Difference between revisions of "Feature Requests"

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** It doesn't make a lot of sense to add support for MIDI files if Audacity can't also be used as a sequencer. Obviously this would take some time, but if sufficiently developed would make Audacity competitive even with [[ProTools]] and Sonar!  
** It doesn't make a lot of sense to add support for MIDI files if Audacity can't also be used as a sequencer. Obviously this would take some time, but if sufficiently developed would make Audacity competitive even with [[ProTools]] and Sonar!  
* Ability to drop vertical marks that are 'glued' to the waveform on the main track (not on a label track). They should move when when track is moved, and also be adjustable and label-able.  Should be possible to highlight for cutting, copying or other operations the area between two adjacent marks.  This is an extremely useful feature available in Sound Forge and most other editing programs. (If this feature were installed, AMARC would recommend and distribute Audacity for the worldwide community radio editing norm.  It would be wonderful to have it available by November 2006 when AMARC has its quadrennial conference! [see www.amarc.org} Add AMARC's 3000+ worldwide members to the votes here.)  (<font color="#CC6699">18 votes</font>)
* Ability to drop vertical marks that are 'glued' to the waveform on the main track (not on a label track). They should move when when track is moved, and also be adjustable and label-able.  Should be possible to highlight for cutting, copying or other operations the area between two adjacent marks.  This is an extremely useful feature available in Sound Forge and most other editing programs. (If this feature were installed, AMARC would recommend and distribute Audacity for the worldwide community radio editing norm.  It would be wonderful to have it available by November 2006 when AMARC has its quadrennial conference! [see www.amarc.org} Add AMARC's 3000+ worldwide members to the votes here.)  (<font color="#CC6699">18 votes</font>)
* Allow real time adjustment [[RealTimeAdjustment]]  (<font color="#CC6699">17 votes</font>)
* Allow real time adjustment [[RealTimeAdjustment]]  (<font color="#CC6699">18 votes</font>)
** could allow effect intensity/LADSPA plugin parameters/panning to be varied in real-time?
** could allow effect intensity/LADSPA plugin parameters/panning to be varied in real-time?
** include something similar to the envelope tool to adjust the effect parameters?
** include something similar to the envelope tool to adjust the effect parameters?
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* Noise gate (not noise removal, just a simple binary gate) (<font color="#CC6699">6 votes</font>)
* Noise gate (not noise removal, just a simple binary gate) (<font color="#CC6699">6 votes</font>)
* Single menu command for Extract vocals/instrumental from stereo sources (<font color="#CC6699">5 votes</font>)<span style="color:green;font-style:italic"> Note: This is very hit and miss - on many recordings simple techniques don't work well or at all. A Nyquist plugin can be used for automatic centre extraction and other plugins can be tried. See [[Vocal Removal]]</span>
* Single menu command for Extract vocals/instrumental from stereo sources (<font color="#CC6699">6 votes</font>)<span style="color:green;font-style:italic"> Note: This is very hit and miss - on many recordings simple techniques don't work well or at all. A Nyquist plugin can be used for automatic centre extraction and other plugins can be tried. See [[Vocal Removal]]</span>
* Dolby B and Dolby C input and output filters (for converting to/from tape recordings in Dolby) (<font color="#CC6699">1 vote</font>) <BR>
* Dolby B and Dolby C input and output filters (for converting to/from tape recordings in Dolby) (<font color="#CC6699">1 vote</font>) <BR>

Revision as of 07:07, 25 November 2007

This is our Feature Requests page where users can suggest new or enhanced Audacity features. You may either add your vote for existing suggestions already listed, or add a new request.

If instead you have suggestions about the Wiki, please click here. To comment about the main Audacity website  , please click here.

Instructions for adding new Audacity Feature Requests:
There are always many requests for new or enhanced Audacity features. As a result we have several other pages concerned with feature requests and planning.

Before adding a new Feature Request to this page, please read all these points!

  1. Check the page to see if your idea has already been suggested. Try the "Find" facility in your browser to make this easier.
  2. Check our Completed Features page to see if your idea has already been implemented.
  3. If the feature uses a proprietary format, check if it is one of the Features We Can't Implement because of restrictions placed on us by other copyright holders. Examples include 'Rewire' support, ASIO and WMA.
  4. If you have many related changes for a particular use of Audacity, such as wildlife recording or Theatre, go to the Use Cases page instead.
  5. Please try to keep requests as short as possible so that it's easy to quickly scan the whole list. If a long description of the feature is unavoidable, please add it at Longer Descriptions of Proposed Features for now.
  6. Please look at the existing page sections for an appropriate category to put your new request in. Then click either the "Edit" link at the top of the page or to the right of the section,and add your request prefixed by a * , so that it goes on a new indented line.
  7. If you're sure your feature request hasn't already been asked for, is not one we're prohibited from implementing, and does not fit a category on this page, please click here to add a new request at the end of the Unclassified Feature Requests page.

Point 3 about Use Cases makes a huge difference for us. It helps us to see why a particular feature is useful and makes it easier to progress a number of feature requests at the same time. We may be able to interest a new developer or Google Summer of Code student in progressing a Use Case. The developers would welcome help from the community in organising groups of related feature requests into a well thought-out GSoC Project Idea. It could help us to get those features into Audacity as part of Google Summer of Code.

Instructions for voting for an existing suggestion:
  1. Please use either the "Edit" link at the top of the page or to the right of the section, and increase the number of votes next to the feature by one.
  2. You may also re-sort the list, for example to group together related requests within a section.
  3. Please vote for no more than your 10 most desired features, so that the list reflects items that are really important to users. However, once a feature has been completed, you can vote for another one next time you visit!

While we always consider the best and most often mentioned requests for inclusion in Audacity, we cannot undertake to implement any particular request made here.

Interested in sponsoring a feature? Please contact us for information if you want to contribute money in order to have your most desired feature implemented sooner.

