Local commercials in north Jersey increase between 7 and 10 db (according to my RS sound level meter). This drives everone crazy and sends people racing for the volume control. Is there anyway to deal with this. This is almost enough to make me go back to Dish 😞
This is a very old issue. Unfortunatly nothing has changed. The Volume level unfortunatly does not have any regulation so the channels intentionally make the commercials louder. In fact many commercials pay the channel extra to up the volume. And since Verizon does not alter the broadcast from the channel, whatever they put out is what you get. This has been a debated item for decades. It affects most carriers. And even in some cases, the commercial is not that it is louder, it is just at the upper level of the volume. I know confusing. But when listening to audio on a program you have the highs and lows. The whispers and the loud explosions. All that done at the same "volume" level. The commercials just intentionally record at the "explosion" level so that it sounds louder than the surrounding programming. There have been attempts to get some kind of regulation regarding this since the late 70's (that I know of) but nothing has come of it yet. Your actual complaint is with the channel doing this rather than verizon. Verizon has no control over that. Not if they want to maintain the "non altered" status anyway.
I know there could be a volume leveling feature in the STB. But that is bad terminology. Normalization feature prehaps that could be enabled as an option for the user. I know that you can take a given set of mp3s and do that on the fly in software. Why not the STB? Long heated debate.
There have been TV's and other devices in the past that have attempted to do that. I know that Magnavox played with it for a number of years, but they never got it to work correctly.
Mostly becase in most cases, the volume level doesnt actually change. Like I said with the highs and lows. You set your tv to volume level 20 for example but you still get whispers and explosions. The volume level that the tv gets set to is the median level and then the program revolves around that. The problem they had with the leveling system was that not only did it bring the commercials down to a tolorable level, it also cut off the explosions and such in the main program. This made the program sound goofy. The goal is to level out the commercials and not the programs. Unfortuantly, they just have not come up with a system that works that way yet.
I have been using Audyssey dynamic volume control on my AVR and it worked pretty well but I guess it stopped working. Who inserts the local commercials in cable feeds from Fox News and similiar channels? I assumed it was FIOS but I guess that is incorrect. The local commercials are out of site. Regular (or network) commercials are pretty well controlled.
I have never experienced the excessive volume on FiOS, at least not to the extent that it was really bothersome. Yes, some ads are somewhat louder than others or the actual program, and some channels are somewhat louder or quieter than others, but nothing really irritating.
Have you experimented with the Dynamic Range setting in the Audio part of the Menu? If not you might try the various settings to see if they make a difference. I have mine set on Heavy.
Menu ==> Settings ==> Audio ==> Dynamic Range ==> Heavy (or Light or None)
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This thread reminded me that they were working on a new bill called "CALM" that was going to prevent commercials from being louder than the program it is sponsoring. I went and checked the status of the bill and it looks like it passed. So Congress passed the CALM bill that now requires the FCC to go in and make rules about how loud commercials are permitted to be. Now per some of the technical details, it said that some channels will have to purchase new equipment in order to allow for that, and the FCC still has to write the rules.
The article did not say when it was going to go into effect, only that it passed. So it looks like we may be seeing the end of the high volume commercials in the near future. This supposedly just passed in DEC 2010, just 3 months ago. Hopefully we can get more details as time goes on.