No matter how good your recording set up is, you will always find some element of background noise. Either the distant hum of a neighbours air conditioning unit, static caused by radio interference or more often than not the fan on your own PC. Or have you a digital recording of a beloved old recording, a home video or a vinyl record but the background noise is making it impossible to make out what is being said?
If you are using Adobe Audition, there’s a very simple way to eliminate that background pollution base to give you a nice crisp silence between the words and notes.
First record your track, or select your previous recording and open it up in the Audition single file view window. Now choose highlight a section of the track that is silent, generally at the start or end of the recording, when all you can hear is the background hiss. The longer this section is that you choose, the better the process will work. Next select Effects, Restoration, Capture Noise Reduction Profile, or use the shortcut Alt+N. What Audtion now does is analyse the background noise contained in the section of silent file you have just chosen and notes that this is what you don’t want to hear during the rest of the track.
Now select Effects, Restoration, Noise Reduction Process and the noise reduction widnow will pop up. Press the button that says Select Entire File, then press OK. Audition will now remove the analysed noise reduction profile sound from the entire file, leaving everything else. As with everything, there are more advanced options to play with, adjusting the smoothing amount and transition width are very useful if you find the background noise is too close to the sounds you want to keep, but for most home uses the default settings do an astonishing job of taking a recording with lots of background noise and eliminating it completely.
[Image via Russ Payne]