Can you help me identify this vinyl noise/remove?

Hi all–excuse my wordiness… just skip down to the link if you think you can identify the noise I’m asking about…

I am a complete novice when it comes to vinyl. I grew up in the 80s, so tapes and cassettes were my primary music sources. The LPs always came out at Christmas time though, and that’s the reason for my post. We had this one cheesy 70s record that just “is” Christmas for my family (nothing special about it other than we listened to it every year–you know how it goes). I’m quite sure it’s cheapie-cheap quality. It’s from “Columbia Special Products” and was produced in 1974 (and of course never saw release on CD or any other format other than LP). Our original was horrible with scratches, dust and fingerprints so I bought a sealed copy on ebay in the hopes I could digitize it to CD (no fancy 24/96 stuff) and give copies to family members this Christmas. I didn’t want to drop a ton of money on this so I got one of the mid-range Ion USB turntables (It’s a magnetic cartridge and diamond-tip stylus at least but has no fancy anti-skate control or other high-end features).

I followed the instructions in the Audacity wiki for doing the recording, which all went fine. I found the awesome ClickRepair app and through that also found the DeNoise and DeNoiseLF apps too. I’m doing a trial on all the apps (I don’t have any other vinyl records to process). The click removal was amazing. I was thinking because this was new vinyl there wouldn’t be any clicks (shows you what I know). There were some, but clickrepair on the default vinyl setting removed 99% of them.

But where I’m having an issue is a “wshhh… wshhh… wshhh…” sound I am hearing during quiet moments (certainly inter-track which doesn’t matter but I can even hear it somewhat in the quieter parts of the music). I assume that is the sound coming from the vinyl track itself but I have no idea exactly what it is or whether it’s possible to minimize or remove it. I’ve tried various settings in clickrepair and denoise and haven’t been able to get very far (but like I said, even after reading the manuals I’m pretty clueless about this stuff).

I sampled just a couple of seconds of it and have uploaded it to mediafire so you can hear what I’m talking about. Just so I am specific, this sample is from the first couple seconds of the record (prior to the first track) and I have already run DeNoiseLF, and ClickRepair on it (but not DeNoise):

So can any of you vinyl gurus diagnose my problem and let me know if there’s any treatment? Preventing it from occurring in the first place would be best but is probably not possible at this point because I really don’t feel like making a larger investment in better equipment and we’re getting so close to Christmas already–I don’t have time to start over. But is there anything in ClickRepair, DeNoise or even Audacity that can remove or lessen that sound?

I also realize the dangers of over-processing and I don’t want to be so aggressive that it lessens the overall sound quality. So if it’s best to leave that sound in, then I’d be willing to heed that advice as well. Hell, maybe you’re going to tell me that noise is totally normal for vinyl.

Thanks for any advice!

My vote is you’re stuck with it. Pulsing white noise would be impossible to remove and given how low a level it is, you should probably ignore it. Unless you’re playing to a bunch of musicians or techies, nobody is going to know. If you play nice with the leading and trailing segments of each song, nobody will hear it.

If this was a Deutsche Grammophon or RCA Red Seal, I’d be concerned, but you’re talking about a mass market prize in the bottom of Cracker Jacks. Nowhere is it written that this was struck from master tapes. It may have been struck from another vinyl and the original music just came with the noise built-in.


When this noise is between tracks it can be completely removed with a noise gate

However a noise gate won’t remove or reduce this sound when you can hear it during the music. :cry:

Facemask ? …

What I do is to use use Ctrl-L in Audacity to convert the intertrackgap to proper silence and usually I add a very short fade-in to the beginning of each track and a slightly longer fade-out to the end of each track (as Koz hints at).

And I agree with Koz that:

a) you’re probably stuck with the noise on the track (it sounds like fairly common vinyl noise to me) - it is worth a bit of experimentation with Brain Davies’ DeNoise though. I used it on a set of Blues LPs that I had which were obviously recorded onto vinyl from 78s long before the days of digital audio processing and DeNoise did a good job on them. I did find that I had to use different settting for each trcak as they were sourced from separate 78s - this should not be so in your case though.

b) most folk won’t hear the noise unless you play the CDs on high-end equipment and the listeners have got good (especially trained) ears.

One thing to check though: is the cartridge tracking weight set correctly and is its tracking alignment set properly. Running a cartridge over-weighted can often produce more Whoosh vinyl noise. You could try underweighting it a tad, but that may lead to skipping/skating because AFAIR those ION decks don’t have any anti-skate device - experiment.


Oh and have you seen this workflow tutorial from the 1.3 manual:


Another thought: have you checked the iTunes store and other online music sites) to see if the album is commercially available as a download.

That’s how I got a copy of our family’s old Perry Como Christmas record a couple of years ago :sunglasses: