Audio Editing Software

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Editors for Music Can Be Useful Tools

Serious researchers using sound recording devices (including audio tracks from video files) will have the ability to enhance their recordings, regardless of the original format of the recording.

Note: It should be noted here that since we consider ourselves professional researchers and investigators, we ONLY uses these software packages for: enhancing the volume of an EVP clip, occasionally reduce the background noise, always clip out only the relevant segment of a long recording (we also open and close our EVP sessions every 5 minutes during an investigation so we don’t become complacent during the review process and fall asleep), and use only about three different spectrograms to be able to identify an audio range of a recorded EVP.

Nor will ever use any enhancement options that will intentionally add, modify, change, or enhance, an EVP to create a totally different sound to a file or overwrite the original EPV file.

So when buying an editing software package, ask yourself what you’re going to do with it, before you can determine which audio editing software is right for you. Is it difficult to use and understand? and How much does it cost?

Using good tools does not have to be expensive. There are a variety of options out there from free to quite expensive. But it all depends on what that editing software allows you to do; create, restore, edit, record and convert – with a single user application. Some products are relatively easy to get you started with, even if you’ve never used audio editing software before. Then once you get past the learning curve, you will be edit, enhance, convert, and create your own library of recordings like a pro.

There are just some basic features you should consider when selecting an audio editing software package:

Create  The package you choose, should be easy enough for any amateur to use, yet sophisticated enough to manipulate and enhance your recordings with an advanced tool set as you get more proficient using the software to create mixes or training files for the Internet, a website, PowerPoint presentation, or personal use and archiving.
Restore Your audio editing software should have enough ‘Advanced’ features such as filters and other tools or plugins  to restore, or enhance, the sound of aged or corrupted audio recordings, including the ability to filter out background noise, static and/or any other unwanted background noise.
Edit Audio editing software can include many different types of editing tools, including cut-and-paste options with the ability to edit and cut sections out of a file to create a smaller segment of the media information.
Record Captured recordings should enhance the audio recording to make it audible enough to create your own library of podcasts, SoundCloud files, and/or any other type of streaming audio. You should also be able to pull the audio portion of any video audio file, CD, DVD and computer sound system, so that they can be replayed and/or edited on any computer or a portable device.
Convert The most popular format for converted file formats that use the PCs standard audio players would be WMA, WAV and OGG files into the popular MP3 format, for playback on devices like MP3 players, iPods, iPads, and/or iPhones, for instance.
Enhance Often our EVP recording are faint, yet an identifiable EVP has been detected. The software should be able to turn-up the volume, remove background noise and hiss, as well as display the audio frequency range of your recording.

Desert Highlands is constantly researching additional software options in both audio and video editing software as the need arises. Nor do all the applications do everything we need, and often use multiple applications in conjunction with each other to achieve the results we require. By so doing, we can only tell you what we know about the applications in our arsenal. You will have determine what the right applications are for you. Here we will give you the latest and greatest features, tools, enhancements or plug-ins to what we use for audio editing software. Within this page we also hope to provide you some valuable information on the tools we use; packages like as MAGIXNCH WavePad, Goldwave, and AVS Audio Editor.

Analyzing Audio Paranormal Phenomenon

Desert Highlands has many several tools for analyzing audio recordings for EVPs over the years, that basically boils down to preferences. Our favorites include Goldwave, WavePad, and AVS Audio Editor, but it all depends on what we’re trying to do with the audio recording and what type of evidence may be derived. All have these have free trial downloads, and are not prohibitively expensive to register. We highly recommend that you try, before you buy!

It takes a lot of practice to analyze evidence, but unlike video evidence, analyzing the audio track of a video recording, or an audio file requires you to develop a sensitive ear. Turning your discoveries into any type of trace evidence is a whole different ball game. Yes, looking for evidence in digital photography takes a lot of practice, but video analysis is much more difficult and must sometimes be converted from one format to another (like H.264 to AVI or M4P) and finally into an MP3 or WAV format.

