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Topic: VDJ8 Master Meter and Limiter (green)
When I buy music from record pools I've noticed a lot of them seem compressed and normalized all the way to 0 or even +1.4dB and VDJ8 does a nice job at taming them nicely without hitting the limiter. I've also noticed the meters stay in the green and don't touch yellow or red at all even the the audio seems really maxed and loud. When I load purchased mp3s into my DAW I can verify how loud it is there and the meters are maxed. Now, if I make an edit or mashup in any DAW and render it out even at -6dB or, -1dB or even normalized, with a limiter or not, they seem to run into the yellow/red on the meters in VDJ8 even though look the same in the DAW, but sounds loud enough and clean. Does anyone know how to make your custom recorded mashups/edits metering look uniform like purchased mp3s when playing in VDJ8?

Posted Fri 25 May 18 @ 9:57 pm
It's hard to give answer without more information.

All the music you buy is in MP3 format? You mention a DAW - which one?

Then later you say "any DAW" - well if you're using multiple DAWs, then:
1) You must have lots of money! How many DAWs are you using?
2) There will be variations between them due to different codecs etc.

The process of loading an MP3 into audio editing s/w, then saving it again (even without making any changes) involves uncompressing then recompressing the data. The end result will not be identical to the original file.

What exactly are you changing when making an "edit or mashup"? Give an example.

Posted Sat 26 May 18 @ 8:28 am
bagpussPRO InfinityMember since 2003

If you're making a simple edit like a cutdown, then the source level and the rendered files level should be exactly the same (providing you haven't altered the level yourself).

Leveling mashups is a case of trial and error, if they're louder in VDJ than your DAW is implying it could be because VDJ's level indicator is a peak meter rather than RMS.

If you're changing the rate of instrumentals (with timestretch) then you can expect these edits to show louder in VDJ, due to the artifacts of the algorithm used.

Posted Sat 26 May 18 @ 1:16 pm
Thanks, that's the kind of information I was looking for. Both of you brought up some good points and it's making more sense now. I was measuring loudness several ways, including RMS+Peak and also the LUFS (short term, integrated, loudness range - momentary max, short term max, true peak max). I think each song and the instruments used, the way it was recorded, how it was layered, mixed, mastered and processed, the type of plugins used, if it touched external analog gear before going back into the digital realm all make a difference. I found some pro MP3s that were running into the red now (but not hitting the limiter), so it depends on the file. I suppose MP4s at 48k vs 44.1k mp3s, M4As at 1036kbps, AAC, lossless files and 1411kbps redbook and store bought CD files all make a difference on their own and there's way more factors that play a role into it. I'm mixing different formats because I also purchase from video pools. I keep VDJ8 and my sound interface set to 44.1k even though I do mix with 48k videos and suppose that's just the way it is. I have more regular 44.1kbps files than video files by far (around 125k total now and growing). I can't wait to upgrade to Pro and buy a controller next. Thanks again, peace!

Posted Sun 27 May 18 @ 5:40 am
One tip that you may find useful - slap a VST limiter plugin on VDJs master fx slot, to prevent triggering the built in master limiter (which sounds awful).

A popular one around these parts is called LoudMax.

Posted Sun 27 May 18 @ 7:07 am
Nice, I have LoudMax already installed. I'll give it a shot. I usually run VDJ8 at zerodb -6dB for a clean sound.

Posted Sun 27 May 18 @ 9:48 am
bagpussPRO InfinityMember since 2003

Level matching in VDJ is so easy being as the gain adjustments are shown on the waveform, just use a skin like orange juice, where you have fuller and much better looking waveforms.

Sounds like VDJ needs a new default skin and master limiter :)

Posted Sun 27 May 18 @ 12:58 pm
I might as well give my quick review of VirtualDJ (v8.2 b4291) in case any new users are reading this thread and want an overview. I know this thread started out with metering and loudness and just wanted to add my final thoughts. I'm still learning as I go and appreciate all the Pro Infinity users for their expertise and knowledge. I use to mix all analog on vinyl records and finally started to embrace digital mixing technology.

