Audio Stem Cleaning

Every Location Has Its Flaws

I get it. As a location sound recorder for many many years I’ve understood that the best looking locations are not always the best sounding locations. Sometimes we have doors closing in the background, a little birdie that landed above the microphone to sing its song, fans, distant airplanes, and varying ambiences. Thankfully we have solutions in post production. Amazing solutions. Borderline sorcery solutions.

Bringing Your Message Closer To Your Audience

This is the art of Audio Restoration, also known as forensic audio, audio repair, or simply – stem cleaning. We use a particularly unique and powerful software called iZotope RX Advanced to do this in our industry of audio post-production, and I’m happily inside of it every other day.

I apply audio restoration techniques honed over more than a decade in every project that comes on the line here at the sound factory. These techniques include de-noising loud rooms, removing harsh sibilance and clicks in your voices, matching ambience patterns between edits, and spectrally negating offending sounds in the distance like doors and car horns (when possible).

I provide this service If I’m mixing a documentary for you, or a voiceover for your commercial. I also provide this service on its own in case your budget can’t afford a whole mix, and you just need the voice(s) to feel more clean and forward.

The honest caveat is that it’s very easy to over-do and also under-do, and knowing the correct amount to apply or not apply is heavily reliant on having a correct listening system and a practiced ear. Sometimes it is better to just reduce, or to leave in certain sounds to keep the overall feeling of your audio natural – but if the sound is possible to remove without creating any jarring sonic artifact or degrading the quality of the signal you want more forward – then you’ve come to the right place to get it done.

Using a visual measurement tool called a spectrogram, this program allows us to visually see where offending sounds appear in the audio and through careful and trained techniques, paint them out – much like a photo editor would spot-heal a photo in photoshop. It’s fantastic!

So if you are finding that the dialogue in your edit tells the story right, but just sounds amateur and unclean. Get in touch! Let’s chat about the possibilities of bringing it to balance, and potentially beyond.

Every Location Has Its Flaws

I get it. As a location sound recorder for many many years I’ve understood that the best looking locations are not always the best sounding locations. Sometimes we have doors closing in the background, a little birdie that landed above the microphone to sing its song, fans, distant airplanes, and varying ambiences. Thankfully we have solutions in post production. Amazing solutions. Borderline sorcery solutions.

Some Examples Of What Is Possible

Below are some before and after samples showcasing sounds I’m taming or removing from recordings every day.

Room Cancelling

AC, fridges, light fixtures, oh my!  Almost every room has a “tone” it brings to the table..  

Noisy Lips

You may not hear them during the interview.  But the microphone sure does

Excessive S's

Microphones & Recorders absolutely LOVE to emphasize this harsh band of frequencies.

Ambience Matching

Is your perfect take a bunch of takes?  Ambience matching is the secret sauce.

Tone Matching

Similar to ambience matching, but I tailor the voice rather than the environment.

Environment Healing

Clicks & Bangs & Booms & Pops…They’re never ending! 
No Fear…  Let’s fix it in post.