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134th AES Convention Zeros In On Loudness

Loudness Track To Address Critical Issues From Every Conceivable Angle

ROME: The Loudness wars have waged on air and in ear for decades, leaving millions of frustrated listeners in their wake as collateral damage. The FCC, EBU, and ITU have responded with a family of standards aimed at measuring and controlling loudness, and designed to ensure an acceptable listening experience. 134th AES Convention Chairman Umberto Zanghieri reports that the Loudness Track, anchored in a full day of focused events on Sunday May 5th, represents, “A comprehensive and authoritative overview of the many complex issues related to this enduring problem.”

To emphasize the importance of the Loudness Issue, the 134th AES Convention has declared Sunday, May 5th Loudness Day. Assembled by Florian Camerer, Chair of the EBU Loudness Group, PLOUD, these Papers and Panels will explore the latest research and practices and, address recommendations for demystifying and ameliorating this exasperating scourge. The 134th AES Convention will be held May 4 -7, 2013 at Rome’s Fontana di Trevi Conference Centre.

AES Rome: Loudness Track: Saturday, May 4

Loudness Measurement of Multitrack Audio Content Using Modifications of ITU-R BS.1770: Recipient of the Convention’s Best Peer-Reviewed Paper Award, this far-reaching primer on recent ITU and EBU loudness measurement recommendations, will be presented by Pedro Pestana who co-wrote with Josh Reiss and Alvaro Barbosa.

Loudness Papers presented on Saturday under the heading: Perception: include:

1.The Relation Between Preferred TV Program Loudness, Screen Size and Display Format 2. A Framework for Adaptive Real -Time Loudness Control

AES Rome: Loudness Day – Sunday May 5

A Hichhiker’s Guide to Audio Nirvana: Presenter Florian Camerer, ORF – Austrian TV – Vienna, Austria; EBU – European Broadcasting Union – Targeted to sound engineers, this session will bring participants up to speed regarding virtually all the key aspects of loudness control and metering.

All Loudness Recommendations Are Equal-But Some Are More Equal than Others: Presenter Andrew Mason, BBC Research and Development, London – This tutorial will offer an explanation of the different loudness standards used in Europe (R 128), the US (A/85), and such other countries as Australia and Japan.

Loudness for Commercials-How Esthetics Change(d)

Are Movies Too Loud? The Loudness Race Reaches the Cinema: Presenters: Florian Camerer, ORF – Austrian TV – Vienna, EBU – European Broadcasting Union; Eelco Grimm, Grimm Audio – Utrecht, Netherlands, Alessandro Travaglini, Fox International Channels Italy – Guidonia Montecelio (RM), Italy – Cinema audiences constantly complain that soundtracks are “too loud.” Just turning the level down results in lowered dialog levels, which leaves the movie quieter but unintelligible. EU loudness standards are starting to be applied to cinemas. There may be a need for standards to ensure that theaters receive soundtracks that meet EU laws. This workshop will investigate the issues and the work necessary to resolve them.

Make LUFS Not War: Chair, Thomas Lund, TC Electronic A/S Denmark; Panelists: Florian Camerer, ORF – Austrian TV, Vienna; EBU – European Broadcasting Union; George Massenburg, Schulich School of Music, McGill University, Montreal – Newly produced pop/rock music rarely sounds good on fine loudspeakers, commercials on TV are annoyingly loud, and a visit to the cinema may be a deafening experience. This is audio’s dark Middle Ages. However, 2013 could be the year where a renaissance again spreads from Italy. Transparent loudness normalization has arrived to radio, TV, and iPod; The panel will address the far-reaching implications this development will have on audio production.

Give Peaks a Chance: Presenter: Thomas Lund, TC Electronic A/S – Risskov, Denmark – Hearing is our most acute temporal sense, but the terms we have for describing dynamic changes in audio are not well defined. This session will explore micro and macro-dynamics in music and speech, their effects and, what it takes to actually register them as a listener. But, engineers be warned! Although audio samples will be played, this presentation will focus on anatomy, physiology, and psychology.

Loudness Work in Live Sports – Case Studies, Upmix And Downmix

Loudness In Radio – The Next Step

“We are extremely proud of this historic Loudness Track,” states AES Executive Director Bob Moses. “We hope it will produce meaningful dialogues on correcting this ongoing problem. We also recommend that attendees refer to the Preliminary Events Calendar -http://www.aes.org/events/134/calendar/calendar.cfm to confirm times and locations for all these events. Packed with descriptive abstracts of Papers, Workshops, Tutorials and Special Events, the Preliminary Events Calendar provides an invaluable overview of the first AES Convention to be held in the Eternal City.

Photo: Florian Camerer, Chair of the EBU Loudness Group, PLOUD

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The Audio Engineering Society was formed in 1948 by a group of concerned audio engineers. The AES counts over 14,000 members throughout the U.S., Latin America, Europe, Japan and the Far East. The organization serves as the pivotal force in the exchange and dissemination of technical information for the industry. For additional information visit http://www.aes.org

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