5+ High-End Noise Removal Plugins

3 of the best sound suppression plugins - decibel peak
3 of the best sound suppression plugins - decibel peak
3 of the best sound suppression plugins - decibel peak

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I used to believe that it was IMPOSSIBLE to remove noise from audio recordings.

That’s understandable, considering how many TERRIBLE noise suppressor plugins out there. However, I discovered 3 of the best noise suppressor plugins and am now a BELIEVER.

Everything I used prior has ALWAYS deteriorated the quality of my track…

The first noise suppression plugin that changed my mind was NoiseAssist. It ran off of the internal DSP from a Sound Devices MixPre6-II I was renting for a gig.

The second noise suppressor that impressed me was from the ERA 5 Bundle by accusonus.

BUT… It’s the C-Vox Noise & Ambience reduction from C-Suite that revolutionized noise suppression. I can’t wait to tell you more about this one!

Keep reading to find out which of these plugins YOU’LL be using…

Noise Gates vs Noise Reduction

One of the biggest misconceptions with noise reduction comes from noise gates.

That’s why I personally started developing doubts in regards to noise reduction. For example, Logic Pro X’s stock noise reduction plugin is a NOISE GATE.

That’s why I DON’T recommend using it.

It sounds bad because it doesn’t remove noise, it simply “mutes” your sound source when it drops below a certain threshold.

That’s why it sounds “choppy”… DON’T do that to your tracks, please.

One of the best investments you’ll make is towards a good noise reduction plugin. ALL of the plugins we talk about today use a process known as SPECTRAL DENOISING.

In other words, it actually REMOVES noise from your audio using an algorithm (sometimes AI).

If you’re still doubting the possibility of noise removal plugins… Take a few moments to check out some of these plugins!!

Waves Clarity Vx

The Waves Clarity Vx is #1 on my list. I use it 99.9% of the time in film mixing.

The fact that it has FOUR different algorithms to choose from and that it’s powered by AI is what makes it a winner.

I have to tell you, it’s cleaned up some pretty siginifcantly damaged audio and goes by unoticed in the mix.

However, a combination of solid dialogue editing skills and layering is what’s going to give you the best results!

That’s why it’s used by industry professionals and amateurs alike…

Luckily for us, it’s available under the Waves Creative Access subscription.

This makes it the most accessible high-end noise removal plugin. You’ll also get access to Clarity Vx DeReverb in the subscription!

iZotope RX

Every audio post-production studio has it installed on their computers, guaranteed.

iZotope RX has the widest reach and has been around the longest (so it’s been updated the most).

It’s a full suite of noise removal tools that specialize in everything from electric guitar to cinematic dialogue.

However, it’s definitely the PRICIEST option on this list… The only way you can get RX if you’re on a budget would be to “rent-to-own” using a marketplace like Splice.

It’s also possible to get the “Elements” version for FREE during special giveaways.

Either way, you can always try if for FREE if you want to see if it’s worth the splurge.

CEDAR Audio C-Suite C-Vox (UAD version)

Let’s start with a classic noise suppression plugin, C-Vox Noise & Ambience Reduction.

Most of you know how difficult it is to record sound/audio in “less-than ideal” environments.

One of the most common issues with rooms is VENTILATION.

You may also be fighting with other sources such as appliances, traffic, etc…

Well, C-Suite has officially made it possible to record vocals and to…

  • Livestream
  • Podcast
  • Voice-Over

AND pretty much anything that requires COMPLETE SILENCE.

I’m still blown away by the technology involved with the C-Vox noise suppressor…

When I did some more research, I found out that noise suppression technology developed by CEDAR was used. If you’re not familiar with CEDAR Audio, they basically make audio restoration software/hardware for FORENSICS.

Now you’ll understand how it’s possible to COMPLETELY remove noise.

It virtually doesn’t deteriorate audio quality.

Oh, did I forget to mention that C-Vox Noise & Ambient Reduction runs in REALTIME?

In other words, that means ZERO-LATENCY.

However, the fact that this plugin is exclusive to Universal Audio might disappoint some.

Personally, I’ve been using UAD products for quite some time and THEY ROCK!!

Universal Audio Apollo Solo Heritage Edition

It’s revolutionary technology, especially when paired with forensic-grade noise suppression.

You’ll just need to see it in action…

Sound Devices – NoiseAssist

You’ll most likely get to use a SoundDevices Mix Pre at some point in your audio recording career.

Well, they also have an onboard noise reduction plugin called NoiseAssist.

But, keep in mind that you would need to purchase NoiseAssist separately.

It’s kind of pricey, but it just might be worth it out there in the field.

NoiseAssist is also the first noise suppressor to make me rethink noise suppression.

However, I can’t say that this one is completely flawless…

That being said, I still believe that NoiseAssist is beneficial for field recording.

NoiseAssist also works in REALTIME. However, there’s always more risk when you record things in realtime.

That’s because you can’t “undo” the noise suppression.

I trust C-Vox 100% indoors, but I wouldn’t 100% rely on NoiseAssist outdoors.

accusonus ERA Bundle – Noise Remover

Note: this bundle has been discontinued, but you can still find a FREE download if you look around

I really like plugins that save me time.

It’s one thing when you’ve GOT time, but you’ll definitely need to increase your performance when you’re on the clock.

That being said, the ERA Bundle’s “one-knob” design is fantastic!

However, it’s the Noise Remover that we’re interested in right now…

If you purchase the PRO bundle, you’ll even have access to Noise Remover PRO. The difference is that this version can “subtract” noise from your recording if it was recorded using two different microphones (i.e shotgun + lavalier).

I haven’t tried it personally, but it sounds like what humbuckers do to electric guitars.

In other words, I think it’s revolutionary for ENG style voice recording.

It’s clear to me that the ERA 5 Bundle was designed mostly for audio post-production and not for music production.

However, it works GREAT on noisy vocal and guitar tracks.

The ERA Bundle is the best all-in one noise removal solution, especially if you’re on a budget!

Steinberg SpectraLayers

One of the lesser known products, but actually one of the most capable!

SpectraLayers is like going fully manual and allowing to modify audio files like you would on Microsoft Paint.

It can be intimidating, but it’s required for those “impossible” fixes. Hear it in action in THIS post.

The “Elements” version is more than enough for most, but the “Pro” version is worth it for advanced users.

You can also try if for FREE, so make sure to find out wheter or not it’s a good fit for you.

It’s the noise removal plugin for those 0.1% moments. That’s where you save the day!

Summary: 5+ High-End Noise Removal Plugins

Which of these noise removal plugins do YOU prefer?

I work mostly with C-Vox and Waves Clarity Vx.

The thing is, the noise removal plugins we talked about all have different purposes. I did that on purpose because you’ll most likely need to use more than one of these.

In retrospect, it’s also possible that you only need one of these.

Either way, I really did my research and experimentation so you’ve got yourself a pretty distilled list of plugins to check out.

I truly believe that these are best of the best when it comes to background noise removal.

Do you feel like I should add another noise suppression plugin to this list?

Let us know in the comments and please, share your experiences!










Picture of Stefan Chamberland

Stefan Chamberland

Stefan is a highly proficient sound professional who specializes in sound for picture. His journey into sound production began at the young age of 16, where he initially produced music that went on to feature on local television. Today, Stefan utilizes his extensive expertise to record production sound and lead the audio post-production process for a variety of projects in the TV, Film, and New Media industry. Driven by his passion for sound for picture, Stefan founded Decibel Peak, a platform designed to empower and support emerging sound professionals while contributing to the growth of the industry.

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