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This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Applying Audio Filters and Effects

Sound engineers go to great lengths to record high-quality sound during movie making, but what you hear when watching a movie is much different than what you would hear on the set.

A soundtrack is usually sweetened in several ways: speech is given a bit more warmth, background noise is minimized, and so on.

iMovie HD includes several tools for punching up the quality of your movie’s audio and sweetening the mix.

Whether you captured audio using a camcorder or imported it from iTunes, it’s all digital information—which means it’s malleable and ripe for improvement (or just experimentation).

To Add an Audio Effect

  • Step 1. Select the video or audio clip to which you want to apply an effect.
  • Step 2. Click the Editing button and then the Audio FX button.
  • Step 3.
  • Step 4.

Deleting an Audio Effect

Select the audio clip and press the Delete key to remove the effect.

Updating an Audio Effect

When you apply an audio effect, iMovie HD renders a new audio clip, but doesn’t delete the original clip; the effect acts like a layer on top of the original. (Video effects work the same way; see page 256.) The advantage of this approach is that you can “stack” multiple audio effects on a clip and have each effect interact with the layer beneath it.

Unfortunately, you can’t pick a layer and change its settings. You must select the audio clip and press the Delete key to remove the effect, and then reapply a new effect with new settings. And if you’ve applied multiple effects, you need to remove the most recent layers to get to the one you want.

Reduce Background Noise

To minimize the amount of wind or road noise (if the footage was shot in a car, for example), apply the Noise Reducer audio effect. You don’t have much control over isolating specific sounds, but this effect does an adequate job of limiting white noise.

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