[EXPECTED BEHAVIOR] Tidal playback loud

  • Beta Version: 1.4

  • Steps to Reproduce: Play track from Tidal with master out and gains set to mid point.

  • Expected Result: Clear and vibrant sound, comparable to iTunes downloads.

  • Actual Result: Volume is significantly louder and tracks sound too compressed. Waveforms very wide compared to iTunes equivalents.

  • Reproducibility: Frequently. Depends on tracks.

  • Additional Notes: Difficult to mix between tidal and other sources due to the volume difference.

  • Link to Video Repro:

Are you talking the same exact songs?

Not all songs are at the same level when gains are set to mid point. Auto gains kicks in or you’re forced to used the gain/trim button to compensate.

Can the tidal songs level be adjusted by using the gain control on each channel, like any other incoming signal?

If so, just DJ the gain control to a more suitable level.

Yes, you can use a combination of the channel gain and to the master volume to reduce the volume. But I’m having to reduce the channel gain by -1 notch and the master by -2 notches to bring it down and about distortion (and that’s setting the master VU meter to -10db).

The analysed waveforms themselves are also much fuller using Tidal as a source and some of the waveform is clipped. Tends to be the same for most tracks.

I’ve got the auto limiter set to 0db in the preferences.

You won’t need to touch the master or limiter.

Just adjust the gain control on the channel which you’re playing the tidal track on. This is just like some album tracks are often quieter than single purchased tracks. Just watch the led vu meters while any track (tidal or any) is playing in headphones, and adjust the gain knob so the the led vu meters are only bouncing up to an acceptable level.

No need to touch master or channel fader or limiter , just channel gain

As an old hand, doing channel gaining is such second nature, I don’t even pay attention to it.

I still think it is a good “routine” to have. You may not always be playing on gear that will have normalized track volumes and/or limiters and such.

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To add to this: How is this a Prime defect or bug?

If Tidal uses a maximizer at 0dBFS and iTunes does the same at -3dBFS, you just need to adjust gain as a DJ. That’s part of the job.

And even if they are the same level, loudness plays part in this also. Looking at your findings, Tidal tracks have higher LUFS.


It isn’t …

Thanks for reporting this and for the ensuing discussion. This is out of of the Player’s control, as it is just decoding the songs that we get from TIDAL. Jetsound and DJ_Vintage have the right idea here.

I’m labeling this as Expected Behavior