Should SFI Music be mastered for maximum loudness?

We are currently in the process of mastering 8 new Tabata based HIIT tracks but we face a interesting dilemma. Since 1990 with the advent of the compact disk there has been a trend to increase audio levels. To quote Wikipedia.

With the advent of the Compact Disc (CD), music is encoded to a digital format with a clearly defined maximum peak amplitude. Once the maximum amplitude of a CD is reached, loudness can be increased still further through signal processing techniques such as dynamic range compression and equalization. Engineers can apply an increasingly high ratio of compression to a recording until it more frequently peaks at the maximum amplitude. In extreme cases, efforts to increase loudness can result in clipping and other audible distortion. Modern recordings that use extreme dynamic range compression and other measures to increase loudness therefore can sacrifice sound quality to loudness. The competitive escalation of loudness has led music fans and members of the musical press to refer to the affected albums as "victims of the loudness war."

So why is this causing us a dilemma ? Well we can master our tracks to be as loud as many of the current EDM tracks used by instructors in class. The problem with that is when these tracks are played on some of the poorer fitness studio sound systems they can sound awful. Many studio sound systems have a lack of bottom end and exaggerate the high frequencies. What this does is magnify the distortion at the high end making the track sound bright and overly aggressive. We recently carried out a sound check on a typical studio sound system using a popular track as a benchmark against a SFI HIIT track mastered at the correct levels. The SFI track sounded so much better how ever there is a problem.
The SFI track was a lot quieter so in a class situation the instructor would have to increase the volume on the playback system if they wanted to maintain volume levels between tracks which would be impractical in a class situation.

So what is the answer ?
We think that a compromise may be the best solution. If we take the levels to just below maximum we should be able to avoid most distortion issues but still make the track loud enough so that the instructor does not have to reach for the volume control. We may also decide to release two versions of each track allowing the instructor to make a choice based on personal preferance. The Reformation released their album Fatal Expectation with two different official masterings available: a "standard" version as a digital download, and an "Audiophile Mastered" CD.

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