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I need a free audio program for Windows that will allow me to feed it an mp3 file and spit out an mp3 file with fewer jumps in audio volume. Basically I have a bunch of mp3's where the volume goes from really quiet to very loud and I want to minimize this difference.

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I think thehollow89 is talking about dynamic range compression, not volume equalization. –  rob Jan 23 '10 at 0:14
    
Hopefully you can do this in a non-destructive way, so as not to ruin your music collection. –  Sam Jan 25 '10 at 15:18

4 Answers 4

Mediamonkey has a volume leveling facility, and a whole heap of other easy to use features.

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Foobar2000 supports ReplayGain:

Replay Gain is the name of a technique invented to achieve the same playback volume of audio files.

Replay Gain allows the loudness of each song within a collection of songs to be consistent. This is called 'Track Gain', or 'Radio Gain' in earlier parlance. It also allows the loudness of a specific sub-collection (an "album") to be consistent with the rest of the collection, while allowing the dynamics from song to song on the album to remain intact. This is called 'Album Gain', or 'Audiophile Gain' in earlier parlance. This is usually important when listening to classical music albums, because quiet tracks need to remain a certain degree quieter than the louder ones.

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Check out MP3Gain, a free and open source tool which can do this:

MP3Gain analyzes and adjusts mp3 files so that they have the same volume.

MP3Gain does not just do peak normalization, as many normalizers do. Instead, it does some statistical analysis to determine how loud the file actually sounds to the human ear.

Also, the changes MP3Gain makes are completely lossless. There is no quality lost in the change because the program adjusts the mp3 file directly, without decoding and re-encoding.

This will actually fix the files, as opposed to just masking the problem and playing them correctly. This way, when you transfer the songs to an environment without that specific player, the songs will sound the same.

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It sounds like you're talking about dynamic range compression.

You can do this with Audacity (tutorial) or with any of the software in the Wikipedia article.

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