quickly see gain value without action?

Howdy dudes.

My question is not really mac specific, as I use audacity on both Mac and Windows, but there’s something that I need to ask about, as it’s making me a little paranoid. I’m hyped up on caffeine so i’m sorry if it’s rambly.

I’m currently working on a project with LOTS of tracks, 45+? at the moment, and different tracks are set to different gain levels. Unfortunately I am not able to see the actual numerical gain value of any specific track. Sure, I can click on the gain slider and find out the gain that way, but this action, even if it does not result in me changing the volume, counts as an action in the Audacity program, thus it can be “undone” and also appears when you view history, neither of which I want to happen when I am just checking something. It really messes with things. All i’m looking for is a way to see the precise gain value of any track, without all of that. The audio mixer in the “view” section also unfortunately doesn’t show any numeric values, just much taller volume sliders, so it’s no help either.

When the gain is largely different usually I can just see that it is approximately in the correct place, you know, from the default view, but , for example, when the gain for something is at -1.47, and is inbetween two tracks that are at 0, then it becomes quite difficult to see the difference.

What reaper does is, when you hover the mouse over the gain knob, a small text box barely bigger than the cursor pops up with the exact numerical value, very basic stuff, and thus you can check without “interacting” with the project. It is very unfortunate that audacity does not do this, as it is otherwise a very intuitive program. Something like this, or similar, or just something different that accomplishes my goal, hard to believe it doesn’t exist. (I can show screenshots of what I mean if it’s not easy to understand)

I am currently using version 2.2.2, I don’t enjoy upgrading my software version, as a rule of thumb I only do this when I encounter a bug that a later version fixes, so if something like this is implemented in a later version of Audacity, I’d be really happy to know. Alternatively if it’s some hidden feature in “preferences”, or a shortcut, that would also be great. Even if it’s something windows exclusive i’d be really happy to know.

Probably could have portrayed this with a bunch less words, so sorry for the ramble.

edit: title makes more sense now

Audacity used to do that, but after some update or other it stopped working, and the only way to “fix” it was to make it appear on click rather than on hover. I don’t recall the details of what caused the change.

The best “solution” that I can come up with is to click on the control, then “Ctrl + Z” to “undo” the click (maybe “Command + Z” on Mac).

Hi Steve,

First of all, thanks for reading through my wall of text, and replying!

I am surprised to hear that this used to be an option. It certainly seems like a step back for it to no longer be a function.

The solution you propose is actually kinda what I am doing at the moment, however from what i recall it’s not perfect as sometimes multiple gain edits are counted by audacity as just one action, so for example If i was genuinely editing gain before doing this check, then the ctrl+z would undo all gain edits i did before checking gain for something. But i do apply carefulness whenever I use this.

Do you think if i brought this up in the “Adding Features to Audacity” section, It would be well received? This is currently what I am thinking of doing, as hopefully you agree that it would be more ideal to have this feature as opposed to having to perform actions and undo them. I cannot imagine it being a hard one to implement seeing as it in-fact used to be exist.

I will keep this thread open in case there is anyone with alternative inputs, perhaps someone can tell me of an older audacity version that “works just fine” and still has this feature or something. All I do is add labels, generate noise, amplify and use cosine fades.

Once again thanks for your reply Steve!

Audacity used to do that

I went back to 2.0.3 and none of them (I didn’t hit them all) have hover info.

If somebody asked me cold whether I’d seen this or not, I would have said yes. Mob Memory?


Hi Koz,

Thanks for your reply.

Thanks for doing the legwork on this one. A shame that the feature is not present even that far back. But are you insinuating that it’s something perhaps only the super old versions had? I don’t remember what audacity was like back then…

Also what exactly do you mean by “mob memory”?

I thought it was when we used wxWidgets 2.8, which was around Audacity version 2.1.2, but I could well be wrong about that.

Also what exactly do you mean by “mob memory”

That’s where everybody has seen something that looks a lot like Hover Info and would be willing to swear absolutely that it is, or was, a thing. I have two working copies of 2.0.3 and neither of them seems to have Hover Info, whether or not I have the track selected.

They will both do Single Tap View, but each tap counts as an UNDO event. The build INFO is Jan 19 2013. So it’s been like this for at least seven years.


Right, thanks for clearing that up, Koz.

I think with the help of you and Steve we have established that this is simply not a thing in recent and current Audacity versions, not an option that can somehow be enabled, either.

I will deliberate briefly and perhaps I will rephrase some of the things I mentioned in my original post as a new thread under the “suggestions” section of this forum, if something similar does not already exist there.

I kindly thank both of you for taking time out of your day to assist me. I do believe that this thread won’t serve a further purpose to anyone as we’ve reached our conclusion. If I find a way to close this thread, I will, although it might be the case that only an admin or mod has that right, if so, I declare to whom it may concern that this thread may now be closed.

I will rephrase some of the things I mentioned in my original post

Down to one sentence.

View volume and pan settings on track left by hovering the cursor.


Pieces of this are already available. The sliders in Audacity 2.3.3 change color when you hover. Sooooo close.


Another workaround is that you could open the Mixer Board from the View menu (Mixer - Audacity Manual). The sliders in the Mixer Board show tool tips on hover.

Having given this some thought, I’m going to log this as a bug, since we all seem to agree that these tool tips “should” appear when hovering the mouse pointer over the sliders.

I’m the co-author of a bug!

I need to lie down for a while.


I just tested this on a selection of old Audacity versions on W10 all the way back to 1.2.6 - and I can’t see such a hovertext info-box on any Audacity version :confused:


So it’s not a “regression”, but do you agree that you should be able to see the pan / gain amounts without creating an event in the Undo history?

Personally I think this is not “only an enhancement”, but adding an undo history event for something that hasn’t changed is a “bug” (it’s not rational to actually “undo” something that hasn’t changed).

Yes, it would certainly be jolly useful - I can see that …