RMS Loudness levels // Seeking advice

Personah

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#1
Hi,

Wondering if anyone can shed any light on RMS levels. When producing more kick drum driven music I have always aimed for around -6 rms on the master. How does this apply in Drum & Bass? I want a nice loud mix but not to squashed keeping a good level of dynamics.

Also loudness/peaking levels for sub bass in the mix?

Cheers
Scott
 

tv_g

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#2
I wouldn't really consider rms a relevant measure for dnb because it's going to end up being a relative measure of how sparse or dense you subs notes are. Imagine a tune with loads of space between subs and kicks versus something where the sub hardly lets up; the rms could be wildly different. And that's ignoring that a tune with a 33hz sub should have a higher rms than a sub line sitting around 50hz. The best approach imo, would be a/b'ing against a track with the volume you want.

Also -6 rms sounds awfully loud for mixing down. I usually keep my peak below -6 which means my rms often sits around -15/-20db.

For comparing subs, I often high pass before the a/b'ing and match that level then low pass and see how close the subs are. This is just to catch big loudness issues when I'm on headphones or have gotten to low in the frequency range to trust my monitors.
 
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Personah

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#3
Very valid point. The track i am working on sits at around -10/-12db, and is a pretty chilled tune with a deep baseline. Thanks for the reply :)

Also any suggestions on analysers?

Thanks.
 

djdizzy

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#6
Analyzers for rms/loudness? I'm just using the stock ones in Sound Forge.
Lately I've been sending my tracks off to get mastered professionally and they usually want the track with peaks at -6db to give them plenty of headroom.

I use Blue Cat's VST plugins for audio analysis, they have great tools. For amplitude I use Blue Cat's DP Meter Pro: http://www.bluecataudio.com/Products/Product_DPeakMeterPro/
If you have Ozone then you can use iZotope Ozone's Meter Bridge.
If you have FabFilter products then you can use Pro-L to see the peaks and rms.

For free solutions, Wildfunk made a good recommendation with Voxengo SPAN. Also your DAW might have a native tool, depending on your DAW.
 
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