Noise Reduction: How to Remove Background Noise from Audio and Video
Ambient sounds—whether the hum of a fan, the hiss of white noise, or extraneous speech—can ruin a recording. Whether you edit professionally or just for fun, background noise removal is a valuable skill to have in your editing arsenal.
Let’s go over what noise reduction is, review a few tips for reducing background sound in your recordings, and then learn how to remove unwanted noises on iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows. We’ll even explain how to use an online audio tool and answer other questions you might have about noise reduction.
To help you learn these valuable skills, we'll use one of the best professional video and audio editors on the market: PowerDirector. This AI-powered software is incredibly feature-rich, with countless tools for making your audio clear and crisp, such as audio denoise, speech enhancement, and wind removal.
PowerDirector is the easiest solution to remove unwanted noise from digital media.
- What Is Noise Reduction?
- Why Should I Use a Noise Reduction App?
- How to Reduce Background Noise in Your Recording
- How to Remove Background Noise on Windows and Mac
- How to Do Customized Background Noise Removal on Windows
- How to Remove Background Noise on iOS and Android
- How to Remove Background Noise Online
- Best Background Noise Removal App [Free Download]
- Noise Reduction FAQ
What Is Noise Reduction?
Noise reduction refers to taking a signal and reducing the noise within it. When you record with a digital or analog device, the electrons heat up, agitate, and become "excited," causing them to stray from their standard path.
That movement creates white noise (such as a hiss, buzz, whine, hum, etc.) or a sound dependent upon frequency. Those background noises detract from the quality of the recording and can make dialogue difficult to hear.
In 1966, Ray Dolby developed one of the first professional noise reduction techniques, Dolby Type-A. The encode-decode system was the beginning of the Dolby Atmos technology that professional sound design studios use today.
Even if you don't have Dolby Atmos, you can still remove unwanted sounds from your digital media by applying noise reduction tools like speech enhancement, hiss and click removal, audio denoise, wind removal, and more.
Why Should I Use a Noise Reduction App?
Reducing the noise level in the background of your audio and video recordings provides clear benefits. As you know, unclear audio or incomprehensible dialogue can ruin an otherwise good video. A noise reduction app helps you accomplish your goals of clear, optimized audio for high-quality content your audience can easily hear and understand. In addition, an app with tools for background noise removal ensures that your recordings always sound professional.
How to Reduce Background Noise in Your Recording
Recording audio is a delicate equilibrium of collecting clear speech and enough background sound to offer the listener perspective without overpowering the dialogue. Here are tips you can use to reduce background noise and increase the speech-to-noise ratio in your recording:
Tip 1: Keep the speaker close to the microphone
The best way to reduce the noise level in your recording is to ensure that the speaker is close to the microphone. Many professionals use lavalier microphones to combat this problem instead of boom microphones. You can also lower the frequency range on your microphone to reduce the amount of noise on your recordings.
Tip 2: Use real-time noise suppression
A portable device for real-time noise suppression is a proactive method for recording audio with no background noise. CEDAR is a popular brand for sound professionals who need noise suppression during outdoor recording sessions, or you can use noise suppression software when recording in-studio.
Tip 3: Eliminate extraneous background noises before recording
You can eliminate extraneous background noises from your recordings by being proactive. For example, a running fan or AC can cause unwanted noise in your recordings. Instead, turn it off before recording. It's faster, easier, and cheaper than removing the noise during post-production. If you're outside, use a windscreen on the microphone to eliminate high winds from ruining your recording.
How to Remove Background Noise on Windows and Mac
Using PowerDirector, you can easily remove unwanted environmental noises from your projects for high-quality audio restoration. Just follow these simple steps:
- Download and launch PowerDirector in Full Mode on your Windows or Mac computer.
- Click on the Import Media button.
- Select the video you want to edit, and click Open. You will now see the thumbnail of your video in the Media Content folder.
- Add your video to the editing timeline.
- Select the audio track, then click on the Fix / Enhance button on the toolbar.
- Select Audio Denoise.
- Now, select your method of reducing noise in the background from the drop-down menu: stationary noise, wind removal, or click removal.
- Adjust the settings to your preference.
- Click Apply to All to save your changes.
- Click Produce to render your new audio file.
Now, you're ready to share your creations on your social media pages or with family and friends.
How to Do Customized Background Noise Removal on Windows
Now that you know how to remove background noise from video, it's time to use AudioDirector, the companion software to PowerDirector in the Director 365 Suite. AudioDirector has a full range of professional audio editing tools, permitting far greater customization of background noise reduction in your videos.
With AudioDirector, you gain an extensive selection of noise reduction tools to help you achieve clarity in your digital media projects. Just like its sibling PowerDirector, AudioDirector comes packed with features. You have numerous options for background noise removal, including:
- Plosive removal
- Wind removal
- Hum and hiss removal
- Click removal
- Contour dialogue
- Distortion removal
- Reduce noise
We don't have time to go through each tool, so we'll use Clipping Removal to demonstrate how easy it is to use AudioDirector.
Download Director Suite 365 right now to experiment with the full range of professional noise reduction tools for a rich, clear sound without any obnoxious ambient noise. For clipping distortion removal in AudioDirector, follow these simple steps:
- Download and launch AudioDirector on your Windows computer.
- Choose the audio clip you want to restore and add it to your timeline. You'll see the colored waveforms of the audio track in your primary workspace.
- Under the Restore tab, select Clipping Removal from the menu on the left side of the screen, and a box pop up with the same title will appear.
