Guide to dynamics in media

Introduction to Dynamics

Media content can have dialog with uneven talker volumes depending on factors such as how loud an individual speaks or their position relative to a recording device. These dynamics can result in an unbalanced listening experience that degrades the perception of quality.

  • A person speaks too quietly or too loudly
  • A talker is seated off axis from the microphone
  • A participant doesn't keep a consistent distance from the microphone over time
  • One talker is further away from the microphone than another
  • The user has a microphone in the wrong polar orientation
  • The recording device has a low quality microphone

And many more similar scenarios.

Dynamic Range Control

A leveling algorithm can identify speech sections and apply a time-varying amplification or attenuation as needed so that speech levels are brought closer together within a desired dynamic range. This means the soft-spoken person across the room and the booming voice close to a microphone can be fixed. Some talkers may be inconsistent or very dynamic when narrating such that there is fluctuations in their volume. This can happen when a talker is in motion or changes position relative to a microphone. The leveling algorithm can smooth this out in a natural and pleasant way.


An equalization or dynamic eq algorithm can analyze the spectral profile relative to a target such as professionally recorded speech recordings. Adjustments can be made dynamically to filter and apply this equalization. By analyzing the audio, adjustments can be made to make inputs resemble a typical profile for that type of media. This can help to compensate for recordings using home or consumer devices like mobile phones or low quality off-the-shelf microphones and recordings made in less optimal environments where the room affects the overall balance of the sound.