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  1. #1

    @Turbine about the music update on 15.3 and how we can help you to fix this

    As it slowly turns out the new music system wasn't ready - as many suggested on the forums already.

    The overall conclusion is that it's not as bad as the last attempt, but there are really a lot of quirks and problems - it's quite detrimental on some aspects of large music arrangements. Also there are those new strange issues with the positioning (run around someone playing a horn - it's a nice sound effect, but something is messed up in the sound system now)

    This update is NOT an improvement, at best we can adjust to this and continue, but the overall quality goes down. Small bands that play without lutes will be able to adopt by removing some of the too loud drum sounds in their abc files, but the huge arrangements are a struggle.

    I noticed by looking at the recordings that you were not following any objective method to adjust the volumes of the tones (neither normalizing or adjusting by some perception weighted system) - I guess it was all done manually by ear. This is not the way this could have turned out to be an improvement.

    A lot of tones (bagpipes, some flute) have clicking sounds in the end because they are not properly faded out ( any rapid change of a slope in the sample will result in a perceived plopp ... its because edges have a lot of high frequency components ).

    I'd really like a suggestion of how we should help you improving this - I could generate a huge table with volume adjustments that would result in an equalized volume on the instruments - but would you really take that into account? It would mean a lot of work to adjust basically every tone again. Are you willing to put in that developer time?
    Bruzo, Dwarrowdelf Minstrel ~ "A Rock & a Hard Place"

  2. #2
    I guess it will not make a difference, but here are relative volume differences in dB (rounded) for all the lotro instruments according to my measurements as we have it in Update 15.3.
    ( to convert dB to a scaling factor of amplitudes as in samples it it's time 10^(dB/20) ... as a hint for the developers )

    These values can be used to better understand why certain tone areas need a different volume compensation than others, and why singular tones stand out so much on some instruments.
    It also demonstrates why it was so hard to test the new music system properly on Bullroarer, as every tune will lead to different conclusions towards relative volumes of the instruments based on
    the pitch range/volume range that is used.

    Huge thanks to those who tried though, turned out you tried the impossible!


    Also volume differences in dB don't convert directly into differences of lotro abc volumes.

    To give it as a table: (lotro volume vs dB )
    +ppp+ -12.5
    +pp+ -9
    +p+ -6.5
    +mp+ -4.5
    +mf+ -3
    +f+ -1.65
    +ff+ -0.5
    +fff+ 0

    So given the tables below and the relative volume differences in dB one can now calculate how to adjust a tone. For instance a Lute plays [^C,] at +f+. If all the tones were equalized that would be at -1.65dB.
    But what we will hear is : -1.65db -1.5dB + 5dB = 1.85 dB and yes this is totally out of the comparable area, so this ^C, at +f+ will definitely be too loud.
    To compensate we have to go down till we reach something like -1.65dB in total: -4.5dB(+mp+) - 1.5dB+ 5dB = -1dB or -6.5dB (+p+) - 1.5dB+ 5dB = -3 dB so the value we'd want is somewhere between +mp+ and +p+.

    So what we have for this tone (^C,) at the moment is : order a +f+, get a +lots of f's+ and to get the +f+ we actually need to order something between +p+ and +mp+.
    This difference changes for every single tone and volume - so it's really not something that can be done by hand, if possible at all.


    Enough of the explanations, here are the crude numbers - and as you can see very clearly, volumes ARE a mess.

