Old 08-07-2008, 05:42 PM   #1
1dell
Human being with feelings
 
1dell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 79
Default Vu Meters, why would I want the plugin?

Why would I want a VU meter plug in when I already have built in VU meters on the Mixer in Reaper?
1dell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-2008, 06:29 PM   #2
Art Evans
Mortal
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 6,656
Default

Dunno. Who said you should use a plugin?

Well, more seriously, there are some very fancy and costly ones for people who can't live without that kind of thing, but whether it makes any difference to the end result of their audio I rather doubt.
Art Evans is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2008, 02:08 AM   #3
technogremlin
Human being with feelings
 
technogremlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 2,583
Default

I have a few VU-meter plugins that I never use. However, something like ElementalAudio's Inspector (there is a nice free one) has a lot of nice features besides it's VU-meters

I have Inspector sitting in my default Fx-chain on the master strip
technogremlin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2008, 07:32 AM   #4
martygras
Human being with feelings
 
martygras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: In a cave
Posts: 672
Default

Anything that helps bring analog eng's over to the digital side is ok with me.

1dell:
I'm assuming you know that VU meters respond more slowly to singal changes and transients than normal bar meters.
__________________
Sometimes it's intermittent, sometimes it's not.
"Don't quantize me bro".
martygras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2008, 09:46 PM   #5
1dell
Human being with feelings
 
1dell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 79
Default

Yeah thats precisely what I was thinking. Thanks guys. I'm getting rid of the ones I have. I definitely have to check out that ElementalAudio's Inspector. I'm looking to set up plugins I'll need for the master strip
1dell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2008, 08:30 AM   #6
Bubbagump
Human being with feelings
 
Bubbagump's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 2,024
Default

Some DAWs don't have VU metering and only have peak metering...
__________________
www.theslang.com
Bubbagump is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2008, 09:16 AM   #7
1dell
Human being with feelings
 
1dell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 79
Default

hmm, so is that what Reaper Has? Peak Monitoring? or is this a VU monitor? I mean those lights that flash in response to the signal on each track.
1dell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2008, 10:13 AM   #8
ngarjuna
Human being with feelings
 
ngarjuna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Miami
Posts: 2,298
Default

Reaper utilizes digital Peak meters and RMS meters. Not the same as VU meters at all, though the term VU meter has become a catch all; it's not, though, VU actually refers to certain characteristics. Do a google for VU meter and you can find the spec.
ngarjuna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2008, 11:06 AM   #9
Tedwood
Human being with feelings
 
Tedwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: South Coast UK
Posts: 14,303
Default

Maybe they are for people that can't see very fast






__________________
The grass is greener where it rains
Tedwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2008, 11:10 AM   #10
1dell
Human being with feelings
 
1dell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 79
Default

Good stuff Ngarjuna, I'll do just that. Thank

Quote:
Originally Posted by ngarjuna View Post
Reaper utilizes digital Peak meters and RMS meters. Not the same as VU meters at all, though the term VU meter has become a catch all; it's not, though, VU actually refers to certain characteristics. Do a google for VU meter and you can find the spec.
1dell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2008, 11:24 AM   #11
Till
Human being with feelings
 
Till's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Germany's California
Posts: 1,541
Default

there's a lot to VU and digital peak meters. they can have as much settings and styles as compressors do.
__________________
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 / 2 GB / WinXP Pro SP2 / EMU 0404 USB

"Recording is God's way of telling you that you suck." - Bob Brozman

My Jesusonic FX - Xenakios' Extension

REAPER FR Tracker - what is that?

The "How Stuff works in REAPER": video blog
Till is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 07:10 PM   #12
martygras
Human being with feelings
 
martygras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: In a cave
Posts: 672
Default

I must have misunderstood.
I thought that RMS was a bar graph version of a meter that reacted like a VU.

Is this not the case?
__________________
Sometimes it's intermittent, sometimes it's not.
"Don't quantize me bro".
martygras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 07:26 PM   #13
ngarjuna
Human being with feelings
 
ngarjuna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Miami
Posts: 2,298
Default

Nope.

RMS = Root Mean Square.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Root_mean_square

I've read that most audio/multimeter RMS meters aren't "true" RMS calculations. Here is an article I found on that subject:
http://www.hifi-writer.com/he/misc/rmspower.htm

I'm not an EE guy, so I can't back that up, but it's not the first place I've seen the complaint. Someone with more of an EE background can probably fill in the details better.

