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Enhance your Audio Recordings with iZotope included in Pinnacle Studio Ultimate

Enhance your Audio Recordings with iZotope included in Pinnacle Studio Ultimate By Le Papy - Last updated on Friday, March 7, 2014
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Category: Pinnacle Studio 20 & S16-S19 Tutorials / Capture, Pinnacle Studio 20 & S16-S19 Tutorials / Edition, Pinnacle Studio 20 & S16-S19 Tutorials / General  -  Previous tutorials
Published on Thursday, March 6, 2014
Created on Saturday, November 23, 2013 2:20 AM
 

Previous users of Studio did not think much of the audio plugin that came as a bonus with Studio 11. iZotope Music & Speech Cleaner, the bonus audio plugin that comes with Studio 17 Ultimate, in my opinion, deserves a little more attention. This software is not integrated as a plugin into Studio but is used as a standalone program only. It is fairly easy to implement and gives quite good results on the most common corrections. It can be used to record any audio coming into your sound card as a digital audio file. Once your audio has been recorded into a digital audio file, you can use your recordings in other applications. iZotope Music & Speech Cleaner will always use the sound card that is specified in your Windows system audio preferences. You can run it from the installed programs -> iZotope / Music & Speech Cleaner / iZotope Music & Speech Cleaner or from a shortcut you create yourself.

The purpose of this tutorial is to familiarize you with this audio software as quickly as possible.

Step 1 : Software Configuration

Before using iZotope, it should be set up with your preferences:

  1. Access the control panel by way of the "File" menu.
  2. Select the "Preferences" item. If you prefer to use the keyboard shortcut, Ctrl+E will allow direct access to preferences.
  3. To adjust the Hum Filter Frequency, you can choose between 50 or 60 Hz depending on the frequency of your power source. This will directly control the frequency at which the Remove Hum module will perform its processing. This setting should match the frequency of your power source. The USA and most of the Americas use 60 Hz power. Europe and most of Asia and Africa use 50 Hz power.
  4. Auto-normalize will automatically adjust the levels of your sound files, in order to keep your audio at its maximum loudness without causing clipping, or any other audio distortion or artifacts. This auto-normalize process can occur after recording any incoming audio to make up for any lost level. If you want iZotope to automatically adjust the sound level of your files after recording, check the box.
  5. Depending on your audio settings, select the recording type to suit your needs.
  6. Click OK to save your settings.
The Panel
Step 2 : Treatment of an Existing File

One of the first basic functions of iZotope is to read an existing audio file, to clean and enhance your recordings and record corrections to a new file.
iZotope can open and save the following file formats : WAV, AIF, MP3, M4A, AAC, WMA, MOV, MP4, and AVI. When opening the movie file types (MOV, MP4, AVI) iZotope will automatically extract the audio portion from the video file to work with. Your recordings will be saved as .wav files.

To open an existing file:

  1. Use the "File/Open" menu.
  2. Select the media file to open in Windows Explorer.
  3. Click the "Open" button.
  4. You can also simply click and drag a supported media file onto the iZotope interface to import that file.

Finally, note that a simple click on the "Open File" button or Ctrl +O does the same thing...

Opening a file
When first loading any audio file, iZotope will automatically detect and store in its memory any unwanted noise in your audio. Upload a file

The playback position of your audio is represented by the light green playhead shown below. (item 4). When playing back your audio recording with any of the effects enabled, a red shaded progress bar will appear ahead of your playhead as it plays through your audio. Buttons allow you to read the uploaded file:

  1. Play button.
  2. Stop button which becomes active after pressing the Play button.
  3. Rewind button which becomes active after playing has begun.
  4. Read head that can be moved with the mouse by dragging the green box at the top of the playhead. A mouse click in the waveform moves the playhead directly to the position clicked.
  5. Magnifying glass button to expand the time line. The "=" key does the same.

The space bar can also be used in place of the Play and Stop buttons.

Ergonomic timeline

To better isolate a part you're interested in, you can set division markers to identify the area to be treated. If split markers are present, when clicking Save As, each marker defined audio region will be exported as an individual audio file. This enables you to break up any of your sound files into multiple shorter files.

  1. By clicking on the Split button a region split marker will be placed.
  2. The region split marker will be placed at the current position of your playhead. Pressing "S" does the same thing.
  3. Split marker 01 will automatically be added at the beginning of the audio file. To remove split markers, right-click on the marker you would like to remove, and select Delete Split Marker.

     

The region split marker

To place your playhead more accurately when searching for noise, you can use the included zoom buttons or your mouse wheel to zoom into your audio waveform. In addition, various buttons and shortcut keys are available:

  1. Magnifying glass button button. The "=" key does the same.
  2. Zoom out button. The "-" key zooms out incrementally.
  3. The navigation buttons allow you to navigate the timeline while zoomed in.
  4. The scroll bar is used to navigate by dragging across the zoomed waveform.
  5. Even if the playhead is not visible, clicking inside the waveform moves the playhead to the clicked point.
Zoom level of the timeline

By default, any file has two boundaries that are simply the beginning and end of the audio file. The interval between the two boundaries is the editable area of the file. You can change the editable area by dragging the red boundaries to keep only the part that interests you. Your editable area is also the part of your audio that will be saved when you select Save As, as opposed to the entire file. This can be very helpful if you have unwanted silence at the beginning or end of your audio file, and you would like to keep Music & Speech Cleaner from processing and saving that silence.

