Audacity Audio Wave Display Issue Help

I’ve been pondered for a few days now, and pulling up searches on end into Google have pulled up 0 results for this weird issue I’ve never seen before.

I’m running Audacity on Windows & Mac, and have recently found that when “zooming in” on a MP3 file to see the closer details of a song’s waveform, the mac displays it differently to the windows version.


If you have a look at the link above, it shows the comparison.
The windows version displays it in a clear crisp pixel cutoff, however the mac version shows a very smooth fade type thing.

I’ve been using it fine on mac for a long time now, and only the other had opened it to find that it displays differently for some reason, and was wondering if anyone knows how to fix it?

Resetting the config doesn’t work, already tried.

Suggestions? I really want to have it how it used to be, which is the same as the windows version.

Mac Audacity ver: 2.0.2

You are down in the region where the waveforms have to be approximated. The linear timeline setting only displays about the loudest third of the show. Switch the display to Wavform dB with the menu on the left and the two should match again (but it can be harder to edit like that).


This hasn’t changed anything.
Switching between the waveform and waveform (dB) doesn’t change it, it still is stretched out, and not a square ending like the windows picture in my link above.

For a long time now, I have been using audacity to crop the silence out of the beginning of music, and have always gone to the start of a song, found the very first part of a line, placed my cursor at the very start and removed all the silence before it.
I had recently also starting doing this on a mac, and it was working fine, up until just the other day, where it has now become stretched and not square.

Any other suggestions?

I note that the position on the time line of the two tracks is different. Are we really looking at the same part of the same track on the two computers?

Assuming we are, what happens if you vertically magnify the waveforms?

– Bill

It’s not the same position on both PC’s but it is the exact same piece of audio. Even when I look at the exact same times, it’s still the same outcome, the smooth fade look on the mac, and the nice straight cut line on the PC.
Zooming in vertically doesn’t fix the issue either, just tried.

Anything else?

Have you dragged the track down at the bottom edge in either project?

Audacity can be inconsistent with display at levels that are almost on the horizontal line. Sometimes dragging down a bit farther can seem to reduce pieces of audio to the level of the horizontal line whereas dragging up or down can thicken the line. I don’t think this is a Mac / Windows difference.

As workarounds, you can try clicking in the track name and choosing “Waveform (dB)” or you can shorten silence below a threshold level with Effect > Truncate Silence… .

I don’t think it is relevant to your problem, but the current version of Audacity is 2.0.5 and you should use that: .