Joe Jacobs on keyboardIf you’ve ever recorded something with a microphone, you’ve probably been here before: Along with your recording, you also picked up the air conditioner noise, the police sirens outside and your client bumping into the mic stand. Sometimes, these things are unavoidable and have to be worked around. However, there are precautions you can take to prevent picking up unwanted noise in the first place. There are also options for removing noise in post-production. It should also be said that you may not want 100% clean audio all the time. Picking up some room noise or ambiance can be desirable for some recordings, depending on your project scope .

The following are five ways to help you capture clean audio recording:

  1. Turn off the he heating/AC is during the recording.
  2. Place the subject in a quiet, enclosed room with some sort of sound-deadening material to prevent sound from bouncing off flat surfaces and walls.
  3. Adjust the volume of the mic is through your software instead of only through the preamp.
  4. Position your subject correctly with enough space for them to avoid bumping the mic or stand.
  5. Use a pop filter on the mic to prevent plosives coming through too strongly.

You may want to do a brief test run of your subject’s performance just to make sure everything sounds okay before an official take. (Hint: Always hit ‘record’ when the subject is performing — even if it’s a test run. They might have a great take or end up with something they want to save or listen to later.) If you end up picking up unwanted noise during a recording and need to remove it in post-production, there are many helpful tools out there that can help you do so. Our go-to noise removal plugins at 678 Main are iZotope RX, NS1 from Waves & De-Verb from SPL.

If you’re struggling with noise in your recordings, drop us a line and we’ll see what we can do to help!