Loudness Wars: the Client Credibility Gap

What are the Loudness Wars?   

The Loudness Wars exist for one very good reason: if you turn the volume up, almost everything sounds better. 

This one, as Nigel Tufnell observed, goes to 11.

Well, up to a point.

Loud sounds big, impressive, clear, full-range, wonderful.  So what's wrong with making music as loud as possible?

That thinking is what lead to the Loudness Wars, and we're all casualties of the war.

It's ironic that the first mass market consumer digital audio medium, Compact Disc, is able to reproduce very quiet and VERY LOUD sound with virtually no distortion or electronic noise. It's ironic because commercial music produced since CD's invention has used less and less of this available dynamic range.  Many CDs released in the last 25 years use only a very few of the available 96dB.