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How to Use a Noise Gate 'Digital Recording'

    • 1). Set the threshold of the noise gate software you are using for digital recording. The threshold setting is the point where the noise gate will kick in to eliminate any noise. You must be careful to set this at the best point possible. Too high and it may cut off played notes on a guitar, bass or individual drum, and too low you risk introducing noise into your recording.

    • 2). Adjust the attack setting. This setting is crucial and works in conjunction with the threshold setting. The attack setting dictates the speed in which the noise gate activates. If you set it for a slow attack, you may get some noise, but too quickly and the noise gate will kick in unnaturally and prematurely cut off sustained notes. Listen to the track and adjust the attack making sure all points where the noise gate turns on sound natural.

    • 3). Set the hold adjustment so that fluctuating notes are not cut off. The hold will allow notes that are held that dip below the threshold to remain intact. Where the gate would normally close, the hold allows notes to ring out fully.

    • 4). Adjust the release setting to allow the gate to open quickly but naturally. Setting the release setting for a slow release may chop the sound of the note, while too quick of a release may introduce noise at the beginning of a note. You must set the release well to make the gated sections sound natural when it is opening and closing.

    • 5). Use the noise gate on a side chain. This will allow the gate to be opened and closed using another input source rather than the track itself. This can be a great way to create chopping effects on drums and guitars. You can make adjustments that relate to the original source to effect the sound of another track, which is a creative way to use a noise gate.

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