VU, on the other hand, relates to a particular formula. The VU (or volume unit) was codified by CBS/Bell Labs/etc. back in the 30s. Per wikipedia:
"The behaviour of VU meters is defined in ANSI C16.5-1942, British Standard BS 6840, and IEC 60268-17." I don't know the standard by heart (and I'm too lazy to go look it up), but I believe it includes not only the various formulas for calculating a volume unit, but also the ballistics of the meter itself. A true VU meter is supposed to be called a VI, volume indicator, but this term has fallen out of use in favor of VU meter. The VU meter is tuned around human speech (it was originally developed for use in telephone lines). In other program material, its usefulness can vary. Most engineers who prefer real VU meters do so because it's what they're used to; the industry used the VU as the primary metering unit for probably 75 years or so.

There are many analog meters which are pretty similar to VU meters (and even call themselves as such) but do not meet that standard, hence the confusion in the industry and why your average analog meter gets referred to simply as a VU meter, even if it's not one.

My M-Audio DMP3 has "VU meters" which, when you read into the manual, are not even close to being VU meters; they are actually made to replicate a digital style peak meter. So why did M-Audio mark them up and make them look just like VU meters? Because the "classic look" is in. Not terribly useful, though, imo.
ngarjuna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 07:39 PM   #14
ngarjuna
Human being with feelings
 
ngarjuna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Miami
Posts: 2,298
Default

Since this may not be obvious, I want to mention:

Most of these meters have little or nothing to do with actual acoustics/audio. They are measurements of electricity. They can be useful in certain contexts and help us to make informed decisions about the audio (because obviously the electricity behind it all plays a big part in recording and amplifying sound), but it's not really a measurement of sound itself. Sound are (somebody correct me if I'm wrong, has been several years since Uni) longitudinal waves, electricity are transverse waves. So there are fundamental differences when you convert back and forth.

I could be wrong, but I think even an SPL meter is measuring electricity: it has to convert the incoming sound waves via the mic in the unit and then measures the value of that electrical signal. I'm sure other types of devices have been developed and sold to more closely measure actual audio rather than just arcane electrical concepts, but you're still stuck with a conversion unless they've developed a listening/metering device that doesn't depend on converting the incoming signal to electricity (maybe they have). Maybe the ears do that, I'm not up on my audio anatomy. But the ears would get filtered through a very complex processor (the brain), which is not always so honest and compensates a lot.
ngarjuna is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2008, 08:51 AM   #15
martygras
Human being with feelings
 
martygras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: In a cave
Posts: 672
Default

Thanks Ngarjuna,

Unless a plug-in simulates the actual feel of a VU then it's false advertising of a sort IMO if the plug shows a VU meter.
__________________
Sometimes it's intermittent, sometimes it's not.
"Don't quantize me bro".
martygras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2008, 09:39 AM   #16
Diogenes
Human being with feelings
 
Diogenes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: A place that allows me to protect myself...
Posts: 8,245
Default

Old, analog "Vu" meter designs had to take into account the ballistics of a moving mechanical system. Many old-school guys still like them because of the inherent "smoothness" (slowness actually!) of some of the old analog meters. So besides calibrating the electrical "side" of the meters, technicians had to tend to the mechanics as well.

Use Reapers built-in meters and call it done. You can tweak them pretty much any way you want. The old moving coil/needle meters are cute but are somewhat an anachronism IMO.

D
Diogenes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2008, 10:24 AM   #17
pipelineaudio
Mortal
 
pipelineaudio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Wickenburg, Arizona
Posts: 13,454
Default

I've reccomended to use the PSP vintage meter plugin in conjunction with ReaComp to find the rms window size in the compressor video
__________________
REAPER Shirts are Back! - https://shop.spreadshirt.com/pipelineaudio/
pipelineaudio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2008, 07:25 AM   #18
Nardberr
Human being with feelings
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1dell View Post
Why would I want a VU meter plug in when I already have built in VU meters on the Mixer in Reaper?
I was just thinking that a VU plugin might be useful when searching for distortion in an FX chain that isin't showing up in the channel meter. e.g. before the limiter.
Nardberr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2008, 04:38 PM   #19
martygras
Human being with feelings
 
martygras's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: In a cave
Posts: 672
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nardberr View Post
I was just thinking that a VU plugin might be useful when searching for distortion in an FX chain that isin't showing up in the channel meter. e.g. before the limiter.
I would think that you would want a standard meter. The VU would not react to short transient distortion.
__________________
Sometimes it's intermittent, sometimes it's not.
"Don't quantize me bro".
martygras is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2008, 12:33 PM   #20
technogremlin
Human being with feelings
 
technogremlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 2,583
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nardberr View Post
I was just thinking that a VU plugin might be useful when searching for distortion in an FX chain that isin't showing up in the channel meter. e.g. before the limiter.
I think you realy want Inspector for that

technogremlin is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:17 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.