hi, i have about 300 sound files with various max. gain level each. i need all sounds to have a max. level of -10dB. i'm thinking the best way to do that would be batch process all sounds through a limiter with a threshold set at -10dB, would that do?

  • or perhaps i should batch-normalize all sound files to -10dB? ... not sure. please advise
    – kampana
    Dec 6 '11 at 10:49

If you use a limiter you are changing the audio. If you normalize you are just changing the amplitude, so this is the best way.

Remember though, there is a difference between level and perceived loudness. What are the sounds and what are they for?

  • they are meant to be used within a desktop application hence loudness level of all sounds should be more or less even (in order to enable users adjust the system loudness level themselves)
    – kampana
    Dec 6 '11 at 12:17
  • Ok, well then it's probably best not to normalize everything. Is there any way of setting the levels for each sound after you've given them to the programmer (presuming that's not you)? If not, you will need to set each one at the level you want using the gain adjustment tool in your DAW. Think which sound is going to be the loudest, normalize that to your -10db, then set the level for each sound against that. I'd also spread a few out on a timeline simulating how you think the application will be used to see how the different levels interact with each other. If you can change levels after.... Dec 6 '11 at 13:26
  • cont.. implementation, then normalize everything and do a mix within the program. Hope this makes sense. It might be worth going into detail what type of sounds you have? Are we talking interface/gui sounds, audio recordings, speech? Dec 6 '11 at 13:29
  • thanks for your reply... it's UI/UX sounds, 1-2sec each. the workflow you propose makes sense.. thanks!
    – kampana
    Dec 6 '11 at 14:06

Adobe Audition CS5.5 has a match volume function which does exactly what you are looking for. The files can be normalized by rms, peak or perceived loudness. Just set the process and the value you want to reach and drop the files in the box... you're done! Batch process are multithreaded in Audition CS5, it goes really fast on multi-core cpus

  • It's funny how little Adobe products are mentioned on SSD.
    – Jinksi
    Dec 6 '11 at 22:16
  • Yeah, Adobe guys make great audio tools despite the poor support and the lack of communication.
    – IVIarsu
    Dec 7 '11 at 22:07

Nugen has a very cool piece of software called LMB (Loudness Manaagement Batch Processor). It will normalize your files to a loudness level using the BS.1770 spec, and will also allow you to set peak limiting levels as well. It ain't cheap ($999 through their site), but it might be worth looking into if it's something you have to do on a regular basis.


You can also batch process in Audacity. Set the chain of different processes you want to do Like limit, normalize and convert to MP3, for example, and then precede. And its open source. :)


I am also interested in!

  • For this, please give a comment rather than an answer. Thanks :-) Dec 6 '11 at 12:25

Barbabatch can do exactly what you need. http://www.audioease.com/Pages/BarbaBatch/

Blindingly fast, excellent conversion quality.

Can also batch fades, gating, etc. as well as convert to scores of file formats and sample rates. Highly recommended.

Also has a demo version.


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