Creating a 30 second preview of audio files

I hope that somebody can help me create preview versions of some mp3 files we have.

We’ve like to take 20+ mp3 files, reduce their length to 30 seconds and fade them out so that we have a 30 second “preview” files for each track, like Amazon did when you could preview an album.

I can get Audacity to do individual files but am struggling to get it to do a whole album in one go. I’m sure that this is a user problem and I’m lacking some pretty basic knowledge.

If anybody can help then I’d be really grateful.


Audacity 3.0.5
Windows 10 (21H1 OS Build 19043.1237)

  1. import all the MP3 files
  2. they will all start at T=0
  3. select-from 30 seconds to the end of the longest track in all tracks at the same time
  4. Delete
  5. Export Multiple (based on tracks)


The job could be done by batch processing with a macro, but for just 20 files, the method described by waxcylinder is probably the quickest and easiest way to get the job done.

Selecting the same interval on all the tracks (for the fades) is the only tricky bit …
select end of all tracks.gif

Thanks for the replies - it’s going to be needed for 15 albums in all so I might try the macro route if it speeds things along.

Much appreciated.