Normalization: Beautiful female podcaster creating a podcast with laptop and microphone

Normalization: what it is and how you should use it to better your audio

As a podcaster, you’ve probably come across the term “normalization” – but what is it and how should you use it to better your audio?

Normalization is the increase or decrease in loudness of an audio file to a fixed/set value. 

Normalization, unless truly necessary, is not advisable at an editing stage. 

For example, if a podcaster records a podcast at too low a level accidentally, they shouldn’t normalize the audio in order to bring it up, as the quality of the recording will be compromised by white noise.

The reason for this is that ANY and ALL pieces of recording equipment have an innate level of white-noise, as the materials in the equipment react to the natural world. [We’ll talk about white-noise in an upcoming article].

Some pieces of equipment have lower noise than others. 

Normalization will raise the level of the desired signal as well as the undesired white noise. 

In an event where it is necessary to bring up the level of a recording without an increase in noise, it would be best to use an Expander.

Did you find this article useful? You may also enjoy reading these articles: Microphone Preamplifier | Stereo Audio vs Mono Audio