James Hardiman

Aaron Wrote:

i hope you are well and everything is fine on your end!

i just plan to talk about your K-14 theory and have an important question. The Loudness dB SPL is measured in stereo or must the 82 dB SPL setup by playing the pink noise a mono channel. Actually i have tested both but setting up the loudness with a mono channel made a better result if i remember correct. I have done this in an earlier studio of a friend and the K-14 worked out as a good and important rule mixing the music. Also the outboard / loudness attenuator is very important. 

thank you for this outstanding work!

PS: If you never did hear from Igor again, one client from Russia told me he is alive but he was deadly ill and he tried to get back to his audio pation but his health did not allow to go into it again. He did everything on his own, soldering, PCB making and probably this isn´t something that supports his health. He still recovers but seems to be cured. I just want to let you know that because when i heard that i was happy because i have never heard about him again after visiting him. 

Best Regards


Hi, Aaron. Good question!

In Mastering Audio Third edition, I revised the K-System to use LUFS loudness, still on a relative scale with 0 LU being -12, -14 or -20 LUFS. So since loudness on an LUFS meter is measured integrating all channels to a single meter, the new K-meter should be a single LU meter where you adjust 0 LU to one of those values. 

Since the distance of the loudspeakers and their transient response have a big effect on the perceived loudness, it’s possible that in your room, your loudspeakers, the calibration point for 0 dB on the monitor control may be different than in mine. 

In my room with the loudspeakers about 9 feet away, the K-System works well with 0 dB on the LUFS meter corresponding with -14 LUFS. Narrow band pink noise at -20 dBFS in one channel reads 83 dB SPL at the 0 dB setting. Typical K-14 to “K-16” recordings are monitored around -9 dB on the monitor control in that room. The closer the loudspeakers are to you and the brighter they are the more you will find you have to derate the calibration so 0 dB on the monitor gain may represent, for example, 80 dB per channel (one channel playing at a time) with the pink noise signal.

Hope this helps,