July 7, 2014

How to Resurrect Bad Production Audio with Izotope RX3's Spectral Noise Reduction Tools

A few weeks ago, we shared a post about using Adobe Audition's built-in noise reduction tools to rescue bad production audio. While I personally have been satisfied by the results that I get from the suite of tools in Audition, many of the comments on our Facebook post and the article itself mentioned a popular noise-reduction plugin called Izotope RX3. After some cursory research, I'm now convinced that RX3 is the most magical thing that I have ever laid eyes upon. So with that in mind, here's a quick overview of the Izotope RX3 as well as a few tutorials on how to incorporate the plugin into your audio post-production workflow.

First up, here's a brief overview of Izotope RX3.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2C3esKNohnY

And here's a quick tutorial from Izotope that shows you how to get rid of unwanted noises in your audio tracks with the basic RX3 plugin. In this example, Mike Thornton uses the plugin to eliminate a strange squeak in a live music track, but this technique can help get rid of unwanted noise in all types of production audio as well. With a few clicks, you can get rid of sounds that are common post-production nightmares, sounds like sirens, airplanes, barking dogs, electronic hum, etc.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9PtpLGmHwKs

What sets RX3 apart from the spectral noise reduction tools in Audition is that RX3 uses some kind of algorithm in order to interpolate what audio data is lost when a specific noise is removed. In the case of the video above, Thornton uses RX3 to sample the chord that the noise occurs within. By sampling the chord around the noise, RX3 is able to make sure that there isn't any kind of strange gap, or loss of frequencies that you actually want to keep in the audio where the squeaky noise used to be. I'm certainly no expert in audio post production, but that's pretty damn cool.

It's important to note that Izotope RX3 comes in two flavors, neither of which are particularly inexpensive. The base plugin, the one that is used in the above tutorial, comes in at $300. For most of our audio post-production needs, the basic version of RX3 would likely be more than enough to correct most of our production audio woes. However, for folks who do intensive audio post production, especially for those that do it for a living, there's also Izotope RX3 Advanced, which comes in at $1100, and which includes a host of other advanced noise reduction plugins and functionalities.

Here's a quick overview of Izotope RX3 Advanced.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJTy2wi0pFg

And here's a quick tutorial for using the Dialogue Denoiser plugin directly inside of Premiere Pro.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oWR5aGBmlYo

Ultimately, these aren't inexpensive plugins by any stretch of the imagination, and for users of Adobe's tools, the spectral noise reduction inside of Audition can provide great results, with the added bonus that it has advanced multi-track mixing and editing features that you can easily incorporate into your Premiere workflow with Dynamic Linking. However, Izotope RX3 is a seriously advanced piece of audio reduction technology, and in cases where Audition's built-in tools can't do the trick, RX3 might just be a magic bullet of sorts.

Have you guys had the opportunity to work with Izotope RX3? If so, how does it compare to the tools built into Adobe Audition, and with other spectral noise reduction tools on the market today?

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11 Comments

This is so good. I'll have to get this ASAP

July 7, 2014 at 5:34PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Dominik Belancic

Bit OT and don't burn me alive Adobeites can anyone recommend something similar for FCPX?

July 7, 2014 at 5:36PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Chris Lambert

RX3 is actually both a plugin that you can use within NLEs (I'm pretty sure FCPX has support for AU & VST3 plugins), and a standalone program. So there shouldn't be any reason that you can't use RX3 with FCPX.

July 7, 2014 at 5:46PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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avatar
Rob Hardy
Founder of Filmmaker Freedom
4503

https://www.izotope.com/en/products/audio-repair/rx/specs/

The basic version functions as a standalone app. So it can work along with fcpx with some exporting and importing.

Their Web page says it will work within fcpx as well.

July 7, 2014 at 5:46PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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david

Both versions of RX include both the standalone application and a suite of plugins. And you can load those plugins inside FCPX. They have a video showing how to do this with one particular plugin, the Dialogue Denoiser, but the process is the same for each of the plugins.

July 7, 2014 at 6:55PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Matt

I've used ex and love it. Its worth it a weight in gold. Audition ' stand alone noise reduction always seemed to leave a metalic sound on the audio. With red you can get away with way worse than what audition. Throws at you.

I recommend if you get it use it as the stand alone application. Its much easier to get the noise sample than working within audition.

I export my audio. And duplicate it.
DE noise the duplicate.
re import into premiere.
then send everything to audition for mastering.

July 7, 2014 at 5:40PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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david

Love RX3! Lucky enough to have a copy at work. The RX3 Advanced 'DeReverb' tool is just incredible, pulling out echo and reverb very well.

July 8, 2014 at 1:06AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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After reading this I was all hot to get the basic version to use on some important audio from a poorly positioned mic (that Audition didn't quite resolve satisfactorily) until I saw to what extent they crippled the basic version. I'm not even sure what I'd be getting for $300, which ain't nothing.

July 9, 2014 at 5:30PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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dave

Hey, thought it might be interesting to note that RX-3 may not support all the audio formats people are using out there. I just downloaded a trial of the advanced version - dropped the real-time dialogue denoiser plugin (within Premiere CS6) on some exterior interview audio shot with my GH4, and it worked like magic - really impressive.

Excited, I tried to drop the same plugin on another interview shot with my PMW-200 (so in the .MXF format), and was unable to complete the process. None of the Izotope plugins could be applied. With the standalone version of RX-3, I was unable to select .MXF clips into the program. I've contacted support (who responded very promptly) but was ultimately told .MXF files are supported. There must be a whole lot of XDCAM users out there who would like to utilise the power of this app.

It may be that for problem audio, exporting to another format is worthwhile in order to have it available for RX-3, but I was really hoping this program would save massive amounts of time and deliver a great result.

Disappointed - Maybe someone can give some advice...

July 9, 2014 at 7:22PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Nigel Traill

Correction to my last post - I was ultimately told by Izotope support that .MXF files are NOT supported...

July 9, 2014 at 7:24PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Nigel Traill

Oh my god, is this voodoo??? I need this program!

July 10, 2014 at 8:48PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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