Hello all,

i really really hate noise(mic/preamp noise), and my recording rig isn't that great(fostex fr2le, 2x rode nt5)...now, cleaning up some sfx, that were close mic'ed, is easy with izotope rx2, you basically teach rx2 a noise profile from quiet moments, and it works great, but how do i get rid of noise from a nature/ambience recording? any particular techniques?

ohh and one more question, at what levels should be nature/ambience sounds recorded? i mean nobody will put a -3db recording of nature in a movie or game, i found that -20 is sort of good level, thou there is a little bit of noise then, at least in my situation.

edit: the noise is not that horrible at all, but it still bugs me :)

2 Answers 2


Try recording some samples with the mic preamp set to the level that you used for the recordings, but without connecting the mic, and then use the micless file for the profile to subtract noise from the ambient recording.

Most of the noise will be from the preamp, mics are generally quiet compared to preamps.

  • hi Iain, just a quick question, what if the mic's have audible hiss themselves. in my case the dpa 4060's have a beautiful sound and wide spectrum but a selfnoise of 24 dB. would connecting them and silencing the environment, be of any use? my sonosax preamps have very low noise specs, so i'd think they won't be an issue.. Oct 1, 2012 at 15:36
  • If you want to build a semi-anechoic chamber, this would definitely give you a base line recording for a profile.
    – user80
    Oct 1, 2012 at 16:10
  • haha, ok i get your point :) Oct 2, 2012 at 8:20

If you want to clean nature ambience, it depends on whether you want to remove hiss from preamps or remove atmospheric-nature sounds, which may make a nature-ambience muffled. If you record some ambience outside, you may have some ugly frequency around 1khz or lower which gives a lot of (atmospheric) noise in the ambience. Try to filter this out with an equalizer. If you want to make something more clear and not that far, remove some low-end or semi-low end, about 200hz. Also, a lot of noise will be in the range of 500Hz. If you record some bugs or some stuff in the foreground, I also would recommend to remove some 'hissing' or roaring frequencies to make it clearer.

Recording in the field is different from recording loud fx. For that, you need a really good preamp. Building good preamps needs expensive components and cannot be done cheap. Also I recommend to use omnidirectional microphones for exterior ambiences. They are much more insensitive against wind than directional mics are. But it does not change the fact that you need high-grade stuff for non-hissing exterior recordings. And on some level, every environmental situation starts hissing, because the nature itself has hiss, for example if there is a river or far distant wind in reach. But you should be able to record quite some things like wind in grass or so.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.