I’ll try to keep this simple if a bit redundant.
Create an audio track by sending signal from the Test Generator placed on a Group Buss and recording that to the Audio Track – typical Tone.
I used 440 Hz at -12 dB per the TG, sine wave.
The Track records and nulls perfectly in Cubase. The meters read correctly, there’s a small overage in level, but it looks generally right.
Export that track (24 Bit 48K Wave file, no processing) and check playback outside of Cubase using the standard Windows Media Player.
Import the file created on Export and compare. They two files are identical. They null perfectly against each other and sound exactly the same and read exactly the same on the Meters.
What I’m not getting is this. Why is playback level lower (SPL) in Media Player lower as compared to the same audio being played back in Cubase?
Cubase is either something like +18 or even more hotter than the Exported File played by Media Player? Or asked the other way, why is Media Player something like the same amount lower in volume than what Cubase plays back in normal operation?
This is not an case of odd attenuation caused by a system malfunction as far as I can tell. Other inputs play back fine and sound clean.
When I playback in Cubase my interface’s volume is set at its known mark (approximately 2 P.M. on the rotary control, approx 83 db SPL) and that’s good, but, when the mix is exported, playback level outside of Cubase, in Media Player for example, requires that I greatly increase the Audio Interface’s volume control to come close to matching the volume level of what Cubase generates.
Creaking the volume of the interface makes most other programs (streams, CDs) playback much too loudly and it introduces some distortion.
The Media Player’s outputs are set to its factory default of -10.5 dB (dBWKW, who knows what, MS won’t say or I can’t find their spec. on this). As I mentioned, playback of all other streams or inputs at this level is fine. The interface is set to its default loudness mark and things sound right.
To be redundant, playback of streams, CDs works fine with the default Media Player levels, but the Cubase Exported Audio Mix output comes back much lower in volume.
Why is that? I feel I’m missing the boat on something here with regard to Cubase’s signal flow maybe. I don’t know… Confused…
The export sounds exactly like what was created, but the volume level is low. I can make it any audio file louder or apparently louder…so I’m not asking how to make said file louder.
Why is there a shift in level between what’s inside Cubase and what we hear using a playback device outside of Cubase to play the Exported mixdown?
Screen shots of the set-up used to generate the test tone files and project.
Thanks for reading and for any help on this. Sorry if the post is overly long. tried to keep it clear and brief.
Best to you,