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Author Topic: Low Audio Levels  (Read 3010 times)


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Low Audio Levels
« on: December 13, 2015, 04:32 AM »
While listening to any audio from any application (browser, media player, etc.), the audio levels of the specific application do not match the level of the "Device".

To better explain what I mean, have a look at the attached picture showing you the audio level of Chrome playing music and compare the level to the levels under "Device" (that's my Speakers). Although both are set at the same level, the audio that plays through Chrome is slightly lower (indicated by the green bar). How can I achieve the maximum audio from my applications?

I have installed the Realtek HD driver and noticed that unchecking the box for "Loudness Equalization" improves the audio levels to some extent for some tracks but the levels are still not the same. Should the levels be the same?

Should this setting (Loudness Equalization) be checked at all times? I noticed that when playing some tracks, this setting helps but for some other tracks, it is better to keep this setting unchecked as I notice that keeping it unchecked increases the volume and sounds much better.


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Re: Low Audio Levels
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2015, 04:36 AM »
"Loudness Equalization" (see here) attempts to make quiet sounds louder and loud sounds quieter.
My advice would be disable this feature while you are trying to tweak and understand your system.

Can't help with the other questions.


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Re: Low Audio Levels
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2015, 12:11 PM »
I have noted something similar.

Usually I have the Windows audio device volume setting at 100% and adjust the volume setting in my media player according to my wishes. If the volume is turned down in the media player and the media player is closed the volume setting remains lower, while it appears all is maxed out in the volume control overview. This setting also survives a reboot in my case. Opening the media player again and adjusting the volume again to max is what helps. On my system Realtek HD driver is installed.

Do you have a plug-in/extension/add-on in your browser in which you have adjusted the volume? Streaming music player, perhaps?

Since Windows Vista/7 the volume control has become too over-engineered for simple audio set-ups. The level of of control you have is nice when you have the audio-setup to match. But in my experience most people use the standard audio ports and are confused by the audio support that comes with most video cards, USB headphones, camera's and what not. If I got a nickel each time someone asked me to fix their audio settings I would be well off by now.

There is room for improvement in this part of computing. IndieVolume and CheVolume are the only pieces of software I know of that give you much more control back over the volume settings.     


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Re: Low Audio Levels
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2015, 05:58 PM »
It's quite important if your audio files are recorded with the same volume level. As you can see in attached photo, the volume levels on these two collections are different from each other with more than 14dB (from 83.9 to 98.2 dB). Such a difference is noticeable.

I am surprised how you focus on getting a high sound pressure / loud volume. Your computer's amplifying system is analogue and not of high quality (if it's a normal PC), and very often the digital output to the amplifier is 'over-steered', so the louder you play, the more distortion you'll get. But maybe your computer is a Hi-Fi version? (Does young people of today even know what "Hi-Fi" means? Maybe they think it's a version of hi' five?)

On my PC I record at approx 89 dB (which is 6~10dB lower than most CDs are recorded) and have the digital volume output set at 70~80% => this low signal gives my external amplifier and loudspeakers the best sound quality. If I want to turn up the volume, I will never turn up the computer's digital signal, but the external, analogue signal.


« Last Edit: December 14, 2015, 06:10 PM by Curt, Reason: Hi-Fi? »