How to record over top of an already existing track?


New user. I am using Audacity on a pc and love it. Only been using it for 2 weeks, so my question might be a little elementary but I can’t find anything yet on the matter.

First problem: I have been using an irig with my guitar and recording directly into the soundcard of my laptop with audacity. Didn’t sound very good. Any recommendations? Instead I’ve been recording the guitar with amplitude into my iphone, then transferring it into audacity. There has to be a quicker method for recording the guitar into audacity?

2nd problem: Once I get the guitar track into audacity, and I try to record some vocals over top of it using the software, the sound wave of the vocals gets small and sporadic with its recording, and I can’t hear the guitar while the vocals are recording. Why? Is it because of the built in microphone sucks? Once again, I can record with the microphone app on my iphone, and then insert it into audacity and it sounds fine after time shifting it into syncopation.

I am planning on getting a nice microphone for Christmas with a usb port to record vocals instead of the iPhone. But I guess I’m a little confused on how to get a good sounding recording using audacity.

Thanks in advance for any advice from anybody out there that has been using Audacity for a while.

You mean an iRig (

What sort of guitar?

That is probably caused by Windows “enhancements”. Here’s how to turn the enhancements off:

That’s a fair assessment of the built in microphone on most laptops.

It may be worth considering a conventional (non-USB) microphone and a USB microphone pre-amp. A separate pre-amp gives much better control over recording levels than many USB mics, and many of them also accept higher level signals such as instruments and/or “line level” signals (such as CD players, mixing desks, and so on).

If you do get a USB mic, ensure that it has a headphone socket (otherwise you will not be able to monitor the live input without a horrible delay), and a recording level control (actually on the mic).

Note that Audacity does not ship with ASIO support (due to licensing restrictions) so whatever device you use must be able to work (fully) with standard WDM (Windows) drivers. Also, many audio devices that ship with ProTools do not work, or do not work fully with Audacity.