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Author Topic: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music  (Read 1587 times)

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Offline gormenghast

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Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« on: May 07, 2018, 08:10:13 PM »
This might be a classic issue and probably gone over before many times.  I have a recording where the clapping is loud in parts of the concert.  It's a youth symphony.  The concert started out kinda loud so I backed off the levels a bit then it never got loud again.  In fact, it was sort of a quieter concert compared to how it initially started out.  I figured I could just fix in post so I left the recorder alone.  So, how do I increase the volume of the music and maybe decrease the volume of the clapping.  If the volume of the music has to be at the same level as the clapping I'll settle for that.  I just want the levels of the music increased across the whole recording.  I'm using Audacity on a MBA.

Thanks!
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Offline ycoop

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2018, 10:46:57 PM »
You can use the Compression tool in Audacity on the clapping portions. Fiddle with the settings until you get some that sounds natural. This is a common issue and compression should give you the result you’re looking for.

http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/compressor.html

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Offline detroit lightning

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2018, 08:32:22 AM »
Here's a recent thread I started working through this. http://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=186078.msg2261668#msg2261668

I've tried limiters, but ultimately the envelope tool has worked the best for me. Learning curve is less than I thought too. Basically, reduce the clapping peaks w/ the envelope tool, and then either normalize or amplify the entire waveform.

Offline opsopcopolis

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2018, 10:24:13 AM »
I feel like I say this in some thread once every two weeks, but limit (or compress depending on your preferred method) that shit. That's what they're designed to do
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Offline nulldogmas

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2018, 05:31:08 PM »
Yup — either:

1) Note the loudest peak of the music*, and compress the hell out of everything above that, or

2) If the clapping is only between songs, compress the hell out of just those sections to taste, and leave the music alone.

Then normalize everything back up to peaking at 0 dB, and you're good.

*Note: I've found that applying compression to a few stray loud peaks of music, particularly if they're drum hits, is invariably unnoticeable. But if you're antsy, just stick to the clapping peaks.

Offline opsopcopolis

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2018, 11:31:22 PM »
Yup — either:

1) Note the loudest peak of the music*, and compress the hell out of everything above that, or

2) If the clapping is only between songs, compress the hell out of just those sections to taste, and leave the music alone.

Then normalize everything back up to peaking at 0 dB, and you're good.

*Note: I've found that applying compression to a few stray loud peaks of music, particularly if they're drum hits, is invariably unnoticeable. But if you're antsy, just stick to the clapping peaks.

I always limit the music a bit. There will always be a stray vocal or snare peak that will get in the way of my boosting, so why not bring it down a bit?
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Offline nulldogmas

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2018, 11:48:43 PM »
Yup — either:

1) Note the loudest peak of the music*, and compress the hell out of everything above that, or

2) If the clapping is only between songs, compress the hell out of just those sections to taste, and leave the music alone.

Then normalize everything back up to peaking at 0 dB, and you're good.

*Note: I've found that applying compression to a few stray loud peaks of music, particularly if they're drum hits, is invariably unnoticeable. But if you're antsy, just stick to the clapping peaks.

I always limit the music a bit. There will always be a stray vocal or snare peak that will get in the way of my boosting, so why not bring it down a bit?

Right, same here. Though I'll usually compress those bits at a lesser ratio, just to be on the safe side.

Offline ilduclo

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2018, 09:45:29 AM »
Here's a recent thread I started working through this. http://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=186078.msg2261668#msg2261668

I've tried limiters, but ultimately the envelope tool has worked the best for me. Learning curve is less than I thought too. Basically, reduce the clapping peaks w/ the envelope tool, and then either normalize or amplify the entire waveform.

Yup. And do it gently..those who recco “compress the hell out of applause” apparently don’t mind the weird unnatural effects of that. If that’s the case, just cut the applause out entirely  ???

Offline detroit lightning

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2018, 10:13:41 AM »


Yup. And do it gently..those who recco “compress the hell out of applause” apparently don’t mind the weird unnatural effects of that. If that’s the case, just cut the applause out entirely  ???

Yeah, I mean there are plenty of ways to go about it - and ultimately it comes down to whatever works best for you. I always felt like the limiters and compressing the applause peaks worked ok, but sounded kind of funky.

The envelope method, to me, sounds the most natural.

Offline opsopcopolis

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2018, 10:25:26 AM »
If you use a limiter or compressor correctly it shouldn’t sound weird. I’m not getting 20 dB of reduction, but I can get 6-10 without any real artifacts
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2018, 10:35:31 AM »
And do it gently..those who recco “compress the hell out of applause” apparently don’t mind the weird unnatural effects of that.

I agree.  To my way of thinking, it needs to sound natural if it is to be of benefit and worth doing.  If unable set a compressor such that it achieves the desired reduction without the compression sounding obvious, best to take a bit more time and draw manual volume envelops, or use a combination of the two approaches. Hearing the compression "kick in" during applause reminds me that I'm listening to "just a recording", draws attention to that and ruins the suspension-of-disbelief "I'm there" musical illusion for me.  But I also understand that reflects a personal preference.  I appreciate it when others take the same approach, but it's their recording which reflects their values and time commitments.

Obvious compression artifacts may not bother some folks who value the degree and ease of signal-leveling loud applause more highly than naturalness.  That's okay and no moral failing.
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2018, 10:45:56 AM »
It can help to use a few different approaches in combination. Each contributing a small amount (whatever you can manage from them while retaining naturalness), yet the combined effect adding up to achieve the desired reduction, or something deemed acceptably close to that.

You might try a limiter to knock down just the tops of the errant highest peaks, followed by a compressor set so as to remain natural sounding. 

Also, working from the other direction, parallel compression can bring up the low-level details of quiet moments, allowing the listener to set the overall listening level lower while still hearing everything clearly, making the loud applause effectively less loud in a relative sense, even if its relationship to the higher-level portions of the music remains unchanged by this step.  It helps reduce the need to "reach for the volume control constantly" which is partly what all this is about.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2018, 10:48:10 AM by Gutbucket »
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2018, 10:51:26 AM »
Which approach(s) to use may depend on how important a particular recording is to you and how much time you want to commit to optimizing the listening experience of it.  For some important recordings I'll use all of these things.
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Offline rigpimp

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2018, 11:21:06 AM »
Izotope RX Advanced series has a really powerful spectral repair tool.  I was going through my NYCH recording and using the spectral repair tool and the lasso to pull out whistles from the asshats around me.  It has almost ZERO artifacts on the background signal but sometimes YMMV.

These tools also work really well for attenuating applause.
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Decrease Volume Clapping Increase Volume Music
« Reply #14 on: May 10, 2018, 07:12:48 PM »
I now use iZotope RX for this exclusively, but this method works well for me in Audacity without affecting the underlying music:

http://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=163137.0
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