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Understanding amplitude

From: Audition CS6 Essential Training

Video: Understanding amplitude

Previously, we talked about frequency, which determines the pitch of the sound you're hearing. The other important part of measuring a sound is its amplitude. In technical terms, amplitude is a level of change in the oscillation of atmospheric pressure caused by sound waves. In simpler terms, amplitude refers to the loudness of the sound. The higher the amplitude the more powerful it is, so the more air it's pushing around and the louder it sounds. Quieter sounds are not as powerful, so they push less air around. So together, frequency and amplitude give you the pitch and loudness of the sound wave.

Understanding amplitude

Previously, we talked about frequency, which determines the pitch of the sound you're hearing. The other important part of measuring a sound is its amplitude. In technical terms, amplitude is a level of change in the oscillation of atmospheric pressure caused by sound waves. In simpler terms, amplitude refers to the loudness of the sound. The higher the amplitude the more powerful it is, so the more air it's pushing around and the louder it sounds. Quieter sounds are not as powerful, so they push less air around. So together, frequency and amplitude give you the pitch and loudness of the sound wave.

In Audition, you'll probably spend most of your time working here with the Waveform Editor. We have an entire chapter coming up in which I'll go into detail, but basically the Waveform Editor displays your audio file as a waveform where time is measured on the horizontal axis and amplitude is measured on the vertical axis. The height of the peaks you see here tell you how loud the sound is at any given time. Amplitude is measured in decibels, or dB. And you can see the scale here over on the right. If I use my mouse, I can actually scroll in to see more increments. But basically, no sound is represented by this negative infinite symbol.

And that's represented by the horizontal line that runs through the Waveform Editor. Any deviations from the center line, whether it's the peaks above or below the line, represent sound. So throughout this course, when I'm referring to as sound's amplitude, you'll know that I'm speaking about its loudness or volume. Now this has been a very brief discussion of frequency and amplitude. If you'd like a much more in-depth explanation, I highly suggest you check out the course called Foundations of Audio: EQ and Filters by Brian Lee White, which you'll find on the lynda.com Online Training Library. You'll find an early chapter in that course called Understanding Frequency and Amplitude, which will increase your understanding of these two important concepts.

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This video is part of

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Audition CS6 Essential Training

56 video lessons · 23859 viewers

Garrick Chow
Author

 
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  1. 1m 7s
    1. What is Audition?
      1m 7s
  2. 1m 55s
    1. Welcome
      54s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 1s
  3. 21m 6s
    1. Understanding the Audition interface
      8m 49s
    2. Setting up input and output
      4m 7s
    3. Setting essential preferences
      8m 10s
  4. 25m 3s
    1. Importing audio files
      6m 39s
    2. Extracting audio from a CD
      4m 6s
    3. Importing video files
      2m 21s
    4. Recording audio
      4m 50s
    5. Creating a multitrack session
      7m 7s
  5. 8m 8s
    1. Understanding frequency
      1m 50s
    2. Understanding amplitude
      1m 40s
    3. Understanding sample rate
      2m 34s
    4. Understanding bit depth
      2m 4s
  6. 37m 59s
    1. Understanding the Waveform Editor interface
      6m 2s
    2. Making selections
      6m 5s
    3. Adjusting the clip amplitude
      2m 49s
    4. Fading clips
      4m 5s
    5. Normalizing
      5m 17s
    6. Copying, cutting, and pasting
      7m 40s
    7. Undoing, redoing, and using the History panel
      4m 5s
    8. Generating silence
      1m 56s
  7. 24m 1s
    1. Using the Spectral Frequency Display
      2m 53s
    2. Using the selection tools
      7m 18s
    3. Using the Spot Healing Brush
      6m 34s
    4. Removing background noises
      7m 16s
  8. 46m 31s
    1. Understanding destructive vs. nondestructive effects
      12m 35s
    2. Applying compression
      9m 20s
    3. Understanding reverb vs. delay
      4m 44s
    4. Working with filters and EQ effects
      6m 46s
    5. Using special effects
      4m 26s
    6. Isolating vocals in a stereo track
      4m 27s
    7. Working with time and pitch effects
      4m 13s
  9. 1h 18m
    1. Creating a multitrack session
      6m 1s
    2. Recording and importing audio
      9m 42s
    3. Understanding the multitrack interface
      5m 20s
    4. Understanding the Mixer panel
      6m 13s
    5. Editing clips in Multitrack View
      9m 49s
    6. Grouping clips together
      2m 43s
    7. Creating bus groups
      7m 42s
    8. Routing and working with sends
      4m 7s
    9. Using automation
      12m 25s
    10. Pre-rendering tracks
      2m 19s
    11. Exporting the mix
      4m 13s
    12. Exporting the session
      3m 22s
    13. Burning the mix to a CD
      4m 45s
  10. 25m 17s
    1. Working with audio from video
      6m 23s
    2. Importing a sequence from Premiere Pro
      3m 59s
    3. Adding a soundtrack to a video
      3m 45s
    4. Exporting a session back to Premiere Pro
      3m 32s
    5. Using Automatic Speech Alignment
      7m 38s
  11. 9m 46s
    1. Understanding the interface
      6m 17s
    2. Using pan envelopes
      2m 44s
    3. Exporting a multichannel mix
      45s
  12. 52s
    1. Next steps
      52s

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