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

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JachinandBoaz
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Post by JachinandBoaz » July 9th, 2020, 10:44 am

Good afternoon -

I'm using Audacity on a Mac. When I save my AUB file, it produces a separate directory that contains the same name as the project and is apparently being saved in tandem it. And when I go into this directory, there are several subdirectories containing lots of MBs of space that have been saved—almost as if the entire history of my edits to the recording are being accounted for. I'm still a novice to Audacity and to making recordings for Librivox, so I had a few questions if anyone happens to have some insight into this:

1a.) Are these supplementary files necessary to the AUB project file? I'm worried that if I delete these "phantom directories" that when I have to go back months from now to edit a chapter for a longterm Librivox project, I'll be locked out of the AUB file because of some nebulous link between the AUB file and these "phantom directories".
1b.) If these files aren't necessary, is there a setting in Audacity that I'm missing or something that I can adjust or checkmark so that these separate files don't get saved? As it stands now, a simple project can rack up hundreds of MBs of space in this seemingly unrelated file.

And as to general archiving of projects that other members do, I'm curious:

2a.) Is there really any point in saving the MP3 files after they've been uploaded to a Librivox project or is that just unnecessary archiving?
2b.) This question also applies to the projects. Is there a reason that Librivox recorders can think of in which it would make sense to preserve the AUB files once the recording has been uploaded to Librivox?...How likely and how frequent is it that a post-publication amendment is made to a Librivox recording?

Thank you!
Daniel

TriciaG
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Post by TriciaG » July 9th, 2020, 11:14 am

JachinandBoaz wrote:
July 9th, 2020, 10:44 am
Good afternoon -

I'm using Audacity on a Mac. When I save my AUB file, it produces a separate directory that contains the same name as the project and is apparently being saved in tandem it. And when I go into this directory, there are several subdirectories containing lots of MBs of space that have been saved—almost as if the entire history of my edits to the recording are being accounted for. I'm still a novice to Audacity and to making recordings for Librivox, so I had a few questions if anyone happens to have some insight into this:

1a.) Are these supplementary files necessary to the AUB project file? I'm worried that if I delete these "phantom directories" that when I have to go back months from now to edit a chapter for a longterm Librivox project, I'll be locked out of the AUB file because of some nebulous link between the AUB file and these "phantom directories".
1b.) If these files aren't necessary, is there a setting in Audacity that I'm missing or something that I can adjust or checkmark so that these separate files don't get saved? As it stands now, a simple project can rack up hundreds of MBs of space in this seemingly unrelated file.
Yes, they're necessary. They're little bits and pieces of the recording. The main AUP file is a road map for putting all those little pieces back together in the right order.

I don't save Archive files. I export my files as FLAC (which is lossless), and re-import them back into Audacity whenever I want to edit or continue recording. FLAC is smaller and just one file to deal with.
And as to general archiving of projects that other members do, I'm curious:

2a.) Is there really any point in saving the MP3 files after they've been uploaded to a Librivox project or is that just unnecessary archiving?
2b.) This question also applies to the projects. Is there a reason that Librivox recorders can think of in which it would make sense to preserve the AUB files once the recording has been uploaded to Librivox?...How likely and how frequent is it that a post-publication amendment is made to a Librivox recording?

Thank you!
Daniel
2a) It's good to save them for a while. If you look in the Error Reports forum, you can see times when recordings have been wrong (missed text, or it somehow got corrupted, or something) where it would be very handy for the reader to still have the file.
2b) I don't save the Archive files, as I mentioned before. I do save my final, PL-OK MP3 and the final FLAC file, which has the final edits but no noise removal or other post-processing.

There have been cases where something went wrong with the uploader/server/system. One time we lost a month's worth of data - posts, MP3s, and all. So I would at the VERY least keep the recording until the project is cataloged. But me, I've been keeping 'em since I started. Storage is cheap. ;)
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JachinandBoaz
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Post by JachinandBoaz » July 10th, 2020, 9:59 am

Thank you, TriciaG for that very informative post!

