Noise removal like ReaFir and Audacity?

Howdy! I mostly lurk but I have a question I have not seen answered.

In Windows I usually use Reaper for music where live tracks are recorded. Reaper has a very cool plugin called ReaFir which does all sorts of stuff. The big function though is that it will allow me to make a fingerprint of the background noise at the beginning of a track, and then it will subtract out that noise throughout the track going forward.

Audacity (which I used to use for podcasts) has the same thing – a “noise removal” effect that lets you select a few seconds of the noise to profile it and than … shazam! Poof! Gone! Background noise is history.

I am still not as proficient with Ardour as I am with other DAW software … so its highly likely I am missing something blatantly obvious.

(BTW, I know I could reduce this problem by recording using my trusty DBX expander/gate/compressor, but I didn’t want to use it for this particular recording.)

I could always export the stem and do it in audacity or reaper and then re-import. And of course I will if I must.

But out of just sheer orneriness I am trying to do this completely in Ardour!

Ardour has no noise removal function itself, you can use plugins for this. What operating system are you on? Everything except Linux has what I would call acceptable solutions for this.


On Linux, you might have some luck with gwc (gnu/gnome (I’m not sure which) wave cleaner). Last time I used it (for cleaning up a rip of a vinyl album), it was a bit restricted on sample rates, and I can’t remember whether it will take float input, but it did a decent job…

Yes – I am using Ardour on Linux. I’ll just export the tracks, clean them up and then import the cleaned-up versions back in! GWC sounds like a good option that I will try. If not, I’ll do it in audacity or reaper.

Thank you!

Good luck, I have yet to see what I would consider a decent solution on Linux. At this time I use either WaveARTs for realtime restoration in Linux via Festige, or Izotope for destructive offline processing in Wine. The latter of which is my goto at this point, but the WaveARTs handles HF noise a bit better in my experience.


Yes, I wouldn’t use gwc on a mix or anything, but it was satisfactory for cleaning up vinyl. HF noise is a bit of a problem (fortunately (!) I’m nearly 60 years old, so I’m not so sensitive to that). It might be useful for a stem, though, as its artefacts could quite likely be be concealed in the overall mix.

thank you seablade, I m still searching for a noise reduction, either plugin or destructive editor - to clean up some car dialog scenes, and looking into all options for that…

Yea I need to get back and try a new trick I learned to see if I can get a machine ID generated to license it. If i ever get time to test, and it works, I will post up my results.


Apart from the pitch shift and time stretch functions, Ardour is a bit light on processing that actually changes the sound, inevitably as its whole design philosophy is to be a non-destructive editor.
This is one of the jobs for which I’d happily use Audacity.
You may find it convenient to define an export format for this (one that doesn’t really change anything, as Audacity will handle 32bit float and any sensible sampling rate) It’s a pain but you hopefully only have to do it once.

actually, Ardour’s philosophy is to leave as much DSP to plugins as possible. Nobody ever seems to agree on what “good” means in this domain, and I prefer not to try to settle the arguments.

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@ Seablade what linux OS are you using? i remembered trying to install izotope plugins via wine with no success…


Well that was a little bit ago, I know I installed it in Bodhi (Ubuntu derivative) and in Ubuntu itself. Here is the catch, first I may have mistyped and meant in a VM as I ran it like that for some time. Alternative is that while Izotope did in fact install in Wine, it would not authenticate as it wouldn’t generate a machine ID. I have an idea of something to try to follow up on with that to see if I can get it to generate one in the future, but the demo ran fine in Wine, I just could never authenticate it with my license. Also something to note is that I wasn’t using the plugins, but the Izotope software itself, I prefer to do audio restoration in a destructive editor and theirs is certainly decent for the task.