Already in CVS HEAD

These will move to 'already implemented' once released and documentation has been updated.

  • Colour red any clipping in the waveform display window. Swell these red pixels so they're more noticeable. Helps with prompt correction of clipping during recording, especially with live events. (1 vote)
  • Count number of clipped samples - see SampleClipCount
  • Option to Record to an Existing Track Rather than to a New One: It would be useful to have the OPTION to record to an existing track at the current cursor position rather than always have to record to a new track and then copy/paste from there back to an existing one. (11 votes) Note: Beta code now allows you to hold SHIFT while pressing Record to append recording the end of a selected track or tracks. Will be in 1.3.4
  • Ability to make selection between one pair of labels (like double clicking between markers in Soundforge) (2 votes) Note: in 1.3.3 you can click in a label, drag a selection from that point and have it snap to any other label
  • A beep after certain types of operation have completed which can take a long time (1 vote) This will need more work post 1.4 so that it calls a system audio file
  • Solo Button should be mutually exclusive, so that it's like universally established function of the Solo button on mixers etc. So when I Solo a different track, I don't also have to un-Solo the previously set one. (1 vote) In the next Beta (1.3.4) and next stable (1.4.0) versions, only one track can be soloed at a time, and a track cannot be both soloed and muted
  • Exported tracks should respect the mute or solo buttons. The only way to stop a track being exported is to delete it before doing an export. (6 votes) In the next Beta (1.3.4) and next stable 1.4.0 versions, muted tracks (or all except a soloed track) will not be exported. Until then the workround is to select the tracks you want to export, then use File > Export Selection As.. You select an individual track by clicking above its mute/solo buttons. You can select multiple tracks out of a number on screen by SHIFT-selecting them i.e. select the first track you want to export, then hold down SHIFT while similarly clicking on the other tracks.
  • Add ability for playback cursor to resume at stop point, not at start point, including shortcut for "play/stop and select" like the spacebar shortcut for play/stop (4 votes) There is already a keyboard shortcut (by default SHIFT + A) to 'stop and select'. In the next Beta 1.3.4 and next stable 1.4.0 there will be a new shortcut SHIFT + RETURN for play/stop and select.
  • Allow short/long seek to work while track stopped by giving it its own hotkey (or preferably change hotkeys so that same seek key works when playing or stopped) (5 votes) A new shortcut for short and long jump while stopped will be in the next Beta 1.3.4 and next Stable 1.4.0 version. Short jump left is "," and short jump right is "." and both keys can be modifed with SHIFT to produce a long jump. The same keys also work while playing and you can still use the arrow keys as before for seeking while playing (which will in that case do exactly the same as the new keys).
  • Use [ and ] keys for setting regions while playing AND while stopped. (1 vote) In the next Beta (1.3.4) and stable (1.4.0) versions, the same shortcut key can be used for setting the left boundary while playing, and extending that boundary while stopped.
  • Precision Selection Cursor Location. The ability to precisely enter the location of the selection cursor, current, start and end, ala SoundForge. In all 1.3.x builds.
  • Recording should be done in a way where crash recovery is MUCH better (make it an option if you have to). Basically if someone pulls the plug on the computer while recording, everything should be still there (including the necessary metadata) except perhaps the last block (subject to filesystem limitations). Currently you risk losing stuff or have to recreate stuff by patching the raw files together - this is not reasonable. In contrast with most other recorders including tape, you have everything up till that point. Why not just write the necessary metadata to disk? Link 23:46, 20 July 2007 (PDT) Recording recovery has recently been corrected in CVS head.
  • Export over a currently open .wav file (so Audacity can edit samples for a host sequencer without the user finding the new file) (1 vote)
  • Generate tone exactly covers selection (ie beep out) (3 votes)
  • Truncate silence. Implemented in 1.3.x for mono tracks but needs to work in stereo (8 votes)
  • Horizontal line at 0 (DC=0) to more easily detect DC offset. (19 votes) Note: Implemented in CVS
  • More precise Volume levelling (both gain and input volume where card supports it (16 votes) Note: you can shift-click to drag the gain/pan sliders with more precision, and in 1.3.3 dragging the sliders will now do so in 1 unit increments
  • Loop file or marker in track (i.e. drum lines, bass loops, etc.) (11 votes) Note: The "Loop Play" command ("L" or shift-play) and the "Repeat" effect provide limited looping features.
  • VoiceActivated -Recording (VOR or VOX) - stops recording when you are not speaking but continues to record in the same file when you start speaking again (15 votes) Note: an experimental feature to pause recording when input falls below a user-defined level is written into CVS, but is disabled until it can be polished a little further.
    • This should include a feature to keep paused or keep recording for a user-defined time once threshold reached (2 votes)
  • Preview
    • Cut or Selection: Plays 3 secs before and after the selected area but skips the selection itself (16 votes) Note: Already implemented in the Beta 1.3.3 version. Use the "C" hotkey, and customise the length of preview in the Audio I/O tab of Preferences
    • Selection Beginning-End: Listen to a few seconds of the beginning of selection; Listen to a few seconds of the end of selection (to test whether long selection is desired selection) (2 votes) Note: Already implemented in stable and Beta versions. Use the "B" hotkey and place mouse cursor near start or end of selection, and audio plays from start of selection to mouse cursor, or from mouse cursor to end of selection
  • A "paste special" function, my main desire would be the ability to paste a loop 2 or 9 or 'x' number of times, but might also include some other paste options (1 vote)
    • select the section, then use the "Repeat" effect ?
  • Create labels automatically at pre-defined intervals on the timeline e.g. every 5 minutes. This would be of great help when you need to split a long continuous single track from a speech.(4 votes) Note: There is a Nyquist plugin here which will do this. This plug-in is now in Beta 1.3.4 and will be incorporated in the next stable build of Audacity as well.
  • Allow custom genre in genre field for MP3s (7 votes)


EDIT HINT: Anything with 10 or more votes can be moved here by cut-and-paste so that it will really grab the Audacity developers' attention! If possible, put those with the highest votes on top of the list.

