Create harmonics or something isolate transmission whine

I am trying to figure out how to isolate sounds from a audio file from an vehicle (A bus). The sounds which I am trying to isolate are transmission gear whine sounds. So far depending on the whine, I am having some luck with the equalizer, however, not the best of luck. I want something that is extremely clean sounding, would it somehow be possible to generate a harmonic or tone so that it would sound exactly like a transmission gear whine?

I thought I had you right up 'till the last sentence. Why would you want to generate transmission whine?

Anyway, the answer to both questions is no. You can’t get rid of a moving target. If you had one and only one noise or interference – we use air conditioner whine as an example – then you can train the software to search and destroy that character or sound. Unless it moves. Then the software needs to be trained all over again.

If you have a pure interference that sounds like a flute or bell tone, then you have a fighting chance of sucking it out of your show with the equalizer tool. Along with that sucking will go all the parts of the show with the same pitch tone, like a singing voice.

But that’s not what you have. You have “whine” which by definition has many multiple harmonics and distortion products similar to bad power supply buzz in your music system. You can’t get rid of that, either, although you have a better chance with that because it’s always the same pitch.

You will never get to a clean, perfect show. There are too many conditions against you. You violated #4. It’s not just the TV. Any moving sound counts.

– The Four Horsemen of Audio Recording (time tested ways to kill your show)
– 1. Echoes and room reverberation (Don’t shoot the show in your mom’s kitchen.)
– 2. Overload and Clipping (Any sound that’s too loud is permanently trashed.)
– 3. Compression Damage (Never do production in MP3.)
– 4. Background Sound (Don’t leave the TV on in the background.)

Try Effect > Noise Removal. You select part of the show with transmission whine and no voice at all and make that the Profile. Then select a portion of the show with voice plus transmission and apply the filter. It will try to remove the whine from the show – as long as the bus doesn’t change speed at all.


You could try analyzing the sound with Analyze > Plot Spectrum. If you stretch the Plot window out horizontally, you might then see if there are any “aberrant” spikes in the plot. You could then try using the Effect > Notch Filter to remove these particular frequency spikes. This technique (originally explained to me by steve) worked perfectly to eliminate the whine of a heavy duty electric water pump in some recordings I had made at our local water mill.
See here for the original post of mine:

I want something that is extremely clean sounding

That’s the part I bet you don’t get, but post back if you do and tell us how you did it. Spectrum tends to fall into the mud if you have noise other than the transmission whine like rushing air or other traffic noise. Your ears a very good at picking out patterns in noise – that’s how we recognize cellphone voices, but seeing the whole package arranged on a neat graphic is a whole different situation.

This is one piano note.

Quick. What do you suppress to get rid of it?

I went back to read the post again. You’re not trying to rescue a valuable interview on a tourbus are you? You want to create a special effect for a cellphone ring tone. Sometimes it’s good to back away from the question and give us the 10,000ft (3048M) view of what you’re doing. If your desired sound isn’t included in the Generate listing or can’t be gotten by modifying one of those, then you’re still out of luck. One of the production offices on 4West has an award-winning collection of sound effects and traffic/automotive is in the pile. They’re money-based but they’re very well done.


Well actually I have managed to clean up the sound a bit. Now just to give an overall view as to what I am doing. I am trying to recapture engine, transmission and drivetain sounds for a simulator called OMSI Bus Simulator. So far, I have some luck, even when the bus or vehicle is accelerating, I managed to use the time-shift tool slow the entire recording down.

I’m basically aim trying to isolate the whine from the remaining sections of the recording. As far as upshift, downshift sounds, but those sounds are easier.

Here’s an example of one recording -

This “turntable warp” plugin progressively speeds up or slows down a sound, a bit like an engine accelerating or decelerating…

Not entirely convincing as it changes the pitch and the speed.