When recording for audio evidence during a research investigation, we us a number of audio recording equipment. Using the right tool for the right task is important and can save you many hours of frustration. For example, when trying to convert from an analog micro-tape machine into to an MP3 or WAV file format. Then there’s pulling and converting the audio track off a video recording, say for example from H.264 to MP3, because no matter what you do, or how good the software is, you’re going to lose some quality. So be sure to protect the RAW data from corruption in a safe place for reference by other researches that may want to hear the entire recording, and only use a backup copy of that recording for your analysis!

Oh, and don’t forget, when analyzing a video file sound track, or from a multi-track audio device  (two for example in stereo), and listen to each track individually. You’d be surprised how often an EVP will be recorded on a single track, that was not heard when played in stereo on a recording!

Again, we will only be presenting what software we find useful, but you’ll have to decide for yourself what works for you. It’s important for you to experiment, but most importantly, don’t get yourself frustrated as it takes a LOT of practice to tune your ear and learn the software. So we highly recommend you ‘test-drive’ the software you’re considering for a period of time before you buy. You’d be surprised how often we ourselves have purchased software only to discover it wasn’t what we thought, or was much too difficult to use.

Four Key Classifications of Evidence

In order to keep our library of evidence simple, we had to adopted a simple method for classifying our EVP evidence into a simple file structure using the KM EVP Classification Scale, which are paranormally significant (evidence was interactive, clear, concise and relevant to the investigation), compelling (yes it’s evidence and it’s clear but not relevant to the investigation), or null (like dogs barking, music playing, footsteps, or something was detected but totally inaudible, etc. – not worth much of anything as evidence).


GoldWave Digital Audio Editor

GoldWave Digital Audio Editor is a top rated, professional digital audio editor that contains so many great features, and should be able to do nearly everything you’ll need getting started.  It’s a good application for anyone wanting to perform simple audio editing and analyzing tasks, but is lacking of more advanced features. Although it does contain some excellent restoration tools that will be able to edit large files, it can at times be frustrating when you don’t get the results you expected. So it’s often a good idea to record iterations of your file BEFORE you continue to make changes to it…and always a good idea to change ONLY the original file. Otherwise, you’ve corrupted your evidence. It’s not what we consider our best application, but it’s quite decent for some good quality results, and can be considered a viable choice.

4GB files are not a problem for GoldWave, which does offer real-time visual and audio previews through your editing process. Edits to the recording are instant, so you will be able to discard any cue points during a file split.

You will be able to associate keystroke combinations with GoldWave’s functions and rearrange toolbars, or change the colors to your heart’s delight to fit your specific needs. After all, different colors for different folks, it’s all to whatever  your preference is.

The software does lake many of the important features you’d expect to find in an audio editor. Such as a frequency tuner, but none exists, nor can you burn a CD from GoldWave directly. You’ll need other software to do that. Other things that are lacking that we sometimes find useful is that there is no ability to add white noise, which is sometimes useful in hearing a weak EVP within your recording. Nor does it offer any features for batch processing, information editing, mixing and channel mixing, but does includes an equalizer, processor, and format converter as analysis tools. Visual representations of your file can also take on various optical qualities from a typical waveform, to a spectral view, VU meter, analog meter, X-Y graph, or spectrogram. Including a blowing inferno!

One of its best features is that your edit is processed quickly, an important feature that allows you to preview your manipulation, check your work, and move on quickly. Plus takes advantage of Windows handy mouse scroll zoom feature with a right-click edit menu to make things a little more efficient.

Some of GoldWaves included preset effects (of approximately 20), include: a compressor/expander, voice/vocal reduction, doppler, cross-fading and a time warp function (altering the file’s playback speed, useful for clarifying a suspected EVP recording by setting and recording it at a different tempo). GoldWave can also split files into smaller segments by blocking, copying, and pasting into a new windows…very useful for shortening the play time for an evidence file. However, it does not have the ability to split tracks, which is important when reviewing individual tracks of a stereo or surround sound recording (like a five channel Zoom).

