So I read recently that all tracks should have their peak db no higher than like -3 or -6.
When I follow those guidelines, everything is really quiet. So I lower the volume on all my tracks so that the peak never exceeds -3db and everything is good, no clipping, etc. But it's so quiet compared to other .mp3s and stuff I have. Like if I render my file like that and play it on my speakers, I have to turn the volume up much louder than almost all the other music files I have on my computer.
I first thought "why is my stuff so quiet?" But if I'm following proper guidelines, does that instead mean that everything else is too loud and mine is actually at the proper volume?
Mastering is when the volume tends to come up.