How to Fix Distorted Audio in Adobe Audition

Audio distortion is a common problem that occurs when audio signals exceed the maximum amplitude of the recording medium. This can cause the audio to sound harsh, unpleasant, and even clipping. In Adobe Audition, there are several different ways to fix distorted audio.

Identifying the Cause of Distortion

Before you can fix distorted audio, you need to identify the cause of the problem. Distortion can be caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • Overdriving the input of a microphone or preamplifier: This is a common cause of distortion, especially when recording loud instruments or vocals.
  • Using a low-quality recording medium: MP3 files, for example, are notorious for introducing distortion, even when the original audio is clean.
  • Processing audio too heavily: Adding too much compression, equalization, or other effects can also cause distortion.

Using the DeClipper Effect

The DeClipper effect is the most direct way to fix clipped audio. This effect attempts to restore the original waveform by identifying and removing the clipping artifacts. To use the DeClipper effect, follow these steps:

  1. Click the desired track in the Multitrack Editor.
  2. Go to Effects > Noise Reduction/Restoration > DeClipper.
  3. In the DeClipper dialog box, adjust the Threshold and Tolerance sliders to control how aggressively the effect removes clipping artifacts.
  4. Click Apply.

Using the Equalizer Effect

The Equalizer effect can be used to reduce distortion by taming problem frequencies. For example, if the audio is clipping in the high-frequency range, you can reduce the gain in the high-frequency bands. To use the Equalizer effect, follow these steps:

  1. Click the desired track in the Multitrack Editor.
  2. Go to Effects > Dynamics > Equalizer.
  3. In the Equalizer dialog box, adjust the frequency sliders and gain sliders to reduce the gain in the problematic frequency bands.
  4. Click Apply.

Using the Compressor Effect

The Compressor effect can be used to reduce distortion by controlling the dynamic range of the audio. This means that the compressor will automatically lower the volume of loud peaks, which can help to prevent clipping. To use the Compressor effect, follow these steps:

  1. Click the desired track in the Multitrack Editor.
  2. Go to Effects > Dynamics > Compressor.
  3. In the Compressor dialog box, adjust the Threshold, Ratio, Attack, and Release sliders to control how the compressor behaves.
  4. Click Apply.

Using the Audio Repair Assistant

The Audio Repair Assistant is a powerful tool that can automatically fix a variety of audio problems, including distortion. To use the Audio Repair Assistant, follow these steps:

  1. Click the desired track in the Multitrack Editor.
  2. Go to Effects > Audio Repair Assistant.
  3. In the Audio Repair Assistant dialog box, select the problem that you want to fix.
  4. Click Repair.

Using Third-Party Plugins

There are a number of third-party plugins that can be used to fix distorted audio. These plugins can be more powerful and flexible than the built-in effects in Adobe Audition. Some popular options include Waves DeClip, iZotope RX, and FabFilter Pro-C.

Conclusion

Fixing distorted audio can be a complex process, but it can be achieved with the right tools and techniques. By using the methods described in this article, you can effectively repair distorted audio and create high-quality audio productions.

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