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Audition CS6 Essential Training
Illustration by John Hersey

Isolating vocals in a stereo track


From:

Audition CS6 Essential Training

with Garrick Chow

Video: Isolating vocals in a stereo track

Occasionally, you may have a song from which you want to either eliminate or extract the vocal. Maybe you're making a karaoke version of the song, maybe you want to sample part of the vocal to place in another track you're working out. Now if you have the original multitrack file of the recording, it's a simple matter to either mute the vocal track or to mute all the other tracks to get what you need. Well, what if you don't have the final mixed-down version? Maybe it's a song you extracted from a CD or downloaded online. Audition has a great tool for isolating vocals that you can use in those instances when you don't have access to the original recordings. I have the file Breakdown Mode.mp3 open right now. Let's listen to a few seconds.
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  1. 1m 7s
    1. What is Audition?
      1m 7s
  2. 1m 55s
    1. Welcome
      54s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 1s
  3. 21m 6s
    1. Understanding the Audition interface
      8m 49s
    2. Setting up input and output
      4m 7s
    3. Setting essential preferences
      8m 10s
  4. 25m 3s
    1. Importing audio files
      6m 39s
    2. Extracting audio from a CD
      4m 6s
    3. Importing video files
      2m 21s
    4. Recording audio
      4m 50s
    5. Creating a multitrack session
      7m 7s
  5. 8m 8s
    1. Understanding frequency
      1m 50s
    2. Understanding amplitude
      1m 40s
    3. Understanding sample rate
      2m 34s
    4. Understanding bit depth
      2m 4s
  6. 37m 59s
    1. Understanding the Waveform Editor interface
      6m 2s
    2. Making selections
      6m 5s
    3. Adjusting the clip amplitude
      2m 49s
    4. Fading clips
      4m 5s
    5. Normalizing
      5m 17s
    6. Copying, cutting, and pasting
      7m 40s
    7. Undoing, redoing, and using the History panel
      4m 5s
    8. Generating silence
      1m 56s
  7. 24m 1s
    1. Using the Spectral Frequency Display
      2m 53s
    2. Using the selection tools
      7m 18s
    3. Using the Spot Healing Brush
      6m 34s
    4. Removing background noises
      7m 16s
  8. 46m 31s
    1. Understanding destructive vs. nondestructive effects
      12m 35s
    2. Applying compression
      9m 20s
    3. Understanding reverb vs. delay
      4m 44s
    4. Working with filters and EQ effects
      6m 46s
    5. Using special effects
      4m 26s
    6. Isolating vocals in a stereo track
      4m 27s
    7. Working with time and pitch effects
      4m 13s
  9. 1h 18m
    1. Creating a multitrack session
      6m 1s
    2. Recording and importing audio
      9m 42s
    3. Understanding the multitrack interface
      5m 20s
    4. Understanding the Mixer panel
      6m 13s
    5. Editing clips in Multitrack View
      9m 49s
    6. Grouping clips together
      2m 43s
    7. Creating bus groups
      7m 42s
    8. Routing and working with sends
      4m 7s
    9. Using automation
      12m 25s
    10. Pre-rendering tracks
      2m 19s
    11. Exporting the mix
      4m 13s
    12. Exporting the session
      3m 22s
    13. Burning the mix to a CD
      4m 45s
  10. 25m 17s
    1. Working with audio from video
      6m 23s
    2. Importing a sequence from Premiere Pro
      3m 59s
    3. Adding a soundtrack to a video
      3m 45s
    4. Exporting a session back to Premiere Pro
      3m 32s
    5. Using Automatic Speech Alignment
      7m 38s
  11. 9m 46s
    1. Understanding the interface
      6m 17s
    2. Using pan envelopes
      2m 44s
    3. Exporting a multichannel mix
      45s
  12. 52s
    1. Next steps
      52s

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Audition CS6 Essential Training
4h 40m Beginner May 06, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Audition CS6 Essential Training demonstrates all of the major features of Adobe Audition and prepares sound editors to start enhancing and correcting audio—whether it's music, dialogue, or other sound effects. Author and musician Garrick Chow begins by covering how to import, record, and manage media files, from extracting audio and importing video, to creating a new multitrack session from scratch. The course then dives deep into editing, repairing, and cleaning up audio files, using the Waveform and Multitrack Editors, and the Spectral Frequency Display. It also covers how to use built-in effects, how to mix both stereo and surround audio tracks, and how to work with video projects from Premiere Pro.

Topics include:
  • Setting up the interface
  • Setting up inputs and outputs
  • Importing audio and video
  • Understanding audio terminology, such as frequency and amplitude
  • Adjusting clips in the Waveform Editor
  • Cleaning and repairing audio
  • Applying effects
  • Working with tracks in the Multitrack Editor and Mixer panel
  • Editing the soundtrack of video
  • Performing surround mixing
Subjects:
Audio + Music DAWs Mixing Video Audio for Video Music Editing Post Production
Software:
Audition
Author:
Garrick Chow

Isolating vocals in a stereo track

Occasionally, you may have a song from which you want to either eliminate or extract the vocal. Maybe you're making a karaoke version of the song, maybe you want to sample part of the vocal to place in another track you're working out. Now if you have the original multitrack file of the recording, it's a simple matter to either mute the vocal track or to mute all the other tracks to get what you need. Well, what if you don't have the final mixed-down version? Maybe it's a song you extracted from a CD or downloaded online. Audition has a great tool for isolating vocals that you can use in those instances when you don't have access to the original recordings. I have the file Breakdown Mode.mp3 open right now. Let's listen to a few seconds.

(music playing) So we just heard the lead vocal as well as some background vocals in there. Now how on earth will we go about pulling that vocal out of there? I only have one file here that has all the music mixed together.

I'm going to select a portion of the song that has both the vocal and the background vocals, which I think is right about from 30 seconds in to maybe about 55 seconds in or so. (music playing) Okay, so with that selected, I'm going to go to Effects > Stereo Imagery, and choose Center Channel Extractor.

So this effect works by honing in on the frequencies that are equally balanced in both the left and right stereo channels, what's known as the center of the mix. Usually, the lead vocal as well as bass and other lead instruments are mixed to the center. Audition is able to identify these elements and then either boost or eliminate them. Under the Extraction tab, you can choose to extract the audio in the Center, Left, Right, or Surround channels. If you want a lot more control, you can select Custom and select the sounds you want to get rid of by its Phase Angle, Pan, and Delay. I'm going to stick with the Center channel for now.

The Frequency Range slider sets the range of the frequencies you want to remove, in this case the Center channel. For this example, I would probably choose Female Voice. But really, the easiest thing to do in here is to choose one of the presets to start with. And we even have a Karaoke setting here which as you can see reduces the vocals by 20 dB. So I'll place it again so you can take a listen and note how it's actually able to keep the background vocals in while reducing the lead vocal, and I'll toggle this on and off a few times few times so you can hear what it's doing. (music playing) So that's pretty cool, right? You can use the Center and Side Channel sliders over here to make further adjustments.

So, for example, I can still here a bit of a lead vocal when the effect is running, so if I want to drop it down even more, I could just drop the Center Channel down. If I want less background vocals, I can drop the Side Channel levels. (music playing) So you do have to be careful about dropping either one too much, otherwise, you start losing the rest of the music.

(music playing) So the presets here are a good place to start from. If I wanted to do the opposite of Karaoke, I could choose A cappella, and that isolates the lead vocal. (music playing) It's not perfect, but it does get rid of a great majority of the music, which might be enough depending on what you need to isolate it for. Okay, so that's the Center Channel Extractor for isolating vocals in a stereo mix.

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