  • Synchronize playback / recording without manual time-shift tool (53 votes)
  • Multi-channel output (e.g. mix down to Dolby 5.1, 7.1, 10.2, 64.4 etc, Playback w. ALSA and Export (maybe OGG multichannel ?)). (34 votes)
  • Punch-in and punch-out recording (32 votes) *PLEASE!*
  • Panning envelope editing (31 votes)
  • Import/Export AAC/MP4 files using open source FAAC library. This would support AAC multichannel and AAC+ (low bitrate streaming-optimised variety of AAC) (27 votes)
  • Extend batch processing to include features dependent on selecting parts of tracks (e.g. trim, fades) (26 votes). See also Automation.
  • Bpm Detection and beats / bars timecode and automatic beat matching/syncing with 2 or more songs (24 votes)
  • Fast-foward and Fast-reverse to the Next or Previous Silence, Edit or marked Point - see this forum suggestion (19 votes) Note that you can already tab between labels when the focus is in the Label Track, then click in the label to recall the point or selection area denoted by the label
  • Allow direct MIDI editing/playback and incorporate midi sequencer (19 votes)
    • It doesn't make a lot of sense to add support for MIDI files if Audacity can't also be used as a sequencer. Obviously this would take some time, but if sufficiently developed would make Audacity competitive even with ProTools and Sonar!
  • Ability to drop vertical marks that are 'glued' to the waveform on the main track (not on a label track). They should move when when track is moved, and also be adjustable and label-able. Should be possible to highlight for cutting, copying or other operations the area between two adjacent marks. This is an extremely useful feature available in Sound Forge and most other editing programs. (If this feature were installed, AMARC would recommend and distribute Audacity for the worldwide community radio editing norm. It would be wonderful to have it available by November 2006 when AMARC has its quadrennial conference! [see www.amarc.org} Add AMARC's 3000+ worldwide members to the votes here.) (18 votes)
  • Allow real time adjustment RealTimeAdjustment (18 votes)
    • could allow effect intensity/LADSPA plugin parameters/panning to be varied in real-time?
    • include something similar to the envelope tool to adjust the effect parameters?
  • Import/Export AC3 files (14 votes)
  • Have the preference for monitoring be on by default (13 votes)We initially didn't do this because of concerns about performance on lower powered machines. We've since had feedback on this that is works fine and that not having monitoring 'on' is causing a bigger problem - especially with new users. This is an easy change and will be fixed in version 1.4
  • Import (extract) and/or Export (burn) CD audio tracks (12 votes) There is experimental code for CD Import/Export in progress. Help welcome.
  • Import/Export AMR (Adaptive Multi-Rate) found e.g. on Nokia/SonyEricsson/iPhone Mobile Phones' Voice Memo or Playing features (supported in ffmpeg) (10 votes)

Segmenting Tracks

  • Parsing (automatically starts recording a new track) based on configurable "silence" period usually found between program segments (merged two items here) (8 votes) Note: try this script to create labels at each silence, then export multiple.
  • Export Multiple
    • change radio buttons under "Name Files" to check box or drop-downs with. i.e. Label/Track name and Number consecutively, and Prefix (e.g. <album><track><title> would now be automated. Postfix label as well? (5 votes)
    • Progress dialogue should say "exporting 1 of 5, 2 of 5.." not string of "exporting entire Project" dialogues (5 votes)
  • Define selection start and selection end via keyboard while listening (3 votes). Commands exist to mark the region without stopping: Try "[" and "]". Audacity also has 'stop and select' (shift-a), that allows you to stop and set the selection start at the point you were listening to. However, once you have the region defined, it seems that you can only operate within that region. See also this Forum suggestion.
  • Ability to select multiple non-adjacent labels (such as with control-click or shift-click. Then pressing the play button would play all of the selected areas in the audio file, skipping the non-selected regions. This feature would be useful for comparing two regions of an audio file without delay between the playback of the two (or more) labeled regions.
  • Set selection based on multiple time-points as "clipped in" or "clipped out," and then have the ability to play the track with "clipped in" points only -- standard feature on professional audio editing systems. (3 votes)
  • When setting volume envelope points for a track, it would be very useful (and sharp), when moving a edit point, having, in the status bar, or in a tooltip, the possibility of showing, while the point is dragged:
    • gain amount
    • position in the timeline
    • it's also very useful the possibility of having a tooltip appearing when the mouse is over a volume envelope point, telling the gain amount, and maybe also the position in the timeline (2 votes)
  • Envelope Tool improvement (1 vote): separate mouse clicks for adding control points and adjusting envelope - change envelope without having to be near a control point. At the moment, clicking adds a control point and drags. If you are far from a control point and want to tweak the envelope, but don't want to add a new control point, you need to go back to the control point. Suggestion: alt-click adds control point (no change to envelope). Click and drag adjusts the current envelope segment (i.e. adjusts the control point at the start of the envelope segment). (Mouse clicks assignable in preferences/mouse)
  • Adjust Clip Boundaries - Recovering original audio from adjoining split/deleted clip. Done in other programs (Audition1.5, Cubase, Vegas) with a drag corner at the start and end of clip. (2 votes)
  • Improve time shifting. When using the time shift tool, a useful improvement would be for the cursor within the track being moved to move with the track. Currently is stays at the same time setting. Additionally, if this cursor extended over other visible tracks, it would make it much easier to line up one track with the others. (1 vote)
  • Shift tool - allow multiple clips to be dragged onto a different track (1 vote). When dragging multiple clips (through shift dragging, or when dragging a selection), you cannot move to a different track. Suggestion is to allow this.
  • Shift tool - allow selection of clips by double clicking (1 vote). When in time-shift tool, double click on clip should still selects the clip (e.g. so that effects can be applied), and double click in track background should still select all clips.
  • Need display of Snap to { on | Off } setting (probably at bottom of screen) (1 vote) Note: already exists in stable version and has been fixed in Beta code.
  • Expand selection command: After recording from an LP or a cassette or a live session, a single track will contain multiple songs, which the user has to separate. Let the user place his cursor on a track, and then use a "Expand selection" command. Audacity should expand the selection on both sides (towards left and right) till it finds silence (or the beginning/end of the track) (2 votes) Also see [[1]] for similar ideas.)
  • Cue sheets: ability to import/export cue sheets for CD burning (and/or text file compatible with shntool) to and from labels (4 votes) NOTE: There is a Java-based tool called label2cue  that converts Audacity's exported text files containing label information to cue information. Instructions for use of label2cue and details of other similar tools are here.

