Is there a way to enhance audio in a video?

High quality audio is essential for creating impactful and engaging videos. As this article explains, poor audio quality can undermine the video watching experience and detract from the overall production value, even if the visuals are excellent. Viewers expect to hear clear, intelligible dialogue and audio that enhances the mood and message of a video.

There are various techniques available to improve the audio quality of videos during and after production. This includes proper acoustic treatment of recording spaces, using suitable microphones, audio processing tools, noise reduction software, and dedicated audio enhancement programs. With some knowledge of audio production and the right tools, it’s possible to take video sound from mediocre to exceptional.

In this guide, we’ll provide an overview of common audio issues and solutions to enhance sound for both amateur and professional video productions. Read on to learn techniques that can make a remarkable difference in audio clarity, listening enjoyment, and overall production polish.

Common Audio Issues

Background noise, reverberation, and abnormal volume are some of the most common audio issues encountered in video production.

Background Noise

Background noise refers to any ambient or unwanted sounds that interfere with your primary audio. This can include computer fans, HVAC systems, footsteps, traffic outside, and more. The best way to address background noise is through proper acoustic treatment and using directional microphones to focus only on the desired audio sources (Source). In post-production, noise reduction software can also help remove unwanted background sounds.


Distortion happens when the audio signal clips or is altered in an undesirable way. This is often caused by the audio input being too loud for the recording device or microphone to properly handle. To prevent distortion, adjust input levels appropriately and use quality equipment designed for your particular audio capture needs.


Echo and reverb occur when audio reflections build up and muddy the direct sound source. This often happens due to room acoustics and can make your audio sound distant or hollow. Proper acoustic treatment like sound dampening panels absorbs these reflections. You can also adjust microphone techniques, such as getting the mic closer to audio sources to pick up more direct sound (Source).

Low Volume

Low recording volume can cause your audio to get buried under background noise or peak uncomfortably when turned up. Place microphones as close as reasonably possible to desired sound sources. Adjust gain/levels appropriately during recording and use compressors/limiters in post-production to even out volume inconsistencies.

Acoustic Treatment

Proper acoustic treatment is crucial for enhancing audio quality in video production spaces. Three key elements to consider are soundproofing, acoustic panels, and bass traps. Let’s explore each area further.

Soundproofing refers to preventing outside noise from entering the production space, as well as keeping sound from escaping. Common soundproofing methods include insulation, acoustic sealants around doors/windows, soundproof drywall/ceiling panels, and isolating floors. As this source explains, soundproofing results in cleaner audio recordings.

Acoustic panels, made of sound-absorbing materials like fiberglass or polyester fiber, are mounted on walls/ceilings to reduce echo and reverberation. They make speech easier to understand and give mixes more clarity and accuracy. Panels are strategically placed at reflection points and room transitions.

Bass traps address low frequency buildup caused by standing waves. Corner mount bass traps mitigate this issue, enhancing bass response quality, tightening low end, and preventing boominess. Effective studio design incorporates bass trapping along with broadband absorption.

Microphone Techniques

Choosing the right microphone and proper placement techniques are critical for capturing high quality audio. As explained in this Shure guide, the type of microphone you select will determine its pickup pattern and frequency response.

For vocals and voiceovers, a cardioid or supercardioid condenser mic is generally recommended to isolate the sound source while minimizing background noise. Place the mic just off-axis from the mouth at a distance of 6-12 inches. Pay attention to the rear null point to take advantage of the mic’s noise rejection properties.

When recording acoustic instruments like guitar or piano, use a small diaphragm condenser mic positioned 12-18 inches away. Angle the mic toward the section of the instrument you want to pick up while managing spill from other sections. Experiment with distance and angle to shape the tone and balance.

Proper mic technique takes some practice but can reap major audio quality benefits. Position the mic as close to the audio source as possible without allowing pops and distortion. Angle the mic to leverage its polar pickup pattern so wanted sounds are clearly captured while unwanted sounds are minimized.

Audio Processing

Audio processing refers to a variety of methods for modifying and improving the quality of audio signals using techniques like compression, equalization and normalization. Proper audio processing can enhance the clarity, intelligibility, and overall quality of audio recordings.

Compression evens out the signal by lowering loud segments and raising quieter ones, reducing the dynamic range. This makes quiet sounds more audible and helps prevent distortion from peaking sounds. Compression ensures consistent audio levels throughout a recording (PathPartner, 2020).

An equalizer allows boosting or attenuating different frequencies to shape the tone of audio. Boosting certain frequencies like the bass, midrange or treble alters the tonal balance. Equalization tailors the sound to suit particular needs like a telecom signal or music reproduction (Cycling74, n.d.).

