Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

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Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by waxcylinder » Wed Dec 12, 2007 4:22 pm

ClickRepair - software tool for click removal
See later in the thread for post-trial appraisal
Update 8Jul08: Six-month review with statistics at the end of this posting

Up until now I have been doing all my click & pop removal from my digitized vinyl manually with Audacity - using the excellent Repair tool in 1.3.x beta version. This has worked well but is tedious and very time consuming as it is labour-intensive.

Following on from a steer that Koz gave me a while ago (and thanks for this Koz) I decided to explore Brian Davies' program ClickRepair. I have been trialling this for a couple of days now and my initial findings are that this package delivers excellent results.

Unlike Audacity, the software is not free- it costs US$40 . The software is available for download free for a 21-day evaluation period, thereafter you will need to buy the license. It has a relatively straightforward GUI and is easy to use - the default settings OOTB perform quite well - it has a nice simple manual.

One of ClickRepair's great strengths is its monitoring capability. You can set it to:
1) Auditory output “off”: no audio gives the fastest processing time - but you still get a visual display showing what it is doing,
2) Noise only: this is the part of the signal that the s/w is removing - very useful as it enables you to listen to how much, if any, of the music is being removed (helpful in setting the parameter level for click removal),
3) Output signal: the cleaned, click-removed, signal,
4) Input signal: the raw input.
You can select from these via a set of radio buttons - and you can switch between modes while ClickRepair is working on your audio.


My overview workflow in future will be:
1. capture in Audacity
2. export to WAV (at 32-bit float)
3. clean this WAV with ClickRepair
4. open the cleaned WAV in Audacity
5. listening test - plus any final repairs in Audacity.
6. Fadeout/in track ends - Audacity
7. track labelling
8. Multiple export of WAVs at 16-bit PCM (and MP3s or AACs)

I have no commercial connection with this software - but I would urge anyone who needs to clean up clicks from digitized LPs to consider buying this software - I shall certainly be doing so.

The website is: http://www.clickrepair.net/

And once again many thanks to Koz for the initial steer.

WC

Footnote:
You may find the default settings for this application remove a little too much signal. An alternative recommendation:
*DeClick = 30 (default is 50)
*Pitch Protection = "on" (default is "off") though leave this "off" for brass recordings
*Reverse = "on" (there is no processing penalty for this and it helps on percussive music)
*Method = Wavelet
Last edited by waxcylinder on Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:52 pm, edited 11 times in total.
Reason: added my softened non-default settings
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by waxcylinder » Thu Dec 27, 2007 4:13 pm

Post-trial period report on ClickRepair.

Well I have now been trialling Brian Davies's ClickRepair software for two and a half weeks now - and I can report that I am extremely impressed with it. Sufficiently so that as I approached the end of the 21 day trial period I definitely decided to buy it and did so yesterday- I would be lost without it now.

After some extensive testing with it I have it set at non-default settings:
DeClick 30 (Default is 50)
DeCrackle Off (same as default)
PitchProtection On (default is off)
Wavelet mode (same as default)
SoundOutput set Off to speed processing
Automatic All no manual intervention - fastest processing

With these settings the software detects and fixes most major click/pop events on the recording, without noticable degradation of the audio. Major events i.e. longer than c. 256-512 samples still need manual detection and repair (I use Audacity for this - after ClickRepair processing).

I have processed 10 or so classical recordings so far (orchestra, string quartet, solo piano, solo guitar, voice) all with outstanding results. Most of these records I had given up listening to some years ago as the cracks and pops used to drive me crazy - I knew exactly where they were going to apear. The cleaned up CDs produced from this sound like new commercial grade recordings.

This is an excellent piece of software - it is a tightly-focussed application with an easy to understand GUI and a good manual - it "does what it says on the tin". IMHO it is well worth the $40 price.

The only downside that I have encountered was that when I came to purchase the software, because I am a UK citizen with "non-traceable" Yahoo mail account it would not let me purchase it with my Mastercard even though that has an attributable address location - fortunately though the same Mastercarcd was allowed to work via my Gmail account.

I just wish that I had found this software when I started my vinyl/tape digitization project - then I would have not spent so much time on manual clean-up.

And once again, many thanks to Kozikowski for the original steer towards this piece of software - you're a pal Koz.

WC
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by waxcylinder » Thu Dec 27, 2007 6:02 pm

Further update: just been experimenting with ClickRepair on some of my old 45s - ones that have had a very hard life on my old jukebox, and sound as though they have been cleaned with a wire brush!

The results are simply amazing - and I would never have had the patience to attempt even a 3-minute single by manual repair with that many pops.

I was considering re-buying some of these from iTunes Store - but now I will not bother, I'll just clean 'em all with ClickRepair. And this way the software will easily pay for itself.

WC
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by ceaker » Mon Jan 14, 2008 9:47 pm

Has anyone tried the low-level pop/click removal process described in the "An Interesting Approach to Decrackling" section of this article (http://www.delback.co.uk/lp-cdr.htm) and compared the results with ClickRepair or used the technique with ClickRepair for the decrackling step to see if it produces better results than ClickRepair alone?

