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Creating Digital Media

This is guide to digital media production in the libraries. It is a supplement to the Digital Studio's documentation, and can be used as a reference for projects that might originate in the One-Button Studio or the Sound Studio.

Basic Recording with Audacity

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Want to use Audacity? We can help!

  1. Log in to the computer.
  2. Plug in your flash drive, if you have one.

  3. Click on the Audacity icon. If the icon is not there, or if Audacity did not open immediately, then open up Launchpad.

    You can find Audacity there in the list of apps.
  4. When Audacity opens, make sure you have the following options selected in the dropdown menus. Note: If ‘Scarlett 18i8 USB’ is not an option in the second menu, make sure the mixer is powered on (switch on back, right).

  5. Choose the number of inputs in the third dropdown menu.
  6. The Focusrite mixer should look like this if you’re recording with three microphone inputs. Please see the expanding instructions (online) if you are recording with one or 2 microphones.
  7. To begin recording, press the red circle/record button. Be sure to speak directly into the front of the microphone!

  8. When you want to stop recording, press the gold square/stop button.

  9. To listen to your audio, press the green triangle/play button.

  10. Once you’re satisfied with your recording, press “File” in the top-left corner of the screen, in the top bar next to the Apple icon, then press “Save Project”.

    (For more information on exporting and saving, please see expanding instructions online.)

    Click "okay."

  11. Name your file and save it to your flash drive.

    If you do not have a flash drive, please go to our expanded instructions online.
  12. Once you have done so, then eject your flash drive (drag the icon on the desktop for your flash drive to the trash and wait for it to disappear).
  13. You’re done! Go into the Digital Studio next door and begin editing your audio!

If you would like more information about editing in Audacity, check out our list of Audacity tutorials, our page on how to edit in Audacity, and our expanded instructions.

Want more of our tutorials? Read them here.

Advanced Recording with Audacity

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Using Audacity, but have some more questions that our last tutorial couldn't answer? We're here to help!

Recording with One or Two Microphones

In our basic tutorial, we went through how to record with three microphones at once. If you need one or two, here are tips for you.

  1. In the drop-down menu, select the number of microphones you will need.

  2. Here is a diagram of our layout, along with each microphone's number:

  3. On the mixer, take the knobs of the microphones you will not be using, and turn them all the way to the left.

    Once done, please reset the mixer's dials to how they were when you first arrived.

More on Exporting & Saving

Export Directly to a .wav Audio File
  1. If you do not have Audacity installed on your computer, or feel that your current recording is sufficient, press “File” in the top-left corner of the screen, in the top bar next to the Apple icon, then press “Export Audio”.

  2. Save to whichever destination you would like. Name your file and select .wav as the file type.

If You Do Not Have a Flash Drive
  1. Either save or export your file.
  2. If you exported your file, save it either to a Cloud Provider (Google Drive, iCloud, etc.) or attach it to an email (file size permitting).
  3. If you chose to save your file as an .aup file, then take the data folder and the .aup itself and put them into your storage method of choice.

Want some more expanded instructions or tips and tricks? Check out our list of tutorials and resources, or our tips for editing with Audacity, along with our basic tutorial.

Want more of our tutorials? Read them here.

Editing Audio Files with Audacity

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Whether it’s making your audio sound nice for your upcoming presentation, or making yourself sound like a chipmunk, we can help you out.

Working with Existing Audio

If you are working with a project or have your project already open, you can skip this step.
  1. Log in to the computer.
  2. Plug in your flash drive.
  3. Open Audacity. (See our Basic Tutorial if you are having issues with getting the program to open.)
  4. On the top-left corner of the computer screen, next to where the top bar has an Apple icon and where it says “Audacity”, select File → Import → Audio. From there, you can edit. A screencap of this action.

 

Cutting Out/Deleting Sound

  1. Follow steps 1-4 in "Working with Existing Audio".
  2. Highlighting lets you select a specific area of the audio clip. To do this, drag your mouse and select a section of the audio. To delete, press the Delete/Backspace Key.

Adding Effects

Whether you want to speed up your voice or cut out white noise, here's where you should go.
  1. To select the entire audio track, click on the left area of the track, where it says “Mono/Stereo” (Note: This will depend on the file).

  2. From there, what you want to do is up to you! To access effects, such as changing speed or pitch--or even both!--click on Effect in the top-screen menu, to the right of the Apple icon and to the left of “Help”.

Remove White Noise
  1. For removing noise, follow the same instructions as "Cutting Out/Deleting Sound" on an area with the white noise you want to remove, but do not press delete.

  2. In the effects menu, select Noise Reduction.

  3. Click on Get Noise Profile.

  4. Once you have done that, then select the entire audio track (as seen in step 1 of "Adding Effects"), and click on Noise Removal again.

  5. Click on "Okay".

Aligning Tracks

If you have recorded more than one audio file, this will help you put them side-by-side, or wherever else you would like.

1. If you have recorded more than one audio file or track, then your screen should look something like this. It does not matter if yours look exactly like this; all that matters is that you have more than one track. A screencap of two music files, side-by-side.

2. Select where you would like the two tracks to meet up by click on the bottom track, where you would like the cursor to be. Make sure both tracks (or however many tracks you want to align) have the cursor shown on them. Screencap of the cursor, highlighted.

3. Once you have the cursor where you would like it to go, click on "Tracks" → "Align Tracks" → "Start to Cursor/Selection Start". As seen here.

4. Voilà! Your tracks are aligned. Aligned tracks.

To Check Your Editing/Changes

  1. To test the changes you make to your audio, press the green triangle/play button. Play around with it as much as you want!
  1. Once you are done editing your audio, either save or export it then eject your flash drive. (More info on saving and exporting can be found in the Expanded Tutorial.

  2. You're done! Don't forget to log out!

Want more of our tutorials? Read them here.

Video Tutorials for Using Audacity

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Exporting and Attaching WAV Files using Audacity and Microsoft Online 365

Have you tried to export a file as an MP3 and hit the "You need to download a LAME Library" Roadblock? Lame, right?!

Try exporting as a WAV file instead. This tutorial will show you how to export your Audacity project as a WAV file and how to send it through Office 365.

MP3's are smaller files -- and easier to attach to emails and share -- but WAV files are preservation quality audio. You can always export DOWN in the quality of your digital media, you can't go back up, so keep a higher quality master file from which you can then make secondary copies for sharing. 

 


 

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