Help Getting Started?

Audio software developers forum.
Forum rules
If you require help using Audacity, please post on the forum board relevant to your operating system:
Mac OS X
GNU/Linux and Unix-like
Post Reply
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 5:07 pm
Operating System: Windows 7

Help Getting Started?

Post by evilmrmahler » Wed Jan 13, 2016 7:34 pm

Hi Folks,

Totally new to the forum. Using the helpful guides online I got as far as debugging a local copy of Audacity.
Now I'm hoping someone with experience can help jump start my project.

Otherwise I can figure stuff out by reading code, placing breakpoints, and walking through the code a lot. This would take quite awhile to start giving results.

In the simplest goals, I'd like to record, generate, or import a sound. Say just a single tone for now. Then:
-Do an FFT and find the primary/average frequency component
-multiply the track into 5 tracks
-time delay some of the tracks
-export or playback the result through 5.1 surround sound
Ideally I could add a menu option to lump these tasks together.

Thanks in advance for any advice

Forum Staff
Posts: 40474
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:57 pm
Operating System: OS X 10.9 Mavericks
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Help Getting Started?

Post by kozikowski » Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:08 pm

In the simplest goals
What's the eventual goal?
Starting with the simplest goal doesn't do much for you because no matter how you analyze it, a single tone comes out one single frequency or energy blob.

Duplicate a track with Control-D as many times as needed. They stack vertically.

Delay tracks with the Time Shift Tool (two sideways black arrows). I would avoid delaying the first track.

There are ways to export a multi-track show into 5.1 Dolby or other format and I would have to look that one up. Audacity will not play more than two tracks (one stereo) at once.

Then what? You're holding a Dolby Surround Sound file..........


Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 5:07 pm
Operating System: Windows 7

Re: Help Getting Started?

Post by evilmrmahler » Thu Jan 14, 2016 3:29 am

The fact that Audacity can't playback surround is good to know.
I'll have to find a way around that.

Otherwise, let me be more specific.
I'd like to be able to find and read the code which handles the things you are describing.
For example if I had a track and used the time shift tool, in what file is that function call?
Or if I open a menu and it displays a list of options, where is the file that defines those options?

Site Admin
Posts: 47316
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 11:43 am
Operating System: Linux *buntu

Re: Help Getting Started?

Post by steve » Thu Jan 14, 2016 9:13 am

Audacity is a large and complex program with about half a million lines of code. The code is split into several hundred files, mostly .cpp and .h files as Audacity is mostly written in C++. The files are sorted into multiple directories. The source code that is directly concerned with building the Audacity application is in the /src directory, which is then subdivided into other directories. For example, the source code for built-in effects can be found in /src/effects.

This is probably a bit out of date, but may still be useful:
And this is unofficial, but may be useful:
9/10 questions are answered in the FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)

Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 5:07 pm
Operating System: Windows 7

Re: Help Getting Started?

Post by evilmrmahler » Mon Jan 18, 2016 1:47 pm

Thanks for the replies guys.

I noticed that Audacity has 'chains' for batch automation of a linear sequence of commands.

This would be perfect, if I could expose some different functionality as commands.

Currently I could accomplish through the GUI:
-Generate a tone
#duplicate the track n times
#analyze->plot spectrum, observe the primary frequency
#time delay some tracks
-export as surround sound

If I could batch the lines marked with #, it would be progress.

Post Reply