When recording vocals there’s always going to be some background noise. Noise gates can work but are hard to set to a good setting if the singer has any sort of dynamics. Gates can work well for rap music usually or for rock/metal singers who are always loud. I want to talk about manually editing the background noise out of the vocal tracks. Hopefully this is self explanatory if you are experienced at vocal production but if not then today is the day that you learn to clean up those vocals really nice! What I like to do is obviously cut all the parts of the vocal out that is empty space or any sort of noise that’s not a vocal or a breath. I wouldn’t advise cutting out breaths unless it’s a really bad sounding breath or if it sounds better without the breath. Most of the time you can just manually turn down the breath and it sounds better than being cut. Next, we want to use fade ins, fade outs, and crossfades. Putting a fade-in at the beginning of the clip (in Protools you can place the cursor on the clip of where you would want the fade to be completely faded in, then hit the letter D) is what is needed after cutting out background noise. This is sort of a visual thing and hard to explain over a blog but I will release videos in the near future. Using a fade out (place cursor where fade out on clip should start then hit G) is used when you need to fade out into the part you cut out. Lastly, cross fades (highlight over a section where 2 clips meet and hit F) is used to blend to different vocal takes together that are touching. This quickly fades out of one clip and into another. Crossfades take away the “pop” sound when 2 audio clips meet that were recorded at different times. When an audio waveform doesn’t line up perfectly it creates a “pop”! It’s science!! Please feel free to put your questions below!