Consistent audio volume between video clips

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by mikelupu, Apr 13, 2005.

  1. mikelupu

    mikelupu Guest


    I have individually mixed the audio parts of several video clips
    however when I joined them together the different clips have noticeable
    volume differences. Is there a way to ensure that all clips in a
    sequence have got the same audio volume.

    Thanks in advance,
    mikelupu, Apr 13, 2005
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  2. mikelupu

    PTRAVEL Guest

    You didn't say what editing package you're using. Most of the good ones
    have a "normalize" function, which will make clips of consistent volume.
    PTRAVEL, Apr 13, 2005
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  3. mikelupu

    Steve King Guest

    Unfortunately, the"normalize" function does not in most instances cure the
    problem of perceived volume in clips of dissimilar sound tracks. Some sound
    clips are very 'peaky', a contentious argument for instance, while other
    clips are more uniform but with distinctive tonal characteristics such as
    city traffic. Simply adjusting the volume of these clips so that their
    loudest contained sound reaches some set point near digital maximum will not
    make them blend properly from one to the other. Normalizing may be a good
    start, but individual tweaking through volume change, compression, limiting,
    and/or frequency equalization is usually required to achieve a pleasing
    transition from clip to clip.

    I finished up the first pass of editing yesterday on a half-hour documentary
    project. At the end of the day my editor and I played the project through
    to get a sense of the remaining work to complete the project. We agreed
    that we'll need at least a day to tweak the levels, EQ, and transition
    points of just the dialogue. Now, if someone could just invent a plug-in
    that will take out about six minutes of content without affecting the
    story-line I'd be a happy man. Oh, and where can I find a plug-in to score
    this project, something I could just tell that it is a PBS type program
    about a very interesting university professor following a controversial
    academic path --- play a little bonk sound when its done kind of thing?
    Where can I get that?

    Often the difference between an amateur effort and a professional one is the
    recognition that it takes a lot of time to do each stage of the job well.
    Non-professionals who are willing to invest the necessary time can produce
    wonderful results. I was amused by a recent poster in another forum who
    wrote of his many feature ideas and how he wanted to put together the
    equipment ("I have two cameras, but I need more.") and the people to do at
    least two features "this summer". Good luck.

    Steve King
    Steve King, Apr 13, 2005
  4. mikelupu

    mikelupu Guest

    I'm using Premier Pro as my NLE, and strangely enough I couldn't find a
    normalize effect in the stereo audio effects.

    I have tried to import some clips in Audition to normalize them there
    but as I expected all the sounds in the clips were amplified including
    the lots of noise there was in the clip. When I tried to reduce the
    noise with noise reduction the voices had way too much reverb. I think
    there must be some ordering with which to apply the various effects, is
    that so? Are there any particular tweaking effects that are usually
    used to improve sound, like what colour levels are in photoshop to draw
    an analogy?
    mikelupu, Apr 14, 2005
  5. mikelupu

    PTRAVEL Guest

    Right click on the audio clip, select "Audio Gain" and, in the window that
    opens up, click on "Normalize."
    PTRAVEL, Apr 14, 2005
  6. mikelupu

    Ken Maltby Guest

    Although I have the impression that you would look down
    your nose at any software that was closer to $50 than $500;
    I wonder what you may think of the extensive audio editing
    abilities of the Magix Movie Edit Pro 10? It appears to
    address all the audio manipulations you mentioned plus a
    number of others, and that's for 36 tracks.

    Ken Maltby, Apr 14, 2005
  7. There is very much an order to editing sound. In short do everything else
    before raising the volume.

    But, rather than go into a complicated (and 20 odd year long) repose on how,
    when, where, and why to edit audio, I'll point you to the best resources I
    have: Jay Rose and RAMPS.

    For books on the subject of pre-production and post-production sound go to .
    For a discussion that will probably make your head spin go to

    Hope these help.
    Tom P.
    Henry Padilla, Apr 14, 2005
  8. mikelupu

    Steve King Guest

    I'm sorry that you got the impression that I would look down on good but
    inexpensive software. Dead wrong. I'm not familiar with Magix Movie Edit
    Pro 10, so I can't comment on that. I do most of my own audio editing,
    processing, sound effects, and music for my video productions. I could have
    easily justified a purchase of a Mac and Pro Tools, when I first moved from
    analogue to digital. However, someone showed me a little program called
    Fast Eddie. I think it was under $50. I had my own video production shop
    so I didn't have to impress outside clients. I thought it was worth a try.
    I set it up alongside a friends Pro Tools and we did a little "edit off"
    using the typical material I was working on at that time. When my buddy
    finished our little contest, I had had time for two cups of coffee and a
    couple of phone calls. No contest. Later I moved to Cool Edit--- free, but
    I registered it for $60 I think in honor of the developer. For the last
    decade almost I've been using the multi-track version, which is now called
    Adobe Audition. I don't do much video editing myself preferring to hire
    people who do it every day and are more talented than I; however, for what
    little editing I do do I use Vegas 5.0, certainly not the most expensive
    choice. It does everything I've asked of it and even a few things that my
    outside editor's Final Cut Pro finds difficult.

    The point of my earlier posting was that each audio clip typically requires
    individual attention to make it fit with all the other clips in a pleasing
    way and that takes time. Lots of time. I also endorse Jay's books, as
    another poster suggested, for guidance in things audio.

    I think I'm going to put together one of those $14 camera stabilizers (from
    another thread) this weekend. Maybe I can avoid some or all of the Steady
    Cam rentals -- maybe two or three per year. I'll use some of the savings to
    buy you lunch next time you're in Chicago ;-)

    Steve King
    Steve King, Apr 14, 2005
  9. mikelupu

    Ken Maltby Guest

    Maybe you could spend the lunch money on a copy of
    Magix "Video Deluxe 2.0 Plus" ( I was able to get a copy
    for $9.95, there are listings on the Froogle part of Google
    in the $15 range most of the time) ; it has most of the
    audio features in the newer releases. They look impressive
    too me but I'm not proficient enough in the use of such tools
    to give them a good evaluation.

    I think there is a demo of the "Movie Edit 2004" that you
    can download, it most likely has the same audio features.

    Ken Maltby, Apr 14, 2005
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