Frequency Analysis Capabilities

As this was a large section with many individual suggestions it has been moved to Suggested Frequency Analysis Capabilities. Please add any votes for these suggestions on that page.

Other analytical/statistical ability

  • Ability to gather statistics (Margin to dBFS, RMS volume, etc, see SF, WAvelab, etc) over an arbitrary length of audio, even the whole file. This could work well with the new Vamp analysis plug ins


Audacity 1.3.3 Beta already has support for batch processing of imported files via an interface, using most of the built-in effects. See SOX  for alternative command line solutions.

We also have at an early stage of development the ability to drive windows versions of Audacity from a perl or other script via a named pipe. At this stage this feature is suitable for developers only.

There is now a separate page for requests for better automation.

Better transcription support

  • Allow Audacity to be controlled by a foot pedal attached to the game, serial or USB port so that hands are free for transcription work (6 votes)
  • There is already an experimental Transcription Toolbar. Extend it and make it functional. (0 votes).
  • Improve Label Tracks so they are more suitable for transcription e.g. so they don't lock when audio track is not zoomed in far enough to create a scroll (4 votes)


  • DirectX effects not just VST (1 vote)
  • A de-clipper for repairing overdriven sound. (3 votes) Note : try Clipfix
  • Preview effects for whole duration of a selection, with option to loop the preview(2 votes) Note: Ability to choose preview length has been added to the Beta
  • Allow effects to be applied in realtime (4 votes)
  • Display/interface issues :
    • Allow the effects drop-down menu capable of sub-folders or categorisation (the slide-over menu hierarchy following the directory structure of the Plug-Ins folder inside the Audacity install folder), so that the user can organize his plug-ins however he wishes. This could include a Favourites folder which would be at the top for frequently used plugins. How about making the "Favorites" area be auto-generating (not something the user needs to create in the file structure) by having Audacity keep track of the top-10 (10 most used) effects, and placing the most-used effect at the top?? (9 votes)
    • Ability to bind functions (effects, plugins, etc) to buttons and/or keystrokes. E.g. one keystroke to amplify +3db, another keystroke -3db, another to compress (3 votes)
    • Include a grid in the EQ display (1 vote)
    • EQ graph needs cursor readout and possibly text input to choose custom band (2 votes)
    • If the FFT filter data were saved in a nice format, such as CSV, we could work around the currently awkward dialogue interface.
    • Generate tone provides a drop down list of notes to set the frequency - i.e. middle C (264Hz), etc. (3 votes)
    • Effects should have recallable presets and/or should remember their last settings after exiting Audacity. (3 votes) Currently only Equalization in the Beta 1.3.3 has this ability

  • SmartEQ function to sample the frequency spectrum of a given piece of audio with a pleasing equalisation, then bring a second piece of audio to the same spectral content. Useful for most cassette recordings and other other medium- and low-fidelity sources. Also usable for sfx. Note: where frequency content falls to the noise floor, this may increase noise level heavily in an attempt to compensate. This is easily addressed afterwards with the Noise Removal, or can be addressed during frequency correction with more coding. Possibly could be incorporated as a third radio button in the current 1.3.x equaliser, with a "Get Frequency Profile" button and ability to add useful profiles as a custom preset. (1 vote)
  • Add effects for post-processing records (like GramoFile ) (7 votes)
  • Noise gate (not noise removal, just a simple binary gate) (6 votes)
  • Single menu command for Extract vocals/instrumental from stereo sources (6 votes) Note: This is very hit and miss - on many recordings simple techniques don't work well or at all. A Nyquist plugin can be used for automatic centre extraction and other plugins can be tried. See Vocal Removal
  • Dolby B and Dolby C input and output filters (for converting to/from tape recordings in Dolby) (1 vote)

Will need quite a lot of trial and error by ear, as the Dolby process is recording level dependent. Needs expander and treble cut.
I agree. It would be tricky to get it right without straight-up copying the actual process. This would be a licensing no-no. Trust me, I work at Dolby.
There is a Winamp plugin which simulates Dolby decoding here.

  • Smoothen effect, perhaps using a weighted average (or a better method)(1 vote)

I wonder about a tool to easy removing of noise could be useful in the program. Like the rubber tool in f.ex. photoshop. The rubber tool should flatten the noise when you touch the noise. It would then be possible to remove noise with less zooming. And maybe it could be useful to have the possibility to set the pencil to (f.ex. with SHIFT ) only go complete horizontally.

