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Hey SSD crew ..

Over the past 2 years I've been making wild sfx / foley recordings. The source is my Sony D50 (D-50). Around a GAIN setting of 5 the self noise becomes annoying. I've been trying to clean these recordings up with the Sony Noise Reduction plugin. I'm recording clean, isolated without any distracting background sounds bleeding in from the locations. Its specifically the the D50's self noise I'm trying to remove.

I'm not thrilled with the results I'm getting with the Sony Noise Reduction plugin. I feel like the NR plug could be better. Has anyone compared the Sony NR to other NR plugs ? I have used the Isotope and Waves plugs but that was a few years back. Kinda forgetting how they sound and certainly can't A/B them right now ...

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4 Answers 4

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Sony NR is good and I have used it on a regular basis since 2001. It is actually particularly effective for the type of broadband noise your are wanting to remove but, as with any plug-ins of a similar nature, it works best when used in multiple passes of smaller increments (8-10dB) rather than trying to remove all the noise at once. Also, ensure that you are using Mode 2 or 3, as these are the most transparent. Personally, I use Mode 2 the most, as it provides a reasonable degree of noise reduction while still providing a natural result.

Having said that, personally I believe RX provides better results, particularly when dealing with more complex material. Once again, best results are to be had using multiple passes and smaller increments. Algorithm D in Advanced mode can give you fantastic results, but is very processor intensive and can take some time to run (Very relevant if you are on a tight deadline!).

I have used Waves X-Noise on occasion and, while it does sound quite natural, it has a tendency to "suck the air out of a recording" often leaving it sounding dull and lifeless. I believe this has something to do with the way their algorithm works with harmonics.

Another important factor to bear in mind is that all of the above are sold as bundles, so you don't only get a broadband noise reduction plug-in, but also clip, click, crackle, impulse, spectral, band, harmonic, etc, depending on the bundle you choose. Now, just because one plug-in in a bundle is great, it doesn't automatically mean that the rest will be too. So, if you are planning to get just one, try to get the one that will suit your requirements best.

I am a huge iZotope supporter and usually turn to their products first, both for NR (RX) and mastering (Ozone). However, for click and crackle removal I usually find Sony NR to be more effective and, for hum removal, Waves X-Hum. Obviously finances don't always allow but, if possible, it is very helpful to have to or three options at your disposal - much in the same way that a studio wouldn't only have one mic to record everything. Every once in a while I find that my plug-in of choice is just not providing the desired results and, under those specific circumstances, I am often able to obtain better results a competitor's plug-in.

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thanks for taking the time to write this post I really appreciate it –  studio13 Aug 12 '11 at 5:50
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I usually use izotope and waves with pretty good results. Mostly a combination of both. Also Oxford has some reduction plugins.

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Sound forge is very good at doing quick edits on single files, but to my ears the plugins are a bit ropey. Since purchasing izotope RX 2 about 6 months ago I've found more and more reasons to switch my effects editing workflow from Sound Forge to RX, and alot of this has to do with spectral editing and noise reduction. Also Waves WNS is very good.

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Sound Forge Noise Reduction 2.0 is quite useable. In particular, the declicker is very effective (though used over-agressively it can get degrade the overall sound). The broadband noise reduction takes some experimentation to get good results.

I have also used the Waves Restoration suite. Their declicker is more transparent than that in SFNR, but refuses to declick some larger clicks. The broadband noise reduction can work very well, though the noise floor can sound rather electronic if you are going for a lot of noise reduction.

I just got iZotope RX2 (basic version). It is very impressive, and most other noise reduction suites do not have anything like spectral repair, which can be used to remove discrete sounds from a sound file. At about $300 street price as of this date, it is quite a bargain.

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hey thanks for the feedback I appreciate that you posted –  studio13 Mar 30 '12 at 0:00
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