mixing downloaded sound effects

I have downloaded a number of sound effects from soundbible .com and I am trying to mix two of them together, namely a steamtrain sound with a stemtrain whistle coming in on top. Each time I open them they appear in a separate window. How do I dub the second onto the first? I am using audacity 2.3.2 on windows 10.

Open one in Audacity and then drag the second one into the open window. It should open in a second timeline under the first and play at the same time. Use the Time Shift Tool (two sideways black arrows) to shift them around in time until you get what you want.

Pay attention to the bouncing sound meter and make sure it doesn’t go all the way up and turn red. That’s an overload condition and will cause distortion.

If you’re correctly paranoid, you can Tracks > Mix > Mix and Render to a New Track. Audacity will create a fresh track with your mix in it leaving the first two alone.

If you’re happy with it, Select it with the button on the left and File > Export > Export Selected

=== Or ===

Back when you had the original two sounds on their own timelines, just File > Export. Audacity will smash the two together into one sound file.

Remember no matter which way you do the export, MP3 is not a good format for production or backups. MP3 creates sound damage and it gets worse as you edit with it. Export as WAV (Microsoft) 16-bit as an Edit Master backup and only then make the MP3 if you need one for uploading or displaying.


Many thanks for that answer. It looks perfectly straight forwards and I wonder that I didn’t think of it myself. Thank you.

Further to my previous post which I thought had solved the problem, I downloaded some sound effects from Soundbible and I am trying to mix two of them together, namely a steam train running with a steam train whistle on top. The answer was to open the one and then drag the second onto it. Unfortunately when I drag it simply crosses out and does not load/open. I thought this problem had been solved, but to no avail. I am running Audacity 2.3.2 on Windows 10. More help would be gratefully received.

I have merged your new post with your previous topic as it is essentially the same question.

Not quite. You’ve slightly misunderstood what Koz meant.

The answer is to drag one so that it lines up under the other - like this:

Sorry, I did not +misunderstand it. It simply does not work. When I have the open one and then drag, as soon as the drag leaves the open window and enters the audacity recording window it changes to a circle with a diagonal line through and does not produce anything. This is the same whether from the Audacity open window or directly from the Soundbible site. I tried opening a new track first but the result was the same. The drag cease as soon as the mouse controlled drag enters the record window. I really would like to sort this one, please.
Colin Scott

I don’t understand why you are having a problem with this.
Try these steps:

  1. Launch Audacity
  2. Import 2 sound effect files.
    You should see the two sound effects, one above the other in separate tracks
  3. Press the Play button.
    You should hear both sound effects playing at the same time.

Does that work as described?

Sorry, no. The second one opens in a new Audacity window, completely separate from the first. What you are suggesting is exactly what I am trying to achieve, but I cannot get the effect you state.

That’s probably because you are using the “File menu > Open” command. Use the “File menu > Import > Audio” command.

Thank you. Yes, that has solved it. I didn’t think of doing that. Most obliged.