Audacity in Linux Mint

  11 years ago

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Although I am running LMDE now, much of what follows will still be applicable to other editions of Linux Mint. You may be lucky, just install Audacity and it will work; unfortunately, when installing it on to a new computer this has seldom been the case for me!

In addition to installing Audacity through the Software Manager, since Linux Mint 11 and the Debian Edition you may find it useful to install some Pulse Audio packages too. (To me, ALSA just worked and was very easy to manipulate but, hey ho...)

From the Software Manager install the following packages...

audacity, paman, paprefs, pavucontrol and pavumeter

Hopefully we wont need the pulseaudio packages but I will deal with it with some guidance in a moment.

Launch Audacity
First of all, launch Auacity and, after clearing the introduction window, maximise the main window so that everything is nice and clear. From the menu bar click on Edit/ Preferences... (or key <> +P) and you will be presented with the Preference menu.


On my set up there are two interface hosts available, ALSA and OSS, as ALSA is the most recent and reliable select that. The Playback and Recording drop-down menus allow you to 'connect' to your hardware or software audio systems. For me the above configuration works for what I normally do. The best way to set up is to try Recording first; play something through your system, be it a live radio audio stream or a CD. Try different Recording devices, one at a time, go back to the main Audacity window and try to record. Once you have made a recording try the same method with the Playback device to hear the recording you have just made. (You may need to delve into the Pulse Audio Volume Control to adjust the sound levels, but more of that anon.)


I have jumped over Playback and Recording as these contain elements which I have found are best left alone! Set up the system as above in Quality. You can reduce the Default Sample Format to 16 bit (the original BBC audio links used this), if space is at a premium. The Default Sample Rate (DSR) sets the uppermost frequency you will record and is reckoned to be half the DSR, ie., 22.05kHz. Even when young a persons range normally only goes up tp 20kHz so, unless you are recording for bats...!

The Real-time Conversion and High-quality Conversion can be set as show. Remember better quality takes processing power, so you reserve it for when it is needed.


Now, those of you who know Audacity may consider my Meter/Waveform dB range to be extreme and, it probably would be if I kept to the standard layout. Because you can drag the tool bars about the Audacity window and delete those which you feel you can do without, I've dragged my level meters to the bottom of the screen and stretched them out across the full width of the window.  I think the rest of the controls are self explanatory. (Scream if you don't think so!)


The rest of the options are pretty straight forward, except for Directories. By default Audacity stores temporary files in the Root partition and, as this normally has restricted space I've moved it to a place in my Home partition.


Below are some of the more interesting options available...





Pulse Audio
First of all start the Pulse Audio Device Chooser. This sits in the tool bar at the bottom of the screen, beside the update manager. If you right click on the icon and select Preferences, you can set it to start automatically in future. By left clicking it you can adjust the settings and, most importantly, the volume settings.

Now you can now see my Tutorial Using Audacity to Digitize that old Vinyl Record to take you further into the world of recording audio on your Linux Box.

RayWoods 9 years ago

Open up Pulse Audio's volume control (you may need to install it as it is not installed by default in Mint, look for pavucontrol). With this tool you can select which audio inputs and outputs are active and their relative volume levels.

You will need to look around this program for your microphone and ensure it is working at a suitable level. This can be more complex if you, like me, have more than one sound board in your computer! Have Fun.

RayWoods 11 years ago

@kazztan0325, when the dust settles on the Moderator front I will give it some thought. @zaenal1234, you are very welcome.

zaenal1234 11 years ago

Very good & thank you.

Anleoje 12 years ago

Thank you ;)

kazztan0325 12 years ago

I think, it would be better if you would edit this tutorial's subject as (e.g.)"Audacity in Linux Mint Part1" and post a new tutorial (e.g.)"Audacity in Linux Mint Part2" which is written about the editing of sound files.

Please don't forget add a clickable link (e.g.)"to be continued..." at the tail of this tutorial.

I hope "Audacity in Linux Mint" Series would be continued like Part1, 2, 3...

RayWoods 12 years ago

Thank you one and all. I am thinking of expanding with an addition to using Audacity in practice, especially in the editing of sound files.

What would you all prefer, adding to the the current tutorial or a new separate tutorial linked to the above?

kazztan0325 12 years ago

I also think this tutorial is written very well, however I have never used Audacity before.

trollboy 12 years ago

Very nice, well done tutorial even if it is on a piece of software I never use ^_^

Boringbytes 12 years ago

I like Audacity very much, it makes my few sound projects easy. Thanks for this tutorial.

blueXrider 12 years ago

Very Nice.