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Decibels Full Scale

From Chace Audio

dBFS (Decibels Full Scale) is a metering scale in which zero (0) is the maximum point over which any increase in level will cause clipping. The current post production de facto standard for digital audio program is to have the reference level at 20dB below full scale 0, or -20dBFS. This is different than the classic VU scale where zero (0) is the reference level, and program can exceed zero by 12, 14, or 16dB before clipping, depending on what recording format is in use.

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SOUND THEORY