It’s an extraordinary sporting event, one in which the spirits of the many nations of the planet come together, driven by a passion for one thing.
No, not football. Notch filtering, apparently. It’s not very often geeky audio matters cross onto the mainstream radar, but such has been the case in the divisive case of South Africa’s beloved vuvuzela horns. Yesterday, I used the whole thing as a teachable moment for learning Linux audio routing, but since then, my inbox has been bursting at the seams.
Along the way, we learn more about the instrument, how to play it, we meditate to the sound of its drones in an electronic remix, and (at top) even hear an orchestra of the things.
Here’s what you may have missed.
A meditative vuvuzela serenade:
First, let’s consider the beautiful, otherworldly sound of a swarm of vuvuzelas, droning. That’s what composer Alec Vance did, and the results are, frankly, gorgeous. Remember how yesterday I was talking about mindfulness? Who needs chanting monks when you’ve got this sound:
More on a post on his blog, though it may be a bit painful if you’re an England fan:
Vuvuzela! (USA Wins 1-1 vs England)
More, more, more vuvuzela:
How to play the vuvuzela and get a good sound [The Guardian]
http://www.vuvuzela.fm/ for 24/7 Vuvuzela radio, because you just can’t get enough of the sound
But wait — there’s more. So. Much. More.
Analysis and coverage
Boing Boing covers the physics of the sound and why it’s annoying:
Acoustic engineer explains why vuvuzelas are annoying
Isophonics explains what’s happening in the sound spectrum, and provides their own plug-in:
What’s all this about the vuvuzela?
The Beeb talks vuvuzela controversy:
BBC receives 545 vuvuzela complaints over World Cup [BBC News]
Can you block out the blare of vuvuzelas? [BBC News Magazine]
Ars Technica has a good round-up: Enjoy a vuvuzela-free World Cup, thanks to technology
http://vuvuzelafiltering.com/, an entire website devoted to the topic
Samsung TV: EQ using on-screen controls
Windows/Mac Ableton Live set
Mac LADSPA (works with Audio Hijack Pro), Linux LADSPA, Windows VST: Free Isophonics plug-ins [compiled plug-ins at the bottom of their how-to]
Mac, AU: Free Prosoniq VuvuX filtering plug-in [sonicWORX]
Mac, AU Free Isophonics plug-in [direct download link]
Mac, AU / GarageBand: How to filter Vuvuzelas using GarageBand
Mac, Logic: Vuvuzela-Filter how-to, in German
Mac/Windows, TDM + native: Waves has a “pro” solution that it developed “in conjunction with a major television broadcaster,” which works in conjunction with Pro Tools, Waves MultiRack, and Cubase. Of course, this being Waves, unlike every other solution listed here, it costs a load of money (to the tune of US$2900 for the noise suppressor and $300 for the parametric EQ), requires a dongle, and could get you sued if a sting operation catches you pirating it. Sorry, Waves, I couldn’t resist. You were an open target. A bit like a UK goalpost. BOOM! (okay, I’ll stop, before I get hatemail from Waves Audio AND the nation of England)
Waves Introduces Vuvuzela Noise Reduction
Mac, Soundflower + free app Vuvuzela noise filter app for Mac OS X [Albert Feller]
Mac, Soundflower + your TV: Mikkel writes in comments:
On Mac, I used SoundFlower in combination with AU Lab (comes with Apple Developer Tools, eg XCode).
You have to make an aggregated device containing the SF input and the Default System Output. Then route your tv-sound to the SF Output.
In AU Lab, you can make a new document with the aggregated device. Then double-click on the audio output and select Stream 2 in the Output Settings. You should now hear the tv-sound coming through. Then you can insert whatever effects on the input track. I used some of Apple’s AUParametricEq with frequencies 233, 466, 932 and 1864 Hz from the http://fetzig.org/ article, and it did seem to help.
I used a test video from youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xW5kByJPZos
Mac, Windows, PreSonus Voodoo One gets its own file
Windows, Winamp [German] Vuvuzela Filter Kostenlos!
Windows, Reaper: Vuvuzela Filter Windows
Windows, entirely using free (as in beer) software: Vuvuzela audio filter using (free) Windows software
Windows, VLC [German]: Vuvuzela Filter für VLC
Windows, Mac, Linux in a free Pd patch: http://puredata.info/Members/anechoic/patches/pluginvuvuzela.pd/view [Kim Cascone]
Windows, Mac, Linux – another free Pd patch, this one with copious blog documentation, too:
http://joaomartins.entropiadesign.org/2010/06/15/vuvuzela-filter-a-puredata-approach/ [Ricardo Lameiro]
And, of course, previously on CDM, Fedora and Ubuntu instructions:
Filter The Vuvuzela Horn Out of the World Cup; Learn JACK Routing on Linux
Okay, does anyone have time left to actually watch the games?