Gain vs. Mouthnoises

You have the order backwards from the Mastering Suite.

You perform Low Rolloff to get rid of rumble, bus and truck thumping noises before the other tools. Then RMS Normalize to set loudness (I think I used -20). That can produce some troublesome peaks which surrender to Soft Limiter.

https://forum.audacityteam.org/t/audiobook-mastering-version-4/45908/1

I think you’re supposed to measure success by the chapter or segment, not minute by minute. If you take the performance apart in great detail, you may never be able to do anything theatrical or expressive.

The ideal live recording volume has tips of the blue waves roughly half-way or 50%. The sound meter should just be turning a little yellow as it bounces, -6dB to -10dB.

Jury’s out on when to correct for mouth clicks and lip smacks. My fuzzy preference is to do it before mastering because if the clicks are loud enough, it will throw the other tools off. Experiment.

And no, you don’t get rid of lip smacks by turning the microphone volume up and down. They’re always in the sound, you just can’t always hear them. After careful mastering, there they are!


There is a condition where you’re too expressive and theatrical. If there is a wide volume difference between parts of the performance, then you’re into heavier compression and more serious volume controls. You may be out of range of anything Mastering 4 can do. It’s either experimental techniques or try other suites. Mastering 4 isn’t the only one out there, and some of the other ones do feature overall volume setting.

Koz