Avoiding compression, but raising level

Hi, new to 2.0.6. Looking for a way to do a complicated procedure, can anybody chime in?

I Imported Wave files from my Digital Recorder, want to prepare for burning to CD.
Two guitars, 3 voices, LOTS of nuance and subtleties but each track is mixed to different volue, want
to master to equivalent levels. Any form of compression I use seems to lose the nuances, makes the
recording sound more ‘MP3’ like. Normalizing gets thrown off by random transient peaks. Simply amplifying
the wave means the peaks get clipped, ugh.

I Have an idea, but DON’T KNOW HOW TO DO THIS. See image below for example

A. Original Left Channel- the outlyers outside .5/-.5 range have little musically important content.
I hand clipped a few, the audio is not adversely affected.

B. Want to erase, (or maybe compress) any levels above .5, DOWN to .5 (and below -.5, UP to .5), and end up with:

C. All music content is between -.5 and .5, AND the dynamics of the critical sound data are unchanged.

D. This result can be amplified, but still retaining the nuances of the original wave.

ANY IDEAS HOW TO DO THIS with Audacity (hint NOT editting each peak by hand)

THANKS so much for any ideas,
oldfartbassplayer Walt

This is already a wheel. You don’t have to make a new one.

Chris’s Compressor is designed to even out production volume second by second and not damage anything too badly. It was designed to make opera so you could listen to it in the car.


In your case, I would probably leave the default values alone and just apply it and see what happens. It does things similar to your illustrations.

If you insist on doing it manually, you’re describing Effect > Leveler.


No :astonished:
The “Leveller” is a “wave-shaping” effect. It shapes (distorts) the waveform and will ruin the sound quality.

To reduce only the peaks that go outside of the +/- 0.5 range, the appropriate effect is a “Limiter”.

Try the “Brick wall limiter” from here: Peak Limiter
I’d suggest that you try the default settings first and see if that gives you enough volume boost.

Instructions for installing this plug-in: Missing features - Audacity Support

Hey, guys, thanks for the prompt replies.
The Brick-wall limiter got the job done perfectly!

Geez, this is gonna be a great forum!
oldFartBassPlayer Walt