Effective Wind Noise Reduction in Premiere Pro

Effective Wind Noise Reduction in Premiere Pro
Effective Wind Noise Reduction in Premiere Pro (Photo credit: Fotogrin/Shutterstock)

Wind noise – the bane of outdoor recordings! That persistent whoosh can easily overpower dialogue, ambience, and the overall quality of your video project. Thankfully, Adobe Premiere Pro offers a robust arsenal of tools to combat wind noise and bring clarity to your audio. This comprehensive guide will equip you with the knowledge and techniques to effectively reduce wind noise in your Premiere Pro projects.

Understanding the Enemy: Wind Noise Characteristics

Wind noise primarily resides in the low-frequency range of the audio spectrum. This rumble can mask the higher frequencies crucial for clear dialogue and ambience. While the exact frequency range can vary depending on wind intensity and recording conditions, it typically falls below 500 Hz.

Conquering the Wind: Noise Reduction Techniques

Premiere Pro offers several approaches to tackle wind noise, each with its own advantages and limitations. Let's delve into the most effective methods:

1. The High Pass Filter: A First Line of Defense

The High Pass Filter is your initial weapon against wind noise. This filter allows all frequencies above a specific cutoff point to pass through, essentially filtering out the low-frequency rumble of wind. Here's how to use it:

  • Locate the High Pass Filter: Navigate to the Effects panel (Window > Effects). Expand the Audio Effects folder and then the Filter and EQ subfolder. Drag and drop the High Pass Filter onto your audio clip in the timeline.
  • Adjusting the Cutoff Frequency: In the Effect Controls panel, locate the Cutoff Frequency parameter. This setting determines the threshold below which frequencies will be attenuated. Start with a low value like 80 Hz and gradually increase it while listening to the audio preview. Aim to find the sweet spot where the wind noise diminishes without affecting the desired audio content.
  • Be Cautious: Applying too high a Cutoff Frequency can thin out your audio, removing essential low-end body.

2. The Parametric Equalizer: Surgical Precision

While the High Pass Filter offers a broad approach, the Parametric Equalizer allows for more targeted noise reduction. This tool lets you create specific EQ bands and adjust their gain independently. Here's how to utilize it for wind noise:

  • Introducing the Parametric Equalizer: Similar to the High Pass Filter, find and drag the Parametric Equalizer effect onto your audio clip.
  • Identifying the Wind Noise Frequency: Play the audio clip and listen for the prominent wind noise frequency. It might sound like a constant hum or rumble.
  • Creating a Narrow EQ Band: Click the Add Band (+) button in the Effect Controls panel. This creates a new EQ band. Adjust the Band Type to Bell and set the Frequency to the identified wind noise frequency (e.g., 120 Hz). Keep the Q (bandwidth) narrow to target the specific frequency precisely.
  • Attenuating the Wind Noise: Reduce the Gain value of the band. Start with a subtle reduction (around -3 dB) and adjust further while monitoring the audio preview. Aim to minimize the wind noise without affecting surrounding frequencies.

3. Embrace the Spectral View: Advanced Noise Reduction (Optional)

For complex wind noise profiles or stubborn noise that persists after using the above methods, consider venturing into the spectral view of Adobe Audition. Premiere Pro allows you to seamlessly transfer your audio clip to Audition for more advanced noise reduction tools.

  • Roundtrip to Audition: Right-click on your audio clip and select Open in Audition.
  • Spectral Editing: In Audition, navigate to the Spectral Frequency Display (Effect Rack > Spectral and Phase). This view allows you to visualize the audio frequencies as colors.
  • Identifying and Removing Wind Noise: The wind noise will typically appear as horizontal streaks in the low-frequency range. Use the selection tools to isolate the wind noise and apply noise reduction tools like Spectral Repair or Noise Reduction (process).

Pro Tip: Before applying any noise reduction technique, create a duplicate of your audio clip as a safety measure in case you need to revert to the original.

Additional Considerations for Optimal Wind Noise Reduction

  • Mind the Recording: Whenever possible, try to minimize wind noise during recording. Use windjammers for microphones or record in sheltered locations.
  • Experimentation is Key: The ideal approach depends on the severity and characteristics of your wind noise. Experiment with different techniques and settings to find the best solution for your specific audio.
  • Subtlety is Your Friend: Over-aggressive noise reduction can introduce unwanted artifacts or distort your audio. Aim for a balance between reducing wind noise and preserving the natural sound of your recording.

By following these techniques and considering the additional tips, you'll be well-equipped to combat wind noise and achieve clear, professional-sounding audio.

Beyond the Basics: Advanced Wind Noise Reduction Techniques in Premiere Pro

While the core methods covered previously form a solid foundation, Premiere Pro offers additional tools for tackling even more challenging wind noise scenarios. Let's explore some advanced techniques:

1. Noise Reduction Effect:

This built-in effect offers a one-click approach to noise reduction. However, it requires careful configuration to avoid unwanted side-effects. Here's a breakdown:

  • Locate the Noise Reduction Effect: Navigate to the Effects panel and expand Audio Effects > Noise Reduction/Repair. Drag it onto your audio clip.
  • Noise Profile Learning: This is crucial. Play a portion of your clip that only contains wind noise. Click the Capture Noise Print button. This allows the effect to learn the characteristics of the wind noise.
  • Noise Reduction Settings: Experiment with the Reduction slider to attenuate the wind noise. A higher value reduces more noise but can also affect the audio quality. Use the Frequency slider to target specific frequency ranges if needed.

2. DeEsser Effect (for Sibilance):

Wind noise can sometimes exacerbate sibilance (excessive high-frequency content) in speech. The DeEsser effect can help:

  • Locate the DeEsser Effect: Find it in the Audio Effects > Dynamics folder. Drag it onto your audio clip.
  • Targeting Sibilance: Adjust the Frequency parameter to target the sibilant frequencies (typically around 8 kHz). Use the Range slider to control how much of the surrounding frequencies are affected. Reduce the Reduction to attenuate the sibilance without affecting the overall audio quality.

3. Embrace the Power of Selection:

Premiere Pro allows for precise selection of audio regions. This can be helpful when dealing with wind noise that isn't consistent throughout the clip.

  • Isolating Wind Noise: Use the timeline selection tool to isolate specific sections with prominent wind noise. Apply noise reduction techniques only to the selected portions.

4. Embrace External Solutions:

For highly complex wind noise profiles, consider dedicated third-party audio plugins specifically designed for wind noise reduction. These plugins often offer more advanced algorithms and features compared to built-in Premiere Pro effects.


  • A/B Testing: Always compare the processed audio with the original to ensure the noise reduction sounds natural and hasn't introduced unwanted artifacts.
  • Documentation: Keep detailed notes on the techniques and settings used for wind noise reduction. This will be helpful for future projects with similar challenges.

By combining these techniques and a keen ear, you'll be well on your way to mastering the art of wind noise reduction in Premiere Pro, ensuring your audio sounds clear, professional, and free from the distractions of the elements.

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