Please Help Identify this Noise Problem

I cannot figure out what this noise is, it kind of sounds like a little drum tapping sound. There is also some fuzzy noise as well.

It was recorded with a Cardioid Audio-Technica ATR55 shotgun mic on a Canon HG10 avchd camcorder.

I really want to find out what the proper terms for the noises are so I can make some progress researching how to remove it, any help is greatly appreciated, I have a project due this weekend.

Thanks :slight_smile:

The sound clip shows the repeating noise, it just repeats over and over, perfectly consistently. No idea what it is or what caused it. (144 KB)

The hiss is normal for a high-gain audio (or video) system. I assume you’re talking about the bubbling in the background?

If you listen on the original videotape or capture with headphones and the volume all the way up, is it there?

It could be mechanical. Do you still get it if you separate the microphone from the camcorder – just hand-hold it long enough to see if the noise goes away.

You could be listening to the hard drive searching. There is still a mechanical drive in there and during capture, you could easily get periodic thrumming like that as the drive actuator flies across the platters.


First, thanks for the response, I still haven’t had luck identifying it.

Yes it is the tapping, popping, thumping, sound. I’m not sure how to describe it, but it is not there when the camcorder runs on it’s own mic. It is completely consistent, it loops that same loop back to back, repeatedly. Through hours of footage that I have to edit and hopefully get the sound out of. :cry:

My thought is, that if I can find out what the name for it is called, I can search how to repair it.

So you really have no interest in solving the capture problem. You want to repair the thousands of hours of capture clips. Whose camera is it?

Not a whole lot of hope of repairs.

You could try getting really fancy with the Noise Removal Tool in Audacity 1.3. The tool in Audacity 1.2 is all but useless.

Try getting a pure segment of thumps as a profile and gently apply correction; 9dB, 100Hz, no delay. Reducing the smoothing will cause bubbling and increasing the reduction may cause noise pumping.

There is always the noise gate tools, but nobody ever gets those to work right.


Thanks for the tips.

I said through not thousands, I shouldn’t have started a new sentence. Anyways, the capture period is over, it was only for a day and I’m not doing it again. I’m stuck trying to fix what I have got.

I’ll give your ideas a try.

Kozikowski’s suggestion of mechanical noise would be the first thing to investigate.

However a possible alternative explanation is EMI (not the record company :slight_smile: )

I have a high gain mic (not cordless) which occasionally picks up Radio Moscow (I’m in in the UK)

If the thump noise is very regular it may be possible to subtract it e.g.

If you have a long section of “silence” with the cyclic thump you could carefully align it with the thumps in your audio and subtract its spectral content using Extraboy or similar centre panned isolation software.

Having said that the digital artefacts created by this process may be even more intrusive than your cyclic thump.