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Isolate 2 people in a podcast

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Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby BongoBass » Wed Oct 14, 2020 3:00 pm

Hi All,

This is my first post on SOS. I use iZotope RX8 Advanced. I have a client that would like me to repair his podcast. He sent me a single mono file of his podcast. He has a few times within his talk where he and his guest talked over each other for about 2-5 seconds and now it bothers him. He didn't realize to do another take at the time he recorded and would like me to isolate one of the vocals so that I can turn it down or remove it so as to remove the conflicts. Is there any module in RX that would isolate 2 people speaking at the same time? To make a parallel to music, this would be like trying to isolate the background singer from the lead singer, assuming both were mono tracks (no L/R panning). I tried everything I know. The only thing I can think of is to try to go to the spectral view and manually select and delete portions until I get a decent result. That may take a long time and not get a good result, though. Hopefully my question is clear. Thanks!
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Re: Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Wed Oct 14, 2020 3:18 pm

Your question is clear... and your idea of using spectral editing is all I can come up with too.... Depending on what is being said at the time you might not need to 'delete' the unwanted talker's contributions. It may be sufficient just to attenuate them a bit -- 6dB might be enough -- in much the same way the console operator would ride faders in a live radio interview...

But spectral editing several 5-second sections of overlapping speech is going to be extremely time consuming and, to be honest, I don't hold out a great deal of hope for the resulting quality or clarity of conversation.

Are you sure your client hasn't still got the individual speech tracks recorded separately from the original recordings? A little re-editing from scratch would be much quicker and easier, and give far better results!

If separate tracks aren't available, it might just be best to encourage your client to learn from the experience and improve his interviewing technique! ;-)

(Unless he's been listening to BBC Radio 4 news programmes in which case he'll think talking constantly over the interviewee is standard professional practice! :( )
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Re: Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby Mike Stranks » Wed Oct 14, 2020 3:29 pm

Welcome! :)

I agree completely with what Hugh's said... Most people probably won't be over-bothered by the overlaps, but in attempting to deal with them you could well end up drawing attention to them. I think separate tracks (if available) is your best bet.

In your shoes and faced with only a mono file of two overlapping voices of - perhaps - a similar timbre I'd be saying, "Sorry, but..."
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Re: Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby BongoBass » Wed Oct 14, 2020 4:09 pm

Thanks, Hugh and Mike! I was thinking the same as you both just now. I didn't ask him if he had separate tracks. He might have them and may not be aware it is an export option for him. I also wanted to see if he would be ok to simply having me delete the overlaps that add no value to the message of the talk and for those that do, have his speaker punch-in those parts.

Other than that, I would unfortunately have to tell him I can't help him. I do enjoy taking opportunities like this to teach my client how to work better in the future. Hey, we were all noobs at one point, no? I like to pass it along.

iZotope is a great tool, but even it can't correct all things.
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Re: Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Wed Oct 14, 2020 4:52 pm

:thumbup:
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Re: Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby BJG145 » Wed Oct 14, 2020 7:56 pm

People talk over each other all the time. Just play him the latest presidential debate and tell him not to worry about it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRyznK9-w58
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Re: Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby BongoBass » Wed Oct 14, 2020 9:29 pm

Looks like he is ok with doing a punch in session. That's what I would do too if the conflicts were bothering me that much.
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Re: Isolate 2 people in a podcast

Postby BongoBass » Wed Oct 14, 2020 9:30 pm

BJG145 wrote:People talk over each other all the time. Just play him the latest presidential debate and tell him not to worry about it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRyznK9-w58
:lol:
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