Monday, December 7, 2009

Leveling Out Audio in a Single Track

Tragic things can happen when mixing audio or video clips from multiple sources. Sound levels (read: volume) can fluctuate erratically, causing the resulting splice of tracks to be inaudible. To stop your viewers from having to play games with their volume nobs while watching your videos we will cover some techniques here to remedy the problem.

Tools you will need:
  • Software to process audio tracks (I use Audacity.)
  • And something to mux/demux Video (I use VirtualDub.)

Some points I would like to make:
  1. If you can run a filter called "Normalize" on all the tracks you are mixing. This will make it so that everything has the same maximum volume. If you do this you avoid having to do...
  2. Dynamic Range Compression should not be confused with plain Compression. Compression refers to making a file smaller. (We will be doing Dynamic Range Compression)
If you can find other software to do these things then good for you! (There is more than one way to skin a moose.)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Virtual CloneDrive

This is the best Optical Drive emulation in existence right now (in my opinion). I used to use Alcohol, but they started wanting money. I used Daemon Tools, but they added spy/mal/adware. So now I turn back to ElaborateBytes and SlySoft. These developers really know how to please.

Virtual CloneDrive has a lot going for it. From great emulation to a humble price tag (i.e. free), you can expect the unexpected. The main selling point for this is that it is from a company I trust, and it is free (cause I'm poor). This thing is easy to install, and easy to use. It isn't very complex or bloated with features you probably wont use. It has a little tray icon that starts up when windows does and hides out in your task bar. You can turn this off, but I've stopped caring about programs that hide down there since Windows 7.

A potential downside, it does install its own drivers on your computer. While this isn't a big deal, it does bother some people.

I'm just waiting for Microsoft to figure out that people really do want to emulate CD Drives so they don't have to burn a disk image every time! It was kind of them to include the ability to burn ISO files natively in Windows 7. But seriously. Why waste a disk unless you are giving it to a friend or loading a new OS?

Virtual CloneDrive can be found here: