I'd like to know if others are using the average RMS calculator from SoundForge to confirm the global RMS level of a song before publishing to Spotify and other online platform. I see a lot going around with the LUFS and stuff but I don't have access to this kind of monitoring and I've been using this feature from Soundforge for ages.

To be clear here is what I do:

  1. I load my file in SoundForge and select the most chunck of the loud part. See image: enter image description here
  2. Then I run the statistics on that part: enter image description here
  3. enter image description here
  4. I make sure the RMS level (dB) is around -12/-13

In the past I've used as much as -8 but since eveything is leveled up on the digital platforms, I'm aiming for a more sane -12db in that stats section of Soundforge. Is that a good reference for digital publishing of popular platform?


There is a de-facto standard of -14LUFS for Spotify and all online audio. You'll need to measure this with an integrated LUFS/LKFS meter. Soundforge stats isn't going to cut it and RMS measurement isn't going to give you what you need to achieve the correct measurement.

There are various inexpensive LUFS meters around, or you can use something like BS1770GAIN which is a free tool for measuring loudness.

  • Ok very cool small tool. I've run the result and here is what I've got: PS K:\Apps\bs1770gain-0.5.2\bin> .\bs1770gain.exe "K:\Google Drive\ExtractsMp3\RuinsTaken-R17.mp3" analyzing ... [1/1] "RuinsTaken-R17.mp3": integrated: -9.98 LUFS / -13.02 LU [ALBUM]: integrated: -9.98 LUFS / -13.02 LU Mar 7 '19 at 9:37
  • Then that would mean that -9.98 is too loud or do I have to use other parameters? Mar 7 '19 at 9:38
  • I've also for the kicks try to run it on a couple of reference files. These are bought mp3s at 320kbps. They all seem very high. Does it mean that these aren't the same volume mixing sent to online platforms? This is the average for 15 of these songs: integrated: -6.76 LUFS / -16.24 LU Mar 7 '19 at 9:44
  • Yes, these are very loud, but when considering that music has been subjected to loudness wars over the past years, not at all surprising. Most music these days is mastered with almost no dynamic range at all. Probably why I listen to classical most of the time!
    – Mark
    Mar 7 '19 at 13:21

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