How can I increase the volume of mp3 files?
Thread poster: Argentine Translator

Argentine Translator
Argentina
Local time: 03:18
English to Spanish
+ ...
Oct 11, 2007

I bought very simple headphones to listen to some mp3 files (mpeg). The sound coming out is very low (a whisper), in spite of the fact that volume in the file screen is set at 100. Video works OK. Which solutions can I implement? I have Windows 98. Thanks in advance. Cati.

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Gianni Pastore  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 07:18
Member (2007)
English to Italian
Normalize it by creating an audio CD Oct 12, 2007

Try to burn an audio CD. When you do this, most of the burning applications ask the user if he/she wish to "normalize" the signal being burned on CD. Select "normalize" and burn an audio CD.

Normalizing is a process by which the volume of the signal is increased to the max before clipping.

Once you have burned the audio CD (creating a WAV file), you need to use another application to convert the WAV file back into the MP3 format (I believe there are many programs you can download for free from the web). This way you should be able to get a volume increase of the file.

HTH
Gianni

[Edited at 2007-10-12 10:13]


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Jan Sundström  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 07:18
English to Swedish
+ ...
No, no, no! Oct 12, 2007

Gianni Pastore wrote:
Once you have burned the audio CD (creating a WAV file), you need to use another application to convert the WAV file back into the MP3 format.


Sorry, but this is a bad suggestion! You will re-encode the data and lose both quality and waste empty CDs.

There are perftctly good options to boost your gain straight on the computer, without re-encoding.

1. Free software like mp3gain, replaygain:
http://mp3gain.sourceforge.net/
http://www.replaygain.org/

2. Depending on which music player you use on the computer, there are also plugins to these players that do the same thing (like itunes, Foobar2000). See suggestions here:
http://jwz.livejournal.com/370342.html

3. If the line-out signal on your computer is too weak, you should invest in a better soundcard, which would have better amplification and can boost your effect...

4. Or add an external amplifier to the chain, available for 10 USD on ebay (+$7 shipping to Argentina):
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=280156841232

5. If you have basic external PC speakers which are powered separately, you can often connect your headphones to those speakers instead, and benefit from the amplification. Like these:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=180165529839


Either way, all these options are better than destroying your MP3's by re-encoding them!

Good luck,

Jan

[Edited at 2007-10-12 11:14]


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Gianni Pastore  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 07:18
Member (2007)
English to Italian
Well... Oct 12, 2007

J-a-n S-ndstr-m wrote:

Sorry, but this is a bad suggestion! You will re-encode the data and lose both quality and waste empty CDs.

There are perftctly good options to boost your gain straight on the computer, without re-encoding.



altought I agree that using a dedicate software is the most straightforward solution... theoretically you are right, but I bet that in a blind test you would NOT be able to tell the difference between an MP3 file and the same file converted to WAV and converted back to MP3. I've done that few times and I definetely do trust my ears.

Also, I am not sure all those application can work under Win98, but I could be wrong here.
Regards
Gianni


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Argentine Translator
Argentina
Local time: 03:18
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Jan Oct 12, 2007

Jan,
Thank you for your help. The mp3 files are OK because I listened to them in somebody´s else PC and sound perfect. Before buying anything, is there any adjustment I can do in the Control Panel of my PC? Quality of headphones may be so influential? Regards, Cati.


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Argentine Translator
Argentina
Local time: 03:18
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I solved it. Thanks. Oct 13, 2007

Finally I found the audio selector in the Control Panel. Now the sound is better. Not fantastic, but audible. Thanks Gianni and Jan for your suggestions. And thank you to Proz also for these fora. Cati.

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