The VU meter and how it got that way

Given its appearance in one form or another in all but the cheapest audio gear produced in the last 70 years or so, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the ubiquitous VU meter is just one of those electronic add-ons that’s more a result of marketing than engineering. After all, the seemingly arbitrary scale and the vague “volume units” label makes it seem like something a manufacturer would slap on a device just to make it look good. And while that no doubt happens, it turns out that the concept of a VU meter and its execution has some serious engineering behind that belies the really simple question it seeks to answer: how loud is this audio signal?

I love analog VU meters, and I’m kind of sad regular, non-professional music equipment has done away with them entirely.

14 Comments

  1. Phloptical 2018-08-11 8:38 pm EST
  2. quackalist 2018-08-12 12:45 am EST
    • grat 2018-08-12 1:54 am EST
      • Gargyle 2018-08-12 6:53 am EST
        • grat 2018-08-13 4:37 pm EST
  3. grat 2018-08-12 1:53 am EST
    • gus3 2018-08-12 3:11 am EST
      • grat 2018-08-13 4:43 pm EST
    • Earl C Pottinger 2018-08-12 4:54 pm EST
      • ilovebeer 2018-08-13 3:16 pm EST
    • ilovebeer 2018-08-13 3:07 pm EST
      • grat 2018-08-13 4:54 pm EST
        • ilovebeer 2018-08-13 6:11 pm EST
          • grat 2018-08-13 6:37 pm EST