Project Menu

Import Audio... - This command is used to import audio from a standard audio format into your project. Use this command if you already have a couple of tracks and you want to add another track to the same project, maybe to mix them together. You cannot use this option to import Audacity Projects. The only way to combine two Audacity Projects is to open them in separate windows, then copy and paste the tracks.

Import Labels... - This command takes a text file which contains time codes and labels, and turns them into a Label Track.

Import MIDI... - This menu command imports MIDI files and puts them into a MIDI Track. Audacity can display MIDI files, but cannot play, edit, or save them yet.

Import Raw Data... - This menu command allows you to open a file in virtually any uncompressed format. When you select the file, Audacity will analyze it and try to guess its format. It will guess correctly about 90% of the time, so you can try just pressing "OK" and listening to the result. If it is not correct, however, you can use the options in the dialog to try some other possible encodings.

At the beginning of your imported track(s), you may notice a little bit of noise. This is probably the file's header, which Audacity was not able to parse. Just zoom in and select the noise with the Selection Tool, and then choose Delete from the Edit Menu.

Edit ID3 Tags... - Opens a dialog allowing you to edit the ID3 tags associated with a project, for MP3 exporting.

Quick Mix - This command mixes all of the selected tracks together. If you are mixing stereo tracks, or mixing tracks that are marked as Left or Right channel, the result will be a stereo track (two channels), otherwise the result will be mono.

Your tracks are implicitly mixed whenever you hit the Play button and whenever you export. This command offers a way to do it permanently and save the results to disk, saving on playback resources.

Note that if you try to mix two very loud tracks together, you may get clipping (it will sound like pops, clicks, and noise). To avoid this, drag the gain slider on the tracks down to reduce their volume before mixing.

New Audio Track - This creates a new empty Audio Track. This command is rarely needed, since importing, recording, and mixing automatically create new tracks as needed. But you can use this to cut or copy data from an existing track and paste it into a blank track. If that track was at a non-default rate then you may need to use Set Rate from the Track Pop-Down menu to set the correct sample rate.

New Stereo Track - same as above, but creates a stereo track. You can also create a stereo track by joining two tracks using the track pop-down menu.

New Label Track - This creates a new Label Track, which can be very useful for textual annotation.

New Time Track - This creates a new Time Track, which is used to vary the speed of playback over time.

Remove Tracks - This command removes the selected track or tracks from the project. Even if only part of a track is selected, the entire track is removed. You can also delete a track by clicking the X in its upper-left corner. To cut out only part of the audio in a track, use Delete or Silence.

Align Tracks... - All the Align functions work on whole tracks or groups of tracks, not on selections, even if they span across multiple tracks. They all operate by time-shifting tracks (moving them left or right), making it easier to synchronize tracks or get rid of silence at the beginning. The cursor or selection stays in the same place unless you use "Align and move cursor...", below:

Align and move cursor... - same as the functions above, except that the cursor or selection is moved along with the tracks. That allows you to shift the tracks without losing your relative place.

Add Label at Selection - This menu item lets you create a new label at the current selection. You can title the label by typing with the keyboard and then hitting "Enter" when you're done.

Add Label at Playback Position - This menu item lets you create a new label at the current location where you are playing or recording. Do this if you want to mark a certain passage while you're listening to it. You can title the label by typing with the keyboard and then hitting "Enter" or "Return" when you're done. Only available whilst audacity is playing.