The Volume Question

One question I get asked a lot by listeners is “why is the volume level on the music samples lower than on the speech?”

This is something that gets raised a lot, but it’s not something that’s ever going to change. When I started the podcast, I had the music levels higher, and got complaints about that, so I started mixing them lower. I then got complaints about that, so I did a poll of my Patreon backers to see what they thought, and by about a sixty-forty margin they wanted the levels to be lower, as they are now, rather than higher as they were earlier.

Basically, there seem to be two groups of listeners. One group mostly listens with headphones, and doesn’t like it when the music gets louder, because it hurts their ears. The other group mostly listens in their cars, and the music gets lost in the engine noise. That’s a gross oversimplification, and there are headphone listeners who want the music louder and car listeners who want the music quieter, but the listenership does seem to split roughly that way, and there are slightly more headphone listeners.

Now, it’s literally impossible for me to please everyone, so I’ve given up trying with this, and it’s not going to change. Partly because the majority of my backers voted one way, partly because it’s just easier to leave things the way they are rather than mess with them given that no matter what I do someone will be unhappy, and partly because both Tilt when he edits the podcast and I when I listen back and tweak his edit are using headphones, and we don’t want to hurt our ears either.

Either way, though, if you’re thinking of asking me about this, please don’t. There is a vocal minority who are very insistent about this, but the majority are against it, so it won’t be changing.

Also, this is not a request for helpful suggestions on how the problem may be fixed. Whatever you want to suggest, I’ve tried it and someone complained. This really, truly, is a case where I can’t make everyone happy.