Lowering audio's "highs"

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writerhoward
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Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:11 pm
Operating System: OS X 10.11 El Capitan or later (macOS)

Lowering audio's "highs"

Post by writerhoward » Fri Nov 10, 2017 12:39 pm

I am listening to an instructional audio and every 10-15 seconds, the speaker's volume, very briefly, rises above a level I find comfortable listening to. How can I lower the "highs"? Related to that, how can I know how much to lower the highs? I am a novice using Audacity.

Also, the audio is an MP3. If I want save my changes, should I export it as MP3? If so, what export settings should I use?

Thanks,
Howard

steve
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Re: Lowering audio's "highs"

Post by steve » Fri Nov 10, 2017 2:15 pm

Try using the Limiter effect http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/limiter.html

Reducing the peak level by 6 dB is equivalent to reducing the level by half. So, if you first Normalize (http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/normalize.html) to 0 dB and then set the Limiter to:
Type: Soft Limit (default)
Input Gain: both 0 (default)
Limit to (dB): -6
Hold: 10 (default)

and that will reduce peaks that are over -6 dB down to -6 dB.
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writerhoward
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2017 1:11 pm
Operating System: OS X 10.11 El Capitan or later (macOS)

Re: Lowering audio's "highs"

Post by writerhoward » Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:07 pm

Steve,

The audio is an MP3. If I want save my changes, should I export it as MP3? If so, what export settings should I use?

Howard

Trebor
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Re: Lowering audio's "highs"

Post by Trebor » Fri Nov 10, 2017 5:16 pm

writerhoward wrote: ... The audio is an MP3. If I want save my changes, should I export it as MP3? If so, what export settings should I use?
MP3 is a lossy format : there is accumulative damage by repeatedly using MP3.

If you must make an MP3 of an MP3 use the highest quality settings to minimize the loss.

Loss-less formats like WAV & FLAC are the best quality, but their file size is ~10x larger than MP3.

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