At one point or the other, we’ve all experienced terrible conference calls, audio recordings, or even chats with loved ones due to uncontrollable background noises. This can be very annoying because it slows down the pace at which you would want to work, making you less productive.
Most people find it difficult to tell what background noise is. So here is a quick breakdown. Background noise is simply the unwanted sound that comes from or interferes with your recordings, calls, etc. In other words, it pollutes the actual sound.
Background noises are unpleasant sounds that interfere with your activities. Whether you are using an actual microphone or your laptop’s inbuilt mic, it makes crystal-clear communication and/or recording very difficult to achieve. It pollutes your primary sound, and it aids the diversion of focus.
Some examples of background noises include but are not limited to:
- Electrical noises like UPS, stabilizers, alarms, air conditioner, TV, and radio.
- Roadside noise.
- Environmental activities like children playing, dog barking, and doors creaking.
- Clicks from the keyboard.
While most of these noises change with time, others are stationary. You can either find solutions to them whenever you use your mic or manage with them. This article will teach you how to control and reduce background noises on your external mic and your laptop’s inbuilt mic. But first, let’s see how background noises affect you.
How Does Background Noise Affect You?
While background noises can be beneficial in the technical and medical fields, they are highly detrimental to your concentration and communication status.
How To Reduce Background Noise on Your Mic
There are different ways to reduce background noise depending on the device you are using to record. The article will help you discover how you can reduce background noise on your standard microphone, headset, and PC.
The first thing to do while trying to reduce background noises is to look around you for non-stationary noises. Non-stationary noises are the ones that can either fade over time or stop completely with the help of an intervention. The noise from your radio, TV, door creaking, etc. is non-stationary. You can easily turn off your radio and TV set and lock the door that makes that never-ending creaking sound. But of course, there are some unwanted sounds that seem to be uncontrollable, and in subsequent paragraphs, you will learn how to get rid of them.
For External/Standard Mic
A standard mic can pick the littlest sound. As such, no electrical appliances should be running in the background.
- Keep other devices properly plugged in to avoid interference.
- Ensure electrical cables are not tangled to avoid electromagnetic force that can tamper with the mic cable.
- Speak directly into the mic.
- Get good mic accessories like a pop filter and mic stand.
- Lastly, use the right type of microphone.
The first thing to consider while getting a headphone is to consider the models with a noise-cancellation feature. This way, you don’t need to worry about background noise interfering with your activities. Some brands like Sony, Bose, Sennheiser, Audeara, Beats, Bang & Olufsen have the best noise-canceling headphones. Although most of them come in not too pocket-friendly prices, it is always advisable to get quality at its best.
In a situation where you have to make do with what you can get, the following tips can be helpful.
- Ensure that the headphones are properly plugged in. An exposed headphone jack could result in unwanted sounds.
- Plug your headphones to the headphone jack and not the audio jack.
- You may want to unplug your laptop too. This helps to reduce electronic noises.
Some background noises that are unique to PCs are:
- Keyboard clicks.
- PC fan.
- Mouse clicks.
- Notification sounds and others.
To reduce or block out these noises on a PC that operates with the Windows system, follow the steps below:
- Go to the search bar and search for “Control panel.”
- Scroll down and select “Sound.”
- Go to the recording section and click on the microphone icon
- By now, you should have access to click on “Properties.” In this section, you will find the “Levels” tab containing the microphone boost tools.
- There are two volume bars in this section—one for the microphone dial and the other for the microphone boost. Increase the microphone dial and reduce the microphone boost to the lowest.
- Finally, double-check by going to the “Enhancements” tab to check the noise suppression box and the echo cancellation box.
For PCs With iOS System
- Simply access the “System Preferences” and click on “Noise Preferences.”
- Check the box close to the “Ambient Noise Reduction” tool and move the dial up and down until you are satisfied with the sound.
Let’s assume you have tried the manual way, and it doesn’t seem to help, here is a more effective option. You can get a software application that helps to filter noise and give you the sound you desire.
In this article, we’ve been able to identify different ways in which you can control and reduce background noise on your standard mic, headphones, and PCs. Remember, background noise cancellation begins with the background. Ensure to control all non-stationary noises and apply each tip as required. Now you can enjoy a noise-free moment!
Frequently Asked Questions
Background chatters, raindrops, thunder, and so on.
Yes. Below is a list of some noise cancellation software;
-Krisp, Nvidia RTX Voice- Suitable and available for Windows and MacOS
-Samson Sound Deck, Noise Gator- Suitable for Windows and Mac
-Solicall- Suitable for Windows
Do not place your mic too close to the sound source.
Yes. Noise cancellation protects hearing.