Looking for audio editor for specific function

Discussion in 'Software' started by DimChandeliers, Nov 20, 2021.

  1. DimChandeliers

    DimChandeliers Ultrasonic

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    Greetings. I have some old four-track reel to reel tapes where three tracks (usually bass/drum/guitar) were bounced to the fourth in order to free up more tracks. Everything has been converted to digital format.

    In some instances, I don't like the sound of the drums and want to remove them from the mixed track. With two songs in particular, I still have the separate, original drum track. They were not recorded over.

    I'm wondering if there is a plugin that will analyze the separate drum track and save the information and then be used to remove the drums from the mixed track. Kind of like highlighting a section of noise or hiss on a track and capturing a profile before removing said noise or hiss. Hope I'm making sense. Thanks.
     
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  3. clone

    clone Rock Star

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    you just want something that can do Stem Separation and Extraction. results vary from program to program, but they are usually not the best outcome. Noise Print Capture and removal is the method you describe, and that can be ok for discrete elements. Drums (and most other things) occupy too much of the frequency spectrum for that method to work very well, either.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2021
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  4. fiction

    fiction Audiosexual

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    I agree with @clone.
    That's possible, theoretically. Problem is that by removing the frequency spectrum of the drums, everything that overlaps from other instruments in the mixed track will be afftected as well, ending up in bad sound quality.

    You could start by loading the file into an audio editor that supports spectral operations and look at the frequency spectra of the drums and the other instruments, to find out how much overlap there is - and I would say that drums are the worst case, sorry.

    This would be a typical case for using AI with neural networks but unfortunately I don't know of any database that has learned from unmixed and mixed tracks. I'm sure there are some out there!
     
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  5. Ad Heesive

    Ad Heesive Audiosexual

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    Stem extraction approaches described above are good BUT you might be able to do better.
    Given that you do have both the original drum track AND the identical drum track mixed into a mono track, you could explore phase reversing the original drum track and then seeing whether it cancels the drums from the mono track. It would take A LOT of fine tuning of both volume matching and (extremely fine sample accurate) track alignment in order to discover the optimum cancellation. Tracks will definitely require that re-alignment given that your tape bouncing will have already significantly misaligned the tracks. Results will be hit and miss but can sometimes be astonishingly good if you get it just exactly right. Having to go back and forth micro-adjusting BOTH volume and alignment makes it tricky. Good luck.

    ---

    If required see articles like this one...
    https://integraudio.com/7-best-phase-alignment-plugins/
    I prefer to just tweak manually in the DAW but some of the above plugins might be useful.
    Bear in mind those plugins are designed to repair phase cancellation problems and you're doing the opposite - trying to force a phase cancellation,
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2021
  6. justwannadownload

    justwannadownload Platinum Record

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    Yeah, before doing any of that spectral stuff, try to align the original unmixed drum tracks with the mix and then flip the phase on drums. If they weren't too processed, this should do the trick of removing the drums from the mix.
    Afterwards you can route the drums into something like Addictive Trigger or Drum Replacer and choose new drum sounds.
    Then there's Master Rebalance in latest iZotope Ozone plugins. An easiest way of removing the drums. Works fine enough most of the time.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2021
  7. phumb-reh

    phumb-reh Audiosexual

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    Good advice here in this thread.

    On top of that, I'd recommend having a look at iZotope RX, which is purely dedicated to audio restauration, and it has the stem extraction "Music rebalance" feature as well.

    Also can do spectral operations so it's kind of an all-in-one toolbox for these kind of tasks.
     
  8. BEAT16

    BEAT16 Audiosexual

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    UVI - Drum Replacer --> www.uvi.net/de/effects/drum-replacer.html

    Drum Replacer is a real-time, adaptive drum replacement and editing tool. It offers easy-to-use audio component decompositions and gaming options, which are paired with a highly developed range of functions and an elegant workflow.

    With Drum Replacer you can easily remove unwanted sounds from drum recordings, replace drum sounds in a mix with your favorite samples or VSTi, add sub-basses, stack existing drum sounds and much more.
     
  9. DimChandeliers

    DimChandeliers Ultrasonic

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    Thanks all for the suggestions. The spectral analysis was the first thing that came to mind, but I'm going to try the phase reversing first.
     
  10. DimChandeliers

    DimChandeliers Ultrasonic

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    I wasn't able to get the phase inversion to work.

    I'm using Audition 3.0 and used this tutorial:


    The mixdown track is mono, as is the original drum track. In multitrack mode, I made a single stereo track with guitar/bass/drums panned to left and drum track panned to right. I open the stereo track in edit mode, "inverted" drum track, converted stereo track to mono.

    It's not working. Must be doing something wrong.

    NOTE: The four reel to reel tracks were digitally transferred in real time. Therefore, the original drum track is not in sync with the mixed track.
    When I made the above mentioned stereo track, I had to manually adjust the drum track to get it to line up with the mix. Of course it's not perfect, and I'm sure some phasing issues would be noticeable if not for the hard pan.
     
  11. fiction

    fiction Audiosexual

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    It's not enough to only reverse the phase, you will also have to add a precise track delay and adjust levels precisely, like Ad Heesive said. Use a DAW that lets you adjust track delays live during playback and take your time to find the best settings.
    You might even have to add slight distortion and EQ, the closer you get to the original bounce conditions, the better.
     
  12. dondada

    dondada Platinum Record

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    the newer cubase algos work a treat in vocal situations
    what you describe is tougher imo
     
  13. Ad Heesive

    Ad Heesive Audiosexual

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    I hadn't looked back here to see how you were getting on. So how is it now?

    You left several clues about (maybe) why it's failing.
    and that's perfect - you should leave them like that.

    But most of what you said here feels convoluted
    All that conversion to stereo and then back to mono is just adding risk.
    Everything you do that adds separation may prevent the phase cancellation from working.
    You want both tracks to be as identical as possible, so...
    - Do not convert anything to stereo
    - Do not pan separately
    Leave then both as mono tracks and leave them both panned center.
    Phase invert only the mono drum track (as you did)

    That was exactly as I mentioned.

    Those phasing issues are what you want. Use mono only as I suggested and get rid of all panning issues.
    When you're getting very close to the perfect spot you should hear that phasing destroying the drums sound and when you actually hit the sweet spot the drums should disappear. If not completely, then maybe still enough. They could be so quiet that subsequent drum overdubs will mask the quiet phasey remains of the old drum sound.

    The alignment needs to be perfect; There is no 'close enough' here - it has to be perfect.
    And the volume must be well matched too. Note (subtle) that you're not matching the tracks volume overall; you're trying matching the volume of the raw drums with the volume of the drums buried in the mixed track.

    This involves a lot of careful trial and error where it may feel like complete failure until you get very close to the sweet spot and start to hear the drums phasing and then actually hit the sweet spot and the drums should (mostly) disappear.

    ---

    An offer:- (If you've tried the above and it's still not working) - if you want to provide links to the two mono tracks somewhere I would be happy to give it a shot. I might fail - spectacularly, but I would be able to offer notes about what happened.

    Cheers
     
  14. F.L.O.W.

    F.L.O.W. Producer

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    XLN Audio - Addictive Trigger.
     
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