    tones in order (C, up to c')

    lute :
    [-4.25,-1.5,-3.0,-3.25,0.0,0.0,0.0,-0.25,-0.25,0.0,-0.25,-0.75,-0.5,-1.0,-0.75,3.5,0.0,1.5,0.0,-0.75,-0.75,-1.25,0.25,2.25,0.25,1.75,1.5,2 .75,3.0,3.5,2.75,1.75,1.75,1.7 5,2.75,3.75,2.75]
    harp:
    [0.0,1.0,-0.5,1.0,0.75,0.0,0.5,0.0,0.0,0 .25,0.25,-0.25,0.75,-0.5,-1.75,0.0,0.0,-0.75,0.0,0.0,2.25,0.0,0.25,1.7 5,0.0,-0.25,0.5,0.0,0.25,-0.5,-0.25,0.0,1.75,-0.25,-0.25,1.5,0.75]
    theorbo
    [2.25,0.25,0.75,0.5,0.0,0.0,0.2 5,0.0,-0.5,-0.5,0.75,0.75,0.5,0.25,1.25,0. 0,-0.5,0.5,-0.75,0.25,-2.0,-0.75,1.0,0.5,-0.5,-1.0,-0.75,-0.25,0.0,-0.75,-0.75,0.75,-0.5,1.0,1.0,-0.5,0.5]
    horn
    [-1.5,0.0,-1.25,-0.25,-1.0,-0.75,1.25,-1.25,0.0,0.5,1.25,0.75,2.25,2. 75,0.0,1.25,0.75,-1.0,1.25,-1.5,-1.0,0.5,2.25,1.0,1.0,-0.5,-0.5,0.25,0.0,-0.25,-0.25,1.0,-1.0,-3.5,0.25,0.0,0.0]
    clarinet
    [-0.75,0.0,-0.25,0.75,1.0,0.0,-1.75,-0.5,0.0,-1.5,-0.5,0.5,0.75,2.25,0.0,1.75,2.2 5,2.0,2.25,1.0,0.5,0.0,0.0,0.2 5,0.25,0.0,-0.5,-0.5,-0.5,-1.75,-1.5,1.75,0.0,-1.75,-1.0,0.75,0.5]
    flute
    [0.0,0.5,1.25,0.0,2.0,1.5,1.0,1 .75,0.75,-2.5,0.5,0.5,0.25,0.75,-0.25,-0.5,-1.5,-0.5,-4.0,-0.5,1.25,-1.0,1.0,0.5,0.5,-2.5,-0.5,-4.75,-2.25,-1.5,-1.25,-1.5,-2.75,-0.25,0.25,0.25,1.25]
    bagpipes
    [-0.25,-1.25,-2.0,0.5,0.75,-1.0,-0.5,-1.0,-1.25,0.0,0.0,0.75,0.25,0.5,-1.0,0.0,-0.25,-2.0,2.75,2.0,2.25,1.75,2.25,2. 5,2.75,2.25,0.0,0.0,-0.5,0.0,0.25,0.5,-1.25,0.0,-0.25,0.0,2.0]
    pibgorn
    [0.75,0.5,0.5,0.75,1.25,1.0,1.5 ,0.75,1.0,0.0,1.25,1.5,-0.5,0.0,0.5,0.75,0.0,0.25,0.5, 0.25,-2.0,2.25,-0.5,-1.25,-3.25,-2.0,-1.5,-1.5,-2.0,-2.0,-1.25,-1.75,-3.5,0.75,-2.25,-3.5,-3.0]
    drums
    [1.75,5.0,-0.75,-3.75,5.5,-1.0,5.5,-3.75,3.75,-3.0,4.5,-1.25,-1.75,0.0,-0.5,-3.25,-2.0,-0.5,0.25,7.25,-1.25,6.5,0.25,5.75,7.0,-3.0,0.5,1.0,-2.0,1.0,1.75,-0.75,1.75,0.0,-2.0,0.5,-4.0]


    For those tables the relative volume differences are:
    lute, harp, theorbo, horn, clarinet, flute, bagpipes, pibgorn, drums
    [5.0, 0.5, 4.0, -1.0, -2.5, -2.5, -2.0, -3.0, 1.0]

    For each instrument the median of the distribution is used as a reference and those are used to compare the instruments to each other - so it's not an arithmetic average comparision, that's why it looks weird. Also the instrument relations are not as reliable as the relative differences within the instruments are perceived differently - so this last set is modified by me instead of pure measurement.
    Last edited by SchorschiSchrumpf; Apr 27 2015 at 04:14 AM.
    Bruzo, Dwarrowdelf Minstrel ~ "A Rock & a Hard Place"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Canterbury, UK
    Posts
    128
    That's helpful, Bruzo. I might argue a little about the harp at 0.5 but otherwise I think it's about spot on.

