Extracting or isolating vocals with 9.5 - Possible? How?

I’d like to extract or isolate vocals in various audio files (flac, wav, m4a). Is this possible with 9.5, and if so, how? I’m not expecting a perfectly clean result, just something that enables me to hear the vocals more clearly with minimal audio from instruments.

Thanks for any assistance.


Nothing built in. Lots of plugins can do a passable job with this task. Good article here https://www.soundonsound.com/techniques/extract-vocals-stereo-mix. Best of luck!

Nothing built-in to WaveLab that I’ve seen.

Doing this will always be a compromise to some degree, you just need to find the one with the smallest compromise.

I think right now the winner is the Music Rebalance module in iZotope RX:

Thank you, Thomas and Justin, for the quick replies. I’ll study the SOS article and also take a look at the info on the Music Rebalance module in iZotope RX (which I don’t yet own but now intend to purchase). Justin, I see that RX also offers, in the RX 7 Advanced product, a “Center Extract” feature (https://s3.amazonaws.com/izotopedownloads/docs/rx700/en/center-extract/index.html). Do you have any thoughts on the advantages and disadvantages of Music Rebalance compared with Center Extract? Thanks again for any assistance!


No problem. This is not something I really ever do so I’m not the best person to speak about it but Center Extract is likely to remove a bunch of other stuff other than the vocals, and this also assumes the vocals are panned in the center which isn’t always the case.

I think the iZotope Music Rebalance is able to work on another level that we haven’t really seen before with software.

Thank you, Justin. You make good points about the downsides of Center Extract—I hadn’t thought about that. I’ll go with RX 7 Standard, which has Music Rebalance but is also much less expensive than RX 7 Advanced.

Looking forward to using this. Thanks, again!


No problem. You can always try the demo first. WaveLab does many great things but it seems that iZotope is the current leader for this specific task.

Unfortunately not a plugin, more an alternative to WaveLab, but yes, this does the job. You can demo the full functionality for 10 days. On certain material it is astonishingly good, but bear in mind it is intended primarily for rebalancing rather than perfect isolation, which it nevertheless can do really well, albeit with artifacts. You’ll need at least RX 7 Standard – pricey if you’re just looking for that one funtion though!

If you’re in that price range, you should also try Melodyne, but that has quite a learning curve when you want to do more than just straight-forward pitch correction or note seperation. It is nevertheless time well invested and a skill that has many more uses.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, MrSoundman. As it happens, I’ve now purchased RX 7 Standard, and so far am very pleased with the results, notwithstanding the artifacts. Thanks for mentioning Melodyne—I’ll take a look at that.


Here’s another one: F-REX … I haven’t tried it but it would seem to be a deluxe version of the “center extract” technique.

Thank you, MrSoundman, I’ll check it out.