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Old 11-10-2010, 06:13 AM   #62
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Milwaukee, WI, USA
Posts: 395

Sorry, it was related to metering that shows 0dBu when we currently see -18dBFS in REAPER. Gizzmo suggested using the Naiant meter and its -18 calibration setting.

The question was, "Can I use this meter with this setting to properly assess my recorded and internal levels?" Well...

It's been said that to be on the safe side, and to avoid detailed analyses of all pieces of input gear specs and plug in programming, one should set averages around -20 or peaks around -10. I was blindly applying that here, thinking that 0 on a VU meter means the same thing in terms of loudness and peak for a kick drum as it does a droning violin note.

I feel like I'm searching for a rule to be applied to all tracks regardless of content. Is that realistic? Getting them to 0 on a VU meter isn't the answer because it isn't telling the whole headroom story. Sure, it's built to protect headroom, but it doesn't exactly show it. And that brings us right back to peak metering and my OP. If all levels obey a peak (and it seems like that peak could be anywhere between -20 and -10 dBFS) that should lead one to a cleaner mixbus, clinically speaking.

So the $10,000 question is, "If I track all my inputs to peak around -20dBFS on REAPER's meters, or trim (pre-FX volume) any tracks NOT recorded that way to -20dBFS on REAPER's meters, will I end up with a better sounding mix than if I had run all those same levels to just below 0dBFS."

It's a big question that belies the depth of understanding to answer it, but from this thread I'm hearing YES as the answer.
End of Kelp.

Last edited by kelp; 11-10-2010 at 07:00 AM. Reason: Changed "0dBVU" to "0dBu".
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