VirtualDJ8 handles the auto-gain extremely well and I rarely make changes to the gain now because artists/producers recorded their songs to sound slightly quieter and louder on purpose and I trust their judgement and now leave it the way it was intended to be heard. I like the boxed metering and the green, blue, red, yellow/amber layout to avoid getting confused, and learned how it switches which track becomes the Master. I also find the stock skin fine for my needs and learned what most things do and what to avoid. I like how I can see what beat I'm on 1-16 and know if the song doesn't follow a perfect phrase count or added an extra 2 or 4 bar phrase.

The loop back feature makes setting up cue points easier. I like going back 8 or 16 bars or more at will. I prefer the 4 deck mode (I don't change keys often, don't use master tempo, but nice it's there) and if I need to I could switch to 6 decks for access to those other layout buttons if needed. I like to see the wave going right to left up top they way it is, then zoomed in the center to make adjustments to the beat grid and cue points. VDJ8's visually appealing to me because we can clearly see where our hot cues / cue markers are in the track and when they're coming up for mix out points, and all the controls are in plain sight. Color coding cue points in the POI's really cool too. I can clearly see the beat grid (big and small square blocks) to get them ready for mixing. I've learned to use the POI editor really well and custom mapping what I need and don't need.

Digital mixing has a long learning curve because you have to know how to fix your BPMs manually when you're analyzing/scanning around 40-80 or 135+ BPM because it takes human intervention, but the rest of the BPMs are usually spot on. I've developed a system for scanning and organizing my tracks and making tag changes. I feel new users could use a tutorial even though a lot of information can be found in videos, but I've taught myself from trial and error, asking questions and all the help offered here. Some pro MP3s are mis-tagged and you'll need a procedure to catch them early. I think beginners will struggle with setting up my library, playlists, favorites, and adjusting the beat grid, and scanning and assigning the intro BPM for all those transition tracks, but VDJ8 makes all these tasks less daunting and they offer videos for accomplishing almost everything.

The browser helps me see what I need without having to scroll over to see what's missing. The programming's truly superb and I don't even question their reasoning anymore. VDJ8's easier to see and use, everything laid out perfectly within reach, less clicks away and very responsive. VDJ8 even offer custom boxes and layout options, skins and more. I demoed almost all of them recently just to see if I'm missing out on anything and to compare features and code. I've learned that trying to install third party effects isn't really necessary anymore. I found slipbrake8 to be the only thing needed and offered as an addon. I'm sure Atomix's going to offer more FX options in future builds, but all these things that can be accomplished externally or in post production.

The stock effects were chosen for their quality and reliability which avoid pops or problems. I really like how you can make what I call remix edits (not to be confused with remix points for the sampler) which are really called Action Macros. Without having to re-record a track, you can edit out verses/choruses with the goto_cue action, and even color code and edit the edit names and revert back to the original, saving you time, storage space, making you sound unique and professional.

Beat matching's a breeze now and you can pull off complicated blends, and automate effects which helps you sound really nice. I don't question the sound quality of digital mixing at all, nor do I want to go back to analog now that I've compared them.

I've been doing file sync backups and system images for backups and recommend Evernote to manually and redundantly backup playlists, mappings, settings, screen shots, output configurations to the clouds, in case you'll ever have a problem restoring anything and need to manually configure them from scratch again. This software lives up to it's name, the programmers thought of almost everything that will make your experience more enjoyable while remaining stable, updated, appealing, sounding nice, highly customizable and responsive.

Edited: I had to break this long post up, because I could no longer read it. I was not able to get the information together, because you gave so much, all together. Hope it is easier to read to others. AMAHM

Posted Mon 28 May 18 @ 3:30 am
bagpussPRO InfinityMember since 2003

Try using paragraphs to make your post more readable ;).

Posted Mon 28 May 18 @ 4:04 am
Thank you, I used up my two edits and couldn't break them up.

Posted Mon 28 May 18 @ 9:09 pm