I am an author of several novels and working now to produce them as audiobooks. The narration and production of the separate chapter files for the first two novels have been done professionally and exported in MP3 format. I recently downloaded Audacity 2.0.5 onto a Win 7 SP1 machine with 8GB RAM, and need to know how to ‘stitch’ these separate mp3 files into one file where each chapter will display as a track on the users audio player/device. While I can join two files together in Audacity I cannot figure out how to do that and have them seen as discrete chapter files in an audio player. I have edited the metadata for each file to identify them as unique tracks, but when I join them together the metadata shows only for one large(er) file.
I sure could use some help with this.
…and need to know how to ‘stitch’ these separate mp3 files into one file where each chapter will display as a track on the users audio player/device.
I think MP3 supports chapters, but most players do not! So I wouldn’t recommend doing that. If the file names start with the chapter number and the “track” field in the ID3 metadata matches the chapter, listeners should have no problem playing them in the correct order.
While I can join two files together in Audacity I cannot figure out how to do that and have them seen as discrete chapter files in an audio player.
This probably isn’t an issue with spoken-word, but MP3 is lossy and it has to be decompressed before Audacity (or any “standard” audio editor) can edit it. If you re-save as MP3, you are going through a 2nd lossy compression step.
There are special purpose MP3 editors such as MP3directCut that can so some limited editing without decompressing/re-compressing. But, you are better off with separate files for each chapter (and possibly for sub-chapters).
I assume you also have files in a non-lossy format such as WAV? If you need to do any editing, edit the WAV file and create a new MP3.
Most audio players will support mp3 and identify tracks. What I need to do is configure each chapter file as a track in numeric order. That way the user can listen to a chapter/track and stop the playback before the next chapter/track begins.
I understand what you are saying about working with .wav files and try to get them from the producer. That said, how do I accomplish my goals? The few attempts I made with Audacity allowed me configure the metadata as I mentioned for the test files, but after exporting back into mp3 I would up with one long file identified as ‘track2’. What showed up in the Nightingale player with the audiobook add-on was one track (track 2).
They do if you use playlists.
Chapter markers are reasonably well supported fro AAC files. Apparently you can create them in iTunes (I don’t use iTunes).
There is also an open source tool for creating Chapters in MP3s: http://id3v2-chap-tool.sourceforge.net/
I’ve not tried it.
What I need to do is configure each chapter file as a track in numeric order. That way the user can listen to a chapter/track and stop the playback before the next chapter/track begins.
If I drag all of the MP3 files from a music album (or audio book*) into Windows Media Player and play the album, they play in order automatically by default. You shouldn’t need a playlist.
I assume** there is a way to shuffle/randomize playback so that’s why I would include the chapter number as part of the file name and the ID3 title.
I understand what you are saying about working with .wav files and try to get them from the producer. That said, how do I accomplish my goals?
This is ONLY if you want to “splice” all of the files together in one big file.
There is also an open source tool for creating Chapters in MP3s: > http://id3v2-chap-tool.sourceforge.net/
But, can the listener make use of this?
- I only have a couple of MP3 audiobooks that I converted to MP3 myself from audio CDs. These play exactly like an MP3 music album.
** I normally use Winamp so I’m not totally familiar with Windows Media Player.
Hi, Garys -
Did you ever get a good answer on this? I feel like I’ve been looking for ages: I want to create & place my multi-chapter audiobook on my own site, and sell it from there, downloadable, in the best format possible so it is easy to listen to from any common user device (phone, computer, pc). I see kazillion ‘audible’ options but am bypassing audible.
I have my entire book recorded; all are MP3 format; chapters are a bit too long to expect people to listen to entire chapter in 1 sitting, much less entire book. Imagine 3-6 ‘sections’ per chapter; then 6 chapters in the book. I want people to be able to download a chapter at a time [I know this sounds weird, but assume I have good reasons for this], AND be able to either:
A) listen to all sections within a chapter in one sitting, with the audio rolling into their ears section after section after section, in correct sequence and/or
B) listen to 1 or two sections, then go away / stop listening; come back a day or week later, and be able to pick up again at appropriate next section.
Do I just have the sections recorded as individual MP3 tracks (internally labeled correctly as ‘section’x’ within ‘chapter y’ within book/album ‘ABC’), then place each of those tracks into single ‘chapter’ file folders??? [am envisioning end audiobook product on my site is one big ‘my book’ folder, containing 6 separate ‘chapter’ folders; my customers download a ‘chapter’ folder, and they receive/download the individual ‘section’ MP3 tracks for that chapter… and somehow when they open the chapter folder in windows media player or whatever audio listening-software they have… the related ‘section’ MP3 tracks play in sequence beautifully…
What did you end up doing with your audiobook?
working now to produce them as audiobooks.
Meanwhile, back at the first post.
With a company such as ACX? ACX wants your works as independent chapters and there are specifications for intros, silences, formatting, technical considerations, maximum file sizes, duration, etc.
If you’re doing it yourself, then you can do whatever you want, but you’re missing the corporate hand-holding. Chapters, segmentation and placeholder “memory” are questions you run into almost immediately. Those are taken care of when ACX accepts your show.
Nobody ever does this, but I would buy an audiobook to see how they do it. I’ve listened to audiobooks on CD and while that sounds just fine, juggling six or more CDs in the car (for example) is a little rough. I can tell you that transferring works from Audio CD to filesets for hiking or jogging is not fun.
This is me watching the postings closely.
There are companies who will publish for you for very little or free and they don’t care what you do. That’s actually the down side. Instead of a guaranteed enjoyable product, the customer gets a gamble.
Contrast that with this actual clip from a Sarah Vowell audiobook.