Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

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rado84
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Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by rado84 » Thu Jun 07, 2018 8:13 pm

Until recently I had this problem on movies: actors voices sounded so quiet that sometimes it was impossible to understand they were saying while action scenes and explosions were so loud that they could tear the building down. Anyway, I just got this problem solved. However, I can't help but wonder why this problem exists with every other setting while with Analog spacial 5.0 output everything is perfect and balanced. The mystery is strenghtened by the fact my subwoofer is 2+1 and yet with Analog spacial 2.1 output everything sounds like from cheap headphones for $1. But when I set it Analog spacial 5.0 output, the sound becomes perfectly balanced.

Does anyone have any idea why is that? Could it be a problem in the ALSA driver?

I'm not asking you to solve the problem I already solved, I'm asking for ideas and thoughts what could be the reason for this... confusion with the output. If I (we) can figure this out, I'll report it to the devs of the ALSA project to fix.
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vidtek
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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by vidtek » Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:36 pm

The problem you have is pretty universal.
The sound engineers who mix the film and tv series soundtracks mostly have damaged hearing and deliberately mix the tracks this way for effect in cinemas.
They are real bozos, and there is little to be done about it, because it has become the industry norm and directors love the audience to be startled by sudden loud noises.
The downside is that the dialogue becomes lost and inaudible in many cases.
Interesting that you have found a setting for your system that mitigates this, well done.
BTW, I am an experienced video/audio technician with nearly 50 years experience of installing/repairing PA systems and nightclub PA and video systems.
Tony.
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JerryF
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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by JerryF » Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:52 pm

vidtek wrote:
Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:36 pm
The problem you have is pretty universal.
The sound engineers who mix the film and tv series soundtracks mostly have damaged hearing and deliberately mix the tracks this way for effect in cinemas.
They are real bozos, and there is little to be done about it, because it has become the industry norm and directors love the audience to be startled by sudden loud noises.
The downside is that the dialogue becomes lost and inaudible in many cases.
Interesting that you have found a setting for your system that mitigates this, well done.
BTW, I am an experienced video/audio technician with nearly 50 years experience of installing/repairing PA systems and nightclub PA and video systems.
Tony.
+1
IF AND WHEN your problem has been solved, please edit your original post and add [SOLVED] to the beginning of the Subject Line. It helps other members.

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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by Hoser Rob » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:18 am

vidtek wrote:
Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:36 pm
The problem you have is pretty universal.
The sound engineers who mix the film and tv series soundtracks mostly have damaged hearing and deliberately mix the tracks this way for effect in cinemas.
They are real bozos, and there is little to be done about it, because it has become the industry norm and directors love the audience to be startled by sudden loud noises.
The downside is that the dialogue becomes lost and inaudible in many cases.
Interesting that you have found a setting for your system that mitigates this, well done.
BTW, I am an experienced video/audio technician with nearly 50 years experience of installing/repairing PA systems and nightclub PA and video systems.
Tony.
+1 for me too. I'd add that those loud sounds in the action scenes are meant for the trailer as much as anything ... when they make most action movies they design 5 or 6 action filled set pieces so they can have a nice trailer. And then they hire a screen writer to try to make a story around them. The dialog scenes are mostly filler anyway.

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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by Flemur » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:55 am

On videos I actually like enough to save, I'll take the time to extract the audio (avidemux, audition or audacity), normalize and customize the audio levels to "majorly" reduce the difference between the loud and quiet portions (audition), then stick the audio back in the video file (avidemux again).
Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] if/when it is solved!
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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by Hoser Rob » Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:28 am

Flemur wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:55 am
On videos I actually like enough to save, I'll take the time to extract the audio (avidemux, audition or audacity), normalize and customize the audio levels to "majorly" reduce the difference between the loud and quiet portions (audition), then stick the audio back in the video file (avidemux again).
That will work, better than the normalize function in many media players, which don't work with all videos. But I don't bother with that myself.

One thing I do with a lot of videos is enable the audio EQ in the media player (almost always smplayer for me) and cut the bottom octave by at least -12dB. Many movies and tv shows will just POUND the damn bass out, esp, when something sinister is about to happen. I think that's a very cheap way to create tension and extremely annoying.

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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by CaptainKirksChair » Sun Jun 17, 2018 2:50 pm

I am finding that I now have to enable closed captioning on practically everything I watch. At first I thought I was losing my hearing. Then my son told me HE has to enable closed captioning because he is always missing some of the dialog as well. So now I know it's the program. However, I don't have this problem when watching a movie in a theater, only on my home TV.

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trytip
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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by trytip » Sun Jun 17, 2018 3:58 pm

best options are to normalize sound. smplayer and vlc use different methods of compressing audio. you may want to enable EQ for smplayer and vlc to flat and a bit of treble

in smplayer

Image

vlc

Image
Image

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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by all41 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 4:58 pm

In my surround system the dialogue is routed to the center channel speakers to allow
the voice to radiate from the center of screen to match the location of the lips.
It's a matter of increasing the center channel and decreasing the f/l, f/r, and sub-woofer levels
to compensate for the obnoxiously mixed special effect levels in most movies.
Downside is: these need to be set for each different movie, which is a pain.
At least it's remote-control
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Re: Difference between actors voices and action scenes volume

Post by Hoser Rob » Mon Jun 18, 2018 7:53 am

CaptainKirksChair wrote:
Sun Jun 17, 2018 2:50 pm
I am finding that I now have to enable closed captioning on practically everything I watch. At first I thought I was losing my hearing. Then my son told me HE has to enable closed captioning because he is always missing some of the dialog as well. So now I know it's the program. However, I don't have this problem when watching a movie in a theater, only on my home TV.
I'm doing this now too. Same thing.

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