I have tried with Ardour, Rosegarden and Traverso, so far all these DAW are better than Audacity but for one thing: they lack this functionality that lets me select a piece of noise as a sample and use it to automagically filter out the noise in all the recording¹. I have to deal with somewhat sub-standard hardware (especially with unavoidable static noise) and this prevents me from switching to a more efficient software.

So: is there a way (perhaps with plugins?) to have this functionality in Ardour, Rosegarden or Traverso?

¹ Details on the process at http://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/How_Noise_Removal_Works

  • Interesting feature - do you think that the "sample" of noise is checked for peak spectral content and then a notch-filter applied to remove it from the whole recording? Does it alter the recording i.e. does it re-processes the recording or is it done on-the-fly. I'm of course being nosey because it sounds coool but, there may be a way of applying this technique if we understood what it actually does.
    – Andy aka
    Commented May 27, 2013 at 11:49
  • @Andyaka The process is described in details in wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/How_Noise_Removal_Works And it does alter the recording.
    – Evpok
    Commented May 27, 2013 at 12:30
  • 1
    The window is the sample of noise that contains no music parts. It analyses that sample and then uses notch filters (it has learned from the sample) to filter out the actual recording. Cool technique but it doesn't seem to be available as a VST
    – Andy aka
    Commented May 27, 2013 at 12:35
  • 1
    it is possible to edit the samples with a separate application while keeping the file link in the DAW software. Perhaps you can make an archive copy of the original and then run a noise removal pass on it using audacity. I note from the wiki that "lookahead" is used and would result in significant delay/latency in realtime processing.
    – horatio
    Commented May 28, 2013 at 16:50
  • @horatio That is what I will probably settle for if I have no solution. That or porting the Audacity effect to Ardour as plugin, but it would require a bloody load of work.
    – Evpok
    Commented May 28, 2013 at 17:43

4 Answers 4


The ReaFir plugin that comes with Reaper is pretty excellent. And you don't HAVE to have Reaper to use it, because you can download all of their VST plugins free. ReaPlugs Download

  1. Insert the plugin
  2. Change to "Subtract" mode
  3. Select a range of audio that you can profile the noise to be removed and enable "Repeat" (so that it loops over the noise over and over)
  4. Check the "Automatically build noise profile" checkbox in the plugin options
  5. Hit play, let it loop over the selection a few times and then stop
  6. Uncheck the "Automatically build noise profile" option
  7. Enjoy your noiseless audio
  • I have been using ReaFir for years now and the noise spectral subtraction works great. It allows to split spectrum from 256 to 32k individual parts, one could think the more the better but for some reason 2k or 4k worked best for me, 16k or 32k seems overly precise. Also once you get your noise profile I usually drag the shape few decibels up with control key, to get bigger dead zone. Commented Jan 20, 2016 at 16:01

Yes I made an lv2 plugin to be used with linux daws it's called noise-repellent https://github.com/lucianodato/noise-repellent

  • That's pretty much the only choice if you want to stick to open-source software. I use this plug-in a lot. It's quite simple but gets the job done pretty well. The companion "Speech Denoiser" plug-in bundled with it is even simpler, based on the RNNoise AI algorithm, and it's a good option to have.
    – unfa
    Commented Aug 19, 2021 at 12:43

Adobe Audition has this feature:



The Noise Reduction/Restoration > Noise Reduction effect dramatically reduces background and broadband noise with a minimal reduction in signal quality. This effect can remove a combination of noise, including tape hiss, microphone background noise, power-line hum, or any noise that is constant throughout a waveform.

Capture Noise Print Extracts a noise profile from a selected range, indicating only background noise. Adobe Audition gathers statistical information about the background noise so it can remove it from the remainder of the waveform.


I see you use free DAWs.

I would suggest finding a DAW that supports VST plugins (like Wavosaur). By the way it supports the method you was useing in Audacity.

Then I would look for free VST plugin for noise reduction, for example:

  • 1
    The point was not that they were free, it was that they were natively available on Linux :) because I am in love with JACK. I actually pay for Ardour.
    – Evpok
    Commented Jun 9, 2015 at 9:02
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    Voxengo Redunoise is not -- not -- free. They trick you into thinking that by not including the price on the description webpage. They even tricked CNET into thinking it's freeware and now this confusion has propagated across the internet and I see it literally everywhere. Sigh... Commented Sep 19, 2017 at 18:57

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