recording classical music with large dynamic range

I am hoping to use Audacity to allow my conservatory students to record their part of chamber music works to allow for online coaching as a result of the corona virus shutdowns of live teaching. Can someone advise me what settings to instruct my students to use to record their individual tracks? The music has large dynamic range from very soft to very loud.

I assume they’ll be recording at home? Or are they coming into school one at a time where there is studio or music room with some good microphones and other equipment?

And, I assume the aren’t all using Audacity already. It might be better to find a phone app for recording. Audacity isn’t always easy to set-up the 1st time. :wink: And, if they are using a microphone built into a laptop it will pick-up the laptop’s fan nose and hard drive noise.

If a phone is used, the files can be transferred to a computer for editing in Audacity. (They can choose the best take, etc., and trim the ends, etc.)

The “settings” in Audacity are not to important as long as is it’s configured to record from the microphone/interface you’re using. And, the levels should be set low-enough to allow headroom so there is no [u]clipping[/u]. It’s better to record at a low digital level and boost later. However, the microphone should be fairly close for a good strong acoustic level, and of course a quiet recording environment is helpful.

And, Windows [u]“Enhancements”[/u] should be turned OFF.

chamber music works

As you may know, this kind of music is difficult to record (with good quality). The acoustic & electronic noise needs to be low, and you need a “good room” with careful mic placement to get a good balance of direct sound and reverb. (Or, you can record in a sound-absorbing studio and add artificial reverb later, but it’s probably easier for the musicians to play with natural reverb.)

Hi Audrey,
This COVID-19 Pandemic affected many schools, Colleges & Universities.
As per the statistics 91% of the world’s learners have been impacted by school closures.
1,576,021,818 learners are cut off from their classrooms
188 countries have shut down schools nationwide.

All these statistics in less than three months?? COVID-19 is worse than a global war!

But many useful online tools & websites can help all over the students in this critical time. is one of them.

Cheers !!