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I don’t have too much experience with VU Meters. Something that’s important to understand is that how we measure audio has changed A LOT over the years.
That’s why there’s so many styles of audio meters.
Right now the “current style” is LUFS. It takes into account how our ears hear frequencies. We’ll see how long it lasts and continues in the industry. It does seem like a good solution so far.
When LUFS was first released, it didn’t get adopted right away, and a big part of that was VST LUFS Meters were extremely expensive (like $299 for a audio meter plugin!)
Youlean Loudness Meter came out at an amazing time, as it was FREE and provided proper loudness metering in a plugin. (At the moment, I just like using FabFilter Pro-L 2 as it’s a limiter and loudness meter built in.. [nice to reduce amount of plugins used]).
My understanding of a VU Meter is that the way its needle bounces with audio is a very nice way to look at loudness. It’s kind of like timing your compression to bounce in time with the beat.
You can use a VU Meter if you’d like, but nowadays I just use a loudness meter so I can compare each track on one of my beat tapes to a similar volume easily.
That’s all the info I can give you, as VU Meters were popular at a time when I was not even making music!
They can still be used, and are powerful, but LUFS being the “new way at the moment”, seems sufficient 🙂