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A Comparative Discussion: Noise Suppression Vs. A Noise Gate

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Today’s post will discuss the concepts employed here in every audio and soundtrack forum. If you are out to buy any audio or sound-related item, say a headphone or a pedal board for an electric guitar, then having a noise suppressor or a noise gate feature is necessary. However, to employ them effectively, you must first understand the functionality of each.

Before we proceed further, we would like to brief you about the two. Noise Gate and Noise suppressors target and eliminate unwanted sounds from the external mediums—however, the mechanism of “how” separates the former from the latter. Now, without further ado, let us see the specificities of both. Here we present a detailed comparative analysis of Noise Suppression vs A Noise Gate

Explaining Noise Suppression And Noise Gate

We have explained the concept and the mechanism of Noise Gates and Noise Suppression in the following manner:

NOISE GATE: The noise gate works just like a sound barrier. Furthermore, this barrier is dynamic and adjustable. The working mechanism of the noise gate is relatively simple. It focuses on the intended audio by creating a barrier against unwanted external noise. The noise gate’s sound barrier works as an auditory threshold, which allows external noise up to a specific audible frequency. Any noise crossing the point will not make it to the ears of the listener or the final audio.

 It also exhibits expanding and compressing features. The expanding features allow the louder parts of the audio to get louder. The lower notes of the audio get lower. The compressor feature works contrary to the expanding feature; it lowers the loud parts and increases the audio of the lower parts.

NOISE SUPPRESSOR: The mechanism of the Noise Suppressor is comparably more complex than the noise gate. The Noise Suppressor does not create a threshold for noise but actively filters them out of the original audio. Though it keeps the original audio intact, people claim it distorts it somewhat. Some even claim that Noise Suppressor potentially takes away the soul of musical audio or recording.

The Difference between the Two 

People interchangeably use the two concepts of Noise Gate and Noise Suppression. However, both have differences, as you have just read about them. For instance, the Sound Gate eliminates any sound beyond the user’s threshold. On the other hand, the Sound Suppressor brings down/ lowers the noise and filters out the intended audio frequency. This way, the final audible product is more precise than the original. You have to understand Noise Suppression Vs a Noise Gate to identify their primary differences. 

Application Of Noise Suppression and Noise Gate

Guitarists and music recording studios mainly use Noise Suppressor and Noise Gates. Generally, the strings of the guitar create unwanted hums. Moreover, when one uses pedal platforms, the buzz or the unwanted noise becomes more apparent. As a result, it adds a lot of unwanted musical flaws. Besides the guitar, other musical instruments too create noise. For instance, the critical tapping sounds while playing the piano or drum hitting sounds; all add noise to the audio. Noise Gates and Suppressors thus become practical tools in eliminating these unwanted sounds. Apart from these, one can employ Noise Suppressor and Noise Gate for other purposes. We have enumerated them as follows:

  • One can use Noise Suppressor or Noise Gate to interact with office colleagues over video calls. Using Sound Gate or Sound Suppressor enables sound clarity at both ends. Hence communicating becomes effective, and auditory barriers also diminish.
  • Furthermore, you can also employ them for webinars and podcasts. Noise Gates and Noise Suppressors can be very beneficial when working remotely. There are often various types of sounds at home, such as yelling, honking cars, clacking utensils, screaming and crying kids, etc. Working around such auditory disturbances can be very irritating. Moreover, it also hampers your work altogether. Hence, using Sound Gate or Sound Suppressor can be helpful in such situations.
  • One can also employ Sound Gate and Sound Suppressor for recording podcasts. The podcasting mics are often too sensitive to pick up even the slightest sound of scratching or your hands brushing through hairs. Hence, the two can optimize or even eliminate these minor auditory disturbances.

Final Verdict: Which One To Use?

Both Sound Gate and Sound Suppressor are good options for audio optimization. Though both have different application modes, they will work fine to make your audio high-quality. However, one must mind the specificities of each and mindfully exploit it to its full potential. 

I hope this article on Noise Suppression Vs. A Noise Gate has enlightened us on the unique features of both.