How to remove background noise from audio on macOS

How to remove background noise from audio on macOS 1

Hum, hum, whistle, or hum: noise kills good audio. If there is a disturbing sound in the background of your capture, it will repel the listener en masse. People will not hear bad audio. But the noise reduction algorithm can be a savior. Learn how to remove background noise from audio in macOS with the default tools in Audacity and Logic Pro X.

Remove background noise on macOS with Audacity

Courage is a free and open source cross-platform audio editor. The noise removal tool is effective, if it is forceful.

1. Make a selection that contains only the sound you want to remove. If you have an ambient tone a few seconds at the beginning or end of your tape, this is the perfect use for it.

2. Open "Effects -> Noise Reduction" from the menu bar.


Selecting the Audacity noise reduction effect menu

3. Click "Get noise profile", which closes the window. When you click on this button, Audacity creates a noise profile based on your previous choices. Audacity will mathematically analyze the selected noise so you can detect and eliminate similar sounds later.

Audacity Noise Removal Effects Panel

4. Select the area of ​​the track you want to delete the number. If noise flows through all your tracks, for example, select all tracks in this step.

Selecting the Audacity noise removal application

5. Open "Effects -> Noise Reduction" from the menu bar again.

Selecting the Audacity noise reduction effect menu

Noise reduction setting

6. Select the decibel level at which you want to reduce noise. Audacity will edit the waveform to reduce the sound that matches your noise sample by the selected amount. The greater the decrease, the clearer the effect will be heard.

Bold noise effects panel options

    "Sensitivity" controls how similar the audio is to samples that are considered noise. The lower the number, the more selective the elimination algorithms are. At higher numbers (up to a maximum of 24), more noise will be eliminated, but at the expense of the possibility of also eliminating the “good” signal. "Frequency smoothing" propagates noise reduction in all neighboring frequency bands. This can confuse your audio, but it can also hide the effect of noise reduction more thoroughly.

7. Click on “Preview” to listen to a short audio segment that is processed with your current settings. Smart Editor Preview Before Applying: They know that removing noise is a destructive operation. This will produce permanent changes to your waveform after being applied.

Panel sound erase effect preview

    “Reduce” plays the audio because it will sound after removing the noise. "Residue" only plays audio that will be removed. If you hear the "good" audio that can be recognized in the residue, you want to adjust your settings before committing.

8. Click "OK" to immediately apply your settings destructively.

Audacity noise removal effects before and after waves

Eliminate background noise in macOS with Logic Pro X

Logic Pro X is Apple version of a digital audio workstation. This is not the most popular DAW, but it is well equipped and intuitive for Apple The user does not have a built-in noise reduction plugin, although commercial options are available. We can use expander and EQ to do it ourselves.

Add expander to your tracks with noisy files.

Logic Pro X Noise Removal Effects Expander

Expanders make loud sounds louder and lower sounds lower. This “pushes” the audio out of the user-specified “medium”. So we can remove just the bottom of the signal, the loud part, using an equalizer or noise gate. If you are not sure where to start when adjusting the noise gate, the "High Expansion" setting is a good starting point.

Logic Pro X High Expansion Noise Removal Expander

Click on the "EQ" box to activate the EQ channel.

Logic Pro X noise removal equalizer adds

Click the settings slider to open the effect.

Logic Pro X noise removal equalizer

Play your track and selectively reduce the audio frequency to reduce audible noise. For a good start, pass everything below 100Hz and above 16KHz.

Setting up the Logic Pro X noise canceling equalizer

You can also apply the EQ part of this technique in Garage Band and use Noise Gate instead of the Expander.


With commercial plug-ins, Logic Pro X may be the most powerful noise reduction tool on Mac. But with the default settings, we are only limited to the default global effects. Audacity's open source noise reduction algorithm is effective, but it can be done with heavy hands, sometimes the audio is too aggressive. Of course, commercial noise reduction plugins specifically for DAWs like Logic Pro X will always be the most effective way to reduce noise.

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