[Windows] Normalize the volume of your MP3 files with QMP3Gain

Downloading and storing sound files from various sources may result in differences in the volume of the individual files. One is often left fiddling with the volume control almost every time a an audio starts, either to reduce the volume or increase it. Instead of adjusting the volume with every song, simply normalize the sound level across all tracks using a free software like QMP3Gain.

WHAT IS IT AND WHAT DOES IT DO

Main Functionality

QMP3Gain is an open source software that allows you to normalize the sound across multiple MP3 files without suffering from any loss of quality.

Pros

  • Allows users to normalize volume for a single MP3 or multiple MP3s at a time
  • Adjusts volume without re-encoding, which prevents loss of quality

Cons

  • Only works with MP3 files
  • Modifications are done to original files, as opposed to making copies

Discussion

QMP3Gain is a fairly useful program that can help you normalize the volume of individual sound files or multiple ones, such as albums. The program makes use of the MP3Gain engine to conduct statistical analysis of the files, instead of boosting volume through peak normalization, thus preventing any loss of quality as there is no re-encoding done.

After installing QMP3Gain, add the files you want to manipulate to the program either through the File menu or by clicking the first button below the menu bar. Once you add the MP3s, specify the volume to be targeted during the process and either press the Track Gain button to adjust the volume of individual files or press Album Gain to adjust the volume of all the files added to the list.

Once the process is completed, you will be presented with the details of the analysis, such as the original volume of the file, the track gain (by how much has the volume increased or decreased), and information regarding audio clipping, which is the sound distortion that occurs when an amplifier is overstepped. There is no need to save the files as the modification is done to the original file itself.

There are also a number of options through which you can make changes to the program. From the Options menu you can specify whether you want the program to clip the audio files, turn a sound alert on and off, avoid Layer I or II check, and set Constant Gain for all the MP3s. Using the Constant Gain feature, you can specify by how much you want the program to adjust the volume of all the MP3s in the list.

Conclusion and Download Link

For those who get their MP3 songs from different sources, QMP3Gain is a very useful program to ensure that all of your tracks play on a similar volume. However, as the program is not compatible with audio formats other than MP3, it has a limited use and may not be able to work with your entire playlist.

Price: Free

Version Reviewed: v0.9.0

Supported OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8

Download Size: 11.4MB

VirusTotal Malware Scan Results: 1/43

Portability: Not portable, installation required

QMP3Gain download page

[via Addictivetips]

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12 comments

  1. sgrams

    I also use MP3Gain for music and voice usually leaving the gain at 105 and I haven’t noticed cutoffs, for the voice recordings I also use Audio Speed Changer Pro to speed things up about 32%, it works quite well because it also has a pitch key to make the voice more normal.

  2. Andrew

    I use this quite a bit. The reason I use it is when driving machinery it can get pretty loud and therefore I could not hear the language lessons on my mp3 player even with ear defenders (yeah I listen to language lessons on my mp3 player instead of music, what can I say except… that’s how I roll), and mp3gain does its job giving the files that extra oumpf so that I can hear them without strain.I don’t notice a lapse of quality in the audio but with language lessons, its not that incredibly important anyways, and the alternative is not being able to hear them in the first place. So yeah, a thumbs up from me for this software.

  3. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    @SteveS: Oh no, I’m not offended in the least. There is a lot of value that comes from members commenting. I highly encourage everyone to provide feedback like you are — it really helps because, as I’m sure you know, we can’t always cover everything.
    My guess is Vinay didn’t know about MP3Gain having a GUI version, which is why we reviewed this. No harm in that, however — just more choice, right?

  4. SteveS

    Ashraf, Yeh, I can’t really see any functionality diff. Both seem to do the same singular and batch album and/or track analysis and gain adjust in about the same time with the same adjustment.

    The only diff I found: The original mp3gain, which is portable by design, supports drag n drop. My non-install version of Qmp3 in VM did not support d&d.

    No prob if you don’t have any experience with either app, I’m just trying to add content, not criticize.

  5. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    @SteveS: Thank you for being a loyal reader!
    Does MP3Gain with the GUI allow you to do batch processing? As I mentioned before, I haven’t used either programs, so I’m just shooting in the dark here.
    For what it is worth, VirusTotal scan results came up 1/43.

  6. SteveS

    First, I really enjoy checking your updates every day!

    The old Mp3gain avail on sourceforge has a gui front-end for the underlying exe also.

    The interesting thing is that the Qmp3gain ‘archive’ contains a 15MB file: QtWebKit4.dll … I wonder what that thing does. I ran the extracted archive in a VM so I didn’t really care what it did but, I have to say that I don’t really like it’s existence/addition to an app that seemed to work just the same, from years ago
    Cheers :)

  7. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    @Everyone asking about MP3Gain: As far as I can tell — and mind you I haven’t used QMP3Gain, so I may be wrong — QMP3Gain is simply a GUI front-end for MP3Gain. In other words, QMP3Gain uses MP3Gain to do all the modifications. The end result should be the same regardless of if you use QMP3Gain or MP3Gain.

  8. SteveS

    I’m at a bit of a loss as to what this app does that the old mp3gain does not do.

    Mp3gain is still available.

    Qmp3gain is ~4x the size of mp3gain and seems no faster nor slicker looking.

    Qmp3gain does not require install, just extract with 7zip (or Universal Extractor) :)

  9. KMHamm

    I downloaded the program and it can’t find its own back end. Seems like a bad download to me. I was able to do some sort of normalization, after a fashion, but haven’t checked the results yet. Anyway, this is a beta version, fer sure!

  10. r0lZ

    It seems to be a revamped version of mp3gain. It modifies the so called “replaygain”, and is very useful. However, if you want to normalize your full audio collection (including non-mp3 files), you should use Foobar2000. Although it is NOT possible to normalize the gain of most other formats, it is possible to store the replaygain information in tags, and play the files with a player that can use that tags to play the file at the correct level. (Unfortunately, most hardware players do not take the replaygain into account, and in that case, you should modify the gain in the mp3 files directly. Foobar2000 can do that too, for MP3 files only.)

    BTW, you should NEVER modify the default replaygain value. 89.0 is the standard level, and it is perfectly suitable in (almost) all cases. If you sets it to a higher level (such as in the illustration above), some files will be clipped or not normalized correctly, and if you sets it to a lower volume, your files will not be compatible with the de-facto standard.

    Also, don’t forget that you should process all files of a single album at a time, to keep the volume relationship of the tracks.