ATSC loudness seminar this week in Washington, D.C.

The Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) is hosting a special one-day seminar on audio loudness issues this Wednesday, Nov. 4, at the Wiley Rein Conference Center, 1776 K Street, NW, in Washington, D.C.

The seminar, which begins at 9:00 a.m. and ends at 4:00 p.m., will provide detailed presentations on the ATSC Recommended Practice for establishing and maintaining audio loudness for digital television, which has been in the works for almost two years.

The goal is to release a Recommended Practice document that broadcasters can follow, which is now in the final stages of approval, according to Mark Richer, ATSC president.

The seminar will include presentations focused on ATSC's work on audio loudness for digital television. The program will also include information about related legislative activities and key topics, such as industry perspectives from cable and advertising, a panel focusing on real-world applications and problems from the field, loudness measurement, monitoring, program interchange, program-to-commercial (interstitial) loudness, dynamic range control metadata and a report on audio/video lip sync.

It’s a great opportunity to learn about the hotly debated issue from the audio experts who have worked for more than two years to develop the document. Presenters will include Pat Waddell (Harmonic), David Donovan (MSTV), Steve Lyman (Dolby), Graham Jones (NAB), Jim Starzynski (NBC Universal), Ken Hunold (Dolby), Tim Carroll (Linear Acoustic), Jim DeFilippis (Fox), Gregg Coppa (CBS), Sean Richardson (Starz Entertainment), Adam Goldberg (AGP), and others.

Starzynski, principal engineer and audio architect at NBC Universal, said the broadcast and content creation communities, fearful of governmental mandates, need to take notice or else Congress will have something to say about it. Since May of 2007, Starzynski has chaired a special task force on Loudness (S63) at the ATSC to develop Recommended Practices for how to handle disparate audio levels among programs and commercial content. The task force includes representatives from PBS and commercial stations, manufacturers and educational institutions.

For more information or to register to attend the seminar, visit