How to edit multi-track audio with Audacity

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How to edit multi-track audio with Audacity 1
Main window of the free Audacity program

Do you want to join multiple audio tracks into one file? Do you need to work with blocks, move them, cut them in Audacity and don’t know how to do it? Well, here we explain the process.

The first thing you have to do, logically, is download Audacity and install it on your computer. Once you have it installed, follow these tips to work better with the program. And, above all, edit audio tracks, move them, cut them, without problems.

how to edit multi-track audio in Audacity
This is how audio tracks are displayed with Audacity

How to edit multiple audio tracks with Audacity

Did you know that in Audacity it is possible to work with several audio tracks at the same time? The easiest way is to open the program and simply drag and drop the files into the Audacity window. Each audio file will be placed as a separate track.

In the image above you can see how each audio file is an independent horizontal window. To better fit the entire Audacity window and see more tracks on screen, you can enlarge or reduce the size of each track. Simply place the mouse on the border between one track and another and the cursor will change to an arrow. If we click the mouse, the size of each track can be enlarged or reduced. This is very convenient to be able to see as many tracks as possible on the screen.

You can also almost hide a track if you no longer want to have it taking up a lot of space on the screen. In each track window, at the bottom left of the word Select, clicking on the up arrow minimizes the size of that track. And when you want to unfold again, just click on that same arrow again.

How to move audio tracks with Audacity

If you want to move a position track, just select the time shift tool cursor. At the top of the program, to the right of the red record button, are the different cursors that can be chosen to work with Audacity. Select the cursor that has left and right arrows. Once selected, it lets you move any track. Just place yourself on it and click the mouse to one side or the other.

How to edit multi-track audio with Audacity 2
How to select the same block on multiple audio tracks

There is a trick that is not easy to guess to be able to move several tracks, but from a specific point and without ALL the tracks moving in block. You place the cursor at the starting point from which you want to move the tracks. With the mouse you select to the end point you want to move. Once you have it, in the menu above you go to the option To select, soon Tracks and you choose On all the slopes. In this way, the selection will have jumped to all the tracks that are being edited in Audacity. From there it lets you move all the tracks en bloc respecting the order in which they are.

How to split an audio track

You can also divide an audio track into chunks, to make it easier to shift them or insert silences in between. This is a trick that took me a long time to learn. But it is as easy as placing the cursor at the point of the track that we want to divide and pressing the Ctrl + I keys.

It can also be done from the program menu. To do this, select the Edit menu at the top, then Trim Limits and, finally, Divide. But honestly, the magic combination of the Ctrl key plus the I key is much more comfortable and faster.