How to use EBU R128?
Strawberry 1.0.20, just released, has support for EBU R128 volume normalization. How is this executed? I can find no menu items for something like "analyze tracks" or "normalize" tracks. Is it implemented "on-the-fly" somehow, without writing tags?
My collection started out on Apple iTunes, using their iTunNORM tags. Later, I used MusicBee on Windows and applied its ReplayGain tags (which, apparently, used the EBU R128 standard, but at -18 LUFS instead of -23 LUFS). Those tags are written to the files as "replaygain_track_gain" and "replaygain_album_gain".
I have been using Strawberry's "Use Replay Gain metadata...", selected in settings.
I was hoping this new feature would allow Strawberry to apply EBU R128 normalization so I wouldn't have to use other software to do it.
I am on Linux Mint 21.2 Cinnamon, using Strawberry 1.0.20, with Qt version 6.2.4.
Can someone please advise -- explain how to use the new EBU R128 feature?
For the ebur128 features to be visible in the settings, Strawberry needs to be built with libebur128. Most Linux distributions that I know have this library in their repository, there is no reason not build with it.
There is a setting in the collection settings for "Perform song EBU R 128 anlysis", once that is checked and settings are applied, do a full collection rescan, ebur128 data should then be added to the database for each song.
To use the feature, you enable the "EBU 128 Loudness normalization" in the backend settings.
"Strawberry needs to be built with libebur128."
Does this mean the only way to implement EBU R128 is to compile Strawberry from source?
I did not have the libebur128 package installed, but it was in the Linux Mint repository, so I installed it. But still no mention of "Perform song EBU R 128 analysis" in settings.
I don't have the skills to compile software yet; still learning. I installed Strawberry from the PPA posted on your website. I also tried installing the Flatpak version (of 1.0.20), which, to my understanding, should take care of all dependencies; but I found no mention of "Perform...analysis" there either.
I must be misunderstanding something. Grateful if you could enlighten me. Thank you for your prompt reply to my question.
Ah, that explains it. Thanks for the clarification. I will wait until the PPA and other releases catch up. In the meantime, I can always try that Debian package just to satisfy my curiosity.
Eagerly awaiting this new feature!
One thing I'm curious about is whether it will write yet another set of tags, specific to EBU R128; or will it overwrite the existing ReplayGain tags (created previously by MusicBee).
The PPA for 1.0.20 wasn't enabled with EBU R128 volume normalization, because I forgot to add libebur128 to the debian control file before the day after the release. It will have it on the next release.
In the meantime you can use the downloads from the website, it has it enabled.
Linux Mint is based on Ubuntu, not debian so the debian packages are not likely to work, use the equivalent Ubuntu package.
My curiosity got the best of me, so I installed Ubuntu 22.04 "Jammy" (x86_64) from the Strawberry website. Sure enough, all the settings for EBU R128 were properly displayed. I experimented with applying the feature to a small test library.
I then opened the songs in the Kid3-qt tag editor, where I observed that no EBU R128 tags were written. My main library has ReplayGain tags (from MusicBee) and iTunNORM tags (from iTunes), so I was expecting some new tag to appear for EBU R128.
I then opened the strawberry.db database and observed that the EBU R128 info was recorded there.
Does this mean that the normalization will only work within Strawberry? It would seem so.
I don't know enough about EBU R128 to know if there is a tagging standard for that type of normalization. Is there? And if so, are there any plans to incorporate those tags into Strawberry?
The EBU R128 info is only added to the database, I don't think there are tags for them.