ac3 render is very low volume

Randy Brown wrote on 11/16/2011, 5:19 PM
This has never happened to me before but using the default ac3 pro, the volume is very low regardless if I change the "dialogue" normalization in custom settings from -27 db all the way up to -3 db. It just doesn't seem to make a difference at all (in listening or comparing the graphic shown in DVDA).
This is with my master volume in VP10 peaking as high as -4 db.
Please tell me what the heck I'm not understanding.
Thanks very much,


ChristoC wrote on 11/16/2011, 5:40 PM
AC3 Pro Encoder:
Dialog Norm = -31 (this sets it at unity gain)
RF and Line Mode DRC = OFF (WYHIWYG)
DC High Pass Filter = ON (this operates at <=3Hz and takes DC bias out of the mix)
Bandwidth High Pass Filter = ON (this takes aliasing noise at >20kHz out of the encode)
90 Deg Phase Shift = ON

Credit to musicvid for the recipe posted here on this very Forum on 9/10/2008 10:45:10 AM
Randy Brown wrote on 11/16/2011, 5:57 PM
What would I do without this forum?
Thanks so much, nice strong signal now that sounds great!
PeterWright wrote on 11/16/2011, 7:22 PM
Randy, don't forget to save these settings as a preset - mine is called "Maintain Volume".
musicvid10 wrote on 11/16/2011, 8:03 PM
Thanks Christo ;?)
john_dennis wrote on 11/16/2011, 9:02 PM
"Randy, don't forget to save these settings as a preset - mine is called "Maintain Volume"."

I call mine "Musicvid's 5.1 Surround DVD".

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musicvid10 wrote on 11/16/2011, 10:19 PM
aah, after all these years, my 15 seconds of immortality . . .
Randy Brown wrote on 11/16/2011, 10:45 PM
Randy, don't forget to save these settings as a preset - mine is called "Maintain Volume".
I already did...I named it "as per Sony Forum" : )
While I'm at it, what's the best settings I can get for PCM wav (there wasn't room on the DVD but there is on the BluRay) ... it has lots of fast cars and music with fat bottom synths etc.
There's no surround recorded so I'm thinking the "PCM Stereo" template, 24 bit/48K with the master in VP10 peaking at about -5db... I have wave hammer on most of the dialogue but not on the music (most of the music already has a brick wall limiter)....any suggestions are appreciated!
Thanks very much guys!
ChristoC wrote on 11/17/2011, 2:40 AM
yes of course thanks to musicvid for the original recipe !

(I edited the original post - ah, feel better now?)
johnmeyer wrote on 11/17/2011, 12:23 PM
It is amazing, after all these years and all these versions, that Sony still does not provide a preset -- or actually sets the default -- to these values. From what I've read over the years, the default AC3 settings are seldom correct for the workflows most people use.

Sony, how about an AC-3 preset -- shipped with the product -- that matches these settings?
musicvid10 wrote on 11/17/2011, 1:08 PM
I agree. I think the default probably came from some attempt to preempt "average" on-camera speech levels, which of course can't be pinned down.

By having a "WYHIWYG" preset, at least it would be some acknowledgment that some of us actually take pains to norm and level our audio mix before it gets to the encoder.