Audacity for blind users
|This page contains information for blind or visually impaired users of Audacity.
A very important feature of Audacity is the ability to fully manipulate the selection using the keyboard.
Screen reader access works very well on Windows. Mac screen reader support now requires considerable adjustment following a transition to wxWidgets 3, but a 2.1.1 accessible build is available on our Mac downloads page. Screen reader support still needs further development on Linux.
Please read the "Free Screen Readers" section below for links to free screen readers.
Documentation and mailing lists
Further help is at hand if you need it.
- There is an Audacity4blind mailing list for "blind people helping each other use Audacity".
- To subscribe to the list:
- Go to https://www.freelists.org/list/audacity4blind.
- Enter your email address into the one edit box on that page.
- Tab to the Go button and press it.
- You will receive an email to confirm the subscription. Simply reply to this email without adding any additional text.
- The list archive is at http://www.freelists.org/archive/audacity4blind/
- A Guide to using Audacity 2.2.0 to 2.2.2 with the commercial JAWS screen reader for Windows, by David Bailes. It includes tips for navigating Audacity without the mouse which should be helpful to users on all operating systems.
Tips for blind users
- Some of this content may only be relevant to legacy 1.2 versions of Audacity.
- Keyboard Shortcuts
- Navigating Effects
- Running Effects
- Mono to Stereo
- Other tips
Free Screen Readers
|Unfortunately, Audacity 2.2.2 is not accessible for users of VoiceOver, and this was also the case for the 2.2.1, 2.2.0, 2.1.3, 2.1.2, and 2.1.1 releases.|
However, an accessible version of Audacity 2.1.1 is available on our Mac downloads page. The name of this accessible version is "2.1.1-screen-reader" (DMG and ZIP downloads are available). It is hoped that future versions of Audacity will be accessible for users of VoiceOver.
- Orca for Linux/Unix. As of GNOME 2.16, Orca is a part of the GNOME platform, so is already provided by default on a number of operating system distributions, including Open Solaris, Fedora and Ubuntu. It does not work with the KDE environment. Orca works moderately well with Audacity, including reading most of the toolbar controls, but does not read TimeText controls (spinbox digits). Orca does not indicate track focus or selectedness.