  • Gradually increasing/decreasing tempo changes (without pitch) to facilitate DJ-style mixing

  • Change Speed/Tempo/Pitch
    • to be controllable by a change factor (e.g. 0.5x means half as fast, 2x means twice as fast) so that users are not confused that whereas -50% doubles the length/halves the frequency, you need +100% to halve the length / double the frequency (2 votes)
    • apply to labels as well as audio, otherwise, labels become out of step.
    • control in terms of change in length of selection (show current length of selection, enter new length for selection). (2 votes)
  • Surprised no one requests an exciter to enhance album or tape recordings. It is actually an easy effect and only needs a high pass and distortion. This is widespread use in recording studios and radio stations.
  • Something like a combination of Voltage-Controlled Oscillator and the "Sample and Hold" modules of the old ARP 2600 Synthesizer [analog], where you could sample another waveform (in another track) at regular time intevals, and the instaneous level of the sample determines the frequency of a tone generated for the same interval of time. In the real-world Arp 2600, you could patch the output of a VCO (or other audio source) into the input of the S&H module, then patch the S&H output into the control voltage input jack of another VCO. In the Audacity version, the user makes a selection in the track to be sampled (analogous to the first VCO) , and then (in a dialog box) selects the time interval between samples, the minimum and maximum frequency to be generated. The duration of the resulting sequence of tones to be generated in a new track would be the same as the duration of the original selection. Optional - select sine, sawtooth, square, or triangle waveforms for the generated tone. Another option would be to be able to sub-divide the length of the selection into X number of sample intervals, as opposed to specifying the duration of the interval. Typical results would be a sequence of discrete pseudo-random (frequency) tones at regular intervals, like a retro movie sound effect for a computer that's busy thinking. Another example: Sampling a triangle waveform whose period is much longer than the sample interval would result in a series of ascending and descending stepped tones.
  • Normalize
    • percentages: Would it be possible to have a percentage normalisation option (as an alternative to decibels)? Many people have problems with decibels.
    • use David Robinson's Replay Gain algorithm: The current normalize method in 1.3.2 uses peak value as indicator of loudness, which is far from what human ears perceive. The algorithm outlined by David Robinson in Replay Gain  seems to approach human perception better than simply taking the peak value. In the Replay Gain algorithm, if the "equal loudnes filter" is hard to implement, we can start with "RMS Energy Calculation" and "Statistical Processing" first. (3 votes)
  • Gverb Negative roomsize: In Gverb I'd swear we used to be able to apply negative roomsize which reduced reverb which improved back-of-the-room recordings. Can this be reinstated?
  • Make a specific de-essing plug-in available (3 votes)
  • Re-essing. This is to improve the sound of already low bandwidth voice recordings by adding higher frequencies.

Improved Resource Control

  • IdlePriority
  • Indicators when Audacity is busy: When I do a control-f (zoom to fit in window) in audacity on a 2 hour recording it takes a while before the waveform is displayed. Some busy indicator, maybe even progress bar might help. Same for moving around in a file, which can take time. (even on striped disks) This also affects re-drawing of the waveform after applying pretty much any Effect. (2 votes)
  • Disk use limit for recording (8 votes)
  • Clean up files after batch processing: In Audacity 1.3.2 beta, if you apply a chain to a group of files (with File, Apply Chain, Apply to Files), it will import each file, write uncompressed temp files during open and edits, export the file to complete the chain, and then proceed to import the next file. This process leaves on disk all the temp files created for all the files in the batch, which can cause the system to completely run out of disk space rather quickly. Instead, Audacity should clear out the temp file when closing each file. (4 votes)
  • Search and recognize existing hardware capabilities. Specifically, note limits on quality achievable due to RAM configuration, DAC bit counts, soundboard specifics such as db gain at recording levels (41, 44, 96), and other software installed on the machine (iTunes, other popular players / organizers). Then customize recommendations by what is doable on that machine, but still allow anyone to get extreme if they wish. (0 votes)
  • Loop record option, commit last 2 hours of recording, at any moment. (2 votes)
  • Undo buffer management:
    • Compress undo buffers (2 votes)
    • (You can already clear the Undo buffers by opening the Undo History dialog box, and compressing will take lots of CPU and have little space gain unless you use a lossy compressor, which kind of defeats the point of undo...)
    • Save undo history into the project file(s) - useful for picking up on a project at a later time (2 votes).
    • Save undo history as a .txt file - it would be very useful for documenting what steps had been done.
    • Per-track undo history and stack. So you don't have to undo a bunch of changes you DO want on some tracks to get rid of something you did a while ago to another track. Also, the history would be viewable per track so you can remember what effects and such each track has had applied (so you don't mess up the effects chain order or over-do anything). (2 votes)
  • Better space management. (2 votes) True, selecting a smaller sampling rate could take up less space, but there's no reason why a comparably small amount of data (a couple 4-megabyte mp3s with very minor edits) should take up as much space as it does (~500 megabytes). The concept of the _data folder is confusing, and the small file size of the .aud itself is misleading. If a user accidentally moves the _data folder or modifies it, the program refuses to accept it, and the user must either figure out what they have done wrong and attempt to repair it (not very newbie friendly), or start from scratch. Perhaps an incremental version check to the audio files (a la Volume Shadow Copy) would be beneficial, because as of now, it seems to save anything it can and wants.
  • Multithreaded/multi-processing support - I'm not sure how easy this would be to do. However, it would be nice if I could use the full potential of my Dual-Core and multi-processor machines when exporting to different file formats and/or editing the audio. (2 votes)

Imports and Exports

Note: There are some file formats and effect interfaces we can't support for commercial reasons. Please check our Features We Can't Implement page before adding features to the list below.

