The Book of Audacity
Record, Edit, Mix, and Master with the Free Audio Editor
Publisher: No Starch Press
Released: March 2011
Pages: 384

The Book of Audacity is the definitive guide to Audacity, the powerful, free, cross-platform audio editor. Audacity allows anyone to transform their Windows, Mac, or Linux computer into a powerful recording studio.

The Book of Audacity is the perfect book for bands on a budget, solo artists, audiophiles, and anyone who wants to learn more about digital audio. Musician and podcaster Carla Schroder will guide you through a range of fun and useful Audacity projects that will demystify that geeky audio jargon and show you how to get the most from Audacity.

You'll learn how to:

  • Record podcasts, interviews, and live performances
  • Be your own backing band or chorus
  • Edit, splice, mix, and master multitrack recordings
  • Create super-high fidelity and surround-sound recordings
  • Digitize your vinyl or tape collection and clean up noise, hisses, and clicks
  • Create custom ringtones and sweet special effects

In addition, you'll learn how to choose and use digital audio hardware like mics and preamps, and tune your computer for flawless audio performance. You'll also find out how to package your work for digital distribution, whether you want to share a podcast through iTunes or sell your own CDs. Become your own producer with The Book of Audacity. The fun starts now.

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About the Author
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No Starch PressThe Book of Audacity
 
5.0

(based on 3 reviews)

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100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Accurate (3)
  • Easy to understand (3)
  • Helpful examples (3)
  • Well-written (3)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Intermediate (3)

    Reviewed by 3 customers

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    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    A great book to enhance my skills

    By Phil Ballew

    from California

    About Me Maker

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Accurate
    • Concise
    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Expert
      • Intermediate

      Comments about No Starch Press The Book of Audacity:

      With so many people wanting to make their own music and record their own songs these days, Audacity has been able to meet the needs and demands of the users. This software allows people to learn how to record music, or just basic audio, as well as many cool tricks you might not have thought about. This book showcases all of these features in a great manner. The first chapter alone gives the reader a guided tour of the software. All other chapters are about a different thing one might do, from making their own ringtone to making podcasts. If you follow all the steps in this book you will have a useful guide on how to enhance your audio skills with a computer. Something invaluable in the world today. Trust me, buy this book and you will be amazed at all you can do with this software.

       
      5.0

      This book gave me 100% Satisfaction...

      By Kokujin Chronicles

      from Seattle, WA

      About Me Educator

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Accurate
      • Concise
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Expert
        • Intermediate
        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about No Starch Press The Book of Audacity:

        I'm a relatively new podcaster on a budget. I decided to use Audacity as my audio editing platform because, among other reasons, I assumed that documentation would be abundant. Not necessarily so.

        I previously read another tile, "Podcasting with Audacity: Audio Editing for Everyone" but still had several gaps in my understanding. The Audacity Book filled in all of those gaps and expanded my comprehension of the product. The writing was easy to understand. Where necessary, basic theory was presented; however, the bulk of this book consists of several basic-to-advanced projects including making ringtones, recording high-quality audio CD rips and archiving legacy analog audio. Hands-on learners will love this approach.

        To my mind, the BEST thing about this title is the coverage of installing and using across the major operating systems; Windows, Mac OSX and Linux. Most technical books give Linux little if any considerations. The Audacity Book not only details installation in Linux, it includes a list of multimedia Linux distros and supplementary programs.

        Just one or two of the tips provided by this book would more than justify the cost. [Disclosure: I was provided a free review copy.] Happily, it has several dozen such tips for both novices and experts. I consider this title an essential addition to the library of any Audacity user. Highly recommended.

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Fun to read but still detailed

        By -edgar

        from Olalla WA

        About Me Designer, Developer, Musician, Sound technician, Sys Admin

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Accurate
        • Easy to understand
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

        • Repetitious

        Best Uses

        • Intermediate
        • Novice

        Comments about No Starch Press The Book of Audacity:

        The Book of Audacity reads like a chat with a friend – the style is entertaining while still being informative. The author clearly understands Audacity and computers. When a technical term is introduced it is explained; the glossary is extensive and very detailed. The frequent use of "screen grabs" (pictures of the software in action) makes this book much easier to understand, especially for the user who is just learning Audacity.

        Pros
        The Book of Audacity covers Audacity like a glove on a hand – if some aspect of the program is not explained it is an obscure or trivial feature.
        The Book of Audacity goes into the nitty-gritty aspects of hardware – soundcards, cables, computer optimization etc..
        The Book of Audacity includes tutorials which guide the user through some of the more common but complex tasks for which Audacity is so well-suited – transferring legacy analog media to digital, creating podcasts, making compilations CDs etc..
        The chapter on "Fix-it's and Cleanups" gives extremely detailed, though easy-to-follow, directions for using Audacity's tools when the user is trying to eliminate all those annoying little glitches inherent in the process of creating a recording. This is especially important for the user who is transferring vinyl LPs to CDs.

        Cons
        The author has chosen on a number of occasions to copy and paste large sections from one chapter to another. This may well be helpful to the reader who picks up the book and goes directly to one of the tutorials without reading any of the preceding material but for the user who reads the book cover to cover it might become a bit repetitious.
        The title of this book might lead the reader to believe that it is a reference manual to the software. While the book does a great job of teaching the reader how to use Audacity for a wide range (though not exhaustive) set of tasks a large portion of the book is devoted to teaching the reader the fundamentals of audio engineering.
        The first chapter is a good introduction to Audacity's toolbars and menus. Chapter 15 is the next chapter which deals with the basics of Audacity; it covers Audacity's Preferences settings in great detail. While Audacity's developers go to great length to make the default Preference settings reasonable starting points, even the first time user should be encouraged to go through and look at all of the Preference panels – there are settings that really need to be understood (even by the first-time user) and choices that really need to be made. It might make some sense to read chapter 15 immediately after reading chapter 1.
        The Book of Audacity can only be accurate as of the date it was written – this is a real failing anytime words are set down on paper describing such a moving target as an open source software project. There is a link hidden away in the fine print, after the "other books" advertising and before the "about the font" blurb, "Updates: Visit http://nostarch.com/audacity.htm for errata, updates, and other information."; this might get more attention if presented very early in chapter 1.

        The author is clearly a Linux guru and extremely familiar with Windows; there are chapters devoted exclusively to fine tuning Linux and Windows for general audio work. Audacity is also available for Apple's Mac OS X computers – there is little or no Mac specific information presented in this book. There are some specific differences with respect to the GUI when Audacity is run on a Mac.

        Summary
        The Book of Audacity's very few minor problems are greatly overshadowed by its friendly tone, attention to detail, general accuracy and excellent advice about things not related to Audacity. If the author releases a second edition of this book shortly after the (hopefully imminent) release of Audacity 2.0 a lot of the (very few and very minor) technical inaccuracies could be addressed with the hope it would be fairly up-to-date for a long time.

        I am an audio technician with over 20 years experience in all aspects of live concert sound; I have my own recording studio and have produced a small number of releases – mainly CDs but also a few cassette tapes back before the digital days. I am a computer programmer with some notable successes on the Commodore 64 and Amiga. I am one of Audacity's manual editors and while not a formal member of the Audacity Development Team some of my bug quashing and feature enhancing code has been adopted by the Audacity developers.

        I received a free PDF version of this book so that I might review it.

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