AudioBooks and Left side hard of hearing

Hello all,

New at all this. As stated in the title, I am hard of hearing in the left ear. Many of the audiobooks MP3’s are recorded in mono. Also, my work enviroment is somewhat loud with fans and machines. (hence my deafness). What is the best way to load a files in the audiobook and at another channel (left) and increase the volume to each side. I figured out the effects/amplify and chains. The way I am doing this seems clumsy. How would you do this?

Thanks for all your time

Make sure you have safety copies of your audiobooks. If Audacity or your computer goes into the dirt during processing, the crash may take the works with it, never to be seen again.

There’s not a lot of “up” volume left to go. Audiobooks are presented with peak volumes in the -3dB range. Most people can’t hear a volume change between -3dB and -1dB and if you boost much over that, the sound may start to distort.

However the balance we can do. Climb into your headphones in a quiet room, play an audiobook and mess with the Audacity L-R control to the left of the blue waves until your hearing balance is about right. Write down the value. That’s the one you’ll be using from now on. I don’t think you can chain that…

Then boost the volume:
Effect > Amplify: New Peak -1dB.

And make a new file:
File > Export: MP3, 256 quality

That’s your balance and as loud as you can safely go without causing buzzing and crackling. Everything else will have to be done at the player and headphones.

Please note your sound files are probably going to be well over double the size of the originals. You went from mono to stereo and upped the quality to avoid compression distortion. So you’ll be able to get fewer books on your personal music device—but they should sound much better balanced.


There is something you can do to boost the volume. Apply Chris’s Compressor with the first setting Compress Ratio changed from 0.5 to 0.8. Do this to the work before you unbalance it.

You’ll have to download and install Chris Compressor.

Chris wrote it so he could listen to opera in the car. It evens out volume variations and boost everything a little.


Thank you all very much