Plugins help with extending the functionality of Audacity. They offer additional functions without the need for in-software solutions. Audacity can be integrated with plugins with a variety of functionality. Some of these plugins can do modulation, time-based, or dynamics manipulation of your audio.
However, this article will look at the best plugins that you can use to edit vocals, their components, and their functionality.
To access your plugins, click on the Effects option in the menu tab followed by the option
A pop-up box appears which allows you to manage the plugins. Managing includes enabling or disabling and viewing newly installed ones,
From the name, it is evident that this is a pitch correction plugin. Pitch correction is an integral part of vocal editing. The plugin works in windows and macOS. Not only will this be beneficial to your vocal editing needs, but you can also use it to manipulate instrumentals.
It is quite a resourceful installation to have. This plugin comes in a package that also has other plugins which you may choose to install. All these plugins fall under Melda Production, a company that produces audio plugins. Otherwise, the installation process itself is quite straightforward.
Click here to download.
After installation, you should see the plugin in the manage plugins pop-up box under the enabled option, where it will be available for selection. In the image below, under the state tab, you can see that the plugin is indicated as new.
To enable it, click on the plugin and then on enable, finalizing everything by clicking OK. Now, whenever you want to access it should be available under the effects tab.
The interface is straightforward with minimal features and buttons. Therefore, it will not take much time for you to get used to it.
Check the preset entry which provides several ways of manipulating the vocals such as changing a man’s voice to a woman’s and vice versa, as well as vocal doubling.
TDR Nova is a dynamic equalizer plugin. It is free to download. You can subscribe for instant updates with your email before downloading, but it is not mandatory. You can download it here.
This plugin has several presets and it also allows you to save additional user presets as well. The functionality ranges from adjusting volumes to the elimination of sibilance within the vocal recording.
A common issue that I face most of the time while recording is the imbalance of loudness throughout the track. If you experience this as well, this is your ideal go-to plugin to correct the loudness difference.
TDR Nova does parametric and dynamic, wideband and multi-band compression and channel strip.
I love the fact that there are nitty-gritty details in the customizability of the interface. You can adjust the drag sensitivity, mouse configuration, and scale of the interface.
For more information, you can download their manual here.
Some statements have a repetition of sibilant sounds that occur as a result of pronouncing words that require us to force air via a narrow channel. A statement like – the soldier’s shin was sore – will have lots of sibilance due to the s consonant. This is not the only fricative sound as others like f and th might be irritating when they reoccur in your vocal recording.
Click here to download this plugin. You will be required to create an account therefore you require a valid email address. Having a Techivation account allows you to download the plug-ins installers, activate free trials, etc on their website.
During my initial days as an audio producer and editor, I never put into consideration avoiding sibilance in my recording, removing or attenuating them.
With time I got better and noticed the presence of such sounds, their irritating and distracting nature, and worse their ability to ruin the processing of my mix. This has been a useful plugin to help me deal with some of the above-mentioned issues that result from fricative consonants.
If you are in search of a plugin to add richness and depth to your vocal recordings, then you should consider the vocal doubler. To download click here. You need to provide a valid email address after which their support team will send you an installer link, information about the system requirements, and the serial code that will be required when launching the plugin interface.
It is free to use and you can have a quick view of the system requirements here.
The interface is not complex with just a few features and buttons to work with. In the bottom section, there is an Enable checkbox that allows you to select and deselect, so that you can listen to the audio with and without the effect.
Whenever your vocals are amid other elements, be it instrumentals or sound effects, you can use Vocal Doubler to make your voice stand out and add depth to your overall mix.
The Klanghelm DC1A is a compressor plugin. The interface has a simplistic touch favoring budding audio editors and its functionality is also beneficial for experienced mixing engineers. It is 100% free to use.
The plugin offers a variety of ways to apply compression. The options (deep, relaxed, dual mono, and negative) are at the bottom of the plugin’s interface. Their functionality varies allowing you to apply changes such as high pass filters as well as compression to different channels separately.
Plugins are a very integral part of advanced audio editing. Audacity is a free and open-source program. Due to this fact, you find its functionality in some cases is limited. This is where plugins come in providing additional solutions to some that do not exist within the program. Another ideal fact about this interdependence is that as a user you get to choose which effects you need and which ones you do not.
Audio editors and mixing engineers have the day-to-day effects that they use. These effects can be categorized into different groups. These categorizations include spectral, which feature effects such as panning, modulation, dynamic, and time-based effects which have effects like reverb and echo. This article tries to address these common effects by suggesting plugins that are used in these common cases.
For instance, the last plugin that I covered, Klanghelm DC1A falls under dynamic audio effects. There are lots of these plugins available over the internet but I believe this is a good way to start and they help with some of the basic audio manipulations.