New to the forum. First post here.
This may sound outrageous, but I've digitally re-mastered the majority of my Ambient music collection. Thousands of songs from every era. Vinyl, CD and various digital download formats.
The reason for this was to create a unified digital library that I could dump into iTunes, hit shuffle play and never have to adjust the volume or EQ. The process was very time consuming. The results please my ears. Life is good.
Ambient music has had a lot of variability in terms of volume, dynamics and eq in the past. It still does today.
I understand there are many opinions in terms of what is ideal volume. My opinion is Ambient should be mastered at a higher relative volume than what 70% of my collection delivered. However, I believe Ambient is a genre that benefits from a wide dynamic range, so I'm not saying it should be slammed.
It is possible to have a wide dynamic range and still be much louder at the same amplifier setting. For example, a song that peaks at -5db and has an average of -25db can be louder without sacrificing dynamics. Ambient songs that have the right dynamic range, but are weak on the relative volume made me reach for the dreaded volume knob. Not anymore, though.
I see no advantage to mastering something quiet in terms of volume when the same dynamic range can be achieved at a higher relative volume.
If you collect music and listen to the music in a playlist or even mix the songs, it always needs adjustments. And it is up to the collector to do so.
But I dont think that you can make standarts of that.
The way of listening to music changed a bit over the last decade. Today we have "Streaming" mostly, with options for a standardised normalizing, blending and sound improving, for instance preconfigured channel strips. The need for this standarts seems to grow with the grow of digital streaming. This development goes with the development in the film industry and mainstream record labels.
So, you might loose the original intent and content of music. Especially the weightlessness of music can be lost by maximizing, compressing and EQing.