K-14 calibration

Does anybody knows how to calibrate the monitor gain where 0dB on the meter yields 83 dB SPL? That will represents K-14 calibration. I have HR824 speakers.



Nice! Bob Katz devised the K-14 (K-12, K-20) systems, and I’ve read up on some of it on GearSlutz. But this link looks far better! THANKS!

Has anyone used a VST for this?


I like Blue Cat’s stuff, so I’m tempted to buy it. And even though one really should use an SPL meter to calibrate their monitors, if you use something like this then theoretically you can achieve the same results by watching the output graph.

Paul: I’m really new to this aspect of mixing / mastering (if you can call my efforts that at all). What are your thoughts?

It is actually good to reference your mixing levels, mixing at a similar volume. Your ear’s frequency response changes with the level of sound you are hearing. So, your perception of spectral balance would change at different volume levels whereas if you mixed at the same volume all the time, it would be relitavely the same depending on how many potatoes you have in your ears.

Understood, but if I never touch the volume knobs on the monitors then isn’t that accomplishing the same thing? My volume is controlled through the Mackie board that I have. (My signal chain is Cubase > M-Audio 2496 > Mackie 1604 VLZ > Yamaha SP3 monitors.) I try to keep that near unity whenever possible during mixing.

I suppose… This is off Bob’s site: http://www.digido.com/level-practices-part-2-includes-the-k-system.html

This is an incredible testament to the effectiveness of the 83 dB SPL reference standard proposed by Dolby’s Ioan Allen in the mid-70’s, originally calibrated to a level of 0 VU for use with analog magnetic film. The choice of 83 dB SPL has stood the test of time, as it permits wide dynamic range recordings with little or no perceived system noise when recording to magnetic film or 20-bit digital. Dialogue, music and effects fall into a natural perspective with an excellent signal-to-noise ratio and headroom. A good film mix engineer can work without a meter and do it all by the monitor, using the meter simply as a guide. In fact, working with a fixed monitor gain is liberating, not limiting. When digital technology reached the large theatre, the SMPTE attached the SPL calibration to a point below full scale digital. When we converted to digital technology, the VU meter was rapidly replaced by the peak program meter.

Isn’t it strange while all talk about calibration and mixing for this and that. That all give a flying frog really.
Louder is better still reigns supreme. We just want a meter to show us how much we can push beyond what was before perceived as very loud stuff. Just 2 db rms more and I’ll be the king of loud/bad sound.


The K System is an effort to combat/defeat the Loudness craze