Monday, April 8, 2013

WavePad Audio Editing Tips & Tricks

WavePad Audio Editing Software Tips and Tricks
Below you will find a compilation of some the audio effects and sound editing basics for the WavePad audio editor that you will want to know and test out for yourself as you delve into the world of audio editing. Another great way for those new to audio editing to get started is by watching the WavePad sound editor intro video tutorials so you can see the audio editor in action.

Split and Cut Audio Files
You can split a file at any point you choose by simply clicking the Split button on the Edit tab. This will create two audio files split at the point you had the cursor. Be careful when you use this function, the action cannot be undone. Additional audio splitting options include splitting at bookmarks, splitting at silences and similar Trim options that delete sections instead of creating new audio files.

Amplify Audio Volume
To make audio sound louder, instead of simply turning the volume control up you want to amplify the file. You will find Amplify on the Effects tab, which will open a window where you can either adjust the amplification using the slider or by selecting a preset level from the drop down menu. Selecting 200% will double the volume, 50% will cut the volume in half.

Equalize Audio
Amplifying affects the full spectrum of the audio in a file, but if you want to increase or decrease certain frequencies, for example, boosting all of the lower bass frequencies, then you want to use the Equalizer. The Equalizer is also on the Effects tab and opens a graph of the frequencies going from low to high frequencies as you move left to right. This gives you very finite control of the frequency ranges you want to control. Moving a point up will make the frequency stronger and moving a point down will make it weaker.

Normalize Audio
Normalizing an audio file is similar to amplifying, except that normalizing increases the sound of the loudest peak to the maximum level without causing clipping in digital audio. This is frequently used as a last step before saving a final version of an edited song or recording. To normalize an audio file, you will find Normalize on the Effects tab.

Fade In and Out of Audio
Fading in and out of an audio file will help acclimate the ear to the background noise of a file. To fade in, select a region at the beginning of your file, then select "Fade in" under Fade on the Effects tab. Similarly you can select "Fade out" with a region at the end of your file selected. A good tip is to fade in quicker than you fade out because the ear expects to hear the initial audio quickly, but abrupt transitions to silence at the end can be jilting.

Remove Background Noise
Since not every audio recording is made in a sound studio environment, you often get unwanted background noise in recordings. To remove background noise you want to take advantage of the Cleanup options on the Effects tab. Specifically, under Noise Reduction try using Audio Spectral Subtraction and then Multi-band noise gating. If the presets don't give the results you want, try using lower levels on these reductions until you find a combination that leaves only audio you want to keep.

Remove Vocals
You will find an option to Reduce Vocals under the Voice button on the Effects tab. This will open a dialog box that allows you to change the pan position and width, the vocal level, and preserve the bass. Generally the default settings will work the best, but different songs may require different settings to effectively reduce or eliminate the vocal frequencies, so if you don't get the results you want, try adjust these settings until you are satisfied with the result.

Layer Audio & Voiceovers
WavePad won't allow you to record directly over another file; highlighting a file and clicking record will replace the selection. Depending on how much mixing you want to do, you may want to consider moving to MixPad audio mixing software, but for some basic audio mixing within WavePad you want to use the Paste Mix feature. Copy the audio you want to add to your file to the clipboard, then select all in the file you want to add it to, then select Paste Mix on the Edit tab. This will open a window with options on what to do if your files are not the same length. When you click OK the two pieces of audio will be combined.

Sound Effect Library
Find audio clips and sound effects to add to your audio projects in the NCH Sound Effect Library. Open the Sound Library from the Tools tab. This opens a new window where you can preview and download sound effects and royalty-free music clips.

Audio Effect Plugins
In the Windows version of WavePad you can add DirectX and VST plugin effects to further expand your audio editing capabilities. Find the options to add and use VST and DirectX plugins on the Effects Tab. VST Plugins will open their own interface where you can adjust the settings, while you will need to go into the settings when selecting a DirectX plugin for the effect to be applied when you click OK. Get started with this list of free VST plugins you can download and use with WavePad.

FFT Sound Analysis
All of the audio editing features outlined above are all easy to put into action, but don't let that fool you into thinking that WavePad doesn't have a lot of power under the hood. One of the more advanced areas you can explore are the powerful audio analysis tools for examining the spectral content of audio. Learn about the FFT and TFFT audio analysis graphs and what they represent to start to get your feet wet. These tools can be used in many fields, including linguistics and mathematics, in addition to sound engineering.

If you have any other tips, favorite features or advice of your own, please comment and share them below.


  1. Please put in google traslator, for we read this page in foreigner languages. Thank you.

  2. Great post. I do video production in Boston for a living and just started using Wavepad on my Macbook Air for video editing on the go. Love it, very intuitive and robust video editing software.

    - J.O.


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