Why won't Audacity work on my recording?

Well, I have dozens of different formats and sizes of this recording, corrected and uncorrected, in my computer. Here’s one I just found that is 48.4 MB. I haven’t used DropBox in years, but here’s a clip–I hope–that is only a few dozen seconds long.https://www.dropbox.com/s/x0h2qq2o44c8wa2/The%20Rubaiyat%20of%20Omar%20Khayyam%202%20copy%202-nr%201.wav?dl=0

I am not an audio engineer so someone else can help you if they want to. :wink: However you want the full gamut of removal - clicks, general steady noise and other disturbances and distortions.

Your sample does not contain “noise only” that you can use as a Noise Profile, so you can’t do Noise Reduction with that sample.

You could buy the CD instead if you want an easier life.


Maybe I don’t understand your last sentence, but it sounds like you’re you’re saying that the clip I sent was too short. That’s ironic because I wanted to send a longer clip from the beginning but was finally forced to cut it down as I did. Now that I have finally grudgingly complied with your demands, you say that it’s too short. Well, so be it, I guess I’m on my own from here on. It doesn’t seem to be worthwhile to ask for help from Audacity judging from the “help” I’ve received so far.

That does not encourage me to spend time trying. Nevertheless, I’ll explain what one of the problems is with that recording. The sample rate is very low. http://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/Sample_Rates

It has a sample rate of 8 kHz (8000 Hz), which limits the frequency range to 4000 Hz, which is about the same as “telephone quality”. Consequently the sound is muffled (no high frequencies). Because frequencies above 4000 Hz are missing (totally absent), any attempt (with any software) to make the recording sound clear and bright will fail. You can’t improve sound that is not there.

Early on in this forum topic you began by said “I am using Audacity because the sound quality of my recording is not good, and I want to improve it”, but unfortunately it seems that the problem lies with the very beginning of this story, with how you made that original recording. By default, Audacity records at 44.1 kHz, which is sufficient to capture the full audio range. The samples that you have posted have less than 1/4 of that audio data, which is too little to data be able to make any significant improvement.

Where we need to start is with how you made the initial recording. Was it made on your mobile phone?

It’s not the clip is too short. The clip does not have a silent portion. Noise reduction needs a selection of pure noise to “sniff” so it knows what to remove.

Clip lengths must be restricted. There are thousands of posters and nobody is paying a dime for the service.

Anyone wanting to post a larger clip can do it on a file posting service such as DropBox.


My first problem is not with the low fidelity, it’s the clicks, pops, scratches, and other noises. I was trying to see what Audacity and another company could do about them. So far I’ve learned that, apparently, Audacity can’t even hear the clicks that, to me, are so bothersome. Well, I still haven’t finished with the other company’s program, but that’s because there is still one patch that is unclear to me. It’s much easier to use than Audacity, but nothing is perfect, least of all, my technical ability.

In addition to trying to remove the most irritating sounds with software, I am also going to try to improve the recording by rehabilitating the LP it came from. I’m not going to buy one of those expensive machines, but I have already received a new needle for my turntable, and the materials necessary for the thorough cleaning and rehabilitation of the disc are on the way. I had hoped that with a better record and needle Audacity could top things off to make a respectable recording. Now I see that I can’t count on Audacity. Live and learn.

So that’s it. Well, I just tried to send you some 'silence," It was a tiny little clip, but it was 48.4 MB. It seems ridiculous to have to send it through DropBox, but I guess that’s what I’ll have to do. Well, all of this helps me in the long run, and learning how to use DropBox is just part of the picture. I’ve used it before, but I tend to forget the details after a year or so. less, actually, much less.

I couldn’t send the “silence.” DropBox keeps telling me that the E-mail address is wrong even though I sent something here a few days ago: “When sorrows come, they come not as single spies but in battalions.”

I just sent the file from DropBox to myself as a test. I received it with no problems. Maybe I am using the wrong E-mail address for this site. Which address should I be using?

You still have not said why the files you send are only 8000 Hz. If you have a proper recording at 44100 Hz, send that.

You can fix the clicks to at least some extent (a plugin click remover might be better) and you can reduce the steady noise if your recording Includes the lead-in or band between tracks that is only the noise from the record. Otherwise you cannot.

You will not be able to completely remove the other noises without to some extent impairing the rest of the audio.

If the help you want is someone to clean the whole recording up for you for free, well I am not going to do that for you, nor I suspect anyone else. We are being as blunt with you as you are with us.

