intro to audio editing

Download Intro to audio editing

Post on 22-Feb-2016




0 download

Embed Size (px)


Intro to audio editing. Oct. 9, 2013. Audio stories: Indian Christians. When listening to this story, pay attention to: - How is this story organized? - What sources are used? - How does it differ from print stories ? - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


Color balance and intro to audio editing

Intro to audio editingOct. 9, 2013+Audio stories: Indian Christians

When listening to this story, pay attention to:

- How is this story organized?

- What sources are used?

- How does it differ from print stories?

- Take notes on story organization

- How does the reporter lead into soundbytes? Out of soundbytes?

- Why is this a good audio story?

+ 4 22 story

Opens with ambient sound (cheering)- Reporter talks over that mentions train whistle, then hear the train whistle- Then someone else talking about the whistle- Then back to the reporter- Then a soundbyte, which the reporter leads into casually

2Audio storiesAverage radio story is between 90 seconds and 3 minutes long

Average rate of speech: 3 words per second

+Audio storiesBe conversational.

Communicate information directly. (similar to your captions)Sentences which follow the subject + verb formula are easier to understand than those beginning with prepositional phrases or other clausesTitles should come before the individuals name- On Wednesday, Mark Kirk, a U.S. Senator, climbed the stairs of the Capitol.- U.S. Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois climbed the Capitols stairs on Wednesday.

No tongue twisters!

Avoid repetition. Use a thesaurus.

+Audio storiesBe concise. You dont have much time to communicate information. Be selective.

Listeners appreciate variety.

Use soundbytes to break up a monotonous story. Lead into them, but dont repeat what the source says.

Use the present tense.

Lets go to the hand out

+Ambient soundAmbience, defined: The character and atmosphere of a location

Ambient sound: Audio which helps capture the atmosphere of a location. organ music in the slideshow about the nun squeals and chatter of children in the NPR slideshow about Chinese gymnasts Most frequently used at the start of news stories or to transition between soundbytes

Use the envelope tool to fade ambient sound tracks in/out, or to fade them under your voice/recording.

+Creating your storyIdentify a topic. Consider some of the factors of newsworthiness:

- Timeliness- Novelty- Prominence- Significance/Number of people affected/Impact- Conflict- Compelling- Human Interest/Emotional

+Creating your storyOnce youve identified a potential story, think about sources.

What do you know?

What do you know you do not know?

Where will you go to gather information? Who will you interview? How?

Brainstorm numerous sources and the information you anticipate they will be able to provide.

Then, contact those sources and set up your interviews.

+Creating your storyThe interview:

Come prepared with a schedule of questions.

Arrive clean, teeth brushed and ON TIME.

Introduce yourself. Shake hands. Smile. Look your interview in the eye. Relax.

- Seek to leave the interview with facts you will work into your story AND a couple of good soundbytes/actualities.

- Good soundbytes express emotion and color, not merely facts.Weak: That new barn is 100 feet tall.Strong: That new barn is as tall as four elephants stacked on top of each other.+Creating your storyOnce youve conducted your interviews, begin mapping out your story.

Once you have a skeleton or outline, select and edit your soundbytes for length.

Then develop the rest of your story around those soundbytes.

Time (or record) your read-through of the script to measure length, and adjust as needed. +Audio production ethicsGeneral rule: Edit only for time and clarity.

+AudacityAvailable in Mac or PC version, free:

Tutorials available:

+Lets go to your computers. 12Audacity

You can import audio (aka open it in Audacity) several ways:

-File>Open- File>Import>Audio- Drag and drop- File>Recent Files/Open Recent, if working off an existing project

Strongly recommended: Save a copy of your original audio track before opening and editing it in Audacity.

Audacity projects are saved in a format unique to the program (.AUP) until they are exported.

+The important logisticsBefore you can export a file in Audacity, you need to download the LAME encoder. This is .mp3 encoding software which allows you to transform your project into a commonly used format mp3.

To do this, you must go to the LAME encoder website and download the software.


14The important logistics

Select the version you need.

For Macs with a recent or current version of OSX, its the top choice: v3.98.2+The important logisticsDownload the .dmg file

Double click on the file in your finder or download window.

+The important logisticsThen, to save your final project into an .mp3

File > Export >

+Getting it onto wordpress an .mp3.m4a, .ogg, or .wav to dropbox and get link, put link in your blog

Upload it to, then embed that link onto your blog

+The important logisticsIf you get stuck

+ vs. Stereo

Tracks are audio files. They can be Mono or Stereo:Stereo tracks: Audio files with two different channels (Right and Left)Mono tracks: A single track audio, with sound distributed to both channels

For most news broadcasts and for our purposes: Use Mono.Most interviews are done with a mono microphoneYou can select mono on eachAnd can convert stereo recordingstrack when recording:to mono by highlighting the file, then Tracks>Stereo Track to Mono

+Effects: Amplify & NormalizeAmplify: All audio tracks selected will be amplified by the dB specified- Peaks and low points will be preserved; everything will be louder- Audacity will automatically calculate the amplification it thinks is required

Normalize: Evens out multiple audio tracks or channels to the same level. So, if you have a two track recording, but sound is strong in only one of them, the normalize effect will help even out that discrepancy. You probably wont need to use this in your project because youll be using mono files.

+Effects: CompressorCompressor: Softens the loudest sections of your track and then amplifies. If executed well, the resulting file is louder and more dynamic but with fewer harsh/loud points. (Hint: Try this before employing amplify.)

- The compressor begins working when the recordings volume exceeds this given volume level. The higher a threshold, the less frequently the compressor will go into effect.

- RatioA:BWhere A is the dB increase at the input and B is the increase in outputSo a 2:1 compression means that a 2dB input increase in a passage of the original audio recording becomes a 1 dB increase in the outputHigher ratios increase the effect of the compression a more drastic change from the original recording.


22Effect: Noise RemovalNoise removal: Allows you to remove pesky background noises (such as air conditioners or electronic machine humming) from an audio file. The tool works by using a recording of the white/background noise to identify what sound to remove.

To accomplish this, you need to have a brief clip (aim for 10 seconds) of the ambient white noise you wish to eliminate. Tip: Make a habit to grab this audio at the start of every recording, just in case.

Use the cursor to highlight this white noise section. Then:Effect>Noise Removal> Capture Noise Profile

Then, highlight (or click and drag) the entire track (or section) where you wish to remove white noise. Then:Effect>Noise Removal hit OK

+Other useful toolsFade in/Fade out: Eases your ear into or out of a sound.

Silence: Use this to write over a heavy inhale or exhale in your recording. Highlight the part of the track where you want to generate audio nothingness, and then select Generate > Silence. You can modify the selected period of silence manually, if you are not satisfied with the length of time you highlighted.

+AudacityDownload a raw interview tape of mine (.mp3) from public dropbox link I emailed you.

- Trim the recording to a couple minutes- On a separate/copy of that trimmed recording, isolate a soundbyte- On a copied track of the shortened audio, use the Compressor, Amplify and Normalize effects; compare the sound quality of each to the original- Practice using the fade in/out tools- Practice combining tracks