USB Whine FIltering (Yeti Curse)

Sounds like a fair compromise between utility & speed.

Jo[e] Public also refers to the problem as …
“USB mic high pitched whine” / “USB input high-pitched whine”
Only some compare it to a “mosquito”.

Only some compare it to a “mosquito”.

I bet it’s safe I’m the only one that calls it the Yeti Curse.

Since the whine has no easy, natural name, I suspect a majority (or all) the time we will be pointing a poster to it. Nobody is going to find it on their own. I guess if I’m clever with the description, someone could find it that way.


Nothing stops you from putting all of the names in the description. That way a search engine will find it.

all of the names in the description

I’m guessing Blue Microphones wouldn’t be too happy about publishing “Yeti Curse” in the documents. I might leave that one out.


You might as well leave it out.

There’s no way you’re going to get on top of the search results as this also seems to be a popular term in the WOW/Runescape gaming community.

Only when you search for “get rid of the “yeti curse”” the second link is to this forum. But that’s something most users will never do, imho. Too many words and it needs the quotes around “yeti curse”.

We’ll stick with ‘USB Microphone Whine’ and variations.

I’m doing this in a publisher/layout program, so this is copy/paste.



Some affordable USB microphones and other USB audio devices can add a constant, irritating, high-pitch whine sound (electronic mosquitoes) to your recording.

The whine sound is very difficult to remove using normal tools, but we found the personality of the whine didn’t change that much computer to computer, so we designed a Nyquist effect to remove it.

Mosquito-Killer4.ny (363 Bytes)
On-line Manual
Follow the link for your operating system then follow the instructions to install Nyquist effects.


Select the work you want to repair, or all of the work by clicking just above MUTE (on the timeline left).

Effect > Mosquito-Killer4 (8 mosquitoes) > OK.

That’s it. We expect the whine to vanish in one pass with no adjustments and little or no audible sound damage.


Mosquito-Killer4 is a multi-point Nyquist notch filter designed to search and destroy the most common, objectionable tones in the whine sound.

1000Hz, 2000Hz, 3000Hz 4000Hz, 5000Hz, 6000Hz, 7000Hz, 8000Hz.
That’s usually enough.

The tones are caused by USB electrical housekeeping leaking into the sound.

Please be clear we are surgically removing very tiny portions of show and you may hear some very minor performance changes. The changes are usually so gentle compared to the piercing USB whine that nobody cares.

If you understand Analyze > Plot Spectrum…

…or timeline Spectrogram View…

…or just keen to experiment, you may find that your whine has fewer than eight significant mosquitoes in it and you can use the effect successfully with a lower number.

The number is adjustable 1 thru 16. As a general production rule, the fewer corrections, effects, enhancements and filters the better.

Best of all is to use a microphone or sound system that doesn’t whine.

If you have troubles, post a message to the Audacity Forum.


Can you post the link to “Mosquito-Killer4”? I can only find links to earlier versions in this topic.


I’ll straighten that out. The nomenclature didn’t keep up with the code.

I didn’t check with the OED, but other authorities assure me both mosquitoes and mosquitos are acceptable. The “e” version looks better. There’s still one sentence that didn’t come out quite right.

There may also be a code error. I’ve been testing with a non-standard version.


The man text above is good to go. That’s the good news.

The less than good news is I can’t correct the code. The corrections are based on Mosquito-Killer3.ny.

There are two changes:
;name is 4 instead of 3.
;name “Mosquito-Killer4…”

;control iter is changed from what I perceive to be default 5 to default 8.
;control iter “How many mosquitos to kill ?” int “1 - 16” 8 1 16

I did it multiple different ways including cp, vi and cat. No dice. I can’t tell if the Mac is trying to help me sub rosa, or I just don’t know what I’m doing.

Screen Shot 2017-05-11 at 13.19.30.png
Screen Shot 2017-05-11 at 13.19.05.png
Mosquito-Killer4.ny (363 Bytes)
Mosquito-Killer3.ny (363 Bytes)

You’ve got a mix of LF and CRLF line endings, but that shouldn’t be a problem.

Both of those should be OK.

Woah! What’s that about?
Try trashing your pluginregistry.cfg and pluginsettings.cfg files, then re-install Mosquito-Killer4.

I just tried Mosquito-Killer4 in Audacity 2.1.3 in Windows Vista : it works as advertised, & menu entry is correct …
Mosquito-Killer4 plugin in Audacity 2-1-3 in Windows Vista.png

OK, that I was not expecting. I know from cat that v3 and v4 appear close cousins of each other aside from the desired changes. I may have hosed my Audacity with one of the bogus install attempts.


Not dealt with the damaged install yet, but I know one failure. Make sure you got ~/Library and not /Library.

Both directories have Application Support and they both have audacity and they both have Plug-ins.


Curiouser and Curiouser (for the moment I quite forgot how to speak good English).

So just to do it, I gracefully removed both Mosquito3 and Mosquito4 from ~/Library.
Screen Shot 2017-05-12 at 09.46.17.png
Audacity thinks they are “Disabled” rather than removed.
Screen Shot 2017-05-12 at 09.45.12.png
It does that on an older machine, too.

Would this be an accidental, undesirable feature or activity, experienced by multiple people on many different machines?


It’s an enhancement request or bug depending on your point of view. Audacity does not know if you intended to delete them or intend to reinstall later. Certainly Plugin Manager should have a way to deregister an effect so it is not listed anywhere in Plugin Manager.

The Mosquito effects were automatically removed from the Effect Menu. We can do that for Nyquist plugins, but plugins in other formats would still be in the Effect Menu even though you deleted them, until you did an OK in Plug-in Manager. That’s a bug, but it’s not an easy fix to test for presence of an effect when opening the Effect Menu because of the time that can take for other plugin formats.


The Mosquito effects were automatically removed from the Effect Menu.

Yes. I got that. That part does work.

bug depending on your point of view.

I did restart the machine in the gaps there. I’m finding it really hard to avoid the “B” word. The listing in Enable Effects is Pure Fiction. It’s also preventing me from repairing a damaged condition.

I need to go.


In my opinion Mosquito-Killer4 and Man are complete. The only failure I know of is a MacBook Air who fell into an Audacity Program Unintended Feature.


Found it.

The original code has three periods after -Killer4.
Screen Shot 2017-05-13 at 18.42.22.png
The bad code has a single horizontal ellipsis (2026h) after -Killer4.
Screen Shot 2017-05-13 at 18.43.18.png
This time I watched it happen. This is Mac Text Edit trying to “help me.”

I do in Text Edit. I’m amazed I don’t get stuck with this more often. Maybe I’m going to take the recommendation and use an actual html editor.

That still doesn’t excuse needing to go into the system files with a sickle to fix Audacity…