This Is How TV Ads Are So Loud

Here’s something that might be hard to believe at first. There is no difference in volume between the loudest part of a TV show and a loud commercial.

But how can that be? TV ads are soooo much louder than the TV shows, right? Well, as WIRED reports, most ads actually never go above the FCC recommended volume limits. The difference is that the TV shows are well below that level, saving the peak volume part for that big explosion or gun fight, while TV ads are right at the limit the whole time. The audio engineers increase the volume on all of the audio, then clip it off right at the loudness limits.

Which is why I use for commercials what the audio engineers haven’t been able to design around (yet), the mute button.

Why Blaring TV Ads Drive You Insane [WIRED]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.