NoiseAssist for MixPre II Series Plugin FAQ

In what applications can I use NoiseAssist?

NoiseAssist is very useful in many applications – for example, fast turnaround productions where there is no time for post, live broadcast and streaming, preview on set, feeds to video village, IFB feeds, rough guide mixes, and more. If you are delivering to post, they may want you to deliver unprocessed isolated tracks so that they have audio from location in the purest form to work with. If you deliver a mono mix, you can apply NoiseAssist to one of the L and R buses while leaving the other unprocessed.

NoiseAssist is another great tool in your toolbox and it is up to the sound mixer to use it wisely.

How much NoiseAssist suppression is good to dial into a channel?

The default amount is 6 dB, but this can be adjusted from 1 to 20 dB of suppression. Like any sort of signal processing, it is best to use as little as possible to get the job done.

How long does it take for NoiseAssist to learn the background noise signature?

It takes NoiseAssist 5-10 seconds from the time you enable the plugin to learn the background noise automatically. This requires no action on your part. When a channel’s gain is changed, or if a new noise is introduced, the algorithm will automatically re-converge in about 5-10 seconds.

Is NoiseAssist just a simple low-cut / noise gate / expander / compressor, etc ?

No.

How does NoiseAssist differ from an automixer?

NoiseAssist is vastly different from an automixer. Well-designed automixers such as Dugan or MixAssist are very effective for reducing noise build-up due to multiple open microphones – the automixer attenuates the entire audio signal for a given microphone. This per-microphone attenuation is termed “off-attenuation” – it is a simple but effective technique. This is quite different from true “Noise Reduction” or “Noise Suppression” like NoiseAssist, in which the audio signal for speech and the signal for background noise are treated independently through advanced signal processing techniques. NoiseAssist is very effective on just one microphone input, or it can be applied to the left or right mix bus. 

Can NoiseAssist be used at the same time as MixAssist?

Yes, absolutely. An automixer is still the best way to cut down on excess noise build-up due to multiple microphones. It is recommended to clean up a microphone first with NoiseAssist before going into MixAssist.

Is it better to apply NoiseAssist to an isolated microphone before going into the mix, or applying NoiseAssist to the entire mix?

NoiseAssist can be applied to the entire mix with excellent results. However, it is better to run NoiseAssist at a given microphone input, as it can then more easily discriminate between speech and background noise.

Does NoiseAssist get rid of rustling from clothes rubbing on lav mics?

No. NoiseAssist works very well for reducing background noise, but rustling noise is very loud and impulsive and would be considered a foreground sound. While NoiseAssist can sound quite miraculous for background noise, it can’t perform actual miracles.

Can I buy more than one NoiseAssist plugin?

You can only buy one NoiseAssist plugin per serial number, for a maximum of one instance of NoiseAssist.

Can I try before I buy?

We provide example WAV files for your consideration prior to purchase. All plugin purchases are final. As always, Sound Devices Support is available for all your post-purchase questions. 

Where can I apply NoiseAssist?

One instance of NoiseAssist can run on any of the isolated channels, bus L, or bus R.

What does one instance of NoiseAssist mean?

An instance is a single occurrence of an object – in this case, NoiseAssist. You can set NoiseAssist to run in one place on your MixPre – any single channel or any single bus. You cannot have NoiseAssist for MixPre II Series running on both buses, or multiple channels.

How does NoiseAssist compare to other noise suppressors on the market?

There are several excellent noise suppressors on the market, both real-time and non-real time. All of them will sound slightly different due to the complex nature of the algorithms. We put great effort into making NoiseAssist sound as balanced and transparent as possible.

How does NoiseAssist compare to GPU-based noise suppression?

“Real-time” GPU-based noise suppressors are effective, but are more applicable for gaming due to their > 50 ms latency and > 20W of power consumption. NoiseAssist has been custom designed for professional audio with excellent sound, very low latency, and low power consumption.

Can I still use the low-cut filter while using NoiseAssist?

Yes. NoiseAssist does its own processing independent from the low-cut filters in the MixPre II Series. With or without NoiseAssist, it is always best practice to reduce unwanted low-frequency noise acoustically at the microphone itself via windscreens. The low-cut filter is available to use as well to roll-off unwanted rumble.

I own multiple MixPre II Series units. Can I transfer the license?

The NoiseAssist plugin is unique to each unit and cannot be transferred between MixPre II mixer-recorders. 

Which MixPre models support the NoiseAssist plugin?

NoiseAssist for MixPre is available for MixPre-3 II, MixPre-6 II, and MixPre-10 II. The original MixPre-3, -6, -10T do not have the hardware required to run NoiseAssist.

I made a purchase from my smartphone. How do I download my license?

While this plugin may be purchased from a smartphone, the plugin must be downloaded from the online store to a computer or SD card in a computer, in order for the plugin to be installed onto the MixPre II. If purchased from a phone, you will need to return to the online store from a computer to get your download file. Simply go to store.sounddevices.com/device-features/, reenter your serial number, and click Look-up.

The store will:

  • Verify purchase
  • Bypass shopping cart screens
  • Show that the plugin has already been acquired for the device with that serial number
  • Provide the download link for the plugin

Then, you can download the LIC file to an SD card, insert it in your MixPre II, and activate it.