Daniel

Ambsweet13
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Post by Ambsweet13 » July 21st, 2020, 1:12 pm

When editing something with multiple tracks, how do you get the first track to "move" when playing and the other tracks to stay "locked" at 0:00.

On my current project, I have the stage directions in the first track, which I am going to edit everything else into, and the lines as the remaining tracks. I want to be able to move the stage directions along, while keeping the others where they are so I can then copy and paste stuff. Hope this makes sense. :D
A.M.B. :roll:
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TriciaG
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Post by TriciaG » July 21st, 2020, 1:19 pm

Try clicking on Tracks / Sync-lock Tracks (on/off). That MIGHT be what you want.

If not, try Tracks / Align Tracks / Move Selection with Tracks (on/off).
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ToddHW
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Post by ToddHW » July 21st, 2020, 2:25 pm

Ambsweet13 wrote:
July 21st, 2020, 1:12 pm
When editing something with multiple tracks, how do you get the first track to "move" when playing and the other tracks to stay "locked" at 0:00.

On my current project, I have the stage directions in the first track, which I am going to edit everything else into, and the lines as the remaining tracks. I want to be able to move the stage directions along, while keeping the others where they are so I can then copy and paste stuff. Hope this makes sense. :D
I find it much easier to open separate copies of Audacity for each input file rather than putting them into one file - where I would have the coordination troubles you are seeing. By being in separate Audacity windows, they are all independent, and I can move along the master file (originally the stage directions) in its window how ever I wish while I cut and paste my way along each of the other reader files in their windows.

Only time I use multiple tracks is when I am purposefully stacking tracks for multiple people talking at the same time. I have some stuff about that in viewtopic.php?f=27&t=44647&start=45

Thanks, Todd

Ambsweet13
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Post by Ambsweet13 » July 21st, 2020, 2:52 pm

ToddHW wrote:
July 21st, 2020, 2:25 pm
Ambsweet13 wrote:
July 21st, 2020, 1:12 pm
When editing something with multiple tracks, how do you get the first track to "move" when playing and the other tracks to stay "locked" at 0:00.

On my current project, I have the stage directions in the first track, which I am going to edit everything else into, and the lines as the remaining tracks. I want to be able to move the stage directions along, while keeping the others where they are so I can then copy and paste stuff. Hope this makes sense. :D
I find it much easier to open separate copies of Audacity for each input file rather than putting them into one file - where I would have the coordination troubles you are seeing. By being in separate Audacity windows, they are all independent, and I can move along the master file (originally the stage directions) in its window how ever I wish while I cut and paste my way along each of the other reader files in their windows.

Only time I use multiple tracks is when I am purposefully stacking tracks for multiple people talking at the same time. I have some stuff about that in viewtopic.php?f=27&t=44647&start=45

Thanks, Todd
Thanks! Opeaning separate Audacity files seems like the easier way to do it.
A.M.B. :roll:
Plays The Young Idea Peg O' My Heart
Solo Project Cape Cod

Ambsweet13
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Post by Ambsweet13 » July 21st, 2020, 5:43 pm

TriciaG wrote:
July 21st, 2020, 1:19 pm
Try clicking on Tracks / Sync-lock Tracks (on/off). That MIGHT be what you want.

If not, try Tracks / Align Tracks / Move Selection with Tracks (on/off).
Neither of these worked for the first audacity problem, but you must have read my mind, because sync lock tracks solved the next audacity problem: how to delete stuff in both the main track and the label track so the labels don't get messed up.
A.M.B. :roll:
Plays The Young Idea Peg O' My Heart
Solo Project Cape Cod

BrizeCrize
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Post by BrizeCrize » July 24th, 2020, 12:31 pm

I HOPE this is a simple question (with a simple answer) to save myself a little time. I know we're aiming for 89db for our exported mp3 files, but is there any way to check this PRIOR to exporting to the .mp3 file? So I don't have to export, do the check, perhaps go back to Audacity and crank up the volume, export again to .mp3, check again, and hope it's at 89 and above? (I'm kind of new to the editing end of it, so I try to keep things simple) Thanks

knotyouraveragejo
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Post by knotyouraveragejo » July 24th, 2020, 12:50 pm

