There’s nothing worse than a sneaky anonymous noise bomb exploding its bits all over your recording session. Gross.
White noise, ambient noise, room noise, hiss, hum, static, reflections.
Whatever the noise flavour, no one’s leaving this room until the culprit is apprehended, cuffed and pleading guilty. *Has taser. Will use*
Such was my life today. Booth-hopping for some corporate explainers. Great studio set up BTW.
Level check read through. I’m feeling it. Producer scratches head: ‘Hmmm… that’s odd.’
Crap, I thought my inflections were on-fleek (as they say in the eyebrow world).
‘There’s some background noise. That’s odd.’
Oh good. I mean, not good re: noise. Good re: my on-fleek-ness.
Also enticing. Audio investigation challenge accepted. Let me grab my rubber gloves and evidence kit.
I ran through my list of usual suspects:
Settings on mic correct ✔️
Mic facing the right way ✔️
Mic cable connected properly ✔️
No visible damage to mic cable ✔️
Headphones plugged in ✔️
Mic and headphones plugged into preamp ✔️
Chickety check—all connected as it should be.
Is the equipment itself working?
Plug in alternative mic—noise still there ✔️
Plug in alternative headphones—noise still there ✔️
Switch mic cables—noise still there ✔️
Just as we reach for an alternative preamp … (these guys are literally the Noah’s ark of studios).
Well looksie here… some loose unit has gone all fiddle fingers on the recording levels and cranked the preamp up to ‘insane’ while bringing down the headphone volume. Considerate.
Case closed. Satisfyingly so. It’s my equivalent of those zit popping videos.
Anyone else enjoy the thrill of uncovering the source of rogue room noise? What’s the weirdest source of noise you’ve brought to justice? 👮🏼♂️