On the plus side, it does have a variety of conversion formats to choose from, including several WAV, AIFF (Apple compatible), FLAC, MP3, MP4, Ogg and WMA (Windows Media), and it can record from anything playing on most sound cards, which is a great if you’re using Internet software such as Skype…as we have often captured EVPs from our recorded Skype calls while chatting on-line. When we realized we all heard one…we began recording all our conversations…. A really nice feature to have. You can also record while listening to streaming audio, a music CD, DVD, video files and MIDI files.

GoldWave does have an exceptional help page on their website’s FAQs pages, offers a  decent product manual, on-line tutorials, and an online user forum. However they will only accept email correspondence for technical support, but were quite quick in answering our questions with a few hours.

GoldWave Digital Audio Editor is a decent application for anyone wanting to perform simple EVP audio editing and analysis by offering you most of the tools you’ll need to do most anything you need to with an EVP file. However, it’s not the best one out there, but for the money, we can comfortable say that it is good enough to do much of what you’ll need as a versatile and reliable tool in your arsenal. As always, try before you buy!

Lifetime License: $59.00

  • License never expires!
  • Free upgrades!
  • Works with any version of GoldWave.

One Year License: $19.00

  • License expires one year after purchase date.
  • Software returns to evaluation mode after one year.
  • Upgrades are free for one year.
  • GoldWave v5.53 or later required
Download a Free Trial of GoldWave

Version:5.69 (2013-05-31) 7.77MB

 

 

 


WavePad Professional Audio Editing Software

This award-winning audio editing software from NCH Software is a comprehensive and well-designed intuitive application that provides you with a ton of tools. Of course, you’ll have the ability cut, copy and paste pieces of an EVP into smaller files, or arrange them as you like them, with lots flexibility during every aspect of the editing process.

WavePad works with over 40 different file formats so regardless of the type of your sound file, WavePad will read it. It also comes complete with an extensive sound library of over 1,000 sounds, enough to spark anyone’s, from the Eine Kleine Nachtmusik clip collection Scifi Monster 7.

One of the drawback’s though is that WavePad can’t edit multiple audio tracks simultaneously, which can be a drawback for some researchers using multiple sound recording devices in the same area for comparison, or triangulation of and EVP. On the cosmetic side, it does lacks a colorful or captivating layout like you’d expect to find in higher-ranked audio editing software. Remarkably though, the application does have an incredible feature set that is easy to navigate through.

With batch processing, anyone can quickly convert a variety of audio file types like a professional mixer at an impressive rates, depending upon the number and size of the recordings. Which greatly reduces all of the steps necessary to convert various tracks to a single editable file type like MP3 as it accurately renders them into a waveform expression for precise editing or track embellishment (like raising audio levels). Additional features include: FFT spectral analysis to make edits and embellishments a more detailed blueprint, that when coupled with its drag-and-drop function will make an accurate and precise edit each and every time.

WavePad’s mixer can be used to combine two audio tracks into a single track and view both files as a mix together,  or separately as they play. Special effects can then be added to each file separately or to the entire combination. This tool is so simplistic, you’ll wonder why you hadn’t used it before. Plus everything you do with WavePad, including and effects or modifications, can be previewed before they’re actually implemented into your creative track. Just be sure you’re not being too creative will all your EVP tracks…but it’s great for music mixing.

WavePad has virtually every effect and filter you may seek in the other high-end audio editors, including dozens of automated and manually applied effects, including echo, delay, reverse, amplification, reverberation, distortion, looping and others. Some of its other formatting features include; auto-trim, fade-in/fade-out, a normalizer, an equalizer and a sample-rate converter, and many more.

The extensive audio editor tool set dedicated to sound, restoration and improvement, including all the tools you’ll need to specifically design a recording free of noise or hiss.

We can’t stress enough that WavePad’s greatest strength as an audio editor lies with its intuitive, user-friendly interface that is actually simple to use. While it may lack effects-chaining process or some advanced options that other packages may have, it is an insignificant reason to overlook this application’s impressive flexibility or range. In our opinion, the interface design, would be the only thing that should be changed, but on the positive side it can be customized to meet everyone’s individual need while maintaining its simplicity and organization. Even its ‘hover over text’ captions will tell you what all the buttons and tools do without reading a word of text from their manual, allowing you to get right to work quickly and simply.

To open an audio file(s), simply click Open from the menu bar, and wham, you’re able to listen to or edit that file immediately. Best of all, you can preview your work before saving  your changes, knowing how it will sound without having to wait for it to download or undo an operation if you’re not satisfied with the results.

WavePad is a really well-balanced advanced or beginner-level sound editing software that will give you the necessary tool sets to do an incredible range of options and tools to accomplish your desired result, all without really over simplifying its interface (although we still think it could have been a bit more colorful) nor does it limit you to only a few tools but provides many tools that more expensive specialty applications lack.

WavePad Sound Editor Master’s Edition: $79.00

  • Works on Windows 8, XP, Vista and 7
  • Works on 64 bit Windows
  • Mac OS X 10.3 or higher
  • iPad version runs on iOS 3.2 or higher
  • Android version runs on 2.3.3 or higher

WavePad Sound Editor Standard Edition: $49.99

  • Works on Windows 8, XP, Vista and 7
  • Works on 64 bit Windows
  • Mac OS X 10.3 or higher
  • iPad version runs on iOS 3.2 or higher
  • Android version runs on 2.3.3 or higher
Download WavePad Standard Edition
Download WavePad Masters EditionVersion: 5.40

 

 

 


AVS Audio Editor

Out of the box with all its useful presets and inclusion of some important tools, AVS Audio Editor could be a great product for beginners. Power editors may find it lacking ‘umph’ even with its inclusion of a sophisticated toolset for the advanced user. Plus AVS Audio Editor does have some of the best-looking and most intuitive interface we work with that includes some pretty nice features for both novice and expert.

All paranormal researchers often have several clips they’re editing at the same time, and often find ourselves moving clips from original sound files around. Requiring us to make decisions such as whether or not to reference other clips of evidence to verify a ‘paranormally compelling’ piece of evidence, proving it to be ‘paranormally significant’ with the collaborating evidence. Say for example, we have an excellent EVP recorded from one of our digital audio recorders, and a simultaneous recorded session from the Spirit Box (P-SB7, which we always record on a digital recorder) we often find that a response to a question directed at the SB7 was not answered by a response, yet they have responded within an EVP recorded on the digital recorders. So if you are editing  an existing EVP, it can mean what would have been a potential “compelling” EVP, becomes a “significant” piece of evidence to interaction with the researcher/investigator. AVS Audio Editor makes it all very easy because of its intuitive interface using drag and drop.

AVS Audio Editor also has a great batch-processing tool that is a real time-saver, allowing us to convert a group of files from one format to another. As well as apply the effects we’ve chosen to use (like volume enhancement and noise reduction) to an entire set of files, instead of applying those choices one by one.

Then preview any changes made instantly, before they are applied and saved. If they don’t yield the results expected, you can choose not to carry out those change instead of undoing each change, on each file later. Unfortunately this audio editing tool does not have the ability to burn CDs, but it’s not something we do as a paranormal tool (however when editing music you may want to). Yet the file can be saved in many different file formats. On the negative side, when editing music for say a YouTube video to put over any of your creations, this audio editing software does not come with a library of pre-recorded sounds, so if that’s important, consider another application, or buy them separately.

This audio editing application is incredibly easy to use right from the box (so to speak), with its attractive and logical interface. Each button is labeled (graphic and text) to eliminates any confusion simplifying the learning curve. The preview tool is invaluable, saving a lot of time and confusion by letting you know how any changes made to the file will sound before you choose to apply them (the undo and redo buttons are also easy to find should you need them, and who doesn’t?). Their right-click menu gives you access to many of their editing tools, making it quick and easy, or they can be accessed from menus for the novice unfamiliar with right-click functions.

Although the AVS Audio Editor seems more geared toward people who edit music than people using it for researching the paranormal, it is by far one of the easiest applications we use.

AVS Audio Editor – Unlimited Access Subscription: $59.00

AVS Audio Editor – One Year Access Subscription: $39.00

Download AVS Audio EditorVersion:  7.1.6.484File Size:  39.60 MB