So a 45 minute stereo recording should occupy a little over 1GB, so 1.2gb is not unreasonable.
Most of my audio is mono. A 42 minute file with the same setup form the previous Audacity version is 460 MB. I am pretty certain this is not what the file size ought to be. Especially the “growing as I cut things out” part. I know it gets bigger as you work because it retains the entire undo history. But that content should be purged when I close the file, no?
What version of Audacity are you running?
I’m on the latest update, 3.2.2.
Do you have multiple Audacity projects open at the same time? There can be a side effect when you copy a clip from one project to another. When you copy even a small portion of a very large clip from one Audacity project to another, ALL of the information from the original very large clip gets copied, resulting in project bloat. To prevent this from happening, copy the clip to a new track in the old project, mix and render that new track, then select the audio from that new track and copy that to the new project. Be sure that you do not have a browser running in the background. Even when they are sitting idle they can be enormous memory and CPU hogs.
Copying clips between files has been slow since a few updates ago. And yes, I do that regularly - to add snippets of music to audioboks. But these all come from their own track anyway (I have it cut into the lengths I need, so I only ever copy that whole track). While this was slow, it was still workable - that has change dnow.
I do cut out bits of audio to collect (basically to create a blooper reel). Cutting, pasting and mixing this every time I want to drop a three second snippet into my blooper file seems extremely impractical. At least being able to manually purge this superfluous content would help a LOT. I cannot close down and reboot the software every five minutes while I try to get through an hourlong voice track.
But even with that superfluous content issue discarded, this speed issue persits if I only have a single version of Audacity and Word open. I am unable to edit in any timely manner because every single time I try to silence a second of background noise, or delete half a mispronounced word, it takes ten seconds upwards.
It is generally best to restart your computer every so often; if things are starting to slow down - that is a good time to do so. Also, it is best not to work on a project that resides (or is mirrored) on a network or cloud drive.
All my files are local on C. I just tried again after a fresh reboot. And Audacity nearly crashed just when I tried to copy a track, without making any changes.
I’m going to try and roll back to the last version now, and hope that this gets resolved in future updates.