How to Bring Out the Voices From Background Noises Using Audacity
By Marie Cartwright
Audacity is a free, open-source sound editing program commonly used by podcasters and musicians. If you have a recording of voices that are overwhelmed by background noise, you may be able to filter out the surrounding sounds by using Audacity's Noise Removal tool. The overall success of this process is determined not only by the quality of your recording, but by your ability to define the correct sounds for Audacity to remove. Using this method to pick up voices can take a lot of practice and patience.
Launch Audacity and open the recording. Select a section of the track that has only background noise and no voices. The selected section must consist of no more than a brief pause in the conversation, and it is important that no voices are selected.
Open the "Effect" menu and select "Noise Removal." Click the "Get Profile" button. This uses the selected portion to define what sort of sound Audacity should remove.
Select the portion of the track from which you wish to filter the background noise. If you want to filter the entire track, select the whole track by pressing "Ctrl" and "A" simultaneously.
Open the "Effect" menu and select "Noise Removal" again. Click the "Remove Noise" button. Audacity removes the background noise that you defined. Depending on the length of the track, this process may take several minutes.
- If there are a lot of different sounds comprising the background noise, you may need to repeat these steps several times in order to create all of the necessary sound profiles.
Marie Cartwright began writing in 2010. Her work has appeared on various websites. Having held office jobs in copywriting and editing, Cartwright now works from her home in Northern California. She also maintains an events website geared toward the science and technology community.