Increasing volume through multiple amplify and normalize effects

You might like RMS Normalize rather than “straight” Normalize.

This was designed to satisfy the audiobook requirement of maintaining a stiff standard for volume (roughly RMS) which normal Normalize won’t do since both it and Amplify work on sound peaks, not volume. Sound peaks do not correlate well with loudness.

Follow that with the soft Limiter to tame peaks and avoid overload (or audible problems) and you’re done.

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Please note that sound inside Audacity does not overload in spite of what View > Show Clipping tells you. So it’s perfectly valid to have a clipping warning between RMS Normalize and Limiter (Soft). Just don’t forget to apply both.

That’s not the full audiobook protocol. The complete suite has a rumble filter before everything because many home microphones have low pitch trash that can throw off filters, effects and corrections and most voices don’t miss suppression of very low pitch sounds. This is the full suite if that’s what you’re doing.

Feel free to mess with the settings and see what the tools do. Please note there are no compressors in the suite even though it would seem this is a natural place for them. Soft Limiter is a version of compressor in this application.