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Television show volume vs. commercial volume.

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Television Show Volume vs. Commercial Volume Have you ever flipped through channels on a television and decided to watch a commercial? If you have, you probably decided to watch the commercial because something grabbed your attention. The attention grabber was probably the audio level. Sound waves are usually the only attention grabber of commercials. Most commercials do sound louder than television shows. Television sound waves give many interpretations to the brain. As television sound waves contact ear drums, the ear drums move and convert the energy of sound waves into electrical surges that are sent to the brain. The stronger the sound waves are, the louder it sounds. However, the brain does interpret sounds in different ways. This means that some waves may seem to have a sound louder than others, even if the loud and soft sounds have the same volume (Hislop, 2001). A way to measure loudness of sound is by using the decibel. It is one tenth of a bel (named after Alexander Bell). However, the larger unit, bel, is rarely used. The decibel uses many different scales to measure sound. One scale, the dBFS, uses zero as the highest sound that can be reached. ...read more.


A peak limiter does this without the risk of bringing distortion into the audio sound of a program. They are employed in motion-picture films, television programs, sound tracks, and anywhere that a peak level needs to maintained (Bluehaze Solutions, 1999). A compressor is an electrical device that prevents an increase of sound volume beyond a determined level of volume. It controls the dynamics of an electric signal. A compressor is used to control a signal so that it is heard without becoming so loud that it hurts listening ears. It is also used to control a signal of soft sounds so that a sound isn't so soft that it is hard to distinguish (Professional Audio, 1997-2001). Television programs and television commercials both use types of attraction to make an attempt to grab the attention of viewers. They both try to get the viewer's attention to either sell their product or their show. In a way, commercials and programs compete to get the attention of the viewers (Drazin, 2001). Television programs have many ways to attract the attention of viewers. The programs grab the attention with a good blend of script, special effects, humor, sound effects, background music, and voices (Diltz, 2001). ...read more.


They do this by selective frequency enhancement- bass, mid- range, treble louder and/or softer. They also use other techniques to make the commercial message easier or clearer to understand. Commercial audio is constantly at or near the maximum level of the volume of audio set by the FCC. Programs, however, go up and down the scale. This makes the commercial audio seem louder than it actually is (Hislop, 2001). Since the upper limit of volume cannot be exceeded, commercials are usually compressed more than programs. The entire commercial is raised to the highest possible broadcast level. It makes the audio feel louder even if the sound hasn't changed (Blackwell, 2001). In general, Broadcast audio processing is both an engineering and artistic job. The engineering goal is to make an efficient use of raising the level. The artistic goal is to avoid deformity and to make the sound of the program/commercial proportioned (Orban, 2001). Commercials do sound louder than television programs. Whether it is by using special equipment or by knowing human hearing, many commercials want to make their commercial seem louder than any other commercial being broadcast. Producers know how to bring up the volume to attract attention of viewers to buy their product. ...read more.

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