    What I would like is the devs to adjust volumes to approx the same across all instruments and leave it to me to adjust as I see fit depending on the tune and how I want it to sound. The relative dynamics of the mix should be my decision and not decided for me by the system.
    Jobbing musician that resides in Bree. Frequenter of Taverns and places of ill repute

  4. #4
    Not sure if it's possible to link pictures here/ or actually how to do it, but I made a little picture to illustrate the problem with the purpose to help understand it better:

    https://sites.google.com/site/brutem...onebalance.png

    As you can see there, the new lute covers a range of more than 7dB in 3-4 little domains, interestingly the harp (which should be almost unchanged) has a distinct peak in the middle meaning most tones are at a constant volume. The changed flute also covers a pretty broad area.
    Currently it is impossible to play all the flute tones at the same volume or louder than all the lute tones. There will be some combinations where a lute +ppp+ tone is louder than a flute on +fff+. Same applies for basically all sustained instruments.


    Concluding: Even though we can lessen the issue with the screwed up volumes, we can't fix it because it too broken.


    I think this is what the bands slowly realize when they try to adjust volumes. It took a while to understand because neither we nor Turbine looked at the changes in a systematic way.
    Bruzo, Dwarrowdelf Minstrel ~ "A Rock & a Hard Place"

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by SchorschiSchrumpf View Post
    I think this is what the bands slowly realize when they try to adjust volumes. It took a while to understand because neither we nor Turbine looked at the changes in a systematic way.
    Not all of us took that long to understand. There were three bands that I know spent hours upon hours on Bullroarer the last two days it was open. All three of them agreed that the music system wasn't ready to go live. All three of them submitted bug reports. All three of them posted on the forums that it wasn't ready for live.
    I think those that did the most work on Bullroarer got listened to the least.
    I myself, am done with it. 450+ songs completely ruined. A few I tried to repair, couldn't be repaired with the new system so unless a really good fix comes in the future, they are lost completely. Not a single song I was able to repair sounds as good as it did under the old system. Tens of thousands of songs from band sites and music sites completely screwed. In one fell swoop the music was sent back into the dark ages as it were.

    I do admire those that are still fighting the good fight to get things fixed, but after the time and effort I personally put into testing and making bug reports, (seemingly ignored) I've lost any desire to continue. I feel like all I did was waste my time. I wish you all the best but for me, I am stepping away from it now.
    Keep up the good work as long as you can, you guys and gals are the best!
    ~hugs~

    Fincin of Landroval
    Level 100 Minstrel
    *Les Beaux Chapeaux Bandmember,* Transciber, Officer
    Founder of the Hobbit Coalition for Giving us Bunny Cosmetic Pets
    (\__/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")
    Hugger of Bunnys

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    The Prancing Pony, usually I'm drunk in a corner
    Posts
    3,355
    Quote Originally Posted by SchorschiSchrumpf View Post
    Not sure if it's possible to link pictures here/ or actually how to do it, but I made a little picture to illustrate the problem with the purpose to help understand it better:

    https://sites.google.com/site/brutem...onebalance.png

    As you can see there, the new lute covers a range of more than 7dB in 3-4 little domains, interestingly the harp (which should be almost unchanged) has a distinct peak in the middle meaning most tones are at a constant volume. The changed flute also covers a pretty broad area.
    Currently it is impossible to play all the flute tones at the same volume or louder than all the lute tones. There will be some combinations where a lute +ppp+ tone is louder than a flute on +fff+. Same applies for basically all sustained instruments.


