Project Rate: Resample?

Windows 10, Audacity 3.2.4, sound device: Roland Quad Capture
Default project rate has always been set at 44,100 Hz.
The other night, in the middle of a large project, playback suddenly started sounding fuzzy, like an old 78 RPM record.
My computer tech theorized it had to do with project rate.
When I looked down at the project rate in the lower left corner, it read 8000 Hz.
How it got set to 8000, I have no idea.
I do not know how many of the numerous clips accidentally got recorded at 8000 Hz.
Is there any way to determine which clips are incompatible and to resample them?
Since my default sample rate is set at 44,100 Hz in PREFERENCES, why does it keep changing to 800?

I Just now discovered a way to determine the sample rate for each individual track. It is found in the track’s drop down menu.
Two of the tracks were found to have differing sample rates.
One was a bass vocal, which - being too low for me to sing - was recorded in a higher key and then transposed. It now shows a lower sample rate. When the sample rate is adjusted to 44,100 Hz, the recording is in the wrong location and sounds like chipmunks.
The second track was tuned using Melodyne. It returned to Audacity @ 92,000 Hz. When its sample rate is adjusted, it is an octave too low.
The remainder of the tracks / clips were created either from 1.) .MID files from Finale, 2.) .WAV files from Band in a Box, or 3.) recorded on an SM-58 mic using the Roland Quad Capture interface. Their sample rates all appear to be at 44,100 Hz.
When the 2 offending tracks are deleted and the Project Rate is reset at 44,100 Hz, playback quality is restored.
What a relief!
How can one ensure that the project rate does not get unintentionally altered to 8000 Hz in the future?

The track sample rate is shown on the panel on the left end of the track, along with “mono / stereo” and the sample format.
In this example:

  • The track is stereo
  • The track sample rate is 44100 Hz
  • The sample format is 32-bit float

Mostly it’s not a problem because it’s not easy to “accidentally” change the project rate, except for one bear trap:

Audacity has a feature that makes life a little bit easier for some users, but poses a severe risk for others. Here’s the background:

When you want to edit an existing file, you will usually want the Project Rate to match the sample rate of the track that you are editing. The Project Rate determines the sample rate of the file that you will export when you finish editing, and in most cases you would want this to be the same as the original file. To make this easier, when you import an audio file into an empty project, Audacity will automatically change the Project Rate to match the imported file.

Personally I think this was a terrible design decision because it can cause devastating problems for anyone that is unaware of this behaviour (as was probably the case for you Craig). The only “solution” is to be aware that it happens, and get into the habit of checking the Project Rate after importing a file into a new project.

Got it. Thanks a million.