Recorded Voice Only Playing on Left Channel


I recorded a voice segment using the built-in laptop speakers (my biggest mistake, I know), and now when I play it back, it is only audible through the left ear/left channel. Is there a way I can duplicate this sound onto the right channel so I get the proper stereo effect?

Thanks in advance!

(my biggest mistake, I know)

That depends. Did it sound OK and do what you wanted? There’s a good chance if you have a quiet laptop and quiet room, the voice track could work OK.

get the proper stereo effect?

Do you want a stereo effect, or a good mono voice track? They’re different.
Use the drop-down menu to the left of the blue waves > Split Stereo to Mono > [X] delete the dead track.

The result should play from both speakers. This is the format that ACX Audiobooks recommends for submission.

A stereo effect is where the voice can seem “deep” or echoey. That’s “fake stereo” and there’s a number of ways to achieve it. Note that even in surround, effects-heavy movies, the dialog is almost always mono and coming from the middle of the screen.

I did a reasonable voice test using laptop microphones and am testing different techniques to improve it—but I’m doing it on a quiet Mac in my soundproofed third bedroom. The old owners had a kid that played drums.

What usually happens on laptops is the application of noise reduction filters and you may not be able to stop it. That can give you “cell phone voice” or talking into a wine glass. That’s usually not acceptable for theatrical production.

It depends on what you’re doing.


Got it, thanks Koz!

Turns out it actually somehow got panned all the way to the left. It was a simple fix.

I’ve always thought it much to easy to accidentally nudge the sliders (I ruined a recording once by inadvertently nudging up the gain).

It’s why I wrote this proposal that’s sitting on the Audacity Wiki:
but don’t hold your breath …