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Old 02-15-2011, 07:21 PM
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Default Voice is Low on TV, but sound effects high.

For some reason my older Sony Bravia KDL-32S2000 is having sound issues. Whenever we watch movies - blu-ray, DVD, or directv the voice levels are really low and the sound effect levels are really high. So I am constantly adjusting volume up and down...(highly annoying). It gets to a point where I am anticipating oncoming explosions or similar to get the volume down or it gets really

I don't have a surround sound system this is only my TV speakers. I have went through all TV settings and it really doesn't make much difference. Is it just time to get a system or new TV?
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:21 PM
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You are a victim of the way the sound has been mixed. Sound engineering is so focused on the surround market that voices (that normally come out through a center channel - with nominal left/right displacement to infer location) that straight stereo is ignored.

Best I can suggest is (on the source device) make sure you are set to stereo and not one of the surround schemes.

I know that for some poorly mixed TV shows (I am looking at you ABC) we set the receiver to plain stereo so that the voices are not lost in the effects.
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:46 PM
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A few years ago in a magazine aimed at TV production professionals there was an interview with the audio supervisor from NBC's "Saturday Night Live" and it detailed what they did to make sure the audio "worked" for everyone. The guy's final test was to listen to the show on a cheap portable mono TV.

Seems like too many folks have forgotten that not everyone listens with surround turned on.
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Old 02-22-2011, 08:28 PM
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Gotcha guys thanks for the help. I guess a surround sound is in my future.
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Old 07-11-2011, 09:54 PM
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Mixing is your problem. You don't necessarilly need surround sound, a proper pair of stereo speakers connected to a properly configured AVR should also handle it fine since they could handle the broad range of the audio. If that is the case set it so that the voices are at a comfortable level and the sound effects will be intentionally loud from time to time. This can be diminished with a night time mode on many AVRs.

If you just want to keep the stereo speakers in your TV which aren't very suited to this, or if you just need a solution till you get your surround / speaker system you can simply select the stereo track when available on the source, or make use of something called "dynamic range compression" or DRC. You could probably enable it on the dvd / blu ray player or on the TV. That will squeeze all of the sounds into approximately the same volume range at the cost of a bit of distortion.
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