    Concluding: Even though we can lessen the issue with the screwed up volumes, we can't fix it because it too broken.


    I think this is what the bands slowly realize when they try to adjust volumes. It took a while to understand because neither we nor Turbine looked at the changes in a systematic way.
    I'll set you up Bruzo

    Did everyone get a bugged signature? My BB code doesn't work anymore
    ____________________________

    Glorgnorbor, A Rock And A Hard Place, Stop by our Friday music shows! 4PM EST at the Bree West Gate on Dwarrowdelf!
    If a Malledhrim Soldier dies alone in the forest because of canceled quest, will it make a sound? ~Leixy

  7. #7
    Little update after I found out the high pitched flute was kinda wrong.

    I can't find that the harp is louder so far, maybe the difference to before U15.3 makes it necessary to tune it down - these values are just the ones that would help to equalize the
    volumes of the current system .. the old one wasn't equalized perfectly as well, but definitly not as bad as the current version.

    These values are included in BruTE 20c's volume adjustments, so you can all try them out. The other option is to take a game recording and adjust the tones manually with an editor like Audacity to see if these amplifications lead to something correct - maybe I can do that script based as well to offer original vs volume corrected tone scales, so that we can actually discuss on that.

    Hopefully we can get Turbine to implement these volume changes once we agree on them - it would give us back the ability to set the dynamics and relative volumes in our tunes as we'd like to - to me it looks like that this is the only realistic way to help improving the music to a state that may even be better than the old system.


    #lute
    [-4.25,-1.5,-3.0,-3.25,0.0,0.0,0.0,-0.25,-0.25,0.0,-0.25,-0.75,-0.5,-1.0,-0.75,3.5,0.0,1.5,0.0,-0.75,-0.75,-1.25,0.25,2.25,0.25,1.75,1.5,2 .75,3.0,3.5,2.75,1.75,1.75,1.7 5,2.75,3.75,2.75]
    #harp
    [0.0,1.0,-0.5,1.0,0.75,0.0,0.5,0.0,0.0,0 .25,0.25,-0.25,0.75,-0.5,-1.75,0.0,0.0,-0.75,0.0,0.0,2.25,0.0,0.25,1.7 5,0.0,-0.25,0.5,0.0,0.25,-0.5,-0.25,0.0,1.75,-0.25,-0.25,1.5,0.75]
    #theorbo
    [2.25,0.25,0.75,0.5,0.0,0.0,0.2 5,0.0,-0.5,-0.5,0.75,0.75,0.5,0.25,1.25,0. 0,-0.5,0.5,-0.75,0.25,-2.0,-0.75,1.0,0.5,-0.5,-1.0,-0.75,-0.25,0.0,-0.75,-0.75,0.75,-0.5,1.0,1.0,-0.5,0.5]
    # horn
    [-1.5,0.0,-1.25,-0.25,-1.0,-0.75,1.25,-1.25,0.0,0.5,1.25,0.75,2.25,2. 75,0.0,1.25,0.75,-1.0,1.25,-1.5,-1.0,0.5,2.25,1.0,1.0,-0.5,-0.5,0.25,0.0,-0.25,-0.25,1.0,-1.0,-3.5,0.25,0.0,0.0]
    # clarinet
    [-0.75,0.0,-0.25,0.75,1.0,0.0,-1.75,-0.5,0.0,-1.5,-0.5,0.5,0.75,2.25,0.0,1.75,2.2 5,2.0,2.25,1.0,0.5,0.0,0.0,0.2 5,0.25,0.0,-0.5,-0.5,-0.5,-1.75,-1.5,1.75,0.0,-1.75,-1.0,0.75,0.5]
    # flute
    [0.0,0.5,1.25,0.0,2.0,1.5,1.0,1 .75,0.75,-2.5,0.5,0.5,0.25,0.75,-0.25,-0.5,-1.5,-0.5,-4.0,-0.5,1.25,-1.0,1.0,0.5,0.5,-2.5,-0.5,-4.75,-2.25,-1.5,-1.25,-1.5,-2.75,-1.25,-1.25,-1.25,-1.25]
    # bagpipes
    [-0.25,-1.25,-2.0,0.5,0.75,-1.0,-0.5,-1.0,-1.25,0.0,0.0,0.75,0.25,0.5,-1.0,0.0,-0.25,-2.0,2.75,2.0,2.25,1.75,2.25,2. 5,2.75,2.25,0.0,0.0,-0.5,0.0,0.25,0.5,-1.25,0.0,-0.25,0.0,2.0]
    # Pibgorn
    [0.75,0.5,0.5,0.75,1.25,1.0,1.5 ,0.75,1.0,0.0,1.25,1.5,-0.5,0.0,0.5,0.75,0.0,0.25,0.5, 0.25,-2.0,2.25,-0.5,-1.25,-3.25,-2.0,-1.5,-1.5,-2.0,-2.0,-1.25,-1.75,-3.5,0.75,-2.25,-3.5,-3.0]
    # Drums
    [1.75,5.0,-0.75,-3.75,5.5,-1.0,5.5,-3.75,3.75,-3.0,4.5,-1.25,-1.75,0.0,-0.5,-3.25,-2.0,-0.5,0.25,7.25,-1.25,6.5,0.25,5.75,7.0,-3.0,0.5,1.0,-2.0,1.0,1.75,-0.75,1.75,0.0,-2.0,0.5,-4.0]


