A common issue when recording musical performances is editing together multiple takes that don’t quite match sonically. The ambience may be different, the performances may have been recorded on different machines, or they may have even been captured in different environments entirely.
Fortunately, the visual editing tools in RX 4 make it easy to combine multiple takes into one seamless piece of audio, with just a few simple steps.
Step 1: Denoise
When combining to two clips, you may find that the noise floors are different, possibly a result of the two recordings being captured at different sample rates. You can check this visually by looking at how the clips match up in the spectrogram.
To resolve this issue, the first step is to apply the Denoise module to the patch with the lower sample rate. However, this can be particularly challenging in musical settings, where the constant stream of notes makes it nearly impossible to grab a clean noise profile.
The solution? Zoom in with the spectrogram and grab multiple partial noise profiles from the gaps in between the harmonics. Simply make a selection with no harmonics, and add selections from the gaps. You may not get a complete noise profile, but by piecing together multiple smaller selections, you can create a patchwork of clean noise. (The bigger the selection, the better your noise profile will be.)
Once you have your selections, open the Denoise module, click “Learn” to learn the noise profile, then select the patch and click “Process” to apply the new noise profile.
Step 2: Spectral Repair
The second step is to use the Spectral Repair function to clean up any areas of the recording where there is no audio (perhaps due to the inferior sample rate).
Use Spectral Repair to highlight the areas that lack audio, and click “process.” You’ve now reconstructed the missing audio!
Step 3: Ambience Match
Thirdly, use Ambience Match to add missing ambience. Select the area that matches the missing ambience. Go into the Ambience Match module, then “Learn” the profile. Zoom in on the frequencies where there are gaps in the harmonics. Make a selection without any harmonic content, and create your patchwork to use in Ambience Match.
With Ambience Match, it’s easy to learn the profile from your selections, impose it on the patch, and process the audio.
Step 4: Image Width
Finally, you may need to match the image width of the second recording to match your primary recording. Select the patch that you want to adjust, then open up the Channel Ops module. Adjust the stereo width as needed, then click “Process” to apply your new settings.
As always, play back your newly combined clips to make sure the final settings sound good to your ears, and not just match on screen.