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Recording Audio with Audacity

Getting Started

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Download the appropriate version for your computer (Windows, Mac, Linux)

Once downloaded, install Audacity by double clicking on .exe file

By default, Audacity is unable to export recording as an mp3 file. To do so we must download the LAME Mp3 Encoder plugin.

Download the LAME Mp3 encoder plugin found at

Once the download, the file will appears as a Zip file. Unzip the Lame.dll file into c:\program files\Audacity Open Audacity


Select Edit and Preferences

In the preferences, select the File Formats tab In the MP3 Export Setup select Find Library and navigate to c:\program files\Audacity\lame_enc.dll Once selected select OK

MP3 Export Set Up

Be sure the Bit Rate setting for the LAME encoder is 32. This is an ideal setting for verbal podcast in that it keeps clarity and manageable file sizes.

Plug in your microphone to the appropriate input (Line In/USB) Select Edit and Preferences. Under the Audio I/O tab be sure the appropriate Microphone is set.

Microphone Set Up

When recording verbal podcasts, be sure your microphone is set to mono. This will ensure a manageable file size for sharing with others.


To begin recording select the Record button.


To stop recording, toggle the Stop button


When finished recording, Audacity creates a blue sound wave for us. This is a visual representation of the recorded audio. The higher peaks display the volume of our voice, while lower or flatter parts of the display little to no audio.


Editing the Recording

Audacity provides the ability to crop audio files. This is generally used to remove unnecessary information such as vocal pauses (e.g. ums, uhs) or mistakes that may have been made during the Podcast.

To remove any unnecessary information simply select the area as you would select text on a webpage or Word document.

Selected Audio

Once selected, hit the Delete or Backspace key on your keyboard to remove the selection.

Audacity has built in effects tools such as Fade In, Fade Out, and many more.

To create a fade in or fade out, select the area of the track you want using the selection tool.

Fade In

Once selected navigate to the Effect menu and select Fade In or Fade Out 

Fade In  Menu      

The audio selected will shrink signifying a decrease in volume.



Once finished with the audio recording, the file can be saved as an MP3 by selecting File and Export as MP3.

Export as MP3

You will be prompted to create a filename, once created click Save Another prompt appears for specification on the track name, artist, album, etc. This step is optional.

Saving the Project

To save your project, choose File and Save Project As. The sound file and edits you have made will be saved. The saved file can be opened and edited again at your leisure.