Introduction: Using the Audio Editing Software, Audacity

Audacity is a program that allows you to edit audio tracks in a vareity of ways. you can easily download it off the internet. in this instructable i will show you how to use some of the basic features.

Step 1: First Off

In order to use this program you will need a clip of Audio to use. Go under file and click open and browse for the file you want to use

Step 2: Tools

Once you have your Audio open, it will look like a timeline with scribblies all over. thats the Audio track. Up in the right hand corner there will be 6 boxes with little pictures in each box: the tools.

the first tool is the selction tool, it allows you to select a secetion of audio.

the next one to the right is the envelope tool. it allows you to edit the amplitute envelope of the track.

The third is the Draw tool. When zoomed up extremely close it allows you to draw paths to eliminate clicks and distortions.

the one to the bottom left is the magnify tool, which is used to zoom in or out on your audio track.

The next tool over is the time shift tool. you can use it to shift audio sections back and forth through the audio clip itself

The multi-tool mode will change functions depending on where on the track the cursor is located.

these are the basic tool you will use when editing Audio in Audacity.

Step 3: Toolbar

The tool bar is the bar right next to the tools. this holds the rewind, play, record, pause, stop, and fast forward buttons. they all do exactly what their name suggests. the record button is used for recording audio straight off of Audacity...you need a microphone. If you hold Shift when clicking the play button, this will enable Loop play which allows the Audio to restart everytime it finishes playing

Step 4: The Audio Pallets.

Notice next to each Audio part there is a grey pallet with the words Mute and Solo in it. This is the Pallet...as I call it. You can adjust how the audio plays here. If you click the drop down arrow more options can be seen

Step 5: The Generate Tab

The Generate tab allows you to generate sounds in your audio...each sound that the option makes is self explanitory

Step 6: Effect Tab

this is the fun part...the effect tasb. this tab has a list of optoins to either edit, distort, fix, and repair your Audio.

Step 7: The Basics

That covers a majority of the Basic concepts on Audacity...if you have any questions feel free to post a comment.

The file below is a mix of files i made on Audacity, the artist is Fort Minor.

Comments

author
jphoton made it!(author)2011-06-12

hi, audacity is a lot more than just a great audio editor...you can multitrack with it, and use many vst plugin effects. i did several albums completely with audacity, in some cases with over 50 tracks of audio, like this song here:
http://www.icompositions.com/music/song.php?sid=84913
if you take the time to learn it's ins and outs, you can achieve some pretty amazing results. you can plug your guitar, bass, mics, keys or whatever directly into the audio in of your soundcard and record multitracks....the version i use i compiled from source to be ASIO compliant (which means not only does it record and play with extremely low latency, but also can record up to 24 completely separate tracks at a time). this is the best freeware audio program out there, and is really similar to using a cassette recorder...no steep learning curve!! have fun with it!
peace
pink jimi photon

author
AlternateLives made it!(author)2011-01-06

Don't forget compressor and EQ! those are probably the most helpful tools available.

Compressor is kind of like having your hand on the volume knob, turning the sound down when it goes above a certain Db level. you can adjust this level with the "threshold" slider. "attack time" adjusts the amount of time to apply the effect when the level goes over, and "Ratio" adjusts the amount to drop the level.

EQ adjusts the separate frequencies of the signal. at whatever frequency you want to raise or lower, click to create a point. the built-in EQ is a pain to get right, so I suggest getting a VST plugin for the EQ, and maybe the compressor.

Google "VST plugins for Audacity" and you should find something.

author
jcksparr0w made it!(author)2010-04-26

Sometimes audacity is recording something and then just stops.  For anyone with this problem, you should defrag the hardrive.

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