  • Import/Export QuickTime files on Windows/Mac (6 votes) Note: Support for importing QuickTime based formats has been reintroduced in 1.3.3 for users on OS X
  • Import/Export OMF multi-track to/from ProTools /Cakewalk, etc. (3 votes)
  • Import/Export Aud-X (mp3 5.1) files (1 vote)
  • Support reading and exporting the timestamp information embedded in Broadcast WAV files (BWF format) (5 votes)
  • Import/Export MBWF (new multichannel extension for Broadcast WAV format) (1 vote)
  • Import/Export MPC files (Windows) (2 votes)
  • Import/Export DSS (3 votes)
  • Facilitate importation of MP3 or other sound formats from video files or program/transport streams (e.g. by demuxing the audio) (3 votes)
  • Support for Speex codec (similar to Ogg Vorbis but optimized for voice) (8 votes)
  • Export multiple using labels to split tracks should filter out disallowed characters from filenames. e.g. a label of '01 - When?' should strip off the ? when creating the file name (1 vote)
  • Option to export a meta-data file that records all changes made (5 votes)
  • support import and export of AVI files including the video (4 votes)

what would you do with the video? - also, AVI is a wrapper, so would need dozens of codecs to cope with range of AVI file compressions. Could easily double the size of audacity just to open and play video files (look at Mplayer, Xine etc)
i guess the idea is, at least thats what i would need it for, to edit the "soundtrack" of a video while keeping the image reference. there is no need for audacity to actually modify the video itself, only play along the video to the audiotrack of the avi / mov whatever. audacity wouldnt need to handle any video codec issues, the user has to take care of that himself. I guess it would even be helpful if you had to export the video to one specific codec & format, i.e. .mov with "mjpeg A" codec. its only to keep the video reference for the sound editing, the process of combining the exported audio track with the full resolution video is usually done (for example with protools) in the video editing software.

  • Define both ID3v1 and ID3v2 tags simultaneously (rather than just either-or) (4 votes)
  • Allow leaving genre field blank (3 votes)
  • Ability to right click on multiple audio files in Explorer and have them open a project and then add to that project (1 vote)
  • When doing an export multiple to break a long track by labels, it would be useful for each WAV file to be an exact number of CDDA frames (similar to using the snap to option). Samples could be carried over (or borrowed) from following section as required. This would be useful when buring CDs to avoid microgaps. The FLAC encode actually has an option to do this. (2 votes)
  • Ability to extract and import Vorbis portion of Ogg files encoded with non-audio tracks, such as Theora. Currently gives an error "unknown format", straightforward modifications should do the trick. (1 vote)
  • When exporting multiple, have progress dialogue's explicitly state which of the files is currently being processed (4 votes)
  • Export Text Labels as XML and/or support SMIL: For using Audacity to analyze interviews or to generate Audio-Picture-Slideshows (e.g. for educational use) it should be possible to export all Text-Labels (with names) as XML. Nodes: "trackname" with Nodes "start, end, label" or using SMIL . (2 votes)
  • Importing a project into another project: Importing an Audacity project into another one could highly facilitate the development of big projects, because one can maintain the different parts separated (1 vote)
  • ID tags for each imported file: Multiple imported files should retain their own ID tags rather than take the tags of the first imported file (3 votes)
  • Import/Export OFR files: It would be nice to be able to import and export OptimFROG files (.ofr), a lossless audio format that's smaller than FLAC.
  • For command line exports, let the user make presets in a .ini or .xml file rather than retype over for different formats. (1 vote)
  • Import/Export playlist file like M3U/PLS. Playlist is 'converted' to a track with separate clips, each clip being loaded from the specified file (2 votes) Note: you can as a workround edit playlist files into a .lof "list of files" format as per instructions here. Audacity will then import the listed files, albeit into separate tracks
  • Import/Export Project File Format to Advanced Authoring Format (AAF): Or even use AFF instead of .aup. Probably it would be a great idea to keep audacity projects compatible to other audio (and video) editing softwares. I am neither a lawyer nor a programmer so I cannot say if AAF the best possible standarized file format, from a user point of view it sounds nice as a lot of other companies are supporting it already. [AAF on Wikipedia]
  • Import DSD 1-bit Pulse Density Modulation (PDM) audio e.g. used in top-end portable recorders or for storage on SACD's. (1 vote)
  • Make a Preference to always respect the Default Sample Rate when importing (3 votes)
  • Update FLAC decoder/encoder to latest, which is 1.2.1 at the moment. Audacity 1.3.4 is still using FLAC 1.1.2 which is over 2.5 years old. (1 vote) It's because FLAC changed their API after this point, which we still have to fix.

Interface Tweaks

These are suggestions for minor changes to the program interface. If it would take more than a day to implement and test, it does not belong in this section! Please put it in Interface Extensions instead.

In many cases the below are differences in user preferences, and would be best provided for in Preferences.

Also, see Use Cases for a number of ideas for hot-keys that would be used during playback or recording.

