Translation with SYSTRAN Links

Sound volume of the televised programs

What makes the CSA so that the chains cease assembling the sound at the time of the advertising screens?

The increase in the sound volume of television at the time as of advertising screens has been, for several years, a subject of work for the CSA. Concerned of the comfort of the televiewers, it organized since 1992 several series of measurements of the sound intensity of the programs. Those had allowed only partial improvements, for lack of tools making it possible to precisely consider the excursions sound perceived like excessive. But as from the year 2010, the Council could bring a concrete solution to this problem by establishing a calendar being spread out December 2011 to 2013.

A median value to be respected

Following a dialogue with the editors and the professional organizations concerned, the Council adopted a deliberation on July 19th, 2011. Laying down precise technical methods to improve comfort of listening and a calendar for the chains and the producers, it aims to the control by the editors of the sound intensity of the programs and the advertisements diffused.

Thus, since mid-December 2011, a fall and a generalized alignment of the average sound intensity of the chains make it possible to the televiewers to pass from the one to the other without undergoing important differences, for little that their television receivers do not introduce new variations. The technical measures carried out by the Council on the free national chains of the DVB during twenty-four hours indicate that most between them the actions envisaged by the deliberation carried out. Indeed, the average sound intensity of these chains measured during twenty-four hours is very close to the value -23 LUFS (measuring unit of the sound intensity of an audio sequence) recommended by the Council. Some of these average sound intensities present a profile far from variable over the day, while others have a greater variance.

A variation reduced for the advertisements

Since January 1st, 2012 , the variation of sound intensity at the time of the passage of a program to a publicity is framed. These variations cannot from now on exceed a ceiling considered as that of the auditive embarrassment for the televiewers. This variation will not be either inevitably worthless, for example between a “calm” end of program followed by a publicity. 

Since January 1st, 2013 , the variation of sound intensity for the advertisements is even weaker than the ceiling such as definite above. The results are satisfactory as regards the chains of the DVB which tried technical and human hard to correctly implement this deliberation. Actions remain however still necessary, in particular for certain specialized channels or foreign available on certain networks of the distributors, in order to make to the televiewers a homogeneous offer as regards the sound intensity. The Council will continue its exchanges with the engineering teams of the chains concerned.

Complimentary measures are also to consider, in particular on behalf of the manufacturers of television sets and the distributors (ADSL, satellite, cable) which must be associated with this effort with homogenisation with the sound intensity. In this dynamics, and whereas the modes of consumption of the television services evolve and that technologies progress, of new working tracks and reflection were identified, on the intelligibility of the dialogues or the advertisements present in the contents diffused on Internet.


On television consult the topic devoted to the sound intensity.

In certain emissions, the background music is so strong that it covers the dialogues. Can the CSA rectify this situation?

The CSA already could note that certain emissions of television can have a background music, integral part of the audio-visual work, which can prove to be awkward. If one suffers from certain auditive deficiencies, the background music can seem to parasitize the dialogues.

The legislator however did not allot to the CSA of competences allowing him to impose a certain level of intelligibility of the programs diffused on the chains of television, level which it would be advisable to qualify, so that they are accessible to greatest number the. Only rules relating to the sound intensity of the chains, and the programs and advertisements which compose them, indeed could be elaborate pursuant to the provisions retained by the Parliament, which was the object of the deliberation on the sound intensity in television adopted by the Council on July 19th, 2011. On the other hand, an unbalance between the sound elements of only one program cannot be sanctioned. It is advisable moreover to note that he is still complex and expensive to technically characterize the intelligibility of programs in the absence of methods and tools which would make it possible to carry out this measurement in an automated and powerful way.

The CSA remains nevertheless attentive with these difficulties and mentioned this question in his report on the loudness with the television, given to the Parliament for the years 2012 and 2013.