[audacity4blind] Re: Creating Multiple Tracks

  • From: "Rick Boggess" <rboggess54@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <audacity4blind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 29 Nov 2014 23:08:18 -0600

Thanks.  I have done some experimenting and  I'm beginning to understand
what is going on.  I typed r to record the first track and press space.
When I pressed r again I heard what I had recorded.  I then pressed space
and then r and was able to record a second track.  When I press enter to
select any of the tracks and try to listen I must listen to all the tracks
I've recorded although they show up as 1, 2, 3, etc. 




From: audacity4blind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:audacity4blind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Gary Campbell
Sent: Friday, November 28, 2014 12:48 PM
To: audacity4blind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [audacity4blind] Re: Creating Multiple Tracks


Hi Rick,

You want to generate a separate file for each track.  You could record each
track and save it to a file, as suggested, then record the next track and
save it.  Or you could record each topic, after each topic press space to
stop, then r to record the next track.  Audacity starts recording a new
track at the current cursor position, so the second track will start at the
end of the first track.  If you press HOME (i.e. by accident, or to review
what you did, the new track might start somewhere else, like at time 0, but
that's okay.  If that happens select all the tracks and do Tracks > Align
end-to-end.  This isn't important for the export, but it will make it easier
to listen to what you've done and understand how your content will fit
together, also you can more easily tell the total length of your project.

This idea of tracks starting at somewhere other than time 0 might seem a bit
odd, but it will become clear with a bit of experimentation. Open a new
Audacity project, press r and record a bit, say 30 seconds, then press SPACE
to stop.
Now, without doing anything else, press r again and record a second track,
then press space to stop.  Just for fun, press HOME, then r and record a
third track, and press space to stop.
Now press HOME and listen to what you did.  You will hear the first and
third track playing together.  When the first track finishes you will hear
the second track.
Press CTRL+SHIFT+a to deselect everything.
Move to the second track and press ENTER.  Your screen reader will indicate
it is selected.
Now press j.  j and k are for the selected tracks what HOME and END are for
the whole project.  
Press space-- the second track will start playing.  Press space again to
Now check your position.  If your first track was 30 seconds long, track 2
will start at 30 seconds.
Now press ENTER to deselect the second track, downarrow to move to the 3rd
track, and ENTER to select it.
Press j and check your position.  It is at 0.

There are several ways to deal with the first and 3rd tracks playing on top
of each other.  The first way is to align the tracks end-to-end.  This might
be the best thing to do for your job.  Press CTRL+a to select everything,
then press ALT+t,a to move to the align submenu of the Tracks menu.  The
first item is align end-to-end, so press ENTER.
Now play your project and you will find that the 3rd track starts at the end
of the 2nd.
Press CTRL+SHIFT+a to deselect everything, move to track 3 and press ENTER
to select it, then j.  You are at the start of track 3.  Check your position
and you will find it starts at the time of the end of track 2.
You can now edit any of the tracks by making sure only the tracks you are
editing are selected.  If you do something to change the length of one of
the tracks, you will have to realign them.  For example, assuming your first
track was 30 seconds long, move to it and select ENTER.  Position the cursor
at 25 seconds by either playing it, or go to the selection toolbar and set
the start of the selection to 25 seconds.  From the track, press SHIFT+k,
which will select from the 25-second point to the end of track 1.  You now
should have the start and end times at 25sec and 30sec, respectively.  Press
DEL to delete.
Now press HOME and play your project.  There will now be 5 seconds of
silence between the end of the first track and the start of track 2.  Since
you are going to put each track in a separate file, this doesn't really
matter much.  However it would probably be easiest to work with if you fixed
this.  Select all the tracks and do Align end-to-end again and the gap is

The second way is to not align the tracks and mute the tracks you don't want
to hear or put the ones you do in Solo mode.  Since the first 2 tracks are
aligned and the 3rd track is the only problem track, we'll mute it.  Move to
track 3 and press SHIFT+u.  Now the track will identify as "mute on", and
when you play, you won't hear track 3.  (Sometimes you have to switch to
another track and back for the screen reader to be aware of this change.)
Instead of muting track 3, you could put track 1 in Solo mode.  To do this
move to track 1 and press Shift+s.  The track will now identify as Solo on.
Which you use will depend on what you are doing and your personal taste, but
remember that muted tracks aren't exported.  If you are using mute,
CTRL+Shift+u (unmute all) and CTRL+u (mute all) are handy keystrokes when
working this way.

When you are done and want to save the files, use File > Export Multiple
(CTRL+Shift+L).  You can export to MP3, but WAV files would retain more
quality.  This might not matter for what you are doing, but if you were
doing something you want to be good quality this would be better, the files
will be bigger though.  I use FLAC for my masters.  It's bigger than MP3,
but smaller than WAV.  

In the Export Multiple dialog you first choose the file format.  Then you
choose a folder to place the files in.  There is a Choose button to browse
for it, and a Create button to create it if it doesn't exist.  Then you have
a set of radio buttons that determine how to split the project into files.
In this case we want to use tracks.  Then is the Name Files group.  I think
all tracks are called "audio track" if you haven't renamed them, so I would
pick one of the options that add numbers.  Once these are set up, choose
Export and it happens.  I think the metadata editor opens for each file.
There you can set things like the track title that might appear on the CD
player display when the CD is played.  I say might, because I can't get
Media Player to write the info (called CD text) to the CD.  It shows it in
the burn list, but it doesn't show up on the CD.  Since Microsoft bothers to
show the information in the burn list, I can't imagine that they wouldn't
write the CD text, so maybe it's my CD drive-- but it can write CD text
because it does work with the CDRecord program, a command line program
that's a port from UNIX and a lot of work to use.  I also don't get CD text
with EAC or Winamp.  I could probably solve this by buying a burning
program, but I haven't yet.  XP came with this capability, and I just have a
hard time getting my head around the idea that a later operating system
(8.1) can't do something for free that one of its ancestors could.

Whatever program you use to burn your CDs will probably take care of this
for you, but CDs expect a 16-bit 44100 stereo WAV file.  If you can burn
MP3s, that means it is doing the conversion.  When I use CDRecord, I have to
make sure they are converted to this format.

This all sounds complicated, but I think you will find it not hard if you
play with it for a bit.  Good luck!

Hope this helps. 


On 11/28/2014 6:33 AM, Gene wrote:

That is not what the person wants to do.  He wants completely separate
files, one for each track.  He would then burn the separate files on cd and
the audio format should be used when burning.  


Here is one way to do this.  Depending on what you are recording, it may be
suitable.  Let's say you are recording something you wrote such as the
minutes of a meeting.  there are five separate topics, each topic taking a
few minutes to read.

Record the first topic.  

 Export it as an mp3 file with the name 01.  .  

Close Audacity and reopen it.

Record the second topic.  Save it as 02.mp3

Continue until all topics have been recorded.  

Then burn the cd using the audio format.


There is probably a new command that would probably save you a bit of time
but it isn't necessary to use and I won't discuss it here.  




: Robbie <mailto:tickleberryfun@xxxxxxxxx>  

Sent: Friday, November 28, 2014 12:49 AM

To: audacity4blind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx <mailto:audacity4blind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>  

Subject: [audacity4blind] Re: Creating Multiple Tracks


Hi Rick!

You need to align each track to its start position to have them play in a
certain order. Since you're creating a CD you probably want to play one
after the other. The simplest way of doing this is to use the Align End to
End command in the Tracks menu. Press ctrl-A and alt-T-A-A to do this.


Cheers! Robbie

From: audacity4blind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:audacity4blind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Rick Boggess
Sent: Friday, November 28, 2014 4:56 AM
To: audacity4blind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx <mailto:audacity4blind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> 
Subject: [audacity4blind] Creating Multiple Tracks


I am in a support group and prepare print and recorded CD information (about
5-10 minutes ) each month.  I produce an audio CD since most members are
older and do not have access to a daisy player.  However, I would like to
make the information more navigable.  Someone suggested that I record each
item on a separate track.  I have tried creating multiple tracks using
Audacity but they are on top of each other.  I need some guidance on how to
create the separate tracks.  Should I label each track and what is the best
way to accomplish this.  I must admit that I am a novice when it comes to
editing and producing digital audio.  Your help is greatly appreciated.  By
the way I am using JAWS 16.


Rick Boggess




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