 


Playback of this editable area will also loop continuously allowing you to hone in on the particular piece of audio you are working on.

Reducing of editable area
Step 3 : Sound Processing

When first loading any audio file, iZotope will automatically detect and store in its memory any unwanted noise in your audio. If the automatic detection is not accurate enough for good results :

  1. First, locate an area in your audio file where only unwanted noise is present.
  2. From the drop-down Edit menu, select Identify Noise. Ctrl + I will do the same thing...
  3. IZotope will search 1/3 of a second of the audio on either side of your playhead position for only background noise, and let you know immediately...
identification of the parasite noise

IZotope makes use of five professional-quality processes to clean and enhance your recordings.

  1. Reduce Noise : Reduces constant background noise in your recording. Adjust the slider to remove more or less noise. Removing too much noise can result in an undesirable artificial sound.
  2. Reduce Hum : Reduces hums that come from some power sources. Use Reduce Noise if your hum is loud or not reduced with this module (based on the frequency of your power source).
  3. Reduce Pops : Reduces clicks and pops, such as from vinyl recordings. Adjust the slider to modify pop detection and removal.
  4. Enhance Voice : Use this module to make voice recordings sound richer and more professional. Adjust the amount to taste.
  5. Enhance Music : Use this module to make music recordings sound brighter and more lively. Adjust the amount to taste.
  6. Simply turn on the power button of modules you wish to use.
  7. And set the amount of correction to be made. The amount to adjust is then a matter of judgment on your part.
The 5 effects module

To adjust the correction level:

  1. Turn on the effects module needed to correct the defect.
  2. Adjust to the desired correction level. By default, all modules are set to the value 3 and the power is off.
  3. Then listen, and make corrections based on what sounds right to your ear.
  4. Finally, save your cleaned file. By default, iZotope suggests a new file name by adding "cleaned" to the original file name.

Note that you can also save your file with the "File/Save or Save As" menu, or simply using Ctrl + S.

Adjustment possibilities offered by the 5 effects module

As your audio is processed with the effects modules, the volume of your audio files may need to be increased. To do this simply select from the Edit menu, Maximize Volume to automatically bring up the level of your audio without causing clipping.

Step 4 : Record an Audio File
To begin, click on the "record file" button on the top left of the iZotope application. The recording window will open. The same result can be achieved with the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + R. Record an audio file

The recording window has 3 essential areas:

  • "1. Prepare to Record" area with the meter and "adjust levels" button.
  • "2. Set Recording Location" window.
  • "3. Record" window.
The recording window
  1. Click “adjust levels” to set your computer’s input level while playing audio into your computer. Adjust the input level so the meter peaks in or just below the yellow section.

  2. Any audio you record will be saved to a new file. Specify the folder and the filename of the new file or skip this step to accept the default values. If no file directory is specified, iZotope will save your recordings either in your ‘My Music’ folder, or into the last folder that was used for your recordings.

  3. However, you can change the destination.

  4. If no filename is specified iZotope will auto-generate filenames by default using the date of your recordings. This will result in filenames such as “My Recording Nov-11-2013”. When a file has been changed by iZotope, the default name will be like "Name of the input file-cleaned". Your recordings will be saved as .wav files.

  5. When you are ready to record, click the record button to begin recording.

  1. The "Adjust Levels" button opens the Windows sound manager.
  2. Select the "Recording" tab.
  3. Select any one of the available input devices.
  4. Click the "Set Default" button if not grayed out.
  5. The Properties button allows you to access the properties of the selected device and the "Levels" tab where you can adjust the proper recording level.
Preparing to Record - Level adjustment
  1. By default, all files will be saved in your ‘My Music’ folder, or into the last folder that was used for your recordings.
  2. By clicking on the "Change" button, you can select another folder.
  3. iZotope offers a default file name such as "month-date-year record and # My order number." When a file has been changed by iZotope, the default name will be like "Name of the input file-cleaned". Your recordings will be saved as .wav files.
Changing the destination and the name of the recording file
  1. Pressing the record button starts recording.
  2. The timer displays the recording time.
  3. Stop button stops the recording. Pressing record again brings up a warning window and if you press Yes, the current recording is erased and a new recording begins.
  4. The Play button allows you to review the recording before saving the audio file.
  5.  Press OK and your recorded file is now saved and will be displayed in the main interface.
  6. The Cancel button asks for confirmation before deleting.

To delete a file loaded into the main interface, you can use the menu "File / Close" or do a Ctrl + W. And to close the application, in addition to the usual means, File / Exit, you can use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Q.

Record an audio file

In addition to the tutorial, here are some additional explanations in sound and picture:

I do not have very good ear but I still noticed a significant correction. Everything is a matter of taste in setting the correction level, then cool ...

{Thanks to Loosecannon for the fine tuning}

{Screen Captures were made with the help of Snagit 10 by TechSmith and video catches were seized with Live Screen Capturing comes with Studio 17 Ultimate}.

 

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Comments
John By # John @ Friday, March 7, 2014 4:05 PM
Hi. I have Studio 17 Ultimate, and I do not see Izotope anywhere

Le Papy By # Le Papy @ Saturday, March 8, 2014 1:41 AM
Hello John,
In the tutorial you can read : "You can run it from the installed programs -> iZotope / Music & Speech Cleaner / iZotope Music & Speech Cleaner or from a shortcut you create yourself."
Regards,

 
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