BeatRig is the software brand created by Eelco Grimm, better known in high end audio circles with Grimm Audio, but also a loudness expert and core member of the EBU p/loud committee that developed the R128 recommendation for broadcast loudness. More recently, Eelco was the author of the adopted recommendations for loudness normalization by Music Streaming Services.
Announced on May 15, 2018 and made available on most online music software distribution platforms, BeatRig released LevelNorm 2, adopting a simple user interface so R128 compliance can now be achieved by audio experts as well as video editors with limited audio engineering skills. Normalizing a piece of mono, stereo or multichannel audio is as easy as selecting the region of interest and clicking the ‘process’ button. For ATSC A/85 compliance, the AAX plugin optionally offers Dolby Dialog Intelligence to determine the dialog level automatically.
Application of LevelNorm 2 is not limited to finalizing a mix for broadcast, but also used to matching levels of different recordings while editing or even prepare tracks with a preset loudness offset. The high processing speed of LevelNorm 2 fits perfectly in a hectic production environment with tight deadlines like news item editing.
And now LevelNorm 2 supports a very wide range of DAWs via the AU, VST and AAX plugin platforms. It analyzes both the program loudness and the dialog loudness automatically. Warnings can be given for max M and max S, LRA, True Peak and a limit for the difference between program loudness and dialog loudness, ‘I-VL’. When the actual normalization takes place, a peak limiter ensures audio is always on target without any clipping. Custom target levels increase the flexibility beyond just EBU or ATSC compliance.
LevelNorm 2 operates in two modes. In realtime mode it measures while editing or playing the audio, and memorizes the result so users just need to re-measure changed parts. Adjustment to target is then achieved even without a single click. This mode is compatible with AU, VST and AAX plugin formats. In offline or ‘AudioSuite’ mode, LevelNorm 2 measures clips offline and much faster than realtime. This mode is compatible with AAX only. The unique flexibility of using one plugin for direct loudness normalization on all platforms clearly sets LevelNorm v2 apart.