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Audacity - Creating sound recordings

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Audacity is a free open-source audio editor and recorder. Audio files can be recorded, imported and edited on any number of tracks. Audacity offers lecturers the possibility to easily record spoken texts and save them as MP3 audio files.
In this manual we will show you how Audacity works under Windows 10, but there may be differences in other operating systems.


Preparation

Install Audacity

To use Audacity on your PC, you must download and install the free software. On the official website of the manufacturer you will find installation files and instructions for the following operating systems:

Requirements

To make a recording with Audacity, a recording medium must first be connected. Such a recording medium could be, for example, the microphone of a headset. Make sure that you have the right cables for this. Many laptop devices already have a microphone built in. In this case you do not necessarily need an additional recording device. However, the quality of the microphones built into the laptop is often much poorer than the external microphones.


Settings

Start the Audacity program. We see the following interface.

Audacity-1.png


At the bottom left we see the project rate. This is preset to 44100 Hz by default. This setting is optimal for high quality audio recordings.

Select the microphone you want to use at the top.

Audacity-11.png


Note: For details on how to select the recording source, refer to the manufacturer's manual.


Create recording

Start recording

Click Audacity-2.png to start recording.
Make sure that the recording level is high enough. It should be between -18 and -6 and should not swing into the red range.
Adjust the recording volume with this slider if necessary

Audacity-3.png

Pause recording

If you want to pause recording, press Audacity-4.png. The recording will then be paused.

To continue recording, click on the Audacity-2.png symbol again.

Stop recording

A click on Audacity-5.png ends the recording.

An exemplary recorded audio track looks like this:

Audacity-7.png

Play recording

The recording can now be played back and reviewed. Click Audacity-6.png to play back the recording. You can click with the mouse in the audio track and select the point where you want to start.

Edit recording

If you want to delete parts of the recording, you can easily do this with Audacity. In this example, we want to remove the silence phase at the beginning of the recording.
Use the mouse to mark the area in the audio track that you want to remove.

Audacity-8.png


Now click on the "DEL" key on your keyboard.

Audacity-9.png


The silence phase at the beginning is now no longer present.

Note: You can also edit existing audio files. Open them at the top via "Data" and "Open".

Save recording

We can save the project as MP3 file at the end.

Audacity-10.png


  • Click on File in the upper bar
  • Select Export...
  • Click on Export as MP3


Select a storage location. You can also add metadata such as author or date to the file.

Publication

You can now publish your recording. One possibility is the learning platform PANDA

  • Upload the file individually from PodcastEine Audioaufzeichnung, welche aus dem Internet abgelegt bzw. heruntergeladen werden kann (Gegenstück zum Vodcast).
  • Or put the file online as a supplement to a PDF file

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