Your first level-up in Skyrim (opens in new tab): Special Edition should be a truly special moment, but if you're an audiophile it may have been a moment of horror instead. Reddit user LasurArkinshade (opens in new tab) has discovered that both the Xbox One and PC versions of Skyrim: Special Edition have super-compressed and generally rotten sounding audio compared to the original game. Not typically something you want out of a remastered experience!
Listen for yourself. The first level-up sound is from the original Skyrim and the second is from the Special Edition.
SoundCloud layers in some compression of its own, but the difference between the two is still apparent. If you want to get all scientific about it you can check out this spectrogram from Reddit user withmorten (opens in new tab), which shows the new audio (on the right) cutting off above frequencies of 12kHz. That's a big part of why it sounds so flat.
A Bethesda community manager (opens in new tab) said in the same Reddit thread that the developer is testing a fix for the audio issue and hopes to have an update out next week. Until then, audiophiles may want to limit their Skyrim: Special Edition playtime to preserve their sanity.
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