Sound ID - Low volume



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    Hey Dylan,

    There could be a few things attributing to this!
    We generally lower the output slightly depending on what headphones you are using to avoid distortion that could be caused by the boosts in certain frequencies.

    It has also come to our attention that there might be a volume logic issue on some systems. This problem is currently being investigated by our devs and hopefully will be fixed soon.

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    Bob Ballard

    Hi there!

    I am a new Reference 4 user. I have about a -4.5db level drop on the master output when I turn on Reference 4. I have set the calibration for my particular headphones (ATH M50X) as instructed.

    I see that in the Before and Simulated curves there are some pretty big peaks that are being cut to reach the Target. Is this why my level drops so much?

    I am concerned that when I bounce my mix down, it will be too loud with Reference 4 turned off (as instructed). Also, if I am mixing/mastering with Reference 4 turned on, won't my mix sound much different when bounced without the Reference 4 correction?

    Please explain as it seems like I am not understanding something.

    Thank you.

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    Kārlis Stenders (Edited )

    Hi Bob, 


    Thanks for the comment, our apologies for the huge lag in the response time here! I'm assuming you've already gotten used to using the software and have figured everything out already but I'll explain, just in case anyone else is wondering:


    That's correct, the overall level is reduced in order to avoid clipping with the Safe Headroom feature. The level amount used for Safe Headroom will different for each profile depending on the highest peak in the (green) correction curve. 


    The render-bypass logic might seem a little counter-intuitive at first but once you get the hang of it, everything will start to make sense. The correction is for monitoring on your individual set of headphones/speakers only, we need to bypass rendering in order for the correction curve to not be imprinted on the track (otherwise you'll achieve the opposite effect - the mix will sound good in your room/headphones only). You can think of the software as a lie detector for your particular monitoring situation only: we want to turn on the lie detector from the very beginning of the project in order to make the correct mixing decisions. After the work is done, we can turn it off, because we already know what the mix ACTUALLY sounds like, with the color of your room/speakers/headphones removed.


    And yes, this does mean that the level will differ after hard-bypassing the plugin for rendering. This can be solved by taking advantage of metering plugins, routing a separate mixing path with its own level adjustments, etc., or simply by checking the actual level several times during the mixing phase.


    Also, the Reference 4 Systemwide app can be used as your DAW output instead of using the Reference 4 plugin. In that case, the calibration is taking place outside of DAW, which means that there are no leveling issues to begin with, no need to disable calibration for rendering at all - it can stay ON permanently!


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