Gear / Technical Help => Post-Processing, Computer / Streaming / Internet Devices & Related Activity => Topic started by: djs on December 21, 2008, 11:55:49 AM

Title: Controlling the Pencil Tool in Audacity
Post by: djs on December 21, 2008, 11:55:49 AM
While working on a show with minor clipping I was using the pencil tool to reshape the peaks where they flat-lined.  After a few I was able to refine a method that produces good, consistent results.  What I found works best (for accuracy, not speed) is to select one of the sample points (click and hold), and move your mouse straight up or down to place it; then, move your mouse straight left or right to the next sample and shift it straight up or down.  An example of your movement would be up-right-up-right-down-right-down-right, or down-right-down-right-up-right-up-right if you were working left to right on the wave.  Don't move your mouse in a curved motion.  Many of you may have figured this out, but it really simplified my work and I thought it was worth sharing.  Using a curved motion works, but can be a little more unpredictable.  If you have a lot of clipping the curved method is probably best for speeds sake.  With fewer clips this method provides more accuracy when manipulating the shape, in my opinion.

I've attached screen-shots of clipping on my file and how it turned out after using the above method.
Title: Re: Controlling the Pencil Tool in Audacity
Post by: dean on December 21, 2008, 03:48:02 PM
FWIW, I don't even try to provide a smooth wav form like you've done any long.  I used to try, but I couldn't hear any difference when I did.

What I do instead, in a situation like you picture above:
1.  split the tracks
2.  select the "brickwalled" points
3.  effect > amplify > -(0.02)

That more or less uniformly reduces the sampled points.  Sometimes it's necessary to repeat, or change the size of the selection and do more on certain points.

At this point, I only use the pencil tool when I've got 2-3 wav points crushed.  Anything much more than that I use the method I describe above.  At first it's hard to remember to recreate the stereo track (was for me, anyway), but you figure it out pretty quickly.

YMMV, of course.
Title: Re: Controlling the Pencil Tool in Audacity
Post by: ilduclo on December 21, 2008, 04:16:18 PM
again, I recommend the clip peak restoration plug in in Cool Edit. Works great!