SPL - Sound Pressure Level Theoretical limit for undistorted sound at 1 atmosphere environmental pressure ~194.094 dB
SPL - Sound Pressure Level Shockwave (distorted sound waves > 1 atm; waveform valleys are clipped at zero pressure) >194 dB
Musical Dynamics A piece of music may change in dynamic level throughout. Live music is especially good for hearing dynamics. Subtle variations in a performance by musicians, being sensitive to the sounds around them.
Musical Dynamics A recording on CD is also excellent for capturing dynamics, as the available dynamic range is far better than on other recording media (tapes, records, and other analog formats).
Compression Radio and mp3 formats are not ideal for hearing dynamics. The recording is modified with Compression. Compression “squeezes” the dynamic levels, making loud sounds softer, and soft sounds louder.
Normalize A way of modifying sound to “ peak ” at the maximum volume. Analysis of a computer sound byte will display the current volume level, as well as show the maximum potential volume before distortion / clipping / overload.
The Loudness Wars The movement in audio recording and production that strives to get the most audio density into each recording. Record a sound, compress it, normalize it, compress it, normalize it, compress it, etc. Eliminates the distinction between loud and soft - everything is loud or “ hot ”.