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Wayfarer

Sound Effect Gurus

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I''m creating a bunch of sounds for my game, and I would like to know how to normalize (?) all of them so they all sound consistent when playing together and over each other. Are there any programs out there that can peform a batch operation on a bunch of sounds at once or do something like this? Could someone explain how this process works? What details should I pay attention to when creating sounds that will be played together in a game? Wayfarer

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Sound Forge might do the trick, that program is supposed to be good for batching, just that it costs a fair bit.

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If you have the equipment, you should use a compressor when you record them... but it sounds to late to do that now for you. So yah, look around..... (If your still recording use a compressor, then it''ll all be done for you! :-)
- Ben

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I''m sorry to say the gamedev music article didn''t help much, since
it was mostly about creating midi music, not about sounds in general.

What I have is a bunch of sound effects, like weapons firing,
explosions, etc. all in WAV format. Most of these sounds were
created by me directly with a sound program that can generate
different kinds of waves and other cool stuff. I didn''t actually
do any recording with a mic, so I guess I don''t need a compressor.

All my sounds have different volume levels, and when they''re playing,
they don''t seem consistent. Some are too loud, some are too quiet,
and some have too much noise going on. And when a lot of them start
playing at once, they saturate to static.

Do the game pros treat digitally created sounds any different than
analog created sounds?


Wayfarer

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Hey Wayfarer, what sound program do you use? That sounds really cool.

initiates shouldn't have signatures.

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Yeah, it looks like the easiest thing to try is Sound Forge or some other sound editor with good batching abilities. That way you should be able to get them around the same volume, and take care of the overflow. I''m gonna be looking at doing this within the next month or so, so I guess I''ll be learning by doing.

As far as your question about analogue vs digital creation is concerned, I''d imagine they''re prime concerns is sound quality and realism. Sound Designers will often just mic something up to grab a sound just so they don''t have to spend two hours sifting through their libraries, when slamming a door and grabbing the sound does the same thing :D .

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There are loads of ways to normalise sounds. The easiest and most effective way is to use a decent sound editor. Personally, I use Sound Forge but I''m pretty sure that most others have the same ability. All you have to do is click on the normalise button and tell the program what you want the average peak value to be.

If you''ve got an audio editor but it hasn''t got a normalise option then you can due it manually. Basically, you want the peaks on all the sounds to be the same height. If you set yourself an amplitude that you want them to reach and then work out how much you are going to have to increase them to (or reduce them by) you can do it using only a volume option.

If you haven''t got an audio editor then download a freeware one from the net.

If you have any other queries fel free to e-mail me at

selfafflicted@netscapeonline.co.uk

P.S. I''m not a Pro but as far digital vs. analog goes it shouldn''t make a difference. Provided all the sounds are of the same quality then who cares how they were created?

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pacman,

I''ve been downloading a bunch of shareware and freeware sound programs
from a site called www.sonicspot.com. There''s one program called Goldwave
(www.goldwave.com) that has something called an expression evaluator.
You can basically type in any mathematical expression (sin,cos,sqrt,rand,
etc.) and it creates the sound for you. Other sound programs might have
something like this, but I just happen to come across this one first.

They have a bunch of presets already made if you don''t really know how
to create a complicated sound. Here''s one. Can you even guess what
this sounds like:

sin(2*pi*t*725)*exp(-t*5)*(1-exp(-t*30))+(step(t-5)-step(t-.3))*
sin(2*pi*(t-.3)*565)*1.3*exp(-(t-.3)*5)*(1-exp(-(t-.3)*30))

[answer in reverse: llebrood a s''ti

But that''s just the beginning. You can flange it, throw it echo,
random noise, doppler effects, etc.. lots of way to get an original sound.

Oh, and I didn''t even notice it, it can normalize sounds. I just
found out today.


Wayfarer

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Hey, I wouldn''t mind seeing an article on the mathematics of sound
on Gamedev. My calculus is a bit rusty.


Wayfarer

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