Removing Pop From 8-Track Tape Recording

I have successfully transfered original music I recorded on 8-track tape back in 1974 using Audacity. As maybe a few people know in this forum about 8-track tapes, there is a piece of foil that signals the player to switch tracks. This switching leaves a “pop” in the recorded transfer. Removing this pop has been real challenging for this newbie.

I have looked at some of the tutorials and wiki, used the click and pop removal, normalize, but still have been unsuccessful at removing this pop. I can cut the pop completely out, but have not been able to isolate just the pop. Zooming in and trying to capture when the pop actually occurs…moves by way to fast to notice the time the pop occurs.

Any advice on how to remove this pop from my recording?


You have to find it. I don’t know any software that will find it for you.

My 8-Tracks would never switch in the middle of a song, so there should be no competition on both sides of the pop except for the tape noise.

I do this in the most painful way possible, by progressively zooming in. Somtimes the moving Audacity cursor will not be able to follow the playback and that makes this process pretty painful.

Select some sound obviously on both sides of the pop. The spacebar will stop and start playback. Control-E will zoom into your selection, Control-3 will zoom out slightly, and Control-F will zoom out to the whole performance.

Play the zoomed-in selection and confirm that the pop is still there. Select something smaller and zoom into that. Play it. Make sure the pop is still audible each time you select a smaller and smaller segment. Sooner or later, you will find the end of one song and the beginning of another with “grass” (hiss in the speakers) and then a disturbance in the middle. That’s the pop.

Select the pop as accurately as possible. You can zoom in repeatedly and get amazingly accurate about it.

It’s not an Effect. Select Edit > Silence. The pop will vanish. Zoom out (Control-3) a couple of times and play the new piece. The background hiss will vanish for the briefest moment and then continue on for the next song. This particular process will not change the length of the performance unlike some of the other tools.


You might want to try Brian Davies’excellent ClickRepair software - it costs abot US$40 - but you can get a free trial for 21 days. See:

and see also my thread on it:


In Audacity 1.3.5 you can switch to the “Spectrum” view of the track (click on the track name for the drop down menu with this option). The spectrum view can sometimes show up pops and clicks as red vertical lines.

Thanks all… The pop does not saturate or display any red verticle lines. Looks like I just have to work a little harder isolating this pop.


It’s only three times per tape. It’s not like trying to dig cat hair sounds out of the only known recording of Verdi. Plus, once you know where the first pop is, you know where the other two are. There’s only one tape in there and each segment has to be the same length.

You might actually have to [gasp] edit!