Electrical engineer cdr pdf article needs additional citations for verification. English by “s”, “z”, “ch”, “j” and “sh”, in recordings of the human voice. Excess sibilance can be caused by compression, microphone choice and technique, and even simply the way a person’s mouth anatomy is shaped.

Ess sound frequencies can be irritating to the ear, especially with earbuds or headphones, and interfere with an otherwise modulated and pleasant audio stream. De-essing temporarily reduces the level of high frequency content in the signal when a sibilant ess sound is present. With this technique, the signal feeding the side-chain of a dynamic range compressor is equalized or filtered so that the sibilant frequencies are most prominent. As a result, the compressor only reduces the level of the signal when there is a high level of sibilance. This reduces the level over the entire frequency range. Here, the signal is split into two frequency ranges, a range that contains the sibilant frequencies, and a range that does not.

The signal containing the sibilant frequencies is sent to a compressor. The other frequency range is not processed. Finally the two frequency ranges are combined back into one signal. This technique is similar to multi-band compression. The gain of a parametric equalizer is reduced as the level of the sibilance increases.

The frequency range of the equalizer is centered on the sibilant frequencies. Whenever problematic sibilance occurs the level can be set to follow automation curves that are manually drawn in by the user. This method is made feasible by editing automation points directly, as opposed to programming by manipulating gain sliders in a write-mode. An audio engineer would not be able to react fast enough to precisely reduce and restore vocal levels for the brief duration of sibilants during real-time playback. Audio editing software, whether professional or amateur software such as Audacity, can use the built-in equalization effects to reduce or eliminate sibilance ess sounds that interfere with a recording. Described here is a common method with Audacity.

Make 2-3 copies of an audio file containing the ess sounds or make a file to use for testing purposes. Plot Spectrum to visualize the frequency range at which the speaker’s ess sound appears. Follow the software’s equalization steps to reduce the target ess frequency range by -4 dB to -14db. Press OK to apply the changes.

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Use more copies of the test file as required. Too little equalization may not eliminate the ess irritant. Experiment to find the correct equalization for the ess. After testing, save the equalization profile so it can be applied to future audio files.

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