- Feb 3, 2020
Technically, tracks can clip by over 1000 dB when decoded as they are floating point. Run gain analysis on all of your albums and adjust them accordingly. Many albums from the iTunes Store and Apple Music clip by several dB. The Mastered for iTunes certification guarantees no digital clipping.Digital clipping with EQ and even without EQ may be more common than people think. I ran a 0 dB sweep on my system (WASAPI Exclusive with Foobar200) and was surprised to hear "hard clipping" when using room EQ which was supposed to allow for that, I had to back off an additional 4 dB to eliminated it. Even without EQ there was some digital clipping with the 0 dB sweep. I am not sure how accurate of a test a 0 dB sweep is... it might be overkill? I do notice that some songs that previously had come "clicks" in them during loud passages no longer do after the -4 dB adjustment. What is the "best" way to check your system digital clipping?
For other content you have to actively monitor your system. This may be impossible on Windows with 24-bit Integer interfaces and CAudioLimiter as it will auto-limit below 0 dBFS. On macOS the full playback chain is 32-bit float with some interfaces like RME's, so you can see the output exceeding 0 dBFS in your playback device if it has a meter.