Normalization maximizes the overall volume to a target level without distorting the loudest peaks. This makes the average loudness consistent from recording to recording for uniform playback levels.

Noise Reduction

There are several ways to reduce unwanted background noise in your video audio to make it sound clearer and more professional.

Noise gates work by silencing any audio signals that fall below a set threshold. By adjusting the gate threshold, certain low-level noises like ambient room tone can be muted. This works best for intermittent noises that drop out for periods of time.

Spectral noise reduction analyzes the frequency spectrum of the audio and selectively reduces problem bands that demonstrate higher noise levels. This method maintains speech signal quality better than standard noise gates.

AI noise reduction utilizes machine learning to identify and remove unwanted background sounds. Algorithms are trained with sample data to recognize noise patterns like fans, traffic, wind, and echoes. AI can often produce the most transparent noise cleanup without negatively impacting the rest of the audio signal.

Audio Enhancement Software

There are several audio enhancement software options available that specialize in noise reduction, clarity, and sound quality improvements. Three of the top professional options include:

iZotope RX – iZotope RX is an industry standard audio enhancement and noise reduction software. It features advanced tools like spectral repair that can seamlessly reconstruct damaged or lost audio quality. The program is suite of plugins compatible with all major editing programs.

Acon Digital Acoustica – Acoustica is designed specifically for audio enhancement, restoration and noise reduction. It can upmix mono or stereo sound sources to 5.1 surround sound. The software also features comprehensive dynamics processing tools, like instant compositional reverb and ambience generators.

Accusonus ERA – The ERA audio enhancement suite includes noise removal, de-reverbing, and sound quality improvements using AI and machine learning. It’s designed for use during post-production and live-streaming applications. The bundle can run as VST, AU, and AAX plugins.

Using advanced audio enhancement software can help improve clarity, spatialization, richness, and remove unwanted background noise in video post-production.

Working with External Audio

When the audio recorded directly into your video isn’t quite cutting it, working with external high-quality audio can significantly enhance your production. There are a few main ways to incorporate external audio:

Recording Voiceovers Separately

Rather than using the audio captured by your camera’s built-in microphone, consider recording your voiceover separately using a dedicated external microphone. Condenser microphones designed for voice recording will provide much clearer audio quality. Make sure to record in a treated acoustic environment to limit background noise. Then, you can layer the voice track over your video footage in editing. Check out this tutorial video on integrating external microphone voiceovers:

Sound Effects and Foley

Enhance the sense of immersion in your videos by adding relevant ambient or spot sound effects. These can be recorded yourself using a field recorder or downloaded from a stock audio site. Pay attention to the acoustics and perspective of the different scenes when inserting and balancing the audio. The unique noises, from footsteps to the rustling of clothing, that occur synchronously to the on-screen action are known as foley effects. Professional foley work can tremendously boost production value.

Licensing Stock Audio

Stock audio websites feature a vast library of high-quality music, sound effects, and atmospheric background audio available for license. Whether you need the perfect complementary track for your video or distinct audio to distinguish a scene transition, stock audio presents an abundant resource. Be mindful of music licensing rules and properly credit any external audio sources used.

Hiring an Audio Engineer

One way to enhance audio in your video is by hiring an experienced audio engineer. Audio engineers are professionals who specialize in recording, editing, mixing, and mastering audio. They have the tools, skills, and ear to take your audio to the next level.

Hiring a freelance audio engineer is a cost-effective way to get high-quality results. Check sites like Upwork and Fiverr to find options in your budget. When interviewing engineers, ask to see samples of their work to ensure it meets your needs.

Another option is working with a post-production sound studio. While more expensive, these studios offer services like:

  • Access to high-end audio gear and software
  • Soundproof recording rooms
  • Collaboration with teams of sound engineers

The benefits of working with a studio include getting polished, broadcast-ready audio for your video. The engineers can clean up inconsistent audio levels, reduce background noise, add sound effects, and more. Just be prepared to pay hourly studio rates.

Whichever option fits your budget, hiring audio help ensures your video sounds as good as it looks. An experienced engineer can work wonders enhancing lackluster audio in videos.


In summary, there are various techniques available for enhancing audio in video, including acoustic treatment of recording spaces, using appropriate microphones, applying audio processing such as compression and EQ, utilizing noise reduction software, and leveraging dedicated audio enhancement software.

As highlighted in the quote, “Films are 50 percent visual and 50 percent sound. Sometimes sound even overplays the visual,” [1] audio is extremely important in video. Clean, clear audio that matches the visuals can elevate a video, while poor quality audio can detract from the viewing experience. By taking the time to properly capture, process, and enhance audio, videographers can create more immersive, high-quality videos that audiences deeply engage with.

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