorry for giving you a hard time. My main conern was that you stated "there is no clipping in ableton." I felt this gave the impression, especially to people who are new to DAW's, that you can pretty much do whatever you want in ableton and it won't clip. You also said "Someone who knows what theyre doing wont use normalize or limiters"... and from my point of view, I could just as rightfully say "someone who knows what ther're doing won't use 6 multiband compressors." But, you can make music however you want, that's part of what makes it so great.


    I totally agree with you about normalizing in this case. Mainly in my original reply, I was getting at the fact that if no mastering was going to be done, then having the normalize setting would probably be okay, keeping the track in a safe range while using the headroom which is present. Obviously you know this though. Mastering without normalizing is always best.

  19. 308224
    theHumps : Tue 22nd Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    I use Ableton and have for a few years now and I get clipping in my tracks. Ableton's default track volume is set at zero. If I am recording guitars, which are loud coming out of an amp, I will get clipping on the track until I lower the track volume to about -9 db. Percussion instruments are the same way, there is this instant slam to the mic's diaphragm and it cause a spike in the waveform higher than my guitar amp. I may have to lower percussion hits 15 db in order to stop the clipping and turn on the 10 db attenuator on my mic at the same time. Also the next time you use Ableton, try a Glue Compressor. There is a clip light in the upper right of the plugin. If you make that clip light stay green you aren't getting the punch of the compressor. In my experience, every time that red light goes off it is showing a clip. Honestly, I push the compressor and get constant clipping according to the light but the track sounds good.

    I just started bringing my final mixes from Ableton into Audition to get a good look at the waveform that sounded great in Ableton. When I looked at all the spikes so far over the 0 db level and off the screen it wasn't funny. Those spikes are clipping. It took about 10 minutes work lowering those spikes to an acceptable level. By doing that I not only removed the clipping but I can use Audition's Amplify plugin to calculate the maximum gain without getting any clipping. I seldom do that because I try to get my mixes at about 0 db if I can.

    In Ableton you really have to push it in order to get full on distortion due to loudness but if you listen closely, it's there more than you think.

  20. 631823
    Mahloo13 : Thu 24th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    @itscharlierose - Check your Spam Folder for the reply to your message cause sometimes Looperman messages go in that folder.

    @InverSound - Spivkurl wasn't bullying you for sure. Just because he has a different opinion doesn't mean he is bullying you or trying to attack your online reputation or whatever. It's a forum so there are going to be different opinions.

  21. 186161
    Spivkurl : Thu 24th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Thanks Mahloo, life is hard enough without bullies!

  22. 1100958
    cosmicinfluence : Thu 24th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Spiv is one of those guys who is always willing to help or give input where he can.
    Innersound seems to have replied with a list of credentials, it wasnt about my dad is harder than youre dad it was quite simply, is ableton some kind of special daw where it will not clip.
    If the answer is no, which i suspect it is due to youre reply having no evidence to the contrary, then he has every right, perhaps even an obligation to point out that u r talking nonsense.

  23. 560295
    TurfGoldMusic : Fri 25th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    LoL, gotta love the forums!

  24. 1205128
    LivingInSilence : Sat 26th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    When I've finished a song/piece of music it's usually pretty quiet. I do that on purpose coz it's usually pretty clean and crisp that way. It always ends up being under 0db but all I have to do is load the finished song in Audacity and Amplify it. (note that this same technique will also work if you're track is too loud and you want to reduce it).

    While the track is loaded in Audacity, highlight it by pressing Ctrl+A, then go into the "effects" tab.
    Select amplify, and from there it will come up with a box asking what you want your new peak amplitude to be. Type in "0" and click "ok" and it will adjust the peak to 0db.
    If for some reason you want your track to peak past 0db (e.g. maybe you don't understand why they put volume knobs on speakers) than just tick the "allow clipping" box and set the new peak to whatever you want.

    Audacity is free software that you can download straight off the site and even has free updates so I highly recommend downloading it. I mainly use it to convert my tracks to mp3 for Looperman but it has many other uses like the one I just explained. And just because it's free does not mean it's gonna downgrade the quality of your music.

    So yeah, hope that helps. And good luck.

  25. 631823
    Mahloo13 : Sat 26th Apr 2014 : 8 years ago

    Ok there seems to be some misunderstanding regarding levels in DAW's so here goes some info...

    1. When you are recording the faders in your DAW adjust the level of the sound post-input meaning that if you lower the volume using a fader (while recording) you will just lower the monitoring level and not the input level. The actual volume of the input signal is adjusted with the knobs on your preamp, interface, soundcard, mixer etc........Record at a medium level with signals being between -24 to -6dBfs(I doubt you have such good gear you need to overdrive it to get harmonics). You are going to notice your songs almost mix themselves when you do that.

    2. The way most DAW's work can't really clip audio tracks (you can clip plugins) but Group/Aux tracks and Master tracks will clip meaning that if you have multiple tracks clipping (the red light is on and you're output level is way past 0dB) and you send all those tracks to a group/aux track chances are the input of that group/aux track is going to clip. In regards to master channels things are pretty much the same (there are exceptions but that's advanced...if someone needs to know about that say something)

    Clipping can occur even when a large number of tracks, with levels bellow 0dBFS, get sent to the same Group/Aux/Master track, it's just like recording a really hot signal.

    There is NO need to go into the red on the master track regardless how much processing you have on the tracks.

    3. A good reason to avoid hot levels in you DAW is the use of plugins. Believe it or not some plugins do distort as hell when pushed to hard (actually they clip and sound like crap). Also compressor plugins will behave better and won't instantly compress as you insert them even though your threshold is at 0dB

    4. Guitar cabinet and amp modelling software works better with more conservative levels so experiment a bit, you might actually be surprised how much clarity you will achieve

    5. Most commercial releases are mastered to a certain RMS level and that level can be -12, -10 and even -6 on modern stuff. To achieve those levels you will need compression on the master during the mastering stage and I'm not talking a single compressor. It could be multiple compressors (both broadband and multiband compressors), clippers and finally limiters each doing subtle or not so subtle things not to mention there might be some parallel compression and distortion going on as well.

    If this is confusing for anybody don't hesitate to ask questions and I'll try and clarify or develop a subject further.

Posts 1 - 25 of 28

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