Background Noise Removal Solutions 2023
Picture the scene: you’ve landed your dream celebrity to interview on your podcast. It’s all going great and you’re getting fabulous content when suddenly, an airplane flies overhead or your neighbor’s dog kicks off, barking at a squirrel. Or worse, your dream interviewee keeps smacking their lips and is all ums and ahs when it comes to answering your insightful questions.
Nightmare! Luckily, help is at hand. Let's look at software solutions to the background and unwanted noise removal, including Cleanvoice AI. Wouldn't you want your podcast episodes clean, crisp, and popular?
What is Background Noise Removal
There are many ways you can reduce background noise and other unwanted noises on your podcast recording which generally involves the physical setup of your speakers and mics. But once you’ve made all the physical changes you can to your recording space, bought the best equipment in your budget, and tweaked their settings, and yet you still have background noises on your podcast recordings it’s time to bring in specialist software.
There are two types of software available to the podcaster:
- Noise canceling - software that reduces or removes noises during recording
- Noise removal - software that removes unwanted background noise or sounds from an audio file that’s already been recorded
Cleanvoice is the latter. It’s a tool that leverages artificial intelligence (AI) to remove unexpected noises, filler sounds, stuttering and mouth sounds from your podcast or audio recording. Problem solved!
Why Background Noise Removal is Important
Think for a moment about where people listen to your podcast. They might be out for a run, shopping, doing the cooking, or walking the dog. Wherever they are and whatever they’re doing they’ll be dealing with background noise and other distractions. That means if your podcast also has distracting background noise, you’ll lose your audience - fast.
For flawless interviews and clear recordings, get some help from the software designed to solve exactly these problems.
Background noise removal tools use algorithms to differentiate background and unwanted noise from voice audio. But which tool is the best one for you?
There are multiple choices out there, some of them standalone apps or online-only tools, while others are built into popular recording platforms. Depending on the tool, they either remove noise during recording or from a recorded audio file. Some of these tools are developed to remove audio with low frequencies, while some of them remove noise from a wider spectrum of both high and low audio frequencies.
Cleanvoice uses a simple, online, drag-and-drop interface to automatically deal with multiple issues on your recordings.
You need a licence key and once an audio file has been uploaded, enter your key and hit “Clean my audio”. And that’s about it. Processing time depends on the file size but if you don’t want to wait, the system will email you a link to download the filtered file later. The link stays active for 7 days, after which unclaimed files are removed from the server.
- Background noise remover:
Filters out everything except spoken words from recorded audio files so you can record outdoors or in a cafe and lose wind and background chatter
- Mouth sound remover:
Removes all kinds of lip-smacking noises as well as awkward ums and ahs that regularly crop up during interviews.
Works with languages including German and French.
Cleanvoice pricing is based on the number of hours in regard to processed audio. Prices start from 10 Euro for both their subscription and pay-as-you-go plans. Plus, you can test out Cleanvoice, by processing 30 minutes of audio for free!
Pros and Cons
- Natural Language Processing
- Machine Learning
- Free trial available, no credit card required
- Can also be used as a podcast editing suite
- Subscription or pay-as-you-go options
- Doesn’t clean during recording
- Some features are in the beta phase
Krisp is another AI-powered noise-canceling app that is designed to eliminate external noise at the time of recording.
The AI automatically identifies and reduces ambient noise that’s picked up by your microphone. Whilst it’s intended for use as a videoconferencing tool, it can also be used by podcasters to remove background noise at source.
- Background noise remover: Filters out background noise during recording
- AI: uses an AI to identify what to keep and what to remove
- Simple interface: because it works during recording, you just need to select input and output in the app settings
Krisp offers a free plan for limited usage of background noise removal. The upgraded and unlimited version costs you $8/month per seat. Krisp also offers customised plans for the enterprise level.
Pros and Cons
- Great for real-time noise cancellation during recording
- Cross-platform compatibility
- Compatible with popular recording applications
- Doesn’t clean recorded files
- No timeline editing functions
Audacity is a free and open-source audio editing software that you can use to adjust the audio settings on a pre-recorded file.
Audacity does not support active noise canceling. What it does support is removing noise and disturbance from a recorded audio file. You can open almost any audio file in Audacity and increase or decrease DB gain. All changes must be set manually, and there is no AI functionality to help you remove mouth noises or dead air.
- Simple noise reduction tool - toggle the settings to get the best result possible
- Open-source - being open source means there’s a really good community to help you out if you get stuck
Audacity is completely free to use. For a free tool, it does the job of clearing up audio well, though you might find it lacking if you’re looking for something a bit more comprehensive.
Pros and Cons
- Open source, free to download
- Great community and user forums are available
- It is a cross-platform noise reduction tool
- Manual adjustments needed to remove background noise
- Complex UI can be intimidating for newbies
Like Krisp, NoiseGator was originally designed for videoconferencing but can be utilized by podcasters to remove background noises at source.
NoiseGator is a much simpler app than Krisp but can still remove the noise coming from your microphone or speakers.
You need to designate your input and output devices in the app settings, and NoiseGator then analyzes the background noise levels and volumes, then sets a threshold that filters out any sound above them.
- Creates a gate - The app closes the “gate” on all sounds if the level drops below the set threshold, hence the name. Noise gate… NoiseGator. Get it?
