Convert stereo to mono

When I convert a stereo mp3 file to mono, I end up with a straight line of silence. Does anyone know what I’m doing wrong? I simply click on the TRACKS option to convert to mono. WIndows 7 with Audacity 2.0.5. I’ve tried multiple files.

I’m assuming your show is a normal theatrical presentation like singing or guitars and not test signals.

The right and left portions of the show cancelled out. Stereo to Mono works by adding the two blue waves to each other and diving by two to avoid channel overload. If the two sets of blue waves are exactly out of step, they will cancel to zero. When one wave is going up, the other is going down. You can force that to happen for a special effect, but you can also get that if you wire up a microphone wrong.

You can probably avoid that by splitting the stereo show up into two pieces (left menu > Split Stereo Track) and flip one over with Effect > Invert. Then marry them together again (left menu Stereo Track) and go for the mono conversion.

If you produced this MP3, you should be very concerned that you’re producing a damaged show.


Thanks for the complete and clear and quick response. I will try to split the channels as you suggested. … but not tomorrow!

You understand that you are in the position of the boy that runs through the house looking for a fire extinguisher and then will not tell you why?

Where did the damaged track come from? I can think of no natural, graceful way to get a track with that condition. All the methods involve wiring errors, using sound machinery incorrectly or possibly somebody maliciously creating a bad track.

This track will only be audible if you listen in stereo. If you have a mono listing system, the track will vanish. So this is not an academic question. This thing is a time bomb.


It’s a religious sermon from the Amazing Facts organization. Go to their sermon download page,
and select the file from 09/21/2003 (4th row from the bottom). Also tried 09/28/2003 with same results. After downloading, I usually convert to mono to save a lot of space since it’s all talk and no music.

I split the tracks and deleted one, and this worked. Thanks for this suggestion.


Down in the Caribbean somewhere, right? I think we’ve been here before. This is an old post. “I want to shrink this bible study to mono but I can’t. Please help me.”

So whoever they are, they haven’t fixed their mixer yet.