  • All left seeks should be able to seek past cursor position ("Seek left long period during playback" doesn't seem to be able to do this") (2 votes)
  • Allow for a track to be immediately deleted with the upper-left X-button while it is playing: the action of clicking 'stop' is superfluous in that case. (1 vote)
  • Add a Select Current View button to Edit Toolbar (1 vote)
  • Add a Select All button to Edit Toolbar (2 votes)
  • Add a button to go straight to maximum zoom (sample level) (4 votes)
  • Have a separate button for loop play (1 vote) currently you press shift and then click play, which may not be discovered (but when the mouse hovers over the Play button, the status bar displays the words, "Play (Shift for loop-play)"
  • Mixer toolbar needs L....R balance control (2 votes)
  • Ability to default (or remember) the zoom. Currently defaults to 10 seconds or so depending on screen width, where I would like it to default to 3 minutes.
  • Persistent Track Height: When I open up tracks in the new beta program they are very small, is it possible so that I can resize them to always open approx. the same size as 1.2.6? cheers Les.
  • More colorful: I think It needs to be more colorful. All of the grayness is boring and depressing. (theming of audacity is on the way post 1.4.0).
  • Spacebar and other keyboard controls should always work without the need to click on the track.
  • Remember import data for raw: When importing raw data, the sample rate is not remembered from last time. If I change from 44100 to 8000 I want that to be default next time I import something.
  • Keyboard Modifiers in User Interface: I was wondering why audacity does not make use of keyboard modifiers in the UI? It could speed up the working process significantly... for example soundforge has the shift modifier so you could move a selection without changing the duration. For me, the more the better, once you know the modifier functions its much more comfortable than changing tools before doing something.
  • Import preferences from HKLM: It would be very helpful in deployment situations if you could easily specify program defaults. Specifically on windows, if the 'Audacity' HKCU key doesn't exist, 'Audacity' in HKLM could be checked for and copied across to HKCU if it exists.
  • Add a preference choice to permanently turn off the "Save project?" question when closing the program. Instead, just quietly save no matter what. How does Audacity know what filename/folder to save to if you record into an empty Project? Autosave tracks as 'Audacity recording 01 09-53 22-07-07' etc
  • Add much more Context Menu (right-click or CTRL-click) functionality (2 votes)
  • Allow user customisation of waveform colour and option to see average value as a lighter colour within the waveform; allow user customisation of the background colour of the waveform editing area (or simply make it white) to improve contrast (1 vote)This will be added in a future Audacity along with other interface customisations. Average value (RMS) already is light blue
  • Tracks Fit vertically zoomed should be on by default (1 vote)
  • On Macs, allow Audacity when editing text to support Option - arrow to skip back and forth one word (1 vote)
  • Hotkeys for buttons should be made more discoverable in the interface e.g. by Status Bar message or dynamic Tooltip (1 vote)
  • Add Next and Previous buttons for navigation between labels to the panel of the Label Track. (1 vote)
  • The pitch view to actually show the pitch of simple piano, guitar or vocal selections with a piano labelled diagram in place of the level indicator and markings shown next to the correct pitch. Right now this view it is useless. user yanky5cool
  • Horizontal and vertical grid lines on the waveform, turned on and off on the fly. This would help with the task of aligning sounds over multiple tracks. (With no grid this is quite difficult to do by eye, especially over four or five audio tracks.) There would be a fixed number of vertical lines on the screen - about 30 (or user could chose a number). For super-accurate alignment the user would simply zoom in - expanding the audio tracks time scale - whilst the number and pixel distance spacing of the gridlines on screen would not change. (3 votes)
  • Logarithmic Y axis in the spectral track view. This is so that played notes are easily transcribable to music notes (1 vote)
  • Automatically join tracks end to end: New option needed under the Project > Align Tracks menu that would align the selected tracks end to end. (4 votes)
  • Secondary horizontal scroll bar (above the existing standard horizontal scrollbar) that scrolls only the extents of selection. When you've highlighted, one bar of a song, then want to zoom in to the sample level. You want to scroll back and forth in your selection, but the standard project-wide horizontal scrollbar isn't granular enough and you whiz way out of your selection. (1 vote)
  • Add the ability to silence a selection and later un-silence it (not just with undo, since we might want to do some other things before undo-ing the silence). Perhaps can be done similar to cut-lines.
  • Put a * in the title bar when the present version of the file has not been saved yet (1 vote)
  • Put the time remaining for a current operation (e.g. noise removal, mp3 export) in the title bar (1 vote)
  • Snap to zero-crossings

Interface Extensions

Substantial extensions, enhancements or changes to the interface that will require significant coding and testing

  • FTP and / or RSS support for podcasters (6 votes) There is experimental FTP support in unstable builds
  • Keep the cursor in one place but move the track - gives smooth visual playback without continual cursor back and forth (3 votes)
  • Automatic normalisation to calculate right gain of all tracks without distortion aka "Mix and Scale" (4 votes)
  • Add capability for limited editing of lossy compressed audio in its native format, rather than decompressing into a full waveform and recompressing the processed audio. This would be ideal for quick editing of formats such as MP3, OGG, etc. especially at low bit rates without altering the quality of the track. Note: For non-destructive cut, paste and volume edits see MP3 Direct Cut (Windows) and Audion (OS X)
  • Tap delay, and tap bpm input (1 vote)

  • Detailed Space Savers suggestion for when working with many tracks moved to new page.

Recording Enhancements

Multi-channel/multi-device issues

  • Allow nonconsecutive set of input channels to be selected e.g. to deal with devices that send special outputs on the higher numbered channels. For example, Alesis's MultiMix-8 returns its mixed outputs, which is the only outlet for its on-board effects, on channels 9 and 10. A common setup for me is to use channels 1-3 for instruments and mics, and mix in some effects from the Alesis unit; I'd like to have Audacity record channels 1,2,3,9,10 instead of 1 thru 10.(3 votes)
  • Allow recording from multiple channel sound devices at once - a lot of multi-channel cards look like this to the application, rather than one multi-channel device. A good behavior could be: (8 votes)
    • there must me the possibility of selecting, for any track, a recording source, from the ones available for a certain sound card (also with the possibility of using multiple sound cards)
    • for mono tracks a mono IN form the sound card must be chosen; for stereo tracks, two mono INs from the soundcard must be chosen (but they can also be the same)
    • for each track the INs can be the same or different, and there must be a key for selecting whether the track is selected for recording or not
    • a versatile possibility would be to be able to choose the default recording source from Audacity just the way it is done now, and this is selected by default for each track, but with the possibility, for each track, of selecting a different recording source, the way I just described
    • this would also allow the possibility of easily setting the sampling rate, depth and number of channels for a track, before recording, and not simply based on master Audacity preferences and project settings, with maximum versatility

