Recorder Audio Meter

  • 264
  • Idea
  • Updated 1 year ago
  • Under Consideration
  • (Edited)
(This idea comes what what we’ve heard here in this community as well as from other customer feedback methods we utilize. The feedback we gather here will help us gauge how well it fits our users’ needs. Please let us know what you think)

The Problem:

Audio inconsistencies mean that my users are turning their volume up and down and sometimes I’m scaring them with uncomfortably loud volume after a previously quiet clip 

Potential Solution:

A colored audio meter on the recorder (with target audio levels) so I can make sure my voice is “just right.”

(edit to original post based on feedback) Another use case with the same underlying problem is normalizing audio across media with a editor based solution
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David D, Technical Product Manager - Camtasia

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Posted 2 years ago

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training

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Keeping the volume consistent between both frames AND videos is one of my most difficult edit processes. This feature would help when I make a series of videos as well as within the same video. 
(Edited)
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Stephane

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You're so right !!!

How can we normalize into a serie ?
How can we normalize with different series ?
How can we normalize with competitors ?
How can we normalize with YouTube ?

That's totaly incredible a such evident feature is not allowed...
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David D, Technical Product Manager - Camtasia

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Thanks for pointing out this distinction between normalizing audio during recording and normalizing audio during editing. Those are both solutions that could potentially address the underlying problem of having consistent audio depending on the use case. I'll make an edit to the idea to include both use cases.
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nathanielb

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Please add an audio meter. An audio meter that shows peak and average level with call outs at -12, -14, -18, -24 LKFS would be best. Wish list: If there could be a transparent brickwall limiter on the master audio bus too, that would hold the volume under the peak standard you select that would be ideal as well. 
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jeff-hurd

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Not only a meter while recording but a meter during playback in post as well PLEASE! We have to know where our levels are at!
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bcarmichael1

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I was using the Orban loudness meter, but since Windoze10 came out, I am unable to get it to work with my USB audio output devices. A built in program loudness meter, selectable between Volume Unites and Digital levels would be awesome. Perhaps make it compatible with third party VST plug ins?
https://www.google.com/search?q=VST+plug+ins&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=VST+plugins&tbm=shop
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elmurray

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I just looked for this today when I was editing a video.  I added recorded audio as an intro to a voice track.  I wanted to try to get them to approximately the same volume level, but it was difficult to do with depending only on my speakers and perception of the audio.
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Bill Coughlin

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editing audio voulmes is very tough  need a larger controller 
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John Wright

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I think a sliding numerical scale to adjust volume at an audio or series of selected audio points would be very helpful
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tRaV

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upvote, especially the normalizing option, especially if available during Editing (was categorized under Recording in roundup).

Wish Audio Scrubbing could be added, as well, as it was requested together with this option, in the past.
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ijnalepa

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I clicked the feedback link in the app to specifically request this feature, and saw this.  Yes!  Please add an audio meter with standard db labeling.  We're using this application in a team environment and would like to make sure all are outputting final videos with similar voice levels.
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william.blackburn

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Also please fix noise removal. The last one in Camtasia 8 was much better.
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S. Shackelford

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Wish list: Audio level meter..

It would be great to have an audio level meter so that I can adjust it before sharing my videos.
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info

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Camtasia 9: Audio level and gain. And view/edit current audio level.

2 questions about Camtasia 9 audio:

1. How do I know what is the current audio level? I edited a video yesterday and I recall I set the volume level to 224 - but now I cannot view it anywhere. I even tried to open the project file in text editor - but could not see it anywhere. Some help will be appreciated here.

2. What is the difference between audio level and audio gain? Which one should be use if we want to make the voice narration a bit louder or quieter?

Thanks
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Pete

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Different audio levels when merging two clips.

I often record a video and find that most of it is o.k., but later need to re-record one section. Sometimes (whether because I'm on a new machine or simply messed up the settings), the volume level on the new clip is drastically different. Is there an easy way to match up the levels (I usually record video and audio at the same time). Also, a better built-in tool for this would be a great new feature(if anyone at Techsmith is listening...)
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Video Engineer

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the fact that there are 2 places to change the audio level and 1 of them you can't enter a # in, and the other doesn't visible change the audio peaks on the time line makes it a nightmare to set audio levels and know what they are.

Instead of fixing the problem they added a bandaid
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David D, Technical Product Manager - Camtasia

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Official Response

We probably should have broken this out into 2 ideas. Before we know which way to go with this, we’d like to get additional clarity on the problems to solve. This idea got a lot of votes so we didn’t want to wait until the next idea round-up to get clarity.


From the feedback we heard two problems:

  • While recording screen, I want to know my audio level is in the target range so my users aren’t having to change their volume

  • I don’t want my audience to have to adjust their volume during my video because of inconsistent audi levels. I’d like a way to normalize the audio levels of some or all my audio media in my project


Here’s a quick survey to clarify the problem to solve


We’d appreciate if you could help us out here. We’ll update the status on idea once we have that additional information.


Here are the definitions of what the statuses mean for Ideas.

Here is the overall vote count for the rest of the Ideas in this round up.

