I’m hoping there’s something simple I’m missing or doing incorrectly here. Thanks in advance for any ideas!
On my projects in Cubase 9.5 Pro, I insert Ozone 8 Advanced on the Stereo Out track. I leave the Stereo Out fader set to 0db and use Ozone’s maximizer to keep true peaks going no higher than -1. I confirm this with Cubase’s loudness meter, and then export the mixdown from Cubase as a single stereo .wav file at 24 bits and 48khz.
For some projects, I need to import the mixdown .wav file into an empty Cubase project file for additional processing. Upon doing this recently, I discovered that the peak loudness levels on imported files don’t match what they were when I exported them. Or at least the Cubase meter levels aren’t matching up.
On a recent instance, Cubase’s loudness meter showed a true peak of 1.5 on an imported .wav file, even though the true peak reading never exceeded -1 at the time I exported the same file.
Initially, I thought that the difference might somehow be caused by having Ozone (especially the maximizer) inserted as a pre-fader effect, even though I have the Stereo Out fader set at 0 on both project files. So I shifted Ozone to post-fader before exporting. But that hasn’t made a difference.
Why would Cubase’s loudness meter show one peak loudness level for my mix at the time I export a mixdown, and then another loudness level when I import that same mixdown file into another empty Cubase project? How do I know which reading is correct?
I saw another recent thread where differences in mixdown levels resulted from stereo signals being summed to mono, but I’m working with stereo at both export and re-import.