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Audacity

Using the Mixer Toolbar

This document provides information on using the Mixer toolbar in Audacity. The Mixer toolbar allows you to easily designate your audio input device, adjust recording volume, and change output audio volume.

return to topSelecting Input Sources

Audacity has the ability to record audio from multiple input sources (e.g., microphone, audio CD). After opening Audacity, use the Input selector to designate which source you wish to use to create your recording.

Selecting Input Source: Mixer Toolbar Option

Certain operating systems (e.g., Windows Vista) will not allow access to the Input selector pull-down list on the Mixer toolbar. If the Input selector is grayed out, use the Selecting Input Source: Dialog Box Option to change the input device.

  1. On the Mixer toolbar, from the Input selector pull-down list » select the desired device
    The device selected for audio input will appear in the pull-down list.Mixer toolbar

Selecting Input Source: Dialog Box Option

You can use this method to select an audio input device when using Audacity on any operating system regardless of the availability of the Input selector.

  1. From the Edit menu, select Preferences...
    The Preferences dialog box appears.

  2. Select the Audio I/O tab

  3. In the Recording section, from the Device pull-down list, select the desired device

return to topAdjusting Output Volume

The Mixer toolbar allows you to quickly adjust output volume using the Output Volume slider. Adjusting this slider will change the volume of the audio when it is played on Audacity. This feature controls the output setting of the soundcard driver and can be adjusted if your audio becomes distorted or is unbalanced with other tracks. See the Meter toolbar for a visual representation of your adjustments to the output volume.

  1. From the Mixer toolbar, use the mouse to select and drag the Output Volume slider right or left.
    The output volume will increase or decrease accordingly.
    NOTE: Changing volume levels using the Output Volume slider has no permanent effect on the audio data. When the audio is saved or exported as an MP3 the results will be the same despite volume changes.
    Output Volume slider

return to topAdjusting Recording Volume

The Mixer toolbar allows you to adjust the recording volume using the Recording Volume slider. This slider lets you control the volume level of the input device selected in the INPUT selector or on the AUDIO/IO tab. If your audio is distorted during playback, you can try to adjust this slider during recording until the distortion no longer occurs. Reference the Meter toolbar for a visual representation of your adjustments to the recording volume.

  1. From the Mixer toolbar, use the mouse to drag the Recording Volume slider right or left.
    The recording volume will increase or decrease accordingly.
    NOTE: Changing volume levels using the Recording Volume slider has no permanent effect on the audio data. When the audio is saved or exported as an MP3 the results will be the same despite volume changes.
    Recording Volume slider

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