How to get the most out of Restoration Suite

Question

How do I get the most out of Restoration Suite?

Answer

Getting the best results with Restoration Suite:

Restoration Suite is best used in a stereo mastering application such as Wavelab or Peak.
To handle all possible restoration scenarios, you will want to be able to load at least 4 Plug-Ins in series. While Restoration Suite can be used as a track insert in a multi-channel application, the more Restoration Suite Plug-Ins you load in series, the greater the latency.

Many applications compensate for latency automatically, but others do not. In addition to the latency common to DSP Plug-Ins, the Restoration Suite Plug-Ins have an additional processing delay-the time required for the Plug-In to function optimally.

Cleaning up audio:

There is a specific, serial processing order that you should always use to restore any audio file, especially that from a vinyl record:

  1. Descratch
  2. Declick (set to Click)
  3. Decrackle (new in Restoration Suite version 1.5)
  4. Denoise

Why is processing order so critical? It not so many words: size matters. Each plug-in is optimized to manage a specific type of artifact of a specific size.

Let's consider the following example: should you load a Declick plug-in and set it to 'Crackle', it will not fix a severe click, but it might smooth a severe click so much that a subsequent Declicker setup to remove 'Click' does not find the severe click anymore and a residual of the artifact will end up in the file.

Removing click and crackle.

These tasks can be accomplished best with the Declick followed by the Decrackle. For Declick, there are just two controls required to adjust its processing: 'Threshold' and the 'Crackle/Click' slider. Also, Decrackle is mainly adjusted by the two controls 'Reduction' and 'Threshold'.

Whenever you are restoring audio, it is wise to frequently compare the original signal to the processed signal very carefully: incorrect settings can create avoidable artifacts.

Extracting artifacts for later use:

Now for something creative: let's assume that it is your task to get a well recorded piece of audio to sound 'old', as if it was taken from a scratched record.

  • First, use any of the Restoration Suite Plug-Ins in Audition mode and record the artifacts from an old recording to a new file. (Use the 'Bounce' or 'Create File' command from your host application.)
  • Then, using your multi-channel recording application, you can add a track for the 'artifacts' file and mix it into your desired material.

Cleaning "vintage" digital audio files:

Suppose you have an older digital audio file that you would like to bring up to date?
The Restoration Suite Plug-Ins can manage sample rates from 22 kHz to 96 kHz. If you are cleaning an older file, such as an 8 kHz 8 bit file, it is advised to convert the Sample Rate from 8 kHz to something more contemporary, such as 96 kHz. This can be done in a number of audio utilities.

Once you have re-sampled your audio material, you follow the steps described in the 'Cleaning up audio' section above.


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