Exported WAV files are incomplete

I do field recordings for an archive (oral histories, etc.)–these are recorded using a Tascam, in stereo WAV file format at a 96000 Hz sample rate, 32-bit. After 1 hour 2 minutes (a 2.1GB) a new file is created; so for example, a recording that was 2 hours, 24 minutes produced the following files:

file1.wav (1 hour, 2 min) 2.15 GB
file2.wav (1 hour, 2 min) 2.15 GB
file3.wav (20 min) 708.4 MB

Combining the files within one audacity project worked fine; I even went through and clicked the seamlines between the segments to make sure it was one continuous segment. After saving the project, I attempted to export it as a WAV file. It produced a WAV file that was 6.67 GB in size, but the WAV file only contains the first 51 minutes and 20 seconds of audio. The unusually large file size does not make sense (how does 2.15 GB + 2.15 GB + 708.4 MB = 6.67 GB???); and neither does the shortened audio.

I have tried this process with several other recordings, and am getting the same result–large file sizes for the WAV export, but much much shorter/incomplete audio.

Does anyone have any insight into why this is happening, and how it can be remedied?*
*Caveats, as I am doing this recordings for an archive, the WAV format, 96000 Hz sample rate, 32-bit rate, and stereo settings are not negotiable.


There’s a size limit of 4 GB for WAV format. Beyond 4 GB it is not possible for the file header to correctly address the data, so it becomes corrupted. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WAV#Limitations). For larger files you will need to use a different format (such as FLAC).

And as you noticed, the recorder uses an earlier 2GB WAV standard. That’s why they do that. My recorders work that way, too. There is no question audio applications will open them.

Can you wack up the performance into chapters or acts?

You’re going to run into similar problems if you try to make an Audio CD. If you get a spoken word performance from the library, it comes as a stack of CDs.