jump to adjacent clip

Is there a way to use a keyboard command to select a clip in the same track that is adjacent to the one that you have currently selected?

Specifically, if I have 2.4 sec to 3.6 sec selected in a track and the borders of this highlighted / selected section are physical boundaries (created by Clip Boundaries - Split), can I toggle to the next clip in the same track (3.6 sec to 4.8 sec) using a key command? Also, it’s crucial that once I toggle to it, that the new section be highlighted / selected. Because if I have to pick up the mouse to highlight / select it anyway, then there is no real advantage in being able to navigate to it by keyboard command.


Currently no way to skip to the next clip, but if the clips are labelled (http://manual.audacityteam.org/o/man/label_tracks.html) you can skip from one label to the next using the TAB key (“shift + Tab” to skip backwards).

There are three audio clips in the audio track, and each clip is labelled (You would create the labels when you create the audio clips).
The audio track currently “has focus” (indicated by the yellow border around the track).
The second audio clip is selected (indicated by the darker shading / highlighting).

Press “Down” cursor key. “Focus” is now on the label track.

“Tab” to the next label. The cursor is now inside the third label (where you would need to be to enter or edit the label text).

“Enter” to close the label text (so that you are not editing the label text).

Optional (depending on what you are doing), press “Enter” again to de-select the label. (The label track still has focus).

“Up” cursor key to move focus back to the audio track. The third audio clip is now selected.

Putting that all together: Down → Tab → Enter → Up.

Awesome, thanks!

I will actually be using Regular Interval Labels often when doing this type of editing, so I will definitely try this out to see if it’s faster/easier than mousing.

Is this type of navigation capability (without labels) something that might be added to future versions? Jumping from clip to clip is a pretty standard navigation option in most DAWs. I know Audacity is not a DAW per se, but it would be a nice option to have.

OR… what about doing some kind of macro? I looked for information about doing macros in Audacity, but I’m not really getting a clear answer. Ideally,I would like to accomplish this type of navigation (Down → Tab → Enter → Up) through a single key command. That would speed up my editing immensely. Is there a resource you can point me to for making a macro?

Thanks again.

Well I think it’s a good idea :wink:
I’m sure this has been suggested before, but I don’t see it on the list of feature requests. You could request it as a new feature in the “Adding features” section: http://forum.audacityteam.org/viewforum.php?f=20

Audacity does not currently have that ability, but it is possible to create such key combinations using 3rd party applications such as AutoKey and Auto Hot Key (different applications for different operating systems).

I don’t know what I’m doing wrong / different, but this isn’t working for me.

I highlight a clip within the audio track, just like in the picture. When I push down, focus (yellow border) moves to the label track. The whole track, not just the portion of it that corresponds to the highlighted clip. But then tab does nothing at all. If I press enter, I can get that portion of the label track to also be selected (in addition to the audio track), but tab still does nothing.

I see that in your example you use region labels, whereas my preferred method would definitely be Regular Interval Labels, as I can set them up all at once. But just to see if that was the issue, I did create region labels, but I still can’t get tab to work.

I’m halfway to getting a macro set up with Autohotkey, but now I’m stuck!


Update: I figured out how to tab from one label to the next (Autohotkeys was messing with my tab button), but now that I can, I still can’t figure out how to shift focus back up in the desired clip of the audio track.

You have to use region labels. When you move back up to the audio track, it is that defined region that is selected. It won’t work with point labels because there is no defined region.

Is there a way to automatically create Regularly timed region labels? Or is there a way to create Regular Interval Labels and then easily convert them to region labels?

If I have to create each region label individually, by hand, then it’s back to the drawing board, because that time investment would completely negate the time savings. I could do it all “by hand” without labels at all just as fast, if not faster. It’ll just be more carpal tunnel syndrome-y

I actually tried a workaround using autohotkeys. I can navigate to the next clip over by using the “Edit all Labels” pop-up interface. Open window, arrow down, return, voila – I’m in the next clip, and the clip is highlighted. But there are two problems. First, it always defaults to the first clip being selected in the “Edit all Labels” pop-up interface, even if I’m in the third clip, fourth clip etc. So I can use it to get from clip one to clip two, but nothing else. Second, sometimes when the “Edit all Labels” pop-up interface opens, slectign arrow down engages some kind of dropdown menu (can’t rmember what the options are offhand and I can’t look right now) instead of allowing me to just arrow down to the next clip.

Anyway, if I can figure out workarounds for those two problems, I can use an AHK macro to accomplish my goal. Any suggestions?

The “Regular Interval Label” effect is an Nyquist effect.
Nyquist plugins produce labels by returning a list of lists in the form:

(list (list <start-time> <end-time> <"label-text">) ...)

If only one “time” number is given, or if and are the same, then point labels are produced.
If both and are present and are not equal, a region label is produced,

The “Regular Interval Label” script is a file called equalabel.ny
Lines 50 to 53 of that file:

; function to add labels to the label track
; from silencemarker.ny by Alex S. Brown
(defun add-label (l-time l-text)
 (setq label-list (cons (list l-time l-text) label-list)))

As you can see, a label is produced (list l-time l-text), in which there is just one time value, so point labels are produced.
If that code was changed to (for example):

; function to add labels to the label track
; from silencemarker.ny by Alex S. Brown
(defun add-label (l-time l-text)
 (setq label-list (cons (list l-time (+ 1.5 l-time) l-text) label-list)))

then region labels of length 1.5 seconds will be produced.

There is currently no easy way to convert point labels into region labels (other than mouse dragging).

Okay, let me see if I have this right. I would open up the “Regular Interval Label” dialog, and then hit debug so I can access the code? And then just make those changes to line 53 (add in the desired time length) and then run it? Do I have it right so far?

And then the next time I run it, it should just default back to its normal state, right?

No, you would open the “equalabel.ny” file (which will be in the Audacity plugins folder) in a text editor (such as Notepad, or Notepad++), and modify the file as required (after making a backup copy of the original file of course).

Here’s the modified file:
equalabel.ny (6.78 KB)
The placement control has now two additional entries for region labels.
However, the plug-in is “Version 4”-ready, thus, you’ll have to use it with Audacity 2.1.0.


Thanks, man! I’ll give it a spin

Pardon my ignorance, but when will 2.1.0 be out?

When it’s ready :wink:
Unfortunately it was delayed due to the discovery of a bug. That’s now been fixed so hopefully the release will not be delayed for much longer.

I guess I must be an Audacity nerd now. I think this is the first time I’ve ever anticipated a new version of software.

You can be even more of a nerd if you like and test the release candidate 3 build of 2.1.0 which we hope will become the actual release: