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

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Post by philchenevert » December 2nd, 2018, 5:35 pm

Hi Nan, this is philthelibrivoxvideoguy who is glad to here your are finding ways to lessen those annoyhing clicks. Let us know if we can help in any way or if you have some more breakthroughs you want to share.
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Post by PattyT » December 12th, 2018, 1:38 pm

Tovarisch,

I'm sorry I left you hanging! I was planning and hosting a large event and everything else just got ignored. I'll be out of town tomorrow, but will look into this later in the week. Thanks for your help.

Patty

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Post by Piotrek81 » January 6th, 2019, 1:37 am

My Audacity no longer detects the mic. It all started when Audacity just stopped mid-recording, i.e the soundwaves stopped 13 minutes into the reading session with the Audacity window still being visible. Since then I can't select my mic from the drop-down menu. Is this a software problem? Should I re-download the thing? (And would the project files survive?) Or is this on the computer side?
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Post by tovarisch » January 6th, 2019, 7:04 am

Sorry to hear about your mic troubles. :(

In order to determine which part of your mouth-to-file chain path is at fault, you could try several different things. First, try plugging your microphone into another port (if it's a USB one). Second, try using some other software: on Windows try "Sound Recorder" on MacOS try Face Time. (BTW, do you use Skype or some other kind of voice-based communicator? Can *it* see your mic?) Third, try another mic (if you have one spare, even if it's not so nice sounding).

If you use a USB mic, the chain is (you) -> (mic) -> (cable) -> (USB port) -> (mic driver) -> (Audacity) -> (OS / file system) -> (storage). In this chain I'd say the mic and the port both can actually become disabled suddenly - they are electrical devices and subject to wear and damage. Check the cable as well, see if another cable makes it better (if you have a spare). Software rarely becomes disabled all of a sudden.

If you use a regular mic, the chain is similar: (you) -> (mic) -> (cable) -> (internal sound interface) -> (sound driver) -> (Audacity) -> (OS / file system) -> (storage). In this chain the parts between you and the sound driver also have electrical circuits.

Can two or more parts become suddenly bad at once? Yes, although it's much less likely. So, divide and conquer to find out which step is giving you trouble, then replace it.
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Post by Piotrek81 » January 6th, 2019, 8:00 am

Thank you, Tovarisch :)
I tried plugging the mic to other USB ports (I suddenly, after 2 years, remembered that I have 2 more to choose from :) ). Audacity wouldn't detect it either. Then I tried plugging another unrelated USB device. Got a response from those other 2 ports, but not the one that I normally use. EDIT, Hold on, I just rememberI have an as-yet unpacked powerbank. It works on all ports. The mic cable seems permanently attached to the mic and I don't have a spare USB mic to test (I used a round-plug one before the present one). I don't know anything about the "Sound Recorder" feature you've mentioned. Is it downloadable or in-built? EDIT 2: That's weird. I downloaded Sound Recorder and suddenly Audacity started seeing the mic again :hmm: Fear of competition? :lol: EDIT 3: Hold on, I spoke too soon. Audacity sees the device but no sound is produced. EDIT 4: And now it doesn't see it again. Back to square one. Sound Recorder doesn't see the mic either.
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Post by Nedge » January 6th, 2019, 9:57 am

I THOUGHT I had alleviated my rhythmic clicking problem, but alas, no. It seems better if I turn off the Wifi while recording, but they are still there, at unexpected times. The click removal tool messed up an entire chapter, since I probably was too stringent with it.

I notice it when I read something and then stop, and there is a pause. CLICK CLICK CLICK CLICK CLICK.

Other than editing by hand, which I do, or ignoring them, which I can't, are there any other solutions?

Thank you,

Nan
Nan

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Post by Nedge » January 6th, 2019, 10:04 am

tovarisch, I did try doing a recording and looking at the waves. I can't seem to GET the clicks to happen. The wifi is activated while I do the test. The mic is placed on a rug on my desk. Truly a mystery.

Here is a small sample. It could be that there ARE no answers and that I have to keep trying things until I figure it out. But I thought I'd ask again anyhow.


https://librivox.org/uploads/philchenevert/clicks.mp3 0.15 KB
Nan

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Post by lurcherlover » January 6th, 2019, 10:14 am

Very strange clicks at uneven intervals - sounds like something in the room. Check by un-plugging the mic and then recording with no mic for a few seconds. Are the clicks still there? If not there, then the clicks are coming through the mic. They don't sound like electrical interference so the mic must be picking them up in the room.

