Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh! [SOLVED]

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Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh! [SOLVED]

Permanent link to this post Posted by mudskippa » Sat Mar 25, 2017 9:46 am

Hi all,

I just recorded all my files for ACX and ran ACX-check on the raw Room Noise and found that it was -59.6DB :o just outside of Audacity's requirements. Please, how do I fix this? I've seen so much conflicting advice all over the internet about using noise reduction or not.

What tool do I use in Audacity, at what settings, and do I run it over the whole track or just the room noise?

Also, does anyone have a guide to actually use the tools to get the rest of the track configured? On ACX's video tutorial, it says to use a normaliser, EQ and limiter. While I have found all these tools in Audacity and looked at the Audacity manual, I'm afraid it all looks like Gobbledeygook. I have no idea of actually how to use them to sort out my audio.

Many thanks if anyone can help. I'd be really grateful.
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:31 am

Did you meet the other two, peak and RMS? Do you know what the specs mean?

viewtopic.php?p=297423#p297423

I posted a process to take you from raw recording to finished ACX-Compliant submission, but if you're close with what you have, you may only need a gentle push from Noise Reduction. Generally, the less processing, the better.

Drag-Select a portion of Room Tone only. No gasps, no breathing, no mouth ticks, no other sounds. Effect > Noise Reduction > Profile.

Select the whole chapter by clicking just above MUTE. Effect > Noise Reduction: 6, 6, 6 > OK.

Analyze > ACX-Check.

I was clear in the first sentence of the comments that I understand a dividing line between technical conformance and theatrical presentation. Mouth ticks, asthmatic breathing, and harsh SSS sounds will not prevent you from passing the ACX robot, but may very well fail Human Quality Control. Why would anybody pay to listen to vocal presentation that sounds like sandpaper on the ears?

The goal, expressed in different form by ACX, is listening fascinated to somebody telling you a story over cups of tea.

Since your question was about noise floor, I think we're done, but if you want further analysis and comment, post back.

Koz
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by mudskippa » Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:49 am

Thank you so much for helping. I only checked the raw Room tone, because I wanted to know if it passed before I fiddled with anything else. I'm just trying the noise removal process you posted. Do I choose Reduce or Residue in the final step? Sorry, I seem to forgotten everything I used to know about Audacity!
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by mudskippa » Sat Mar 25, 2017 12:35 pm

D'oh sorry, figured that one out on my own. Thank you - the noise reduction now has my floor at -65.7db :D

I just checked the whole track. Noise floor is now a Pass, Peak levels are a Pass. Only problem now is RMS level is -30.2db, less than the -23db required.
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by flynwill » Sat Mar 25, 2017 3:05 pm

In that case you still have noise problems. When you amplify the track to get the RMS up to the threshold (7-8 db) your noise floor is going to be back up to ~-57db.

Can you post an unprocessed sample for us? 2-3 seconds of just room tone followed by 2-3 seconds of your normal speech. Post as a wav file. That will allow us to get a better idea as to the source of your noise problems and recommend more targeted solutions.
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Sat Mar 25, 2017 3:12 pm

ACX-Check automatically looks for a "dead" spot in your dialog to measure noise, so you don't have to find one manually. It does have trouble if you didn't leave any silent parts for it to measure. Leave about a second of dead air at the end when you read. I believe ACX has ideas about this as well.

So you can always measure the whole performance.

I need to drop for a while.

Koz
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Sat Mar 25, 2017 3:44 pm

Behold, the human [flynwill] who developed ACX-Check.

This is the formal version of a test clip.

http://www.kozco.com/tech/audacity/Test ... _Clip.html

Koz
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Sat Mar 25, 2017 3:50 pm

There are three different versions of "noise."

There's microphone or microphone system hiss. All systems have this and it's your job to choose the system appropriate to your performance...and purse.

There are microphones that allow computer electrical noises to enter the show. Those are pretty evil and the noise is difficult to remove.

And then there are earthquakes. Some microphones make noises that are so low pitched (rumble, thunder) that you can't hear them, but they mess up noise measurements for no apparent reason.

We can tell which you have when you post. It's important to post a raw, uncorrected performance. Don't help and don't apply effects or filters.

Koz
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by mudskippa » Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:37 pm

OK so I have checked all my files after noise reduction. None of them pass DMS. Only 2 of them don't pass peak:

Dedication -35.0DB
Contents -33.0DB
About -30.2DB.
Part 1 -30.8DB
Part 2 -27.6DB
Part 3 -27.2DB. Peak is also off at -2,2DB
Part 4 -27.0DB. Peak is also off at -2.4DB
Glossary -28.0DB
Opening Credits -28.6DB
Foreword -29.9DB
Introduction -29.4DB
Closing Credits -28.4DB
Summary -25.3

I've put a WAV file sample of Dedication, since that's the furthest off RMS and of Part 4 as that is off on both Peak and RMS:

Dedication.wav
(1.65 MiB) Downloaded 32 times


Part4.wav
(760.18 KiB) Downloaded 23 times


Sorry I couldn't post the non-noise-reduced files. I saved copies of all my raw files (as aup) but when I try to open them up in audacity now, a message comes up saying there are missing audio data (.au) blockfiles, which can't be recovered!

The only unadulterated file is my Room Tone, with no noise reduction or anything, which is below:

Room tone.wav
(439.04 KiB) Downloaded 42 times


Thank you for all your help!
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Re: Room Noise Floor -59.6DB Argh!

Permanent link to this post Posted by kozikowski » Sat Mar 25, 2017 6:43 pm

Sorry I couldn't post the non-noise-reduced files.

That's not useful because the best we can do is pile our custom corrections on top of the corrections you already have. The possibility of sound damage goes way up. One of ACX's failures is "Overprocessing."

The goal is a few corrections as possible.

Burn us a fresh test clip according to that recipe.

http://www.kozco.com/tech/audacity/Test ... _Clip.html

Did all of your Audacity Projects (AUP/_DATA) fail? That's super serious because we're going to give you corrections for the raw performance.

It is recommended that you Export a WAV (Microsoft), 16-bit of each chapter as an archive. That will, for the most part, prevent you from ever having to re-read any work. I know that's what you thought you were doing. Projects can have problems.

Koz
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