I have a YouTube video which has audio that is way too soft. It's there, and audible, but quiet enough to be hard to understand. Basically, I am looking for what this question provides, only for Linux rather than Windows.

My initial research covered a YouTube video which explained what I want to do from within YouTube hinges on a button to the bottom right of the screen saying, "Try the YouTube video editor" which is not displayed now. I have not been able to find my way into the subsequently shown audio tweaking interface.

(I have the video on my machine in original MOV format. I also have intermittent access to a Mac.)


ffmpeg can change the audio of a file

If your file is named video.mp4, you could use:

ffmpeg -i video.mp4 -c:v copy -af "volume=2" output.mp4

to double the output audio volume. Note this will re-encode your audio, possibly changing the codec; use -c:a to set whichever audio codec you like.

The above command will also work just fine on the original MOV that you have, and you should probably use that if you are concerned about quality as YouTube might have re-encoded the audio (and will almost definitely have re-encoded the video).

You may have to test to find how much you want to 'boost' the audio by, depending on what the input is like and how loud you want it.

Note that ffmpeg by design doesn't do in-place editing of files.

Example Output

not boosted boosted

Unboosted on left, boosted on right. Above produced using ahistogram.

There is more info in the ffmpeg filter documentation, see the volume audio filter section.

  • fyi, it seems this command only works for .mp4, and not for .mov – kiewic Sep 4 '20 at 5:07

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