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Post by ToddHW » January 6th, 2019, 10:35 am

Piotrek81 wrote:
January 6th, 2019, 8:00 am
Thank you, Tovarisch :)
I tried plugging the mic to other USB ports (I suddenly, after 2 years, remembered that I have 2 more to choose from :) ). Audacity wouldn't detect it either. Then I tried plugging another unrelated USB device. Got a response from those other 2 ports, but not the one that I normally use. EDIT, Hold on, I just rememberI have an as-yet unpacked powerbank. It works on all ports. The mic cable seems permanently attached to the mic and I don't have a spare USB mic to test (I used a round-plug one before the present one). I don't know anything about the "Sound Recorder" feature you've mentioned. Is it downloadable or in-built? EDIT 2: That's weird. I downloaded Sound Recorder and suddenly Audacity started seeing the mic again :hmm: Fear of competition? :lol: EDIT 3: Hold on, I spoke too soon. Audacity sees the device but no sound is produced. EDIT 4: And now it doesn't see it again. Back to square one. Sound Recorder doesn't see the mic either.
Audacity will NOT recognize something plugged in AFTER Audacity is started. So you have to plug things in and then start Audacity. A nuisance when you are trying to solve problems...

Thanks, Todd

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Post by Piotrek81 » January 6th, 2019, 11:11 am

ToddHW wrote: Audacity will NOT recognize something plugged in AFTER Audacity is started. So you have to plug things in and then start Audacity. A nuisance when you are trying to solve problems...
I realize this. :) Unfourtunately, that's not it. Maybe it's a sign that I need a new mike. I have used this one for several years.
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Post by Nedge » January 6th, 2019, 11:43 am

It's the New Year, and so i'll ask about THIS problem with Audacity, too.

The recording is fine. (Click-filled, but fine.) But the playback to EDIT can be problematic. I save quite often because every once in a while, Audacity gallops out of control, and I cannot stop the bar from traveling to the right. No sound, just a runaway horse, so to speak.

The ONLY thing that works is to hit "Escape," and then reopen the file, which then has numerous warnings about damage and such.

Is this a thing other people experience?
Nan

"You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do." Anne Lamott

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Post by tovarisch » January 6th, 2019, 11:45 am

Nedge wrote:
January 6th, 2019, 10:04 am
tovarisch, I did try doing a recording and looking at the waves. I can't seem to GET the clicks to happen. The wifi is activated while I do the test. The mic is placed on a rug on my desk. Truly a mystery.

Here is a small sample. It could be that there ARE no answers and that I have to keep trying things until I figure it out. But I thought I'd ask again anyhow.


https://librivox.org/uploads/philchenevert/clicks.mp3 0.15 KB
Thank you for the sample. I am sure we together should be able to figure it out... The sound (I've amplified it to hear better) reminds me of some kind of mechanical action, like something snaps in the vicinity of the microphone; there is even a slight reverb (as if the mechanical oscillations continue while being dampened somehow, like a vibrating spring). I believe it is possible that the microphone itself does it. Can you remind us what microphone it is?
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Post by tovarisch » January 6th, 2019, 11:46 am

Piotrek81 wrote:
January 6th, 2019, 11:11 am
ToddHW wrote: Audacity will NOT recognize something plugged in AFTER Audacity is started. So you have to plug things in and then start Audacity. A nuisance when you are trying to solve problems...
I realize this. :) Unfourtunately, that's not it. Maybe it's a sign that I need a new mike. I have used this one for several years.
It takes two main subsystems to record - the mic and the computer. Can you try your mic on a different computer?
tovarisch
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    to PLers: do correct my pronunciation please

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Post by tovarisch » January 6th, 2019, 11:48 am

Nedge wrote:
January 6th, 2019, 11:43 am
It's the New Year, and so i'll ask about THIS problem with Audacity, too.

The recording is fine. (Click-filled, but fine.) But the playback to EDIT can be problematic. I save quite often because every once in a while, Audacity gallops out of control, and I cannot stop the bar from traveling to the right. No sound, just a runaway horse, so to speak.

The ONLY thing that works is to hit "Escape," and then reopen the file, which then has numerous warnings about damage and such.

Is this a thing other people experience?
I've never seen anything like you are describing here. Could it be your keyboard has a faulty key (or a few)? Is your mouse reliable?
tovarisch
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    to PLers: do correct my pronunciation please

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Post by Nedge » January 6th, 2019, 12:07 pm

The keyboard is fine and the clicking happens when I am NOT typing, or using the mouse, which is brand new. The clicking happened before Christmas when I got the mouse.

It is sporadic so I doubt that it can be the mic.

Sometimes, I go through four or five chapters with no trouble at all. It's a very strange thing. :)
Nan

"You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do." Anne Lamott

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