Field Report: Adobe Audition 3.0

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Performance at a glance
Improved editing features
Supports VST effects plug-ins
VST Izotope plug-in package
Loopology music library
New MIDI sequencer

Making it sound great

The creative possibilities stuffed into Audition 3 are endless. First, Audition boasts a complement of tools that allow for cleaning up and restoring audio. When digitizing old cassettes or reels, frequency specific Automatic Phase Correction effects are available to quickly correct azimuth problems. The Adaptive Noise Reduction filter allows for extra-critical elimination of unwanted noises that occur in a poor recording. This filter will find noise within the audio track, without the user's having to sample a segment of noise, which is sometimes impossible. Plus, if for example a ground loop buzz changes in frequency over the length of the audio clip, the Adaptive Noise Reduction filter will change, thus continually eliminating the noise.

Secondly, with the help of Izotope, Audition 3 is armed with a near infinite list of effects. For example, Audition 3 has introduced a multi-band compressor from Izotope in addition to the traditional dynamics compressor (both VST). The Mastering Tool, also VST, makes difficult mastering techniques easy. It is equipped with presets that allow for adjustment of the final mastering EQ, exciter, tube, reverb, Loudness Maximizer and stereo image widener. Izotope also delivers a time stretch feature, which transparently changes the pitch and/or tempo of an audio clip, and a tube-modeled compressor that replicates classic compressor techniques, and comes with plenty of presets.

Thirdly, Audition 3 supports multi-core technology. Dividing real-time effects across several processors reduces glitches and bugs, thus increasing productivity. In addition to multi-core processing, dual-monitor technology will help productivity as well. Two monitors not only give the user more desktop space, but more importantly, a quality dual-monitor video card usually handles the video processing, which lightens the CPU processing load.

The big bang theory

There are two groups of audio professionals we've failed to mention: the radio production folks who produce their own music, and the audio perfectionists who hear absolutely everything. For the music people, Audition 3 is bundled with Loopology, an extensive set of layered loops in different tempos and keys. These loops can be combined to create original sounding ads and imaging bed masterpieces. A new MIDI sequencer is also available, making music creation possibilities endless.

Next, are the type-A sound engineers. When in waveform editing view, switching the file to spectral display allows the user to physically change the waveform by seeing audio anomalies that aren't visible in the standard green waveform display. Harmonics, frequency-specific phasing problems, and other oddities can be edited using the spectral display. A healing brush and lasso tool allow the user to change the way the waveform looks, in order to change its sound. The waveform, in spectral display, can be exported as a BMP file to Adobe Photoshop, edited, and then imported back into Audition 3. Using this technique, the user can see the sound and edit accordingly.


Obviously, Audition 3 is far from lacking when it comes to creating top-quality audio. Whether a musician, voice-over artist or radio producer, Audition 3 is pushing the envelope by expanding creative possibilities, making affordable features efficient and available.

Wygal is the programmer, engineer and Web designer for WRVL in Lynchburg, VA.

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