This is a hard issue to explain but even harder to come up with a good title for this post. I have two groups of music files: one original and one remastered. In order to test the quality of the remaster, I wanted to bring up the same song from each group, and play them back in real time by alternating the “solo” button. The remastered versions sounded awesome!
That was until I made the mistake of adding the original version first, and then the remaster so the original is on top. Now the original sounded better than the remastered version. I did some fiddling around, and it turns out whichever version is added first sounds better than the version below it. This doesn’t make any sense. If my “remastered” versions actually aren’t remastered at all, it wouldn’t explain why order of Audacity import would affect the quality. The remastered versions are either slightly touched up or completely identical in quality to the originals based on a non-Audacity listening test, but that doesn’t explain what the heck is going on in my Audacity tests.
This issue seems strictly limited to these particular files. If I duplicate a random audio file, and put them both in Audacity, they sound identical in quality regardless of what’s on top or on bottom. What’s more, the test files I’m having issues with aren’t the same file format. The original is OGG, 32000hz, and the remastered are WAV, 44100hz. The edited versions of the OGG originals that I made for listening purposes are Apple Lossless, and have different track names than the original files. Same issue occurs. It seems that, with these particular files, Audacity doesn’t know left from right or up from down.
I’ve never seen anyone complain of this issue before, so I’m sure it’s quite rare. I don’t know how to fix it. My Audacity is up to date.
Windows 10/Audacity 3.1.2