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#197637 - 02/23/08 11:16 AM Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression
zhimbo Offline
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Registered: 02/15/07
Posts: 138
Loc: Hanover, New Hampshire
So, having been pointed towards the "Audacity" audio editing software on Audioholics' AVRant Podcast, I've been having some fun.

Here are the waveforms for:

1. Leonard Bernstein conducting Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue - nice wide dynamic range - it's an orchestral arrangement, after all.


2. Miles Davie, "So What" from Kind of Blue. Small group jazz, so much less natural dynamic range in the source. Lots of breathing room in this mastering of the recording (well, Coltrane's solo in the bottom channel is pushing it a little, perhaps, although there's no clipping visible when you zoom in on the wave peaks).


3. Fleetwood Mac, "Go Your Own Way".
The highest peaks correspond to the drum beats, and the song is mastered to just allow for the loudest peaks at the climax of the song.


4. Dixie Chicks, "Lubock or Leave It".
Dynamic compression Hell. When you zoom in on the peaks there is clipping out the wazoo, right there in the source material where there's nothing you can do about it.


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#197639 - 02/23/08 11:24 AM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: zhimbo]
CV Offline
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Drown in the blue ocean.

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#197646 - 02/23/08 11:35 AM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: CV]
St_PatGuy Offline
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Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7463
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Yuck.

I've been paying more and more attention to dynamic compression lately. I wish I didn't know about it.
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#197651 - 02/23/08 12:28 PM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: zhimbo]
chesseroo Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 5171
Loc: western canada
Nice graphs.
Good demonstration.
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#197654 - 02/23/08 12:35 PM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: chesseroo]
CV Offline
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
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Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11677
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Yeah, there should be a music review site with these graphs as standard.

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#197727 - 02/24/08 12:07 AM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: zhimbo]
JohnK Offline
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Registered: 05/11/02
Posts: 10623
Very good, Jim; a graphic illustration(literally)of some of the garbage being turned out in the pop area.
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#197756 - 02/24/08 06:48 AM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: JohnK]
DaveG Offline
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Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 868
Loc: WI
Nice demo, Thanks.
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#197762 - 02/24/08 08:41 AM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: DaveG]
SirQuack Offline
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Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13571
Loc: Iowa
Is this easy to run with my HTPC, how do I hook it all up? I know Audacity does a whole lot more, but I would just be interested in seeing the compression of my CD collection.
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#197764 - 02/24/08 08:59 AM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: SirQuack]
zhimbo Offline
veteran

Registered: 02/15/07
Posts: 138
Loc: Hanover, New Hampshire
Audacity is pretty darn easy to use (and also free) - just rip a file from CD, open in Audacity, and there you go - you'll get a graph like the ones above. You can zoom in, etc, for different views (to actually see the clipped waveforms on the Dixie Chicks, for example).

(It's also easy to make a file of test tones using Audacity, your choice of frequency and duration.)

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#197772 - 02/24/08 11:33 AM Re: Fun with Audacity - Dynamic Compression [Re: zhimbo]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13571
Loc: Iowa
So, you can't just play a track of a existing CD while the program is running? You have to rip the track first off the cd, and then open within Audacity?

What does the clipped waveform look like? Is it in the above pitures.?
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