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elmurray

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I would like to see something like what is in Adobe Premiere.  (See picture) 
It is easier to see what the real volume level is, instead of depending on my perception of what the audio volume is coming out of my speakers.
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davemillman

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To David D, Techsmith,
With respect, you need to read this entire thread and the threads merged into it. Multiple people have submitted very detailed technical requests, more details in fact than your survey. This thread and the threads merged into it go back multiple years, please read the whole thing, many of us have contributed many details. Perhaps you could ask questions about some of the very detailed requests posted previously. Thank you.
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David D, Technical Product Manager - Camtasia

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@davemillman, We definitely read the entire thread more than a few times. We should have explained what the survey is trying to accomplish. There's roughly 2 buckets the ideas/problems fall into (and I'm generalizing a bit here) a) audio leveling while a user is making a recording b) audio leveling in the editor. The survey is to help us understand which portion of users fall in the "while recording" vs "during editing" groups. Not trying to diminish the importance of the detailed responses. Those details are being considered.
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elmurray

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I'm not sure the questions in the survey portray those two options.  I understood the two questions to be a type of manual adjustment vs. automatic adjustment.  From your questions above, I'd prefer to do the audio editing in the editor, but I also want to be able to adjust it manually.  I've tried the automatic noise cancellation and other features before, but they distort the audio.  Essentially, I want an audio monitor that tells me at what db level my audio is at, so I can adjust it in the editor accordingly.
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Dale Towner

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So there is manual adjustment of the audio available at the moment (and hopefully Techsmith wouldn't take this away). The issue with the adjustment currently is that you can adjust it but there is no reference to what is a clean and what is a distorted signal i.e. no reference to 0dBU.

hopefully if there was an automatic adjustment (normalization feature) added, the manual control of audio level would still remain...

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bcarmichael1

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Also, making Camtasia compatible with VST plugins should be less R&D intensive for your team, there are so many options out there for processing audio independent of Camtasia.

From Wikipedia- Virtual Studio Technology (VST) is a software interface that integrates software audio synthesizer and effect plugins with audio editors and recording systems. VST and similar technologies use digital signal processing to simulate traditional recording studio hardware in software. Thousands of plugins exist, both commercial and freeware, and a large number of audio applications support VST under license from its creator, Steinberg.
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Stephane

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Record and Edit  are as important !

Do you ask Camtesia's Customers to record in Black and White and edit in Colors ?
Do you ask your Customers to record in Colors and edit in Black and White ?

And the problem is not to have a vu-meter, a “normalizer“, some colors or not... the problem is to have a sound reference.

I understand Sound is not your speciality and is a problem for Camtesia.
What I don't understand is why don't you allow third party Plugin ?

Thanx
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Dale Towner

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Hi David D,

To clarify my main need - it is to be able to accurately monitor the level of audio on the timeline within the editor (so an accurate dB meter displaying audio levels of the content in the timeline).

A normalizing tool would also be helpful but does not solve the problem of not being able to see where the levels are at any given point.

To clarify, (taken from Wikipedia) normalization is the application of a constant amount of gain to an audio recording to bring the average or peak amplitude to a target level (the norm). 

So normalizing doesn't allow you to monitor the levels of your audio, rather it simply raises the average OR peak values to an entered value.

The issue with that is that you can still have a video that is over unity (aka 0dB) and with no other changes in Camtasia, you'd still have no idea what the actual levels are that you're outputting.

Does that make sense? Happy to elaborate if it doesn't.

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nathanielb

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Allowing VST plugins could be cool. It would definitely fix metering issues for pro film and audio users, however it would not help the majority of users in my opinion. Also it is annoying if it must always scan VST plugins at launch like FCPX. If you do add VST support please remember if you already scanned plugins at launch. 

I think ideally the audio meter looks like the Apple Logic meter and is on the master bus. It shows Peak, RMS, and most importantly LUFS. Most video platforms such as YouTube and broadcast have a LUFS standard now. Would be cool if you could select the standard and it would show you if you are going over like the logic one below. -14 LUFS is what I shoot for when making a YouTube video and -23 LUFS for broadcast.


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Dale Towner

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Thanks nathanielb - I just learned something as I didn't know about LUFS.

Your explanation of the practical application of why we need audio metering should be helpful.

David and Techsmith team, Imagine the real world results of adding the metering that nathanielb mentions - all of the videos created using Camtasia could be accurately output at the levels users want rather than them having to guess and hope for the best.

it really is the one sticking point for me when suggesting to others which software to use for screen capture and video recordings in the university teaching environment.

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Stephane

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When ears are “educated“ normalizers are gadgets !
But there's no ear that can say if this sound is -12 db or - 18 db.

So  :
We need a reference into the editor to know what is the max output YouTube can accept !

*Please forget about “Normalizers“. They are a totaly old fashionned plugin with today's Compressors ! 
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David D, Technical Product Manager - Camtasia

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Thanks everyone for sharing your thoughts and clarifying your needs. Very helpful! We will definitely take these into account as we formulate a way forward on these problems. As a FYI, we've been exploring VST recently and, as a couple of you suggest, it could be a promising avenue for us to leverage. We'll have more to share on this topic in the near future.
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Caoj

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VST: what a nice ideia!!!!! It solves the audio meter and adds infinite possibilities.
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wiesemar

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And still no audio meter  in 9.1. Audio Meters are not a "nice to have" feature  but an essential feature....
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David D, Technical Product Manager - Camtasia

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Hello,

We updated the status of this idea to under consideration. We have a team researching and prototyping a collection of audio improvements. This idea is part of that research. We'll share updates here as that project progresses. Thanks!