Static lowering recording quality

For some reason in Audacity, no matter what mics or mixers or any sort of interface I use, I always get a ton of static when recording. I will use noise removal, low/high pass filters, and all the other little tools, but hints of the static always remains in the sound. The more I manage to diminish the static, the lower quality the sound becomes. By time all the static is gone, my recordings done with high quality mics and mixer interfaces sound like they were recorded from a really old and badly positioned cell phone.

Audacity is the best program I have access to, and this issue is testing my nerves.

Check your recording level's#olevel
The problem may be caused by recording too loud.

Does your recording system look something like that?

You can click on the right-hand edge of your meters and drag to make them bigger. If your red meters go all the way up or the blue waves fill the block or turn red, then you are overloading – recording too loud.

It’s not unusual for home recordists to produce flat and poor quality work, particularly if they record in a room with echoes.

If your voices really do sound like they were recorded in a barrel, maybe you have two problems.


No, it’s not clipping. Even when there is silence, it sounds like a fan or something is humming next to my mic. That sound persists all the way through the recordings, even though the rest of my equipment is several feet away from the mic. I’ve recorded in three different locations and this issue occurred in all of them. Simple noise removal rids the silence of the static, but it somehow blends in with voices and instruments and can be heard slightly under those sounds. That’s when high/low pass filters come in (sometimes one works better than the other, sometimes it needs both) and then I normalize to try to get some volume back without distorting the audio. I’ve played around with other effects like the leveler and equalizer and stuff, but none seem to have any effect on getting that underlying static out. The only way I’ve been able to do it is by running the pass filters again and the noise removal with the original noise profile, and it works but not without making whats left sound absolutely horrible.

This issue is unique to Audacity, as other programs such as Ventrillo, Skype, Teamspeak, Mumble, and game chatrooms do not receive any static from my mic at all, whether there is silence or sound.

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