How to Record Audio From Your Computer With Audacity

Are you new to Audacity? This article covers the tutorial on how Audacity records computer audio. Audacity audio recorder is a software available in all operating systems. It also comes with an editor to enhance your sound or audio. It is free to download and used by many people. One of the best features of this application is the way it captures the sound. Audacity can record computer audio and not just the sound from a microphone.

audacity record computer audio

With Audacity, you can record a sound while the computer is playing music or audio.  This may be a complicated process for those who are just new to Audacity or computers. But when you familiarized yourself with the overall functions of this application, this will become easy for you.

Here is a quick tutorial on how Audacity works in recording computer playback. First thing first. Download Audacity for Windows and Audacity for Mac and install it on your computer before you can record audio. Now, let’s go to the tutorial.

How Audacity Records Computer Audio

Recording audio would vary depending on the OS that you have. Take note of the following information.

For Windows OS

Step 1. Go to the desktop of your computer and right-click on the sound or Volume icon. The dialog box for sound devices will pop-up.

Step 2. Click on the Playback devices and find your default playback device. Your default device has a small green circle with a checkmark.

Step 3. Open your Audacity and click on the Edit Menu. Select Preferences or press Ctrl+p. From the left menu, click on Devices and select Windows WASAPI from the drop-down menu in the Host bar. For Playback, select your default device that has been enabled in your sound device settings. For Recording, you must also select the default playback device and leave the channel set for 2 Channels. Click OK.

There’s an easy way to do this. You can see the device toolbar that contains the selection of your audio host and recording device. Go there and click the enabled default playback of your computer.

Step 4. You can start recording audio from your computer by clicking the Record button on top of the Audacity’s interface.  You can pause or stop your recording by clicking the specific buttons on the Transport toolbar for these commands. To understand how this toolbar works, you can check the article on How to use Audacity.

For Mac OS

  • Step 1. Get Audacity. You may also download Soundflower to enable the routing of the sound from other applications and not just from the default speakers.
  • Step 2. Go to the Apple menu and Select Open System Preferences. Select sounds and got to the Output tab and set the Soundflower.
  • Step 3. Configure your device preferences. On the device toolbar of the Audacity’s interface, select the default playback of your computer including the audio host and recording device, and set the channel for 2 channels (stereo).
  • Step 4. Start recording audio from your computer or websites like YouTube. Surely, you’d be a star with this user-friendly tool.

To record the audio, just open your audio player or any music website, and play the sound you want to capture. At the same time, click the record button in Audacity and wait until it finished recording. You may choose to pause or to stop the recording, it all depends on you. Then go on editing or saving your recorded audio file.

Once you’re done recording, you may choose to edit your recorded audio file using the effects. You can also use the best Audacity plugins which you can download and add to Audacity’s library.


Now that you have an insight into how Audacity records computer audio, you can try editing a prerecorded sound on your own. Just follow these simple steps. You will find Audacity Alternatives in the market, which is fine. Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

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