[LAU] Calculating absolute played(!) volume

Fons Adriaensen fons at linuxaudio.org
Fri Oct 16 21:08:13 CEST 2020

On Fri, Oct 16, 2020 at 06:26:49PM +0200, Jeanette C. wrote:

> > As far as konw, the Delta 1010 doesn't have any outputs compatible
> > with a 60 Ohm load... Do you use a headphone amp ?
> Ah, I hadn't considered yet. Normally I connect my headphones to my
> monitors' headphones out. Something else to ponder. That might have been
> quite a surprise. :)
> So, the whole thing needs reconsideration. Perhaps a different approach
> entirely.

No, just one more variable to take into account...

The way I approach this (to have a consistent monitoring level) is
to set all external gain controls (sound card, amplifier,...) to some 
reasonable setting and then *never* touch them again. 

A reasonable setting means that maximum digital level corrresponds to a
few dB below the largest undistorted analog signal the sound card can
output, and the amplifier gain is set for the loudest listending level
I'd ever want.

And then use only software controls to set the actual listening level.
This is what zita-mu1 is all about - it provides a single (*) calibrated
volume control after the metering point.

You said the signal will be constant... if you are trying to do anything
related to audiometry (e.g. for checking your ears) there's a lot of other
things to consider if you want results that mean anything.


(*) Give someone who's not a trained sound engineer two (or more) volume
controls in series and you can be 100% sure the result will be either 
noise or distortion.


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