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Australia's New TVC Loudness Standards Make Agency Producers Responsible for Studio Mix

As of March 31st, TV Networks can reject any TVCs that are too loud because there is now an independent, objective, standard for loudness.

New mandatory TVC loudness standards effectively make advertising agency producers responsible for making sure sound studios are mixing soundtracks correctly.

Pete Best, director of award winning Adelaide sound studio Best FX said "FreeTV has implemented the new international standard by linking two of its Operational Practices: OP48 which agency producers are aware of, and OP59, which deals with technical sound studio metering and measurement.

"Only studios with expert technical understanding of the meter, its algorithms, and its new measurement will be able to mix as required. But when TVC producers tick the OP48 box on their forms for CAD (Commercials Approval Division), they'll be saying their spots comply with the new internationally-based standards," Best said.

"To tick that box with confidence and know their TVCs will be broadcast, agency producers should ensure they have independent loudness verification from their sound studios," Best said.

Best and film-maker Mark Patterson have launched an online service – SoundDeliveries.com- for professional sound studios, which will test and certify TVC soundtracks.

SoundDeliveries.com’s meter has been independently verified against the loudness measurement software from the Communications Research Centre of Canada, which is considered the international industry reference point.

SoundDeliveries.com issues a time and date stamp for each file tested, so there's independent proof, should anyone query the file.

"Testing the soundtrack as early as possible in the production process saves time, money and possible embarrassment for advertising agencies. Above all, it demonstrates professional client service," said Best.

But the biggest winners are the ads themselves.

“As a sound engineer I’m interested in better sounding ads and the new standard allows for a greater level of dynamics if mixed to compliance – that’s got to be good.”