Cleaning the record and making another recording at 44100 Hz will help a great deal.


The noise sample only needs to be a second or two. You can attach that here as a WAV file.


Okay, here’s a very short sample sent to you directly from my computer. I am no longer able to use DropBox for this purpose. It keeps telling me, “One or more names or email addresses you entered are invalid.” Anyway, here’s the “empty” part of my recording at the beginning before the poem begins.

How are you making these audio clips? Are you using Audacity or some other application?
How did you make the original recording? Did you record with Audacity on a Mac computer or with an App on your phone?

The reason that I’m asking is that despite us repeatedly asking for audio samples in standard 44100 Hz, 16-bit WAV format, your samples are still in a low quality 8000 Hz format. The default export format for Audacity is 44100 Hz, 16-bit WAV. The default recording format in Audacity is 32-bit float, 44100 Hz PCM, which is ideal for high quality recording, editing and processing. 8000 Hz sample rate is too low, and is unsuitable for high quality work. We cannot make silk purses out of pigs ears - no-one can.

If you use a low quality format, then the results will inevitably be low quality and there’s little that can be done about that. To stand any chance of improving the sound quality, you must make the recording in a high quality format (such as 16-bit 44100 Hz WAV, or better), and remain in a high quality format until you have finished editing/processing it.

This is the info about your latest sample:

Complete name                            : ./The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam 2-cr1.wav
Format                                   : Wave
File size                                : 172 KiB
Duration                                 : 5s 468ms
Overall bit rate mode                    : Constant
Overall bit rate                         : 257 Kbps
Album                                    : Angel at Radio Shack
Track name                               : The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam
Performer                                : Omar Khayham
Composer                                 : Omar Khayham
Director                                 : Omar Khayham
Genre                                    : Pop
Recorded date                            : 2007
Original source form/Name                : Angel at Radio Shack
Comment                                  :  00000000 00000210 000004B0 0000000000B88D80 00000000 001BA200 00000000 00000000 00000000 00000000 00000000 00000000
Encoded by                               : iTunes v7.1.1
BPM (beats per minute)                   : 120

Format                                   : PCM
Format profile                           : Float
Codec ID                                 : 3
Codec ID/Hint                            : IEEE 
Duration                                 : 5s 468ms
Bit rate mode                            : Constant
Bit rate                                 : 256 Kbps
Channel(s)                               : 1 channel
Sampling rate                            : 8 000 Hz
Bit depth                                : 32 bits
Stream size                              : 171 KiB (100%)

First,I have to say that I don’t know why that song was sent rather than the silence I had intended. I was NOT trying to be smart. I just don’t understand how that could have happened, and I apologize for it.

I’m not sure how I made the recordings. At first I thought that I had made them many years ago with Wiretap, but now I think that I lost all of those recordings when I had a computer catastrophe with another computer. Now I think I did it with a little gadget that you can hold in your hand. I can’t find it now, but it’s little silvery-colored drum about 1/2" thick and 2" in diameter with wires at each side.You plug one end into the turntable, or whatever, and the other into the computer and play. That’s it. It does a great job, and so easily.

I don’t think that I have more than one or two ORIGINAL (I have numerous copies) audio files in my computer that are not in the MP3 or MP4 format. The reason is simple: The other files took up too much room, so I converted them. When I was using Wiretap, I had it set to import into the MP3 format, and whenever and wherever else I found those files, I made it a practice to convert them into MP3 or MP4. I might have missed some, but that was my practice, still is. I have no regrets about that. One of my proudest accomplishments was in compressing a 90-minute musical production on CD into a 3.5 MB file. It sounds fine to me, and I can export it–without DropBox. By the way, I bought the records in 1960, but I’m not sure when I made these recordings.

I’ve said the following before, but I’ll repeat it, since it’s crucial: I am not interested in “high-fidelity” as such. I’m only interested in producing recordings that sound fine to me. Given a satisfactory–to me–recording, my only concern is in removing irritating noises. I don’t know what more I can say on the subject.

Oh, there is one last thing. Less than an hour ago, I learned that I can buy another box of those 4-LPs for a reasonable amount, so my interest in using Audacity has lessened considerably. I still intend to try to master its use as sort of an intellectual challenge, but it’s fair to say that my passion for doing so has lessened considerably. After all, I said the same thing about Calculus a few months ago, but I never got started in that.