Making a "Soft-Vocal" Instrumental in Audacity

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Introduction: Making a "Soft-Vocal" Instrumental in Audacity

About: 6'3" electro-mechanical engineering technician with a taste for spicy foods and things that fly. Enjoys long walks on the beach. Other hobbies include watching the sunset from a picturesque grassy knoll, indul…

Okay, today I'm going to show you how to make a "soft-vocal" instrumental (An instrumental with soft vocals) in Audacity, a free, cross-platform sound editor. (An instrumental is lyric-free music or just instruments.) ***This instructable does not work with "mono" type audio, it must be "stereo."***

Thanks to LDW, I will provide these instructions on how to make you audio file a "Stereo" type file
::To make the audio file stereo simply copy the track to a new track and save the track as a whole file, making it dual-channeled! :D-Thanks!

This is kinda picky on which songs you use. Sorry about that, it's not for professional work. ;)

Step 1: Download Audacity

First off, if you don't already have it, you need to download Audacity here Home

Step 2: Open Audacity

Now that you have Audacity downloaded, open it up.

Step 3: Importing Music

Now you need to import your music. To do this, you need to go into the toolbar of audacity, and click the "project" box. A list will appear, click import audio, and find and select the audio file you would like to make a "soft-vocal" instrumental out of.

Step 4: Imported Audio

Now your music should be imported, and it should look like this, a "sawtooth" waveform.

Step 5: Splitting Stereo Track

Now you need to split the stereo track. To do this, click the little arrow beside the song's name, and from the drop down menu, choose "split stereo track." The track should now be split. If not, the track is mono, and unfortunately as I stated, this does not work with mono tracks.

Step 6: Now to Invert the Track

Now, you need to invert the bottom track. Click the bottom track to make it fully "grayed out." (It will be grayer than everything else.) Now while still grayed out, select from the toolbar, the "effect" button, and drop down menu will appear. Select "invert." (My effect list looks different because I downloaded extra plug-ins from the Audacity website. But you don't need to worry about that, they are optional.)

Step 7: Make Both Tracks Mono

Now you need to make both tracks mono. To do this, select the little arrow beside the name again, and select "mono." You need to do this to both tracks.

Step 8: Make Into One Single Track

Now to make it into one single track. To do this, you need to download the lame_enc.dll file. Once downloaded, go to the toolbar and select "file." The drop down list will appear, select "Export as MP3..." You will be prompted with a pop-up telling you that you need to select the "lame_enc.dll" file. Select the "lame_enc.dll" file from wherever you saved it. And after exporting to wherever you selected, you'll have a "soft-vocal" instrumental of the audio you used!

Step 9: Finish

You should now have a "soft-vocal" instrumental of your audio. But you make still hear a faint presence of lyrics, and that's supposed to be there. To make this quieter, you need to go back up to the "effects" tab on the toolbar, and from the menu, select "amplify." You need to amplify it in the negative direction. (like -4.8) Then re-export it as MP3, and your done! Uses for this could be to included lyrics synced to the music, and make karaoke. Have fun!

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    79 Comments

    0
    19wilkinsonz2

    I am not trying to be rude, but this tactic is a bad one. There are two ways, and both suck. I think that most songs will not work, but if u have a slow and soft song, then it may work better. I was trying to do Bo$$ by Fifth Harmony, and it sounded horrible.

    0
    Hoboman
    Hoboman

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I understand, it's totally alright, and I appreciate the feedback :o) I'm always surprised on what songs will and will not work. I'm no audio engineer and I'm not exactly sure of the mechanics behind this process, but it is always a fun venture to experiment with the technique with various tracks; especially since this method usually produces a result with less quality than the original.

    I've used heavier songs before with this method and found successful results. Usually I attribute this to the busy musical work going on, drowning out the softened vocals, and I would assume a softer song would actually be harder to mask successfully.

    I did note in the beginning of the instructable that it /is/ quite the finicky process, and I'm sorry that your result wasn't "music to your ears" ;o). I would look into karaoke tracks if you really want a refined version of your song without lyrics. You'd be surprised by the amount of songs you get ahold of nowadays! Thanks again for your feedback and reading my 'ible.

    0
    MyV2
    MyV2

    Reply 4 years ago

    it worked but you could still hear the vocals at most part (i listen to vocaloid UTAU hetaloid ect.) but it doesnt really work for that sadly but still good job

    0
    H-B02
    H-B02

    Question 2 months ago on Step 7

    I pulled in a WAV file to use, and after I inverted the bottom track I clicked on the title and the mono option isn't able to be used.

    0
    poonam.kulkarni88
    poonam.kulkarni88

    Question 6 months ago

    ' Mono' option not found on my audacity interface? any other method should I try?

    0
    Hoboman
    Hoboman

    Answer 6 months ago

    This was written for a version of Audacity from 2008 so I'm sure some things have changed. If you don't have a mono option present, your audio might already be in the mono format. In your track, try pressing the drop-down arrow and seeing if there is an option for "Split Stereo to Mono" in the list.

    If that doesn't help, this method is old and can be finicky and you may want to look for an newer process. I haven't experimented with this process in years but I'm sure there are better alternatives now 13 years later!

    Best of luck!

    testsas.png
    0
    DeVictron
    DeVictron

    2 years ago

    Nice, I tried it and it worked a little... Great work man

    0
    IsaacG63
    IsaacG63

    3 years ago

    Here's my method for making an instrumental in audacity:
    1. Import your song into audacity

    2. Click on split stereo to mono

    3. Invert the bottom track

    4. Import your song below the current project

    5. Make this track have a low pass of 250 hz and 48 db

    6. Import your song below the current project again

    7. Make this track have a high pass of 6000 hz and 48 db

    8. Export your song

    0
    missong
    missong

    Reply 3 years ago

    if you dont mind,may you make the tutorial.i still didn't manage to do it

    0
    SydneyR18
    SydneyR18

    3 years ago

    I think Audacity has updated since this was last made, as the interface and where some of the buttons are is different. I also have a problem where I get to step 7 but it wont let me make either mono the option is greyed out.

    0
    shubhm5
    shubhm5

    5 years ago

    I I downloaded lame encoder but there is no option of export as MP3 in file file files so how do I export it I want it in instrumental can you do it for me

    0
    TaylorB78
    TaylorB78

    Reply 5 years ago

    Same

    0
    PinkyL
    PinkyL

    5 years ago

    Thank you! Will try this. Hopefully it will work for me ><

    0
    chipper35
    chipper35

    9 years ago on Step 9

    Exceedingly cool! I'm going to do this!!!

    0
    picbuck
    picbuck

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    That fools everybody. Effects become available only when something is selected.

    To select part of a track, drag across it. To select all of a track, click an empty spot in the left part of the track, where the volume and balance controls are.

    0
    Seaspider1
    Seaspider1

    12 years ago on Introduction

    even when I amplify it after all 9 steps, it doesn't make a change in the sound, I know I highlighted everything correctly. Any ideas?

    0
    Hoboman
    Hoboman

    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Like I said, this technique is very picky on what material it wants to work with...I'd really love to help you, but sadly I can't.

    0
    mar007com
    mar007com

    12 years ago on Introduction

    hi!I've done this all instruction.but sounds disapear after inverting and make mono each channel.help plss..

    0
    Hoboman
    Hoboman

    Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

    Sorry for the long reply, I'm not really sure why that is happening. There should be no reason that the sound disapears. Are you sure you followed the directions complete? (i.e. invert only one track/mono a certain channel?)