How do I even out sound levels?

I’m using Audacity 2.0.3 with Windows. Is there some way for me to process an entire file to even out the sound levels? Basically, I want to take the low sounds up and the high sounds down.

If we start giving you tool settings they might only work in Audacity 2.1.0, so you should upgrade so we’re all on the same page. Which Windows?


Sounds like my DynAudNorm tool could be suitable for your situation. It was designed especially to “even out” the volume of loud and quiet sections, in a “smooth” way. And it also has a VST plug-in that you can use with Audacity!

(using Audacity v2.0.6 or newer is highly recommended!)

It’s Windows 7. I’ll upgrade when I get home.

I’m using Windows 7 and I have upgraded to 2.1.0. Please let me know what you recommend that I do.

Please post a short audio sample. How bad it is determines which tools are required.
See here for how to post an audio sample:

Well, if you wish to give the DynAudNorm a try (from within Audacity), just follow instructions in the VST plug-in section:

In this case, see also the Audacity Wiki for details on VST plug-in installation and usage:

You can use the leveler tool on moderate 2 times it might help. But use of the proper eq settings to boost the correct frequencys is the best way. I use my normal preset to bring the vocal up but not destroy the music. Then use needed ones to adjust bass or treble or use my voice ones if needed extra boosting. I just got my presets postex for downloading. But I’m sure doing the eq is the best way.

Unfortunately that can add distortion.

If you wanted to take the low volume sounds up and the high volume sounds up while maintaining the frequency balance then ideally you would use a multi-band compressor. Audacity only has a full bandwidth compressor but we should not assume that the poster explicitly wants to change the equalization (though that may be a side effect of using Audacity’s compressor).


Multi-band compression is a must if you expect to export to mp3. Lots of the awful sounding mp3’s are that bad because of some simple auto gain thing to make it louder. For some reason it’s most noticeable with vbr mp3’s.

MP3’s can sound good. But it requires a bit more work than dropping a thousand wav’s on an icon and expecting them all to sound good.

I had a look for a free compressor. Jeroen Breebaart’s ‘Broadcast’ seems like a good choice.

Haven’t tested it myself yet, as it’s Windows only.

Has anyone tested Reaper’s free plugin set with Audacity? Some of these are fantastic and there is a mutli band compressor:

Not necessarily the case.
If you have a thousand great sounding WAV files and you convert them to MP3 using Lame’s “Extreme” preset, I doubt that you will be able to hear the difference from the original WAV files.

On a very quick play yes these seem to work OK in 2.1.0 now that it supports real-time preview.


Thanks, Gale. I need to find some time to try these out in Audacity. Ah, well, maybe tomorrow :laughing:

I’m not in possession of lot’s of hardware or software tools I’m answering on how I do it with the default download of audacity. Yes the leveler can mess it up that’s why I said might help sometimes it has helped on my files.