Tascam DP-24sd - Raising Volume

I’m using a Tascam DP-24DS to record a two person podcast. Recording works well but the when played back through my computer (Windows 10) the volume is very low. It has not been mastered. Is there a process in the mastering that increases the volume? Is there a way to raise the volume. I use Audacity to edit the sound file. I’ve heard something about limited/compresser for raising the volume. How does this work.

The Amplify or Normalize effects can boost the volume. Audacity has already scanned your file and Amplify will default to whatever Amplification is needed for normalized (“maximized”) 0dB peaks. I don’t remember if the Normalization effect defaults to 0dB or near 0dB but you can change the settings. Normalize can adjust the left & right channels independently if one person is on the left an another person is on the right. These are both linear adjustments and they make one adjustment for the whole file so the loudest peak determines the loudness.

The compressor & limiter effects bring the loud & quiet parts closer together, and with make-up gain they will make the whole program louder overall. There is also a leveler option for the “Distortion” effect, and you can use the Envelope tool to “manually” fade-up and fade-down the volume as needed.

It defaults to -1 dB (as shown here: Normalize - Audacity Manual), which provides just a tiny bit of headroom for safety.

Recording works well

I see the unit has record volume meters so you can set the performance level. Did you do that? I’m not happy that they are an option screen buried in all the other screens, but they do exist.

If you have the performance volume set low, then that’s why your volume is low in Audacity.

Recording a live show is difficult because you can record low volume by accident and then turn the headphones up during the show and never know there’s anything wrong until you get the sound files into a different machine or software. That’s why the sound meters are important.