Monday, July 7, 2008

Installing Audacity (WAV/MP3 recording software)

Info from following URLs:

One of my reasons for buying the EeePC was that it could function as a lightweight portable backup device. In the church I attend, I would hook up my Elson EM-200H (128MB) MP3 player to the mixer in the PA system to record the sermons. When we went for church camps, I would do the same as well, lugging along 4 rechargeable AAA batteries, the charger AND my 2kg 12.1" laptop with its own accessories. The laptop was for the sole purpose of backup.

Besides backup, I needed software to amplify the finished recording to see if anything was recorded. There was no spectrogram on the MP3 player to indicate that and a few camp messages were found to be unrecorded. My laptop had Nero 7 Wave Editor installed (bought it online). To equip my Eee PC, I installed Audacity. There is currently no Eee PC distribution, so I had to install the Debian package instead.

  1. Press Ctrl-Alt-T to open the terminal console.

  2. Type "sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list" to edit your software package repositories list.

  3. Add "deb stable main" to the last line

  4. Write to the file by pressing Ctrl-O

  5. Exit by pressing Ctrl-X

  6. Type "sudo apt-get update" to get an updated list of available packages.

  7. Type "sudo apt-get install audacity" to install Audacity (select yes for all questions).

  8. Type "sudo audacity" to launch the program. (The "sudo" is to give permissions for the program to save the file later)

To edit and save as MP3s, download (available on this blog under Resource Files) and go to Edit, Preferences, File Formats, MP3 Export Setup. To save, use Export, not Save Project.

(^ v ^)


Unknown said...

Thank you for the very clear instructions! Ace!

Freddy said...

Thanks for this useful post !

I use Audacity on my eeePC Xandros, and find it very good. There's just an issue with project saving that does not work neither on SD card or usb key, nor on the native memory of the eeePC. I get the following message :

22:29:57: Impossible to set permissions for the file '/home/user/F:/Musique/Enfants_data/' (error 1: Opération non permise)

(in french in the text)
do you have an idea on the source of the pb ?
many thanks for your blog.

PhantomZ said...

Hi Fred,

I'm not quite sure why there is a F: in the path, but you can try pressing Ctrl-Alt-T to go to the terminal console and type

"sudo audacity"

This will run Audacity in superuser mode and hopefully give it sufficient permissions to write to the SD card.

Freddy said...

Thanks for replying. F is my usb key (that's how it's labelled on mi eee, I don't get why, it should be E, but I don't care actually)

You're right, I changed to run Audacity as root, and it seems that I can save projects that way. There's surely something to do with file mgt on the eeePC, I'll search in the corresponding forums.

I hope runing as root doesn't risk to jeopardize the system...


Anonymous said...

Hi there,

thanks for this, i managed to install it fine in my eee900. my only issue right now is that there seems to be a latency problem once i do multi-tracking. any idea how this can be sorted out? is it simple memory issue you think (mine's got 1G of RAM) or has to do with the processor? the second track always sound garbled.


PhantomZ said...

Hi ganj,

I tried recording 1 track after another and after playing back, it sounded ok. Have you tried recording only one track and playing back? If it still sounds noisy, it could be that your microphone volume is set too high/sensitive. I set mine at 1/4 of the max volume.

Other than this, I usually do only 1-track recording, so I'm not very familiar with multi-tracks.

Anonymous said...

thanks, PhantomZ, for replying. I'll try to figure out what the problem is and will let you know of any solution. Audacity is a very good multi-track recorder especially for laying in several tracks of music (e.g. bass, guitar, drums, voice, etc.) and mixing them down. It's could also act as a sequencer in that sense. I've used it many times in the past - like a virtual studio - in most of my home recordings, where i record one track after another (to generally about 4 separate tracks) and mix them all down into a single stereo track. it worked ok in a laptop environment so i thought it could work in a tiny thing such as an eeepc.