Saving and exporting projects

There are two ways to get your work out of Audacity: Saving the project, and exporting audio.

Saving projects

You can save projects using the File > Save Project menu. A saved project (.aup3) has the most information about your project available, but can only be opened in Audacity. There are three options available, each useful for a different use case:
  • Save Project (Ctrl+S/Cmd+S) will save your current project. If you save for the first time, you may need to specify where to save it to.
  • Save Project As... will save your project in a new place and continue editing on it, should you want the original project to remain untouched.
  • Backup Project... will save the current state of the project in a new file, but won't switch to it.
Warning: Avoid saving active projects on external drives, USB sticks, or network storage. Audacity requires fast, uninterrupted access to your storage when recording and editing.

Exporting audio

You can export your project into an audio file using the File > Export menu. Exported audio (.mp3, .wav, .ogg, and more) can be opened with a wide variety of programs, and uploaded to some social media, but may have worse quality and lose some Audacity-specific information.
In the File > Export menu, you'll see a few different options:
Note: You may need to install FFMPEG to access some of these options.
  • Export as MP3, Export as WAV and Export as OGG will export your project into the selected format.
  • Export Audio... (Ctrl+Shift+E/Cmd+Shift+E) will provide you options to export to more uncommon formats, such as FLAC, M4A, AC3, WMA, AMR, MP2 and custom FFMPEG exports.
  • Export Selected Audio... will export only the current selection time range, instead of the entire project.
  • Export Multiple... (Ctrl+Shift+L/Cmd+Shift+L) will let you export different parts of the audio based on either tracks or labels.
Caution: Muted tracks are not exported. What you hear when playing in Audacity is what will be exported.
There are also two additional options which export non-audio data:
  • Export Labels... will export labels if you have any.
  • Export MIDI... will export the currently selected note track as a MIDI or Allegro file. You can only export one note track at a time.