Hello everyone. I’m a complete newbie to all things related to sound recording, other than having a very basic understanding of bitrates, sample rates, and basic acoustic sound principles. Other than that, I do not have a simple understanding of the digital audio world, so please forgive me and bear with me.
When I record sound through my phone, I set it on the table, and leave it on recording mode. But when someone sets a particularly heavy book on the table by just dropping it on the table, or when I accidentally drop the phone onto the table (even from just half an inch from the table), it creates this really painful noise when listening to playback–especially if my subject sounds very quiet in the recording and I max out the volume just to hear what he/she is saying. Is it possible–and can someone provide me with basic instructions on how–to basically use Audacity to create a certain “amplitude ceiling/floor” so that those really loud sounds get their amplitudes cut in half or more? Or if that’s not possible, or simply doesn’t work, is there any way I can use some sort of Graphical User Interface to completely remove those spikes from the waveform by just circling them and then pressing a delete/erase button? I don’t know how negatively that will affect the resulting audio if I do that, but I think it would be cool if it were possible.
I have uploaded a screenshot of one of my sound files in Audacity–and have circled the spikes/needles of loud sounds that pierce my ears whenever I listen to them–just to try to give you a stronger understanding of my situation.
None of the sound recordings I have are of songs, they are of a person speaking normally. The sound files I recorded are in WAVE format, 44100 Hz sample rate, 16-bit PCM (in case this information is necessary for the above). Incidentally, can I have some opinions on what the best compression format is for anyone? I’ve merely heard some opinions on the internet that OGG vorbis is better for lower bitrates and mp3 or some other format (AAC?) is better for higher bitrates. Then, FLAC for lossless, which I think I might need a little better understanding of to compress my files into and discard the original WAVE formats. Could anyone find it in their hearts to enlighten me a little? I know this is vague, but I prefer my recordings to be (at least) “clear” while being as small in size as possible. I am accustomed to hearing MP3’s at 320 kbps, and I regard them as acceptable in terms of clarity (or “real-life-likeness” or “I feel like I am actually listening to the singer sing into both my ears, not a reproduction of it”), but maybe there’s something even better out there.
I appreciate any kind of help, instructions, and opinions on compression formats. Thank you.