- Background tool - Noisegator works in the background, directly accessing your input and output sources while you concentrate on your podcast production
NoiseGator is free to use, with no additional costs.
Pros and Cons
- Kills background hiss noise in real-time
- Light-weight with a simple UI
- Free to use
- It requires Java 7 or higher for Windows
- Requires Java 6 or higher for Mac
- Requires avirtual audio cable for VOIP recording
Riverside.fm is a popular podcasting tool and is billed as a portable, online recording studio.
It allows podcasters to use their phone, tablet, or laptop to record good-quality audio from any location.
The software includes noise reduction settings that filter unwanted frequencies and has been used to record many award-winning podcasts, including Hilary Clinton’s You and Me Both, and The New York Times podcasts like The Daily and Hard Fork.
- Mobile - Can be used with a smartphone or tablet, giving you a recording studio in your pocket
- Cloud upload - Files are continuously uploaded to cloud servers so you don’t need to store them on your mobile device and can access them for editing once you get back to your studio
- Video - Riverside.fm also allows for video recording, creating separate tracks for video and audio
Pros and Cons
- Portable and online
- Reduces background noise
- Multiple recording studio functions all in one place
- Basic noise-reduction features
- Requires subscription for more than 2 hours use per month
GarageBand is a free audio production app included with macOS and iOS.
Because it was originally created for music production, there are a few workarounds you need in order for GarageBand to function as a podcasting tool. But once you’ve set up a podcast template, you’ll be able to access all the necessary recording, editing, and exporting functions for podcasting.
- Slick and packed with features - Well, it’s a Mac product so that’s what you’d expect.
- Audio-only template - Setting up a podcasting template for yourself is pretty straightforward and you only need to do it once
- Samples - The app comes with many built-in, royalty-free music samples that can be used for intros and background music for your podcast.
- Free on Mac products
Pros and Cons
- Excellent GUI
- Record, edit, and export functions
- Mac only
- Requires setting up a podcast template
- Noise reduction functions not obvious
#7. Izotope RX10
Izotope RX10 is a robust noise-canceling software that’s quite popular for its ability to take the most unclear audio recordings and transform them into crisp and clean versions of what they once were.
Izotope RX10 is a software that is perfect for beginners in audio cleaning tools and experts in sound editing.
It is also a great option for those who have tried other audio editing tools but are still looking for something that can fix complex background noise issues. With its dialogue contour feature, users can improve speech intonation, making the audio sound clearer.
- Dialogue Isolate - Bring your speech to the forefront by eliminating any background noise that could distract listeners.
- De-rustle - This feature removes any rustling sounds from your audio that may appear when using a clip-on mic to record.
- Breath Control module - Depending on the mic you use, it may pick up the sound of your breath, and the software will identify this as noise. This feature automatically removes these breathing sounds from your audio.
Izotope is available in three different editions designed for your needs and budget.
RX 10 Elements ($99) is a great option for those who use a home studio, RX 10 Standard ($399) is better for audio cleanup, and RX 10 Advanced ($1,199) is designed for post-production engineers.
Pros and Cons
- Powerful noise-removing tools
- Produces high-quality audio
- Izotope constantly updates its features
- Can be quite pricey
CrumplePop is an AI-powered audio cleaning suite. It offers an impressive range of helpful audio cleaning plug-ins to help you remove unwanted noise from your podcast recordings without compromising the quality of the speaking voices.
You can use CrumplePop’s plugins individually or access all of them at once through SoundApp, which allows you to import and export your audio instead of editing it from a host platform like Adobe Audition.
- Audio Denoiser:
This plug-in removes background noises such as hums and hisses. You’ll simply need to drag the plug-in onto your audio and adjust the “Strength” level to your liking.
For those who enjoy recording their podcasts outside, this plug-in removes any audio disturbances caused by the wind so you can achieve a more crisp sound.
This plug-in removes any plosive sounds from your audio that may occur when someone bumps the mic.
CrumplePop offers two paid pricing plans for their full suite of plugins. The Pro plan is billed at $23/month, and the one-time lifetime license is billed at $600.
There’s also a free option that gives you full access to the PopRemover and RustleRemover plug-ins.
Pros and Cons
- A good selection of sound-removing tools
- Integrates with a wide range of host software
- Easy to use for beginners
- You can spend a lot of time finding the perfect noise removal levels for your needs
#9. Wondershare Filmora
Wondershare Filmora is a video editing software that also offers a range of tools for editing and enhancing audio. It works well for both amateurs and professional users.
- Noise remover:
This basic feature allows you to reduce or remove any unwanted background sounds from your audio, such as wind, chatter, falling objects, and something as subtle as a ticking clock.
This helps you fine-tune your audio
- Voice leveler**:
This feature helps you keep the sound of your speaking voice more level, which is great for when someone may be moving away from the mic while speaking.
Wondershare Filmora offers a paid plan starting at $ 4.17/month for the full suite of video and audio editing tools.
Pros and Cons
- Flexible enough to meet your audio cleaning needs
- Save your audio in your desired format
- Audio Mixer has great audio editing features
- Doesn’t have the option to remove echo
As you can see, there’s a wide range of noise reduction software options available, from established sources like Adobe to newcomers like Krisp.
Your choice depends on whether you want to reduce noise during recording or clean up a file afterwards and your decision will depend on the recording equipment and software you use (or plan to use) and your budget.