If you prefer you can use the Replay Gain plugin in directly in Audacity to tell you how much your file needs to be amplified to get to 89 db. Instructions here:

https://wiki.librivox.org/index.php/Measuring_Volume_within_Audacity
Jo
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mightyfelix
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Post by mightyfelix » July 24th, 2020, 12:51 pm

BrizeCrize wrote:
July 24th, 2020, 12:31 pm
I HOPE this is a simple question (with a simple answer) to save myself a little time. I know we're aiming for 89db for our exported mp3 files, but is there any way to check this PRIOR to exporting to the .mp3 file? So I don't have to export, do the check, perhaps go back to Audacity and crank up the volume, export again to .mp3, check again, and hope it's at 89 and above? (I'm kind of new to the editing end of it, so I try to keep things simple) Thanks
Yes there is! It's called ReplayGain. Here is a link for more info and to download: https://wiki.librivox.org/index.php?title=Measuring_Volume_within_Audacity

Installation is a bit of a bugger, because you need to make sure it's in the right folder, and then you have to go in to Audacity and enable it before you can use it. That's why I don't usually recommend it to brand new readers. But it's very handy to have. I use it all the time, in fact!

(Cross-posted with Jo)

Peter Why
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Post by Peter Why » July 24th, 2020, 12:53 pm

BrizeCrize, roughly speaking, what you do is what I do every time .... except that you don't need that final check on volume. So: export as mp3, leaving Audacity open; carry the mp3 into checker, note how much the volume needs to be adjusted; delete the test mp3 file; return to the file in Audacity, select all, make the volume adjustment. The result will be within a decimal point or two of the correct volume.

(At this point, I carry out noise removal.)

Export the final mp3 and rename it for upload.

Peter
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pschempf
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Post by pschempf » July 24th, 2020, 12:56 pm

BrizeCrize wrote:
July 24th, 2020, 12:31 pm
I HOPE this is a simple question (with a simple answer) to save myself a little time. I know we're aiming for 89db for our exported mp3 files, but is there any way to check this PRIOR to exporting to the .mp3 file? So I don't have to export, do the check, perhaps go back to Audacity and crank up the volume, export again to .mp3, check again, and hope it's at 89 and above? (I'm kind of new to the editing end of it, so I try to keep things simple) Thanks
See Tricia's reply here for your options -

viewtopic.php?f=23&t=78791&p=1693888&hilit=check+volume#p1693888

Checking the volume of your file will likely be the least time consuming part of the editing process. I use Checker. It tells me how far from 89 dB I am. I can amplify the file by the required amount either + or - and have it exactly at 89 dB in less time it took to type this. It does require saving the file twice, but that only takes seconds even for a long recording. :)
Fritz

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Bookworm360
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Post by Bookworm360 » July 25th, 2020, 11:12 am

KevinS wrote:
June 11th, 2020, 9:03 am
Y'all ought to hear me cuss!

I had to do one of those Zoom meetings for the first time last night. Didn't care for the experience really, but that's beside the point.

Today I recorded about thirty minutes of material and the ends of many of the words are getting cut off. To be fair, the computer insisted on updating something last night, too, but that seems to happen often enough without ill effects.

So, I don't know what to do. I assume I will remove the Zoom program entirely and maybe re-load Audacity. Maybe I'll install my new modem too. If I'm not around for a day or two, you'll know what happened.

Errrrggghhhhh.
Yes, Zoom sucks.😡 It doesn’t replace face-to-face at all. :( (It also apparently messes with librivox.)
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loon
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Post by loon » July 25th, 2020, 11:20 am

Suggestion: make sure Zoom is completely shut down before running Audacity again. Windows, Mac and Linux all offer ways to show all programs that are running, even if they are lurking in the background.
Rich Brown
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