Isolating violin from the restaurant scene in Ferris Bueller's Day Off [CLOSED]

Hey guys,

First off, I’m using Audacity ver. 2.3.0 and Windows 10 Home Version 1803 OS Build 17134.523. With that out of the way, I need help isolating the violin in the scene where Ferris, Cameron, and Sloane go to Chez Quis. I can bring the violins to the forefront by using Vocal Removal, but then there are some parts of it where it sounds like someone is rubbing fabric on a microphone. This is no doubt due to the fact that technology is not strong enough to do everything perfectly, but I was wondering if you guys had any ideas to get it cleaner. Hear the file here and thanks for all your help.

That sounds like other “stuff” in the music wandering in and out of the cancellation field.

There are two tools. Vocal Removal and Vocal Reduction and Isolation. Try Vocal Reduction. That one has additional settings and adjustments.

There’s another possibility, too. Where did you get the music from? If it’s a highly compressed MP3, you may be suffering from data compression artifacts—which are permanent. Start with a ripped DVD or other higher quality version of the show.

Los Angeles Public Library thinks there are 38 free DVD copies on the shelf at various branches waiting.

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Hey, that was a quick reply! Thanks a lot. I’ll try using the Vocal Reduction option and see if that does anything different. If not, I’ll just get the film, and go from there. We’ll figure this thing out together.

We’ll figure this thing out together.

Or not. If the two cancellation tools fail, there’s not much left. The Audacity Party Line is we can’t split a mixed performance into individual voices, instruments or sounds.

This question usually shows up as bad recordings where the operator got more on the tape than they bargained for, but this is also a popular problem.

“I need to separate one of the Andrews Sisters.”


Sure. I understand. If, it can’t be done, it can’t be done. I remember there was a saying someone said as I was looking into this that was something like “It’s like trying to separate the eggs after you’ve baked the cake” or something like that.

Unscramble an egg and take the chocolate out of a cake.

There’s no personality or key to use for the separation. You know how to recognize the violins because you’re human. The computer just sees a lot of very similar sounds.

The vocal reduction tools mostly work on the key of whether or not the sound appears on both left and right. That’s relatively simple arithmetic and easily built into a pre-baked tool. Anything more complicated than that either requires more sophisticated software, or just plain can’t be done.

People sometimes make the process much more difficult by trying it on an MP3 download. Compression software sometimes scrambles left-right positioning if it helps making small files. Would you really know if the violins weren’t positioned exactly where they were recorded? So people use these conveniently small files and try to play tricks with them. The tricks have already been played and it doesn’t go well.

MP3 files are also a time bomb. They get worse as you edit them. You can never go back to the same file size as you downloaded without sound distortion.


I’m sure the file I have isn’t really the greatest, but I’ve never ripped audio off a DVD before, so I’m a little interested in having a go, but am not sure how to do it.

Could you please explain?

Is it on the [u]Soundtrack CD[/u]? …There is a song called Celebrated Minuet. Is that it? Usually soundtrack CDs are just the music with little or no dialog or sound effects.

The soundtrack seems to be rare but I found something on YouTube. And even if you have to pay-up for a rare copy, that’s cheaper than hiring a violinist to play & record it for you! :wink:

I don’t own the movie and I don’t remember the details of that scene, but if you want a nice clean violin/music recording I doubt you’re going to get it from ANY move unless it’s a musical or something where it’s a purely musical scene…

It isn’t on the soundtrack, no. It’s one of the songs I’d like to re-insert. Actually the soundtrack you found is the one I actually just bought.

You can close this now. I’ve found out the name of the songs in question and used clean recordings that sound alike.

Thanks for all your help. :slight_smile: