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How to De-Ess Vocals with iZotope Neutron

The dynamic EQ in Neutron can be an incredibly transparent way to de-ess vocals if we’re hearing any unpleasant sibilant harshness.

So for example, listen for the words “sound,” “silent,” and “spin” in this gorgeous vocal. Let’s see if you can pick up on what I’m hearing.


I’m going to call up a preset. The basic female de-ess, which is in the vocal folder, and if I unbypass it, you can see that I’ve chosen a band shelf frequency of around 12,000 cycles, and I’m compressing this area of the frequency spectrum every time something harsh pops up. Those ess consonants.

Let’s do a little before and after. So here’s before.


[vocals, before de-esser]

Here’s after.

[vocals after de-esser]

So by using the dynamic EQ, we’re able to tame some of that harshness, but retain the body and the soul of the vocal performance.




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