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The Levelator™


It has been one week since we debuted The Levelator™ and to say we are pleased is an understatement. The response has been overwhelming! With kudos and claims of “hit of the Expo” and “best new software” from folks like Robert Scoble, Leo Laporte, Jake Ludington, Scott Bourne, Rocketboom, Paul Colligan and many, many others it can get a bit heady. Let me take a step back and explain The Levelator™ for the uninitiated; what it does and why we made it freely available.

The Levelator™ solves a common problem for podcasters: recordings with participants at various levels. Whether this is a multi-mic setup such as a panel discussion, a single mic interview with multiple people, a “double”/”multiple” ender or the infamous Skype recording. With one fell swoop of the drag and drop, The Levelator™ will take a Wav or Aiff file and “level” all those various speakers. Here is a quick example:

Levelator Before

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Notice that the middle section is severely reduced. In this case I turned and stepped away from the microphone. The lead and end levels are me speaking directly into the microphone. I took this file and with no other audio manipulation dropped it on The Levelator™. The Result:

Levelator After

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Now fixing a single segment like this is easy with standard tools, but imagine if this were a forty-five minute interview. Now you understand the power of The Levelator™. I took a sample file that originally took me 3 hours to fix, and The Levelator™ brought it up to broadcast/podcast standards in a minute and a half. Pretty incredible. Many see The Levelator™ and assume that is is doing normalization. While that feature is a step in the process there is much more going on. For a technical description check out Doug Kaye’s explanation. Also, please check out The Levelator™ forums.

So why has GigaVox made this available for free for non-commercial use? As many know, GigaVox Media is the parent company of IT Conversations and our other podcast channels. Currently, we have 1400+ active podcast episodes on our network and that number is growing every day. What many do not know is that in order to run a network and production team of 55 plus people we needed to implement innovative tools and solutions to automate the production workflow. Our three years of experience and development clearly establishes us at the premier podcast technoloogy company. Simply put, while others have interesting ideas, no one has the hard earned and tried and true technology that we have developed. Whether it is the monster Content Management System/Audio Assembly System that runs the entire network that allows us to inject sponsor messages into any and or all episodes with the click of a button, our recently debuted GigaVox Media Audio Lite, our coming video technology or the tools we give to our audio engineers such as The Levelator™, we are the podcast technology leader. We gave The Levelator™ out as an example. It is an amazing tool and one we hope will help podcasters make better podcasts. For those who are curious, you should see what we keep behind the curtain…

Download The Levelator here.

7 Responses to “The Levelator™”

  1. Gravatar Icon 1 Ed Ovett Oct 16th, 2006 at 12:45 pm

    On Show #52, item #17 of the Ed’s Mixed Bag podcast you can download an audio of Doug Kaye’s explanation of the Levelator software as an excerpt from his seminar “The Secret Lives of MP3 Files” at the 2nd Annual Podcasting and Portable Media Expo in Ontario, California. There is also a link on the same line item to the actual Levelator software download! Check it out, and while there grab the Direct Download of show #52, my celebration of 1-year of podcasting, of the Ed’s Mixed Bag podcast!!

  2. Gravatar Icon 2 Daniel Aug 14th, 2007 at 12:47 am

    I couldn’t understand some parts of this article evelator™ at MWGblog, but I guess I just need to check some more resources regarding this, because it sounds interesting.

  3. Gravatar Icon 3 Joshua Giese Oct 8th, 2007 at 11:35 am

    wow, this seems like a great tool. I have been doing a multi mic podcast for almost a year now. levels have been something that I have constantly had trouble with. I will check this tool out for sure!

  1. 1 Scoble, the most boring blogger « Scobleizer - Tech Geek Blogger pingback on Oct 7th, 2006 at 11:16 pm
  2. 2 Podcast Fresh - » GigaVox Unveiled Free Podcasting Tool pingback on Oct 8th, 2006 at 5:59 pm
  3. 3 New Media in Australia » Blog Archive » links for 2006-10-09 pingback on Oct 9th, 2006 at 1:20 am
  4. 4 The Levelator™ « Jeffrey Daniel Frey’s Blog pingback on Oct 10th, 2006 at 12:20 pm
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Michael W. Geoghegan is founder and CEO of GigaVox Media, a production, consulting and technology company focused on audio/video new media.

As a pioneer of podcasting, Michael created some of the first corporate podcasts, including efforts by Disney. Michael is also creator of the 2008 James Beard Award winning "GrapeRadio" and "Reel Reviews: Films Worth Watching". He is editor-in-chief of the Podcast Academy™ book series and co-author of Podcast Solutions: The Complete Guide to Podcasting.

Michael speaks frequently on podcasting's impact on new media and its corporate applications and is often quoted by the media including in The New York Times, USA Today, CNN and Wired Magazine.