Other recording enhancements

  • Suggestions for Beta Timer Record: Accessible from File Menu so when you hit record button dialogue would come up that would give you choices. (1 vote)
  • Ability to set Timer Record to automatically use stored settings to start recording on a daily basis (1 vote)
  • Should be MTC/MMC slave and master
  • Simple voice recorder build or interface/toolbar: wondering if it might be possible to create a simple, stripped down version of audacity that would simply record and spit out to mp3. Or an "always-on-top" enabling Start, Stop, Pause, with monitoring and control of input levels like the current input on the toolbar. (2 votes)
  • 8 bit recording. Quality more than sufficient for many lower quality sources such as cassettes, speech, etc. Reduces file size & cpu use (both important for multitrack conference recording). Also reducing cpu use would make audacity usable on more machines. (1 vote)
  • "Azimuth Setter" displays tape azimuth setting before and during recording. Enables quick easy & accurate azimuth setting, and shows any real time variation during recording. This is described in more detail in the recording from cassettes section of Use Cases. (1 vote)
  • Automatically set recording settings": Audacity would capture several seconds of incoming audio and analyse it to decide what bit depth & sample rate was appropriate to use for recording. Makes life quick and easy, and results in consistent success and non-bloat for the majority of non-technical users. Automatic sample rate is fairly easy, just detect what highish frequency never raises itself significantly above the noise floor, and translate this to a suitable sample rate. Automatic bit depth setting raises a few worms:
  • the input must contain at least a moment's silence
  • there would be more than one answer to best depth setting depending on use
  • A solution to that could be to show a little text box saying the source is n bits deep so n+1 bits is good for recordings where no effects will be applied, or 32 bits where many effects can be applied without degradation. (1 vote)

Playback Enhancements

  • The beta (1.3.2) allows for playback at different speeds, but the slider bar is difficult to control accurately, it would be good if the speed ratio was also displayed in a textbox, that allows entry of a specific desired number.
  • Also, it would be nice to be able to record while playing back at the different speed. I realise this could be difficult, but often singers like to record vocals at a lower speed than the final playback, it adds an "edge" to their voice.RoscoHead 20:04, 17 February 2007 (PST)
  • I know there is variable playback speed in the beta but I as well as allowing the user to input a specific number, you can also have some pre-set speeds such as 50% slower or 50% faster. An example of this is in the music playing software JetAudio Basic COWON America Website. This program has a playback speed changing feature with pre-set speeds such as 10% faster which can be applied while playback is occurring. 22.47, 10 May 2007 (GMT+10) - Nickdella
  • Scrubbing: While playing back audio, I'd like to be able to drag and drop the time position indicator (cursor) left and right to skip to various places in the project. When I release the mouse button, playback should resume at that position. This is not an unusual feature - it is merely how every single one of dozens other audio players work. Good for controlling the end of (long) selections. So you don't have to start from the beginning and hear it all for the n-th time. (5 votes) Note: There is a hotkey B for play to selection and various alternative means of improved navigation in our Beta 1.3.3 version of Audacity. See here for more information.
  • Multi-channel device output routing. Create a patch panel to define routing of multi-channel audio to specific channels of a multi-channel device.(2 votes)


  • Color code levels for clipping: On the waveform display have a colored background that goes yellow .7 then red .9, the levels where clipping will occur. Red colouring for samples in the waveform that are outside +/-1.0 will be in 1.3.4 as described at Already in CVS Head
  • Better peak / clip indications (2 votes): Something I'd like to see added to Audacity would be an indicator for each track showing the peak meter reading for the track. This would be especially helpful in live recording scenarios, so we can see if we clipped. Right now, I have to watch the meters in real time, and even the sliding peak indicator only holds it's position for a couple of seconds. I note that Cakewalk Sonar has this on each channel (with a reset button) and it's very helpful. Possible implementation options: a max level (i.e "-3.5db") per track at the far left track info box, which could be turned red if it ever went to "0.0".
    • It would be really good to have some basic tool to do a final check that nothing is distorted. If this is too tricky to do on-the-fly, then perhaps a plug-in under "Analyse" menu item, called 'detect peaks', that can be run on the project as a whole or on tracks, and would return the maximum peak detected, and warn if that is 0dB. It would be easy enough to do this in nyquist (see silence detection above), except that it seems to be the case that audacity only passes a single track to nyquist processing, and there is no option for passing the stereo mix to a nyquist plugin. Discuss in forum.
  • Headroom Indicators: On the waveform display, a horizontal line (actually two lines) at a user-specified number of dB below and above 0dBFS. This is for compliance with SMPTE and EBU standards calling for program material to have a specified amount of headroom before full-scale clipping. As previously suggested, the waveform trace could change color when it exceeds the specified headroom level. This would be in addition to the previously-suggested horizontal line at the DC level.
  • The VU meters should likewise have headroom indicators: a line drawn at n dB below 0dBFS. In addition, the color of the meter fill should change colors when the headroom level is exceeded. My suggestion for colors is green for levels below headroom, yellow for levels above headroom, and red when the level is 0dBFS (clipping). The headroom level could be set using the existing Meter Preferences dialog.
  • A `peak hold` line on the compressors and limiter so that you can see what the maximum amount of compression/limiting was since starting. This can help in finding the right settings without having to watch stuff very very closely.


  • Ability to render a MIDI file using samples from suitably 'free' sources such that the eventual full file was also 'free'. Some kind of 'tracker' would allow a user to convert a MIDI or other forms of tracker file (i.e. Protracker) into RAW audio. Old PD Music can be scored and performed without the need for actual musicians. I want conversion of sound-like files without having to payout for commercial tools. ShakespeareFan00 10:15, 30 January 2007 (PST) (1 vote)
  • Note recognition with wav-to-Midi capabilities (1 vote) This is hard to do except with pure tones. We'd want to leverage existing open source sound analysis software. Any suggestions of what? If you do it with pure tones, that is still great!
  • Allow MIDI files to control VST Instruments (1 vote)
  • Import meter/key meta-events from MIDI-file (to represent time in measure/beat) & markers. (1 vote)
  • Allow direct import of MIDI files into Projects as sampled audio waveforms, which are then editable and exportable as WAV, MP3 etc. (2 votes)

Unclassified Feature Requests

Requests which don't fit into the above categories or needed a very long description can be added at Unclassified Feature Requests. These requests will be eventually be categorised, summarised if necessary then amalgamated back into this page.