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Real-time track-level-adjusting software?

posted on #1
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Joined: 03.09.18
Rather than using an envelope tool, I'd like to adjust the volume level on various parts of a track while I hear it in real time in relation to the other tracks of the song. For example, if I lay down a bass guitar line, I want to make it louder or softer at some parts, but adjust those levels while the track is playing. Once I make the changes, I'd then save them to a new track that would replace the original in the final mastering.

I've read that professional recording engineers regularly do these level adjustments in real time. But I'd prefer to use software rather than a hardware mixer/recorder. Is there a simple and ideally free or inexpensive program that I can use for this? I'm running a PC with Windows 7 and 4GBs of RAM, but also have access to a Macbook running El Capitan.
posted on #2
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Posts: 107
Joined: 14.02.18
Hi Georgeo,

I don't know if we're talking about the same, but when I'm using Ardour as my DAW, I can record my fader movements and play them back later - just like any other digital mixing console would offer as well. That's called "fader automation".

Ardour is free software, but you're supposed to spend at least 1$ (I think, on Linux it's also free of cost) for a pre-built binary download. They also have an online manual in case you're interested.

Hoping that I got you right, and that this actually helps,
cheers,
Wolfgang
posted on #3
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Thanks Wolfgang!

I installed Ardour, and was able to automate the fader movements as you informed me was possible. I was then able to export the changes to a WAV file, which is what I also needed to do.

Best,
Georgeo
posted on #4
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GeOrGeO57 wrote:
Thanks Wolfgang!

I installed Ardour, and was able to automate the fader movements as you informed me was possible. I was then able to export the changes to a WAV file, which is what I also needed to do.

Best,
Georgeo


Hi Georgeo,

I'm glad that it works for you. One more good thing about Ardour IMHO is that when exporting you can select to use LUFS (which is also known as LUKS) according to the EBU R 128 recommendation, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EBU_R_128 and other places if that doesn't tell you anything.

I use this all the time to counteract and to prevent what is called the Loudness War (you can also search for that, but it's pretty good explained in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loudness_war )

So everything I export for here is at -16LUFS (Loudness Units Full Scale), and at -1dB TP (True Peak), which are the recommendation for streaming media (for broadcast it's even lower at -21LUFS I think).

Why do I do this? Because I don't wanna blow your ears off ;)

Cheers,
Wolfgang
Edited by wjl on September 05 2018 10:58
posted on #5
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Manually use the tools of the software to take out offending loudnesses and softness---Then listen to it ---too loud adjust more---too soft adjust more--or duplicate track or part of the track on another channel --- I'm a firm believer you can't do every thing on one channel with a track
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Edited by GemmyF on September 05 2018 16:19
posted on #6
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Thanks again Wolfgang. Yes, I also believe guarding against unnecessary and sometimes harmful loudness is important.
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