I am digitizing LPs and question whether I should use Normalize. I understand that Normalize can amplify the entire recording without clipping. But is that what we want? For example, if one recording is very loud on the original LP (let’s say heavy rock) and a second recording is very quiet on the LP (let’s say some typical background music), do we really want to make them both the same volume? It seems more logical that we record them both at the same level and leave them there. The recording level would be set as high as possible without clipping on the loudest LP. Then the quiet LPs would remain quiet.
That makes more sense than the generally stated “normalize everything.”
I was unaware of that. Are most standardized and some are not or do they all vary? It seems when listening to LPs I usually set the volume once and then do not change it for different LPs.
My thoughts exactly. Maybe the best approach is to record everything at -6dB maximum and then adjust it to your liking with either Normalize of Amplify.
I am just starting to convert my LPs to digital so I want to get the recording approach correct before I start. I don’t want to learn something new after recording 50 LPs and then have to redo them.
No matter how much advice you receive or how much reading you do, you will almost certainly get better at digitising your vinyl as you gain experience of “doing” it. waxcylinder’s suggestion of starting with “less important” records is a good idea.
That may not be due to the variation between the LP recording levels. It may be because some originals have quiet material (elevator music) and others have louder material (heavy rock).
It can also depend how long the record - there is only so much vinyl real-estate for the cutting engineer to play with. A good exaple of this is the earlier Rolling Stones LPs are definitely louder than Aftermath, as Aftermath contains more material and is longer. Another example is that of 12" singles which can be recorded very loud.