- Sound Forge is rated higher in 2 areas: Likelihood to Recommend, Support Rating
Likelihood to Recommend
So, starting off, Cool Edit Pro is NOT a replacement for Adobe Audition. I used to use Cool Edit Pro and there is a world of difference in quality and ability. I use Adobe Audition for post-production editing. it it very well suited for that application. Truncate, fade, add a second or 2 of silence at the end or beginning, save as MP3 or almost any other format a client would want to receive the file in
Sound Forge is great for when you need to edit a lot of audio, like interviews, spoken word, podcasts, monologues, presentations, lessons—you name it. When you have a lot of audio to get through, Sound Forge can make it go by very quickly by using such features as the markers and hotkeys for normalization, inserting silence (where needed), graphical fades to remove audio artifacts, and so on. I've been able to edit a 1 hour interview in 2 hours, having made hundreds of edits in the process.Sound Forge is less useful for situations where you want to hear a realtime effects chain, or record with VST effects on. For instance, if you want the person being recorded to hear their own voice through headphones with reverb and compression applied, I do not know how to do this in Sound Forge. I think it is impossible, but even if it is possible, it is not readily apparent how to do so.
- Sound waves - Sound originates in the air, arising from its vibrations. The source of air vibrations can be, for example, a person's vocal cords, a drum or loudspeaker membrane, or guitar strings. These vibrations push nearby molecules together, slightly increasing the air pressure.
- Bit depth - The bit depth (depth) of digital audio determines the dynamic range for an audio file. When a sound wave is digitized (sampled), each sample is assigned an amplitude value that most closely matches the amplitude of the original sound wave. The higher the bit depth value, the greater the dynamic range, the lower the noise level, and the higher the digital sound quality.
- Automatic filters and special effects - Adobe Audition includes a suite of new sound effects ranging from circuit-optimized Surround Reverb to a suite of diagnostic effects.
- Analog Audio: Positive and Negative Voltage - The microphone converts the pressure of sound waves into electrical current: high air pressure becomes a positive voltage, and low pressure becomes negative. As these voltage changes move along the microphone wire, they can be recorded (as changes in magnetic field strength) onto magnetic tape or onto a vinyl record (by resizing the grooves on the disc).
- High-performance code - Adobe Audition has received a new redesigned code. This means increased speed of audio processing, accurate and smooth sound reproduction during preprocessing, the ability to work with multiple files and audio tracks at the same time, high overall performance.
- Editing, enhancing and restoring audio - Any professional working with sound dreams of making the source material as close to ideal as possible. For this, special studios are being built with soundproofing, special acoustic form, and equipment. Indeed, if there is such an opportunity, then it is better to record sound in the studio. Even in this case, insignificant noises and unwanted sounds can be received at the input: a click of a switch, a weak background of a poor-quality or punctured cable, or, for example, a defect in human diction, in which some hissing sounds turn into whistling sounds. It is worth going out to record an interview, for example, in an office space - phone calls or conversations in the next room, the noise of the city outside the window, sounds of the door being opened, etc. will be added.
- Markers - You can rapidly edit spoken audio to remove pauses, "ums" and "ahs," by using the marker feature while listening to the audio in realtime. Then, you go back and cycle through the markers and make the edits very quickly.
- Hotkeys - Once you've learned the Sound Forge hotkeys, you can rapidly perform a number of tasks related to audio editing and mastering.
- Fixing Clicks and Pops - The Graphical Fade feature allows you to easily draw volume envelopes in extremely short spans of audio, to successfully remove clicks and pops without affecting the rest of the sound.
- Organizing VST Plugins - Sound Forge has a nice way of organizing VST effects into folders so you can put your most regularly-used plugins in a "Favorites" folder while organizing others in a sensible way.
- It is a very expensive software, as is all of Adobe's other software.
- The interface and all the features can be difficult [for] beginners to get the hang of and get used to.
- When live listening to your recording with effects, there is an unavoidable latency which doesn't help.
- Batch Processing - While I like a lot of things about the batch audio processing in Sound Forge, the inability to hear the effects chain is limiting.
- Performance - Sound Forge takes a long time to open large files the first time they are opened, as it draws the waveform. It also takes a long time to save large files, every time.
- Inability to Listen to VST FX in Realtime - Technically you can listen in realtime, but only from the beginning of the waveform, rather and it is not easy. You have to open the VST effect and turn on the "Preview" mode which starts the audio from the very beginning, without being able to seek.
- Inability to Chain VST FX - You have to apply one, then apply the next, then the next, in a destructive mode. The only non-destructive way you can test out different FX chains is by applying them one at a time, and then hitting "Undo" over and over to get back to an earlier state. But you couldn't, for instance, add a reverb, then add compression, then go back and change the reverb. You'd have to undo the compression first.
- FX Preset Management - You can save FX presets but it does not save your last-used settings from session to session, and with some VST FX plugins, it doesn't even save them between application, undoing, and attempting to apply again.
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Additional Pricing Details—
Premium Consulting/Integration Services—
Entry-level set up fee?
Sound Forge Editions & Modules
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Based on 1 answer
It isn't easy to just jump in and learn the program, though most of Adobe products aren't easy to use the first time around. They UI is not friendly, and it is cumbersome and intimidating when you first try it. For simple audio changes, it seems to difficult to use, but for the more advanced audio work, it's the perfect solution.
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Based on 28 answers
I have not contacted support but given the large amount of users, I have no doubt that most problems can be solved fairly easily. A cursory search for known issues in Adobe Audition yields a support website with many workarounds posted by the official Audition team. They seem responsive and eager to continue fixing bugs and improving the application, which I take as a sign that their support is top notch, as I would expect from my experience using other Adobe products.
Sound Forge 10.0
Based on 2 answers
I've never contacted MAGIX for support, nor Sony or Sonic Foundry before them (Sound Forge is on its 3rd developer now). But I've always been able to find exactly what information I needed through the support of its large user community. There are a number of audio engineering forums available where you can search the post history to find out how to do specific things in Sound Forge, or you can make a new post if you are running into an issue that has not already been solved.
I mentioned earlier that I used software from Sony before moving to Audition. I really liked the Sony solution, but when I moved to Audition I found a lot more power and surprisingly, an easier-to-use solution. Working with the timeline in Audition is more intuitive for me. Audition has more effects than the Sony product had and the interface is better organized. Plus, Audition's workspace can be customized in ways I never figured out how to do in the Sony product.
I tend to use WaveLab for recording, because I can apply effects chains to the audio as it is coming in. So, if I'm recording a singer, I can give them reverb, compression, EQ, and other audio effects in realtime going into their headphones. I'm still recording the dry signal, so I can change all of those effects later if I wish. Sound Forge does not have a way to do this as far as I know.Where I do prefer Sound Forge is audio editing, specifically of spoken audio, although it is quite useful for music as well. I worked for a company once where I had to edit hundreds of testimonials. I was paid on a per-testimonial basis, flat rate, so I had a strong incentive to get them done as quickly as possible, without sacrificing quality. I would listen through a testimonial all the way through, marking every area that had a long pause, an "ah" or an "um," a click, pop, or other undesirable audio artifact. I could then cycle through the markers and fix all the problems quickly.
Return on Investment
- Audition makes Audio editing/production so efficient that we're able to produce audio more rapidly than with any other software.
- The option to save in multiple file formats, and to save session files, makes it easy to go back and make edits to completed projects with just a few clicks.
- All versions of Audition work well together, so whether you have the latest version or an older one, you can pick up any session file and edit as needed.
- Sound Forge has had a very positive impact in saved time editing files. It would have taken me hours longer using WaveLab, Audacity, Adobe Audition, or some of the other competitors for tasks like editing interviews.
- Sound Forge has also had a positive impact in saved time through its batch processing features which allow me to normalize and apply effects to a huge set of files all at once.
- Sound Forge has not had any negative impacts that I am aware of beside the cost.