I've tried the technique with EAC and Audacity (I could probably use only Audacity except I haven't been able to figure out how to save only the noise filtered out of a WAV file to a file) and haven't been impressed, but haven't been able to put a lot of time into it. I stumbled onto this thread earlier today and was curious if anyone here was familiar with the above technique.
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by waxcylinder » Tue Jan 15, 2008 10:36 am

Hi ceaker,

an interesting read - thanks for that link.

I read the de-crackling section with great interest - however it does still have a step in the process (Step 4) which relies on click removal.

What this approach looks to try to do is to avoid removing as much musical content from the signal - by separating the nusic from the "noise" - and then applying the click removal to the "noise" only - and then adding this cleaned up bit back to the musical content. Worth a try certainly.

He is right in saying that click removal software does remove some musical content - if you set the parameters too aggressively then the music can become noticeably slightly duller. As with most things in life a trade-off exists.

WC
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by waxcylinder » Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:41 pm

Further appraisal - a month-and-a-half on.

Having used ClickRepair for a month an a half now I justed wanted to add a few further comments.

I am still delighted with the software - it saves me a lot of time.

Most of the time it yields excellent results on my LPS, many of which I have had for 30-40 years or more - amd they have not always been stored in ideal conditions. What ClickRepair fails to repair are larger noise events - but I can easily find those by reviewing after ClickRepair in Audacity. I tend to know which LPs need the review by listening during recording - I make myself a cue sheet, noting the timings of major noise events - so sometimes I just review around the event.

I tend to repair these longer time events by deleting the offending section and smoothing the join with the repair tool. This reqires careful auditioning.review after the repair - mostly it sounds totally unnoticeable - but sometimes it is best to reverse the repait with the Audacity Undo.

I would say that c. 90-95% of my LPs are processed ok by ClickRepair - but the sample is not yet large enough for accurate stats.

I have only had one recording that I had to totally abandon as beyond repair - a 45 single of Lou Reed's Perfect Day. It was just far too scratchy to salvage - it has had a very hard life on my jukebox! So a quick trip down to my local library to borrow a copy of Transformer fixed that one......

WC
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by waxcylinder » Tue Jul 08, 2008 4:51 pm

Six month review of use of ClickRepair

For the last six months I have been gathering statistics on my use of ClickRepair on the digitized recordings of my LP collection.

In that period I have processed 102 LPs - of that sample:
60 of them 58.8% required no further click/pop editing
28 of them 27.5% had 1-5 clicks or noise events that required a manual edit
7 of them 6.9% had 6-10
The remaining 7 of them 6.9% had in excess of 10

In general the clicks/pops that ClickRepair did not fix tended to be fairly major noise events on the recording, arising from bad damage on the record (I did let my sons play many of these records - plus some of them suffered when we lived in a damp house, the LPs that is not the sons!). I suspect that I could have caught more of the clicks if I had set the CR parameters more aggressively - but as I explained in my earlier post I prefer to set it to a low threshold to minimise the damage to tha actual musical content.

I am using it now to re-process some of earlier WAV files that I created when I was doing click removal manually with Audacity's Repair function. It still finds lots of small clicks that I either didn't notice - or gave up trying in some cases as there were too many to deal with (some of my old jazz records for example).

I still believe that this is a really good piece of software that "does what it says on the tin" - and I still heartily recommend it.

WC
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by gutted » Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:41 pm

Hi,

I'm new here (this is my first post), but I was inspired to reply to this thread having tried ClickRepair with some pretty spectacular results! (!) I downloaded the software earlier today, and after processing only a couple of tracks, I decided to buy a licence and now waiting for the PayPal invoice.

I've been using Audacity for quite a while - I first used it a few years back to rip some demo tapes to digital format for a friend. More recently I've used it to rip all my vinyl to digital format (I don't have all that much vinyl, but I've got several vinyl tracks that aren't available on CD). I've already spent far too long manually editing cracks and pops out of vinyl rips before stumbling on this thread through a google search. Thanks to this thread, I'm now aware of (and using) Audacity 1.3, and now aware of and using CR. I'm going to revisit the old .aup projects of the vinyl I've already ripped and I'm expecting them to be tidied up a great deal more after running them through CR.

Anyway - this first post from me mainly to add my weight (FWIW) to CR and also to say thanks to all contributors to this thread for tuning me in to both CR and to the new version of Audacity.

Cheers,
Dan.
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by waxcylinder » Sun Aug 22, 2010 11:32 am

A tip on the use of ClickRepair: To ensure that I always get my "correct" settings - I created a Custom setting, this way I can ensure that all my preferred settings are restored easily (including having Stereo=>Mono checked off).

WC
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Re: Click/pop removal - ClickRepair software

Permanent link to this post Posted by billw58 » Sun Aug 22, 2010 5:10 pm

I always do declick and decrackle as separate passes. The reason for this is that when declicking I always use pitch protection to avoid false-positives on spiky waveforms. Davies warns you that pitch protection may impair decrackle. Since I am doing LPs from the 60s to the 80s, decrackling is not often needed.

-- Bill
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