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09 December 2009 @ 04:49 pm
Breathing noises in Audacity  
Is there a way in Audacity to remove obvious breaths? I've been using the noise removal tool to get them one at a time, but at the rate I'm going, I'll finish this by Christmas 2010.
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Torra Kimbul: iPODtorra on December 10th, 2009 01:04 am (UTC)
I can think of two ways:

1) To prevent the mic from picking up breath sounds, try tying a bit of cloth over the head of the mic (external mics, that is). That'll prevent puffs of breath from catching or warping sounds.

2) If you have breaths on the audio that are loud, like inhalations at the start of a sentence, you can copy a few milliseconds of silent background, and the paste over the breath sound until it uses up the same amount of time. Or just delete it entirely.

The first, of course, only works when recording new stuff, and the second takes a lot of time, but, well, I'm severely OCD, so I do both. ::chuckles:: I end up deleting/copy/pasting around inhalations at the start of every paragraph or bit of dialog. ...I spend a lot of time editing. ::chuckles::
Darkrosedarkrosetiger on December 10th, 2009 01:19 am (UTC)
I'll keep the first in mind for the future. The second's what I've been doing, and I was hoping there's an easier way; it sounds like there isn't, though. Ah well. Thanks!

Edited at 2009-12-10 01:20 am (UTC)
LovePlatinumBaby: podficluvplatinumbaby on December 10th, 2009 01:05 am (UTC)
What I try to do is cut the obvious breaths out manually, and replace it with a similar amount of soundless recorded time that I copy from somewhere else. I basically record about half an hour at a time. Then listen through it while editing like this. You get pretty good at recognizing the shape of breath when you have the visual blown up a bit. It does take a good bit of time, but the result is good.
Darkrosedarkrosetiger on December 10th, 2009 01:30 am (UTC)
Audacity is actually good at removing the noise; it's just very time-consuming. Looks like there's no easier way, though. Next time, I'll remember to put something over the mike.
Mal: ckr mamet facepalms by bohemian__stormmalnpudl on December 10th, 2009 05:19 am (UTC)
No solution, just empathy. This is why I spend three hours editing for every hour recording.

I'd add a *heavy sigh* here, but... ;-)
Luzulaluzula on December 10th, 2009 07:51 am (UTC)
You have my sympathy. This is why I have a mike that can record some distance away from my mouth--that prevents it from picking up the breath noises.
Jen: Kino Dreamnikojen on December 10th, 2009 02:59 pm (UTC)
This isn't really much of a solution, but I thought I'd mention it on the off-chance it might be useful.

When I was looking for a way to eliminate general background buzz from my first recording, one of the apps I played with was WavePad. Its "noise removal" tool seemed to work by just cutting out everything in the little wave-graph below a certain level. The results were mostly acceptable as noise-removal went (though I found something better later, so didn't end up using it).

I mention this because one of the side-effects of that method of noise removal was that most of my breath noises *also* got chopped out.

It's like taking a hatchet to a problem that requires a scalpel, but it might be an option...

(Hrrrmmm... fair warning: Just tried to open the software and found out that what they call a "free" download is actually a limited-time trial that you don't find out about until you try to open it after the trial is up. :P )
Occasional Renaissance: books glasses heartsregonym on January 12th, 2010 11:37 pm (UTC)
The results were mostly acceptable as noise-removal went (though I found something better later, so didn't end up using it).

Out of curiosity, what did you end up using for your noise-removal? I'm working on my first podfic right now, and the Noise Removal feature in Audacity produces a result that sounds kind of weird to me... over the speakers the recording sounds alright, but when I listen to it with headphones there's a funny, artificial sound underlying everything. I'm trying to find a better alternative, so I'd appreciate knowing what it was that you liked using!
Jennikojen on January 13th, 2010 01:03 am (UTC)
Hi. :) I've been using GoldWave, which rashaka brought to my attention in this comm a while ago.

Its noise removal tool can still cause some of that weird tinny effect, but it also gives you more settings and presets to play with to try to find the right balance. I can't say my final results have been 100% wonderful, but they're way better than what I managed in Audacity.

Hope this helps. :)
Occasional Renaissance: books glasses heartsregonym on January 13th, 2010 04:33 am (UTC)
Thanks! I'll definitely check GoldWave out. If it has more options than the 'Less - More' noise cancel slider in Audacity, that's enough to make me happy. :D
DarkEmeralds: Podficemeraldsedai on December 14th, 2009 09:14 pm (UTC)
I haven't found one. It's funny, because I can visually spot them--they're all very similar to each other--but Noise Removal doesn't work well on them (that I can discover) and even if it did, you'd have to pick them all out and tell it to remove them.

I know it doesn't help you on your current project, but I've found that manually editing out enough breath noises has made me much, much better about not making them in the first place. I do a lot of open-mouth breathing while recording, and I've learned to allow deep, loud breaths plenty of time to drop before resuming speaking--that way, I can edit it out completely.

There are certain characters and bits of dialog where I consistently forget and start speaking on a nasal inbreath (it sounds very upper-crust British and is just a bad habit). Little by little, I'm catching myself better as I go along.

Also, for what it's worth, I listen to a lot of professional audiobooks, and even there, you do hear SOME breath sounds. I'm not sure how critical it really is to take them all out.
ext_2081871 on July 25th, 2013 03:26 pm (UTC)
This is not 100% fool proof, but it will cut out quite a bit. I assume you know basic editing and mastering tips for audio. (If not, visit ACX.com, click on the Need Help section, and they have specifications that are great to record by listed there.)

To get rid of the breathing: in Audacity, highlight a portion of your recording that has breathing on it. Click on the Noise Removal tool and then click "Get Profile". Then highlight the entirety of the recording (or control-A), click on the noise removal tool again, and then click ok. That will take the profile of the breathing that you want cut out, and will apply it to the entire recording. Again, it's not 100% foolproof (I assume because our breaths are not identical throughout a recording), But ... if you have are speaking at a healthy volume and not having an asthma attack with your breathing ... it should be able to differentiate quite a bit of it.
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