Having all tracks play back at consistent volume when creating collage of different songs

I am creating a collage of pieces of various songs. These are at numerous volume levels when dragged into the Audicity program. When creating one big collection (collage), how do I adjust the volumes so that when played back, there aren’t some songs that are loud while others are low? I want the playback to be at a pretty much consistent volume level.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

You can start by running the Amplify effect on one file at a time, accepting the default volume change. That will normalize (“maximize”) all of the files with 0dB peaks. Or you can use the Normalize effect which also sets the peaks at, or near, 0dB.

The peaks don’t correlate well with “loudness” so you’ll probably have to make more adjustments.

If you have a small/manageable number of files it’s best to adjust by ear. Since all of the files have been maximized, choose the quietest track as your reference and adjust the louder files down to match. (Enter a negative dB value into the Amplify effect to reduce volume.)

If you don’t want to do it by-ear there are 3rd-party plug-ins such as [u]dpMeter[/u] that can measure LUFS Loudness. Again, the trick is to measure the loudness of them all and choose the quietest (biggest negative dB reading) as your reference. Then again enter the dB difference as a negative value into the Amplify effect to reduce the louder files.

When you run the Amplify effect to amplify or attenuate this is a linear adjustment. i.e. If you reduce the volume by 3dB, the peaks, RMS, and LUFS are all reduced by 3dB.

Audacity also has a Loudness Normalization effect and you can enter the desired LUFS loudness. But you still need a starting-point and a reference file because you want to keep your peaks at 0dB or less.


There are tools such as ReplayGain (and MP3Gain, WaveGain, or Apple Sound Check) that are intended for volume-matching an entire music library. In that case you can’t use the quietest-sounding track as your reference so they pick a target level low-enough so that most files are adjusted down to match. Some files are still too quiet and they can’t be adjusted-up enough hit the target loudness without clipping but it’s a compromise that works with most files.

Thank you very much for your help. I did try what you suggested - that is, I allowed the Audacity to adjust automatically by going through each track one-at-a-time and applying the “Amplify” effect to each track. But, you are correct, some are still quiet compared to others. So, I’ll do what you suggest by selecting the lowest volume, i.e. the track that sounds the quietest to my ear, then go through the other tracks and adjust them downward with the Amplify effect; I’ll enter negative volumes as you suggest. I’m not super tech savvy, but I perform magic, and I need (and enjoy) mixing and editing music for my performances.
Thanks so much for your help and for responding to my inquiry.

Also, here is a simple workflow to try:

  1. File > Import > Audio > (select all desired tracks)
  2. View > Tracksize > Fit to Height (depending on number of tracks)
  3. Ctrl-A
  4. Effect > Loudness Normalization > (defaults: perceived loudness, -23LUFS, dual-mono)
  5. Effect > Amplify (to make any final adjustment if desired)
  6. Tracks > Align Tracks > Align End to End
  7. Export (or Play) (or Track > Mix > Mix and Render to New Track)

I hope this helps. :smiley: