Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Noise Removal Plugins - Izotope RX2

I see a lot of people asking about how to remove noise from a recording. In the immortal words of Mr. Miyagi, "Best block no be there". In other words, do all you can to get a clean recording in the first place because once that hum or crackle is in there it's awfully hard to remove.

If you're clever with gear or a DAW you can apply notch filters, expanders and a few other tricks but the best tool out there though by far is Izotope RX. It's got separate tools to denoise, declick, remove hum, a spectrographic display module to get a clear picture of what your working on and a tool called Spectral Repair.

The whole suite is a step above (at least) of anything you've likely used before. The tools are really top notch for getting the noise out and leaving as much of your program material behind, unharmed. The Spectral Repair tool is the crowning glory though. If nothing else works and you just have to cut a section right out, this tool resynthesizes the audio to fill in the gap as seamlessly as possible. 

On the forums a lot of people balk at the price. If you're working on just one low budget project it's hard to justify the expense. If you do any amount of work though, even if you're getting solid tracks from good sources it's well worth the expense to be able to reliably fix those troublesome issues. I've done it the hard way and I've used many a plugin to try and clean up flawed audio. Izotope has really nailed it and it's not for nothing that they're the most recommended tool for the job.
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