- Choose the drop-down menu under Quality and click on High.
- Under Threshold, drag the slider tool to the left and drop it on your preferred setting.
- Select the Preview button to hear your changes.
- If you're satisfied with the distortion removal, click Apply.
Experiment with the other tools in AudioDirector to remove excessive background noise and keep your audio and video files high-quality and easily understandable by your audience.
How to Remove Background Noise on iOS and Android
Next, we'll show you how simple it is to remove background noise on iOS and Android devices using the PowerDirector app. Follow these simple steps to remove background noise from your digital media creations on your smartphone or tablet:
- Download and launch the PowerDirector app.
- Select Create New Project to open a new workspace.
- Select the audio or video file you want to edit and add it to your timeline with the + button.
- Open the Edit menu by selecting the clip on the timeline and tapping the pencil icon.
- Along the bottom toolbar, select the Audio Tool option.
- Click the Denoise button.
- Press Play to hear the level of noise removal you achieved.
- Make any other adjustments or edits to your clip and export it via the Produce icon at the top right of your screen.
Good job! You've now removed background noise from your audio or video file on your Android or iOS mobile device.
How to Remove Background Noise Online
You can also visit Audiodenoise.com for an online noise reduction tool. The website lets you remove background noise from audio files using different parameters. Just follow these steps once you are on the website:
- Click Choose File to select the audio file you want to restore.
- To use the first standard preset for noise reduction, choose your file and press the Start button.
- There are now two versions of your audio file. Compare the processed and unprocessed clips by pressing the Play icon.
- Select the 2 icon for the second preset noise reduction template if the first preset didn't remove enough background noise. Process and compare the result with the original.
- Repeat with the third preset, if necessary.
- You can also adjust each setting manually with the slider tools. However, it's time-consuming and will take a lot of trial and error to find the right combination.
- Once you reach your desired level of noise reduction, click on Download.
You can use this free website as many times as you like to help clean up your audio, but it is nowhere near as effective or fun to use as Director Suite 365.
Best Background Noise Removal App [Free Download]
Have you ever recorded a great take, only to realize later on that the file was full of unwanted background noise? When that happens, don't despair. Instead, you can use audio restoration technology to give your projects high-quality sound. You can eliminate hums, buzzing, fans, airplanes, or any of the many ambient sounds that can easily sneak onto your recordings, whether you're inside or outside.
Ready to get started? Use Director Suite 365 (including PowerDirector and AudioDirector) to handle all of your noise reduction needs, using tools like click and hum removal, speech enhancement, wind removal, clipping distortion, and more.
Download Director Suite 365 today for free and start creating crystal clear, high-quality audio that will elevate your work to the next level.
Noise Reduction FAQ
1. What Is Noise Reduction vs. Noise Suppression vs. Noise Cancellation?
Noise reduction, noise suppression, and noise cancellation may sound similar, but they're different:
Noise Cancellation can reduce unwanted background noises by adding a new sound that effectively cancels the first.
Noise Reduction refers to the process of removing unwanted noise from an audio signal.
Noise Suppression utilizes real-time digital processing, capturing ambient sounds in the background and suppressing them.
2. How Do I Remove Audio From Video?
You can easily upload videos into PowerDirector and then remove the audio from the video using these steps:
Mac and Windows
- Add your video to the editing timeline.
- Right-click on the video clip in the timeline and select Unlink Audio and Video. You'll now see that the audio and video files are in two separate tracks on your timeline.
- Select the video or audio file on the timeline, whichever you don’t want, and delete it.
- Click the Produce button to create your new audio or video file.
If you want to learn more about removing audio from video, read our informative article entitled 5 Best Software to Extract Audio from Video.
iOS and Android
- Add your video file to the editing timeline.
- Navigate to the Audio Tools module in the Edit menu (the pencil icon).
- Extract the audio from your video file and delete either the video or audio file.
- Click on Produce to export.
3. What Is the Best Software for Noise Reduction?
- Adobe Audition
While our top two choices are AudioDirector and PowerDirector from Director 365 Suite, Adobe Audition, Krisp, and Audacity are also solid choices for noise reduction software.
Krisp is AI-powered and ideal for enhancing human speech. Adobe is a popular choice that uses the spectral display to reduce noise within your digital media files. Audacity has numerous tools for noise reduction, including a notch filter that cuts out the unwanted sound in the frequency spectrum.
4. What Are the Best Apps for Noise Reduction?
- Video Noise Reducer
- Video Noise Cleaner
PowerDirector is our overall top choice with its intuitive editing interface and advanced, AI-powered tools for noise reduction.
Denoise is convenient for removing unwanted background noise because it's available as an iOS extension, so it launches automatically as soon as you start recording.
This is a simple app for Android users, and it can remove annoying background noises like electronic humming or the wind for much clearer speech and audio.
This simple iOS app uses a percentage slider tool to reduce background noise and clean up audio files.
This Android app utilizes smart algorithms to eliminate background hums, hisses, clicks, pops, and other annoying noises from your audio and video files.
5. What Is Noise Reduction in Photography?
Just like the white noise you hear in the background of audio files (that annoying hiss, hum, whistle, buzz, etc.), digital photography "noise" is the random imperfections, graininess, or rough texture you sometimes see in photographs. The two primary types of photographic noise are color noise (colored specks or splotches) and luminance noise (grainy imperfections).
To reduce noise in photography, always make sure to expose your images correctly in-camera and take pictures at the lowest possible ISO. To reduce noise in your photographs in post-production, you can use a third-party app like PhotoDirector.