Today’s featured FAQ Friday question is: Should one always de-noise their audio recordings to make it sound professional? Is it worth it or that big of a difference?
For those of us that have heard or have access to classic multitracks, you’ll notice that in a lot of these amazing songs that we grew up with – and that we consider to be the greatest recordings of all time – actually have a ton of noise.
The question you have to ask yourself in this situation is: is it noticeable?
The reality is that de-noising is amazing for certain things. For example, we tried this guitar part a few days ago where, as the part was being played, the guitar was turned down so quiet that the noise floor on the amp came through and added a ton of noise to the track. This was definitely somewhere we wanted to de-noise!
If you are putting a guitar part super loud and bright and up front, you are likely going to want to de-noise it. If it is a featured solo part, you are definitely going to want to de-noise it. On the other hand, though, if it is faded into the background or barely noticeable, you may not really need to. If there are five sets of guitars all smashing at once and one of them is a little bit noisy, but it is blended in lightly for support, are you going to notice a little bit of noise? Probably not!
If the noise is noticeable, then clean it up – especially if you are sending it off to someone else to mix or master – but if it is buried in the track and not noticeable, then you may be okay to leave it as is!
Watch the video below to see the full answer to this question!