    lute, harp, theorbo, horn, clarinet, flute, bagpipes, pibgorn, drums, cowbell, moorbell
    [4.75, 0.5, 4.75, -1.0, -2.5, -2.5, -2.0, -3.0, 0.5, 5, 5]
    Bruzo, Dwarrowdelf Minstrel ~ "A Rock & a Hard Place"

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by SchorschiSchrumpf View Post
    Hopefully we can get Turbine to implement these volume changes once we agree on them
    I think redoing the samples for the instruments might be a better first step.

    Fincin of Landroval
    Level 100 Minstrel
    *Les Beaux Chapeaux Bandmember,* Transciber, Officer
    Founder of the Hobbit Coalition for Giving us Bunny Cosmetic Pets
    (\__/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")
    Hugger of Bunnys

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Emere View Post
    I think redoing the samples for the instruments might be a better first step.
    With those volume corrections it's possible to produce decent sounding stuff .. it's just that the dynamic range is totally limited because of all the wrong volumes that are inversely corrected tone by tone.

    Even if redoing samples is an option .. fixing the volumes is a much easier and fast step that could and should be done right away and if we provide the table for the fixes we don't have to rely on the ears of a single person.
    For strategical reasons we should focus on something we know can be easily implemented and not demand the ultimate.
    We're in a pit and I'm pointing to a stairway to get half the distance up without effort, because I know asking for the rope that leads us to the top is impossible.

    Even the lute plongs don't matter that much anymore if they are not 2dB louder than the tones around them - the reason we hear them so distinctively is also volume related!



    TLDR: first fix the volumes as it's basically for free and then discuss sample quality/timbre
    Bruzo, Dwarrowdelf Minstrel ~ "A Rock & a Hard Place"

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by SchorschiSchrumpf View Post
    With those volume corrections it's possible to produce decent sounding stuff .. it's just that the dynamic range is totally limited because of all the wrong volumes that are inversely corrected tone by tone.

    Even if redoing samples is an option .. fixing the volumes is a much easier and fast step that could and should be done right away and if we provide the table for the fixes we don't have to rely on the ears of a single person.
    For strategical reasons we should focus on something we know can be easily implemented and not demand the ultimate.
    We're in a pit and I'm pointing to a stairway to get half the distance up without effort, because I know asking for the rope that leads us to the top is impossible.

