Multi-track audio editing software

What is Audacity?

Audacity is a free, easy-to-use, multi-track audio editor and recorder for Windows, Mac OS X, GNU/Linux and other operating systems. You can use Audacity to:

  • Record live audio
  • Convert tapes and records into digital recordings or CDs
  • Edit WAV, AIFF, FLAC, MP2, MP3 or Ogg Vorbis sound files
  • Cut, copy, splice or mix sounds together
  • Numerous effects including change the speed or pitch of a recording

Recording Records in Audacity

  • Using the computer provided, login to your student account using your Bay College username and password
  • Turn on the external speakers
  • Take the dust cover off the turntable
  • Turn on the turntable
  • Open Audacity
  • IMPORTANT! In Audacity, go to Audacity > Preferences

Audacity screenshot preferences

  • Click "Recording" and check the box next to "Software playthrough of input" (Doing this allows you to listen to the record playing while recording in Audacity)
  • Click "OK"

Audacity screenshot software playthrough of input

  • Put a record on the turntable
  • Lift the turntable tonearm off the rest and gently place the needle on the record
  • In Audacity, click “Click to Start Monitoring” on the Recording Device audio channels to listen to the record playing (See screenshot below)

Audacity screenshot Click to Start Monitoring

  • If prompted, allow Audacity to access your microphone
  • Adjust the external speaker volume as needed  by turning the volume knob up and down on the speaker (See image below)

Audacity screenshot Click to Start Monitoring

  • Tap “R” on the keyboard to start recording within Audacity
  • Tap the Spacebar to stop recording
  • Tap the Spacebar again to playback what you've recorded (Loop playback = Shift + Spacebar)
  • Edit your sound within Audacity as needed (e.g. Trim audio, add effects etc.)
  • Save your sound as a .WAV file by selecting File > Export Audio or use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Shift + E
  • Name your file and click “SAVE
  • Bypass the “Edit Metadata Tags” window by clicking “OK
  • When finished recording, take the record off the turntable, place the record back in the white paper sleeve and slide it behind the record cover in the clear poly sleeve
  • Return the record(s) to the library staff at the circulation desk to be returned back to the library shelf

Useful Audacity Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Preferences = Ctrl + P
  • Start Recording = R
  • Start/Stop Playback = Spacebar
  • Loop Playback = Shift + Spacebar
  • Zoom In = Ctrl + 1
  • Zoom Normal = Ctrl + 2
  • Zoom Out = Ctrl + 3
  • Select All = Ctrl + A
  • Export Audio = Ctrl + Shift + E
  • Open = Ctrl + O

Useful Audacity Effects

  • Normalize = Effect > Normalize
  • Click Removal = Effect > Click Removal