an addin / method for removing bass distortion


I’m a newbie to Audacity and this forum so be gentle with me!

I have a live rock concert recording made using a minidisc recorder which was recorded at levels which showed that it wasn’t distorting. However, due to the high levels of very low bass at the concert every time a bass note is played there is noticeable / nasty distortion on the recording (I believe this is something to do with the levels of bass overloading the pre-amp of the minidisc…but I’m no expert)

My question is: Is there an Audacity addin that would help me reduce this problem? Has anyone had the same problem and been able to reduce its effect? Or should I just give up trying and bin the recording?

Any help gratefully received

Distortion is notoriously difficult to repair. If it is severe enough to sound bad it is usually too far gone to repair. You could have a go with the “Clipfix” plug-in, but you are likely to waste a lot of time for disappointing results. I would probably just bin it.

thanks for the lightening response!

I will give that a go. Is clipfix an addin or part of the standard software. I have Audacity 1.2.6 but obviously could download a more up to date version if necessary

Your assumption that the preamplifier overloaded is almost certainly correct. You can make a good quality microphone amplifier or you can make one with a volume control. You can’t do both, so the volume control is almost always after the first set of electronics. Since musical performances compare favorably in volume to a jet engine taking off or thermo-chemical explosions, it wouldn’t surprise me that the amplifier overloaded.

Or not. If you are using a small electret microphone element – fairly ubiquitous these days, the internal plates may have touched. That’s the curse of a condenser microphone no matter how it’s constructed.

Next time you shoot one of these things, take a dynamic microphone with you plus one or two 10 dB or 20dB attenuators. Dynamic or moving coil microphones are extraordinarily difficult to overload. There was a joke a while back that if the “music” was loud enough, you didn’t need the amplifier at all. You could plug the microphone, a bullet-proof ElectroVoice 635A in this case, directly into a transmission line.


I think it is now included in Audacity 1.3.7