    Even the lute plongs don't matter that much anymore if they are not 2dB louder than the tones around them - the reason we hear them so distinctively is also volume related!



    TLDR: first fix the volumes as it's basically for free and then discuss sample quality/timbre
    Perhaps, but a simple volume fix won't bring me back to transcribing and doing shows. What will bring me back, is having a system that actually sounds as good or better than the old one. I don't feel we have that and I do not believe a simple volume fix will give us that.

    Fincin of Landroval
    Level 100 Minstrel
    *Les Beaux Chapeaux Bandmember,* Transciber, Officer
    Founder of the Hobbit Coalition for Giving us Bunny Cosmetic Pets
    (\__/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")
    Hugger of Bunnys

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Emere View Post
    Perhaps, but a simple volume fix won't bring me back to transcribing and doing shows. What will bring me back, is having a system that actually sounds as good or better than the old one. I don't feel we have that and I do not believe a simple volume fix will give us that.
    There also seems to be a quality problem in the music engine of lotro .. or it is related to my soundcard/recording of ingame music. For some reason the result of the ABC player sounds clearer even though it uses the same samples than the game (Digero extracts the samples from the .dat files). Its not the reverb (echo) that is added by the ABC player .. even with a similar reverb the ingame recordings I can record have somehow a lower overall quality. I can only guess that it's related to some dithering or interpolation of the samples that is different in the game - I wonder if others observe the same.

    Anyway balanced samples would be a start to let us truly compare the new sound without being distracted by the volume differences - from my point of view it's the minimum that should have been there in the first place. The other advantage would be that if samples are changed and volume balance is kept constant we don't have to change our songs in terms of volume ... just swap some instruments if necessary. It'd make everything much easier on our side.
    Bruzo, Dwarrowdelf Minstrel ~ "A Rock & a Hard Place"

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by SchorschiSchrumpf View Post
    There also seems to be a quality problem in the music engine of lotro .. or it is related to my soundcard/recording of ingame music. For some reason the result of the ABC player sounds clearer even though it uses the same samples than the game (Digero extracts the samples from the .dat files). Its not the reverb (echo) that is added by the ABC player .. even with a similar reverb the ingame recordings I can record have somehow a lower overall quality. I can only guess that it's related to some dithering or interpolation of the samples that is different in the game - I wonder if others observe the same.

    Anyway balanced samples would be a start to let us truly compare the new sound without being distracted by the volume differences - from my point of view it's the minimum that should have been there in the first place. The other advantage would be that if samples are changed and volume balance is kept constant we don't have to change our songs in terms of volume ... just swap some instruments if necessary. It'd make everything much easier on our side.
    Sadly, those are not my only problems I'm having right now. For some unknown reason I cannot run all the alts I used to. I was, as most know, running up to 8 accounts which would peak my cpu at 65% if I had a large crowd watching or was in Bree while playing songs. Now I am running 100% cpu for the 8 accounts. Ram has stayed pretty much the same at 8 gigs used for 8 accounts but the cpu trouble keeps me to only using three accounts at the most. If I close them all out, my cpu usage drops back to 0%.
    I've no idea why I suddenly am needing more cpu to run lotro. No virus, no spyware, no malware according to AVG, Superantispyware, and Malwarebytes. Nothing I can find in my processes is doing it, just lotro requiring more cpu suddenly for each account.
    Between not being able to run the alts and the terrible sound of the music, I've all but given up hope. I still wish you all the best in finding out a solution for the music but I will no longer be doing much save the occasion visit to see my friends. I find myself spending more time on the forums than in game anymore in the hopes of seeing a fix to all of this.

    Fincin of Landroval
    Level 100 Minstrel
    *Les Beaux Chapeaux Bandmember,* Transciber, Officer
    Founder of the Hobbit Coalition for Giving us Bunny Cosmetic Pets
    (\__/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")
    Hugger of Bunnys

 

 

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