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Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 4th, 2019, 4:49 am
by tovarisch
I also strongly suggest Phil Chenevert's excellent videos. See this Wiki page. Look for the word "Edit" on that page and watch those videos.

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 5th, 2019, 5:49 pm
by ColleenMc
Is there a limit to how much you can use the Amplify function to raise the volume of a recording? 5-10-20-30 decibels? If there is a limit, what the options to make a recording louder past that point -- is there something else to try or would you have to re-record?

Thanks,
Colleen

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 5th, 2019, 6:12 pm
by TriciaG
ColleenMc wrote:
August 5th, 2019, 5:49 pm
Is there a limit to how much you can use the Amplify function to raise the volume of a recording? 5-10-20-30 decibels? If there is a limit, what the options to make a recording louder past that point -- is there something else to try or would you have to re-record?

Thanks,
Colleen
Yes, there's a limit. The limit is "clipping" - when the wave forms reach maximum.

Audacity will show the maximum amount you can amplify when you highlight and go to Effect/Amplify. The number in the box is the max amount for that selection, where the highest peak will hit maximum. If you go past this (which there's a tick box in Audacity to allow clipping), it loses data (the stuff that went over maximum) and can cause unpleasant distortion. So don't check that box. :)

What I do to amplify without clipping is use Compressor. It squishes down the spikes so that you can amplify more.

One of Phil's videos on compression: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJ3lOTDsN6c

My default settings are as follows:
Threshold: -13 dB (This is the volume level of the wave form where it'll start to compress. -13 is a very light compression. On other recordings, I've done as much as -23 dB).
Noise Floor: -40 dB (this is the volume of your background noise. Leave it at default.)
Ratio: 2.5:1 - 3:1 (this is how much it'll squish the spikes)
Attack: 0.2 (leave at default)
Decay: 1.0 (leave at default)
NO checks in the check boxes

After compression you can amplify more.

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 5th, 2019, 6:48 pm
by ColleenMc
Thank you! This is very helpful!

Colleen

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 6th, 2019, 6:39 am
by lurcherlover
It is best to record at a reasonable level (it's called gain staging) so you do not have to increase or decrease the levels in post production. If you get close to LV's required levels then there is no need to increase (or decrease) levels more than 1, 2 or 3dB. Audacity is good at adjusting these amounts as previously mentioned, and you will end up with a better quality reading. If you record very low, for example, when you increase the gain by 20-30dB in Audacity the noise floor will increase as well and result in a noisier recording, and then you have to employ noise reduction which further degrades the quality.

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 21st, 2019, 7:44 am
by KevinS
Does anyone use 'click reduction'? (Is that what it's called? Removal?) I'm assuming this is to remove the clicks made by the mouse, but I could be wildly mistaken. I've never understood the darn thing, but, in truth, I end up editing out the 'clicks' by hand easily enough.

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 21st, 2019, 10:23 am
by TriciaG
The built-in "click remover" doesn't work well, IMHO. Instead, I use the de-clicker plugin that you have to install. And I only use it locally (not over a whole file) because it can cut out your wanted clicks (D and T sounds, for example).

Here's a thread: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=52753

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 21st, 2019, 11:35 am
by KevinS
TriciaG wrote:
August 21st, 2019, 10:23 am
The built-in "click remover" doesn't work well, IMHO. Instead, I use the de-clicker plugin that you have to install. And I only use it locally (not over a whole file) because it can cut out your wanted clicks (D and T sounds, for example).

Here's a thread: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=52753
Thank you!

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: August 24th, 2019, 12:53 pm
by pschempf
I recently bought a new laptop. I installed the current version of Audacity (2.3.2). My old laptop had 2.1.1. I'm having issues with the window that displays the waveform. In the old version the background was white; now it is gray and turns white for selected text. The cursor in the new version is is also smaller than in the older version. Both of these issues make it harder for me to see where I am in the text while editing. Is there a place in Audacity to change these settings? Going from a 17" screen to a 13" screen didn't help either, but I don't miss the weight of my old machine.

The new version also has a playback delay. When I click to start the playback, there's a 1 second or so delay. Tolerable, but it would be nice if the playback started immediately as it did in the older version.

Re: The all-new "HELP! I have an Audacity problem" thread

Posted: September 12th, 2019, 11:32 am
by philchenevert
I just made a video on how to download The latest Checker program and use it to find your volume level. Since Audacity has no built in way to to this I thought it might go in this thread as a work around to a common problem https://youtu.be/QKVOYsaDoRo The first four minutes is how to download it and the last part is how to find a decibel level. :D