Hello. I am having a bizarre problem with Audacity’s amplification feature. If certain parts of a file get too loud and choppy, it seems to automatically normalize them on export. Sometimes, if say, an extreme bass boost is applied, it will come out as total silence. Occasionally upon exporting files, I will get a problem where some parts intended to sound distorted will come out sounding incredibly fine in some areas and then completely silent in others.
Take for example, these two David Bowie clips. One has been amplified in Audacity 2xx (it seems to happen in every version I’ve tried from 2.0.5 onwards), the other in 1.2.1. The latter comes out as loud and distorted as intended, but the former comes out completely normal, only slightly louder, even though it was broken and distorted within Audacity.
I have no idea why you’re getting “total silence”.
One has been amplified in Audacity 2xx (it seems to happen in every version I’ve tried from 2.0.5 onwards), the other in 1.2.1.
Probably different OGG encoders…
As a rule you shouldn’t exceed 0dB (=1.0 =100%). Regular (integer) WAV files and audio CDs will [u]clip[/u] at 0dB, and your DAC (and ADC) will also clip at 0dB.
If you do export to a format that goes over 0dB it will sound normal at low volumes but the DAC will clip if you play it back at full-digital volume.
If you WANT clipping (distortion) the Limiter effect has a Hard Clip setting. So for example, you can amplify the peaks to +10dB (Allow Clipping) and then runt the limiter to hard-clip at 0dB. Or, you can limit to -10dB and then amplify back to 0dB.
even though it was broken and distorted within Audacity.
By default, Audacity works in floating-point which has virtually no upper or lower limit (so it will never clip). However, you can clip your DAC if your audio goes over 0dB and you play back at full volume. And, you might not notice a problem until after you’ve exported.
Maybe we’re the only ones hearing smashed loud and dense performance? Are you trying to make up for something wrong in your playback system? Audacity sound files have a top end in the outside world. Louder than that, the distortion goes nuts, and as a respected production engineer once said, “Distortion sounds loud.”
But it’s still distortion. The digital sound file is not following the original performance.
Once you have a good sound file, making it louder means you turn your speaker or sound system up.
If you have different performances that don’t match, that’s a whole other world. Windows has different volume settings for different sound services. One performance on line and the same performance in Audacity may not sound the same in Windows.