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Post Posted:: July 18th, 2017, 10:02 am 

Joined: July 16th, 2017, 3:02 am
Posts: 12
Location: Finland
Hi! If someone wouldn't mind giving me some feedback on this, that'd be awesome.

https://librivox.org/uploads/tests/test_wathgwen.mp3

Thanks!

Sorry, didn't include info:
Using a USB webcam w/mic, Audacity, on Windows 10.


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Post Posted:: July 19th, 2017, 8:12 am 

Joined: August 7th, 2016, 6:39 pm
Posts: 1036
Hi, and welcome to LibriVox! Thanks for your test. :)

There are a couple of issues that I found here. One is that your volume was too low. It was only 82.9 dB. We shoot for 89, but 86-92 is acceptable. The other problem was DC bias. I only kinda-sorta know what that is and how it happens, really, but that's ok, because I know how to fix it. It's recommended that you fix DC bias before doing any other editing, so just for fun, I went ahead and tested it on this recording. When I did it, Audacity worked its magic, and removed the DC bias, plus amplified the file to where it needed to be.

So here's what you do: Highlight the whole thing in Audacity (you can use Ctrl+A as a shortcut), then go to Effects>Normalize. The settings I used were:

Check Remove DC offset (center on 0.0 vertically)
Check Normalize maximum amplitude to -1.0 dB
Uncheck Normalize stereo channels independently

This last setting doesn't apply anyway, since we don't use stereo recordings. Having that second box checked is key to fixing your volume and DC bias all in one go. If you don't check the second one, the volume won't change and then you'll have to (or be able to, if you prefer to do it manually) go in and amplify it as a separate step.

Try this out and post your new link here. You'll be recording in no time!

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Devorah Allen

Journal of Francis Asbury, second Methodist bishop and traveling preacher in America from 1771-1815
Religion: Mushrooms on the Moor by Frank Boreham (died 1959)
Fantasy: The Double Life of Mr. Alfred Burton


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Post Posted:: July 19th, 2017, 8:30 am 

Joined: July 16th, 2017, 3:02 am
Posts: 12
Location: Finland
Don't want DC bias- I'm more of a Marvel girl anyway. ;)

Thanks for the feedback. Will get on it posthaste. Will the 'amplify' effect in Audacity be enough to get the volume right?


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Post Posted:: July 19th, 2017, 8:38 am 

Joined: August 7th, 2016, 6:39 pm
Posts: 1036
Wathgwen wrote:
Don't want DC bias- I'm more of a Marvel girl anyway. ;)

Thanks for the feedback. Will get on it posthaste. Will the 'amplify' effect in Audacity be enough to get the volume right?


Yes, it will, and I would have mentioned that, except that using the normalize effect took care of both your issues at once, so I didn't see a need.

The dumbed-down explanation of DC bias (which is the only one I understand anyway) is that the wave form is not centered on zero. You may have higher spikes above the line than below it, or vice-versa. Again, I don't know what causes this, but it's easy to fix.

_________________
Devorah Allen

Journal of Francis Asbury, second Methodist bishop and traveling preacher in America from 1771-1815
Religion: Mushrooms on the Moor by Frank Boreham (died 1959)
Fantasy: The Double Life of Mr. Alfred Burton


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Post Posted:: July 19th, 2017, 8:50 am 

Joined: July 16th, 2017, 3:02 am
Posts: 12
Location: Finland
https://librivox.org/uploads/tests/test_wathgwen.mp3

Should all be here. I didn't use the amplify effect- I did at first, but see that I misunderstood and the new file might've been too loud. I've done noise reduction as well.

Until I can get a headset or something, my mic is part of a webcam. It's quite sensitive and picks up computer noise even if I turn my fan off. I've also had to make sure I only try recording when my cat is asleep in another room!


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Post Posted:: July 19th, 2017, 9:19 am 

Joined: August 7th, 2016, 6:39 pm
Posts: 1036
Wathgwen wrote:
https://librivox.org/uploads/tests/test_wathgwen.mp3

Should all be here. I didn't use the amplify effect- I did at first, but see that I misunderstood and the new file might've been too loud. I've done noise reduction as well.

Until I can get a headset or something, my mic is part of a webcam. It's quite sensitive and picks up computer noise even if I turn my fan off. I've also had to make sure I only try recording when my cat is asleep in another room!


Perfect! You are all set to go!

Our readers have used and do use all kinds of different setups, and you're not the first person I've heard of to use a webcam. You can get nice results with all different kinds of equipment. My mic also picks up some computer noise, but Audacity has always done a nice job in cleaning it up.

I also have cats--two of them, in fact. And they do sometimes like to butt into my recording time. But if (actually, when) they begin fighting or begging for food or scratching something while I'm recording, I just give it a minute until they quiet down again and record that sentence over again. It's easy to cut it out later. If they get really obnoxious, I'll sometimes lock one of them in the bedroom. :lol:

_________________
Devorah Allen

Journal of Francis Asbury, second Methodist bishop and traveling preacher in America from 1771-1815
Religion: Mushrooms on the Moor by Frank Boreham (died 1959)
Fantasy: The Double Life of Mr. Alfred Burton


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Post Posted:: July 19th, 2017, 9:20 am 

Joined: August 7th, 2016, 6:39 pm
Posts: 1036
Also, I see that you have already chosen a project to contribute to, so you can just go ahead with that recording whenever you're ready! Have fun! :D

_________________
Devorah Allen

Journal of Francis Asbury, second Methodist bishop and traveling preacher in America from 1771-1815
Religion: Mushrooms on the Moor by Frank Boreham (died 1959)
Fantasy: The Double Life of Mr. Alfred Burton


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Post Posted:: July 19th, 2017, 9:46 am 

Joined: July 16th, 2017, 3:02 am
Posts: 12
Location: Finland
Thanks so much for the feedback. Helps to know what to look for in the future, too. It's a bit late for me today but I think I'll start recording my first 'real' stuff tomorrow!

Good luck with your felines. Mine's 19ish and enjoys sitting behind my computer while it's on since it's warm, but gets jealous if she hears me talking to anyone but her (especially if I'm not also petting her).


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