If I split, adjust one, then rejoin stereo channels, Audacity 3.3.3 will export ONLY to mono

An apparent bug: If I split, adjust one, then rejoin stereo channels, Audacity 3.3.3 will export ONLY to mono.
One channel in a concert recording came to me 3db louder than the other. I needed to de-amplify the louder one before making a CD.
Audacity versions 2.0.6 and 1.2.6 are free of this glitch. It’s not convenient, but I’m slowly getting what I need by using 2.0.6 on an older PC.

To the left of the waveforms there is a left-right pan slider.

Normally if you choose Split Stereo Track the top track defaults to full-left and the bottom one defaults to full-right.

If you Split Stereo To Mono usually the pan-sliders are both centered and flagged as mono but you can change them.

Hello DVDdoug: I am fully aware of those sliders. I’ve watched them when I chose Split Stereo Track. They do as you said. v3.2.5 and v3.3.3, as well as 1.x.x and 2.x.x all do this. It doesn’t matter. Doing a split stereo, adjust left channel, make stereo gets you bona fide stereo pictorially, by watching the dancing horizontal bars , and by ear. Nonetheless, the v3.x.x series exports it as mono.

Testing on W10 with 3.3.3 I cannot reproduce this following your steps to reproduce. I get a proper stereo file exported, not a mono one.


Responding to waxcylinder: You may be on to something. Call me an old fuddy-duddy, but I refused W10 on my workhorse PC. It’s running W7. I will try the procedure myself on my unfun W10 laptop.


Updating my response to Peter (waxcylinder): I tried my procedure on my W10 laptop. Very unfun! And the exported file came out mono, same as with W7. You say you followed my steps. One of those steps was adjusting the left channel by de-amplifying it 3db. What adjustment did you make before rejoining? I appreciate your efforts, and hope we can sort out what, if anything, we did differently.

I deamplified the right channel on a 3 minute stereo song (track 1 from Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band)


Again updating my response to Peter (waxcylinder): THANK YOU for detailing what you did. Only one difference I could see – you adjusted the right channel while I adjusted the left. Should not have mattered. Anyway, my story has changed, and I am more mystified than ever. After getting mono, mono, mono from 3.3.3 on W7 and W10, I went back around, did the same procedure, and now get stereo, stereo, stereo. (I always got stereo when I wanted with 2.5.3.) OK, maybe the difference was due to leaving the ID2 fields blank… but no, I can fill them as before and now get stereo. I think I checked the box for Joint Stereo in all cases, but I can’t be sure. Prior to the 3.3.3 install, I had been producing mono on purpose, to feed the radio station’s robot (see truthandjusticeradio.org), so it’s possible that the mono option got inherited somehow by the 3.3.3 install. Anyway, for now I seem to be on the stereo road that I need for this CD. I’m indebted to you for your sympathetic hand-holding. Is that your actual cat? Best regards, Stan

Hi Stan.

glad you’ve got your stereo output files back.

Most likely so. Re-installing does nothing to reset Audacity’s settings as these are all held in a settings folder in your user directories that is entirely separate from where Audacity is installed.

See: FAQ:Installation, Startup and Plugins - Audacity Manual

Yes, that is (or rather was) my actual cat, my beloved Mojo RIP. He was an entertainingly mischievous boy marbled Bengal cat, he’s been gone for 4 or 5 years now and is still very much missed.


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