Level of song after mix down in low

When I record a project in N-track the playback level is nice and loud. The output is peaking out at about -3bd. However, after mixing it down it is really low. What am I doing wrong?

What are you mixing the project down to. MP3, wave and what are your project settings?


The age old "why do my mixes not sound like mastered CDs?"



And once you have read those and realize what you need to do, go grab this:


Cheers, Bubba. Good reading. Every time I check this kind of stuff, I learn something new.

Bubba, those are great links, but I wonder if they answer his question. Why would a song you just recorded sound just right when you play back all the tracks, and then you mix it down to a single file, and that file is way quieter than the multi-track original, even played back through ntrack with all the settings the same? If I have my mix just right, and I mixdown, why does that file play back at a lower volume?

This is something I have had happen a couple times, and I never have understood. The volume of a mixed down wav should be the same as the master volume of the original multi-tracks, shouldn’t it?

'til later

is “decrease volume as tracks are added” clicked in preferences?

Just a guess.

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

Nope,I have actually never used that feature. The master out is reading -3db during playback, but is way low after mixdown.

A quick fix might be to use ntrack’s normalize function on the mixed down track. If just turning the volume up does not change the overall sound, then at least you will have your mixdown at the right volume then…

'til next time;
tony w

Whatever media player he is using is not at max volume or the sound card’s software mixer has a separate volume. More or less can guarantee it.

I think Bubbagump is on to the correct answer. If you open the file in N-Track and play it there the sound level should be the same. Another question would be: does the other player have a VU output meter and how those reading compare to the readings in N-track. Using compressors will raise the “perceived sound” but that should stay the same on the mixdown track (mixed louder, plays louder) not necessarily what a person always wants in a mix.
A compressor/limitor can be a real dynamic killer.

Another maybe…what does the finished mixdown look like? when you bring it back into Ntrack?

It has been my experience that if a track is truly loud the wav. file will be thick, sometimes so thick (with mastering) that it will just look like a solid block of red cheese with only the occasional sliver of a dip or two in it. :)

However I digress, and agree with Bubba, that it may very well be another windows related volume level affecting the playback but we won’t know that for sure until we have a better idea of what the mixdown file looks like or what sort of FX you have on the master channel, as pointed out compression or limiting can have adverse FX on overall volume level.

Is it possible He has this mixdown routed to some AUX channel or something that has a lowered fader guys? this would account for a lower volume on the resulting mix, however again hard to know without comparing the way each file looks with one another., again it has just been my experience that quieter tracks are smaller looking, meaning they are not as wide of a image than louder ones, so looks may be important! :)

If your resulting track looks less FAT for lack of a better word, then there is more at work here than just a playback volume issue.

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

Nope, not the media player. I play the songs on several systems. Using a Delta 1010, and all level settings seem ok.

SO what does the mixdown look like? that is what does the wav. file look like?

Is it small looking? or does it fill the cube?

It would stand to reason a -3db file would appear pretty thick.

Are you able to take a screen shot of the project with the mixdown brought back into it and show it to us? or at least describe it to us as compared to the other files?
IF we have eliminated the media player volume as a possibility we have to explore other possible causes, but to be honest you are not giving us much to work with here, is it possible to answer a few of the asked questions?

A lot of knowledgeable people here who have been using this software for over a decade now and would love to help.

keep shinin

jerm :cool: