How to Reset Audacity Settings to Default – Audacity Preference Guide

Many Audacity users are asking us how to reset audacity settings to default.

This is a very common issue for the new Audacity users. Matter of fact, many veteran Audacity users also face this problem. They don’t know how to reset the preferences to the default settings.

Many users even try to uninstall and reinstall the software but to no avail. But fear not.

We have come up with a few easy to follow solutions. And we will be sharing all of these methods of resetting Audacity preferences/settings to default.

So, let’s get this going…

How to Reset Audacity Settings to Default?

There are a few ways you can factory reset Audacity. Fortunately, these methods are very easy to execute. In the following section, we will talk about all these various methods one by one.

What is Audacity?

But before we jump off to the tutorials, let’s talk about Audacity. If you are a new user of this powerful software, you might not be familiar with it that well.

For your information, Audacity is one of the most popular open-source multi-track audio editors and recorders. It is free software.

How to Reset Audacity Settings to Default
reset audacity settings to default

Also, it is available in macOS, Windows, Linux/GNU, and many other common operating systems. Interestingly, you can also use Audacity software to record live audio.

So, if you are looking for an audio recording and editing software that is totally free and comes with a bunch of premium features, then Audacity is the best option out there.

Audacity Preferences

So, what is the Audacity ‘Preferences’? Simply put, this is another term for the settings of the software.

So, you will be able to change the default settings or behaviors of the Audacity software from the ‘Preferences’ menu.

You can access the ‘Preferences’ menu in two ways in Windows. First of all, you can press the ‘CTRL+P’ keys on the keyboard.

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And the Preferences dialog will appear on the screen. Or else, you can also click on the ‘Edit’ option from the top menu bar.

In doing so, a new overlay menu will appear. Simply, click on the ‘Preferences’ option from the bottom of the menu. And it will bring out the Audacity ‘Preferences’.

However, on Mac, you will find the ‘Preferences’ under the ‘Audacity Menu’. Also, you can press the ‘COMMAND+,’ keys on your keyboard to bring the ‘Preferences’ dialog.

How to Reset Audacity Settings to Default

Remember, there are a lot of options in the ‘Preferences’ dialog. You can tweak each of them.

Some of the most commonly used options are Devices, Interfaces, Tracks, Playback, MIDI Devices, Recording, Import/Export, Effects, Libraries, and so on.

Now, the problem arises when you have changed some of these options and want to return to the default settings.

Because there are no buttons or options to return to default settings in Audacity. But don’t worry. We have solutions to this. And, we will be sharing all of these right now.

How to Reset Audacity Preferences to Default

Remember, there are 2 ways to reset Audacity Preferences to default. Both of them are easy. So, let’s see how to accomplish this in a step by step manner.

Method #1 Delete the Audacity Config File

The first method is the easiest one. Also, it is the fastest method as well. Because you will not have to uninstall the Audacity software. Rather, you can reset the settings to default without reinstalling the software. Let’s see how…

Steps to Follow

  • Simply, locate the ‘Audacity.cfg’ file and delete it while the Audacity software is not running

That’s it. But the question is where to find the ‘Audacity.cfg’ file. The location of the file differs depending on the operating system you are using. So in this section, we will be sharing the method for each operating system separately.

How to Reset Audacity Settings to Default

For Windows OS

  • Close the Audacity software if it is running already
  • Now, press the ‘Win+R’ key on your keyboard it will bring out the ‘RUN’ box
  • So, enter ‘%appdata%’ (without the quotes) on the Run box and press the ‘Enter’ key on the keyboard
  • It will open a new folder on your computer, where you will find a folder named ‘Audacity’. So open that folder by double-clicking on that
  • Next, you will find a file named ‘Audacity.cfg’ inside that folder. Simply, delete the ‘Audacity.cfg’ file from your computer
  • Now, you can open the Audacity software and it will start as a newly installed software. That means the Preferences have been reset to default

For your information, in Windows OS the ‘Audacity.cfg’ file is located in the ‘Users\<username>\AppData\Roaming\audacity\’ folder. But we have shown a quicker way to locate the file in the tutorial above.

For macOS

If you are a macOS user, then the location of the ‘Audacity.cfg’ file will be different. In this case, you will find the file in the ‘~/Library/Application Support/audacity/’ folder.

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So, locate the file on the ‘Audacity’ folder and delete it. And every setting will be reset to default.

For Linux

If you are using Linux, then you will find the ‘Audacity.cfg’ config file in the ‘~/.audacity-data/’ folder. Then delete the file and restart Audacity, you will see all the settings are reset to default.

Note: If you don’t see the ‘Audacity.cfg’ file on the ‘Audacity’ folder, then you might have selected the ‘Don’t show hidden files’ option. So, you must show the hidden files and folders to access this file.

Or else, you can also directly type the folder path in the address bar of the file explorer/manager to see hidden files.

Method #2 Uninstall and Reinstall Audacity

The second method is another easy one. However, in this one, you will have to have the ‘Audacity’ installer on your PC.

If you don’t have that, you can download it from here. Now, that you have downloaded the installer, let’s learn the rest of the method below.

For Windows OS

  • First, uninstall the ‘Audacity’ app
  • Then, re-install the ‘Audacity’ app using the installer you have just downloaded
  • While you are installing, navigate to the ‘Select Additional Tasks’ screen
  • And, put a checkmark in the box next to the ‘Reset Preferences’ option by clicking on it
  • Now, complete the installation process as usual
  • Then launch the Audacity software again. You will find a new dialog appearing with the ‘Reset Audacity Preferences’ option. Select the ‘Yes’ option

This way, you can also reset Audacity Preferences by re-installing the software. We are sure that it is possible to follow this method and reset Audacity settings to default in Windows OS.

But we don’t really know whether the uninstall/reinstall process works on operating systems other than Windows.

But you can try and find out. Remember to select ‘Yes’ if the ‘Reset Audacity Preferences’ option appears.

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Last Words

By this time, you should be family with all the methods of resetting Audacity settings to default. In this article, we have shared two methods on this topic.

In addition, we have tried to keep the tutorials as simple as possible. We hope this post will help you to use Audacity to its potential from now on.

Before you go, you can check out our interesting post on 25 astonishing things about black holes. And, don’t forget to share this post with fellow Audacity users.

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About the Author: Jakaria Tiaz

Jakaria brings years of extensive experience in tech and business writing to the team. After working as the chief editor for several very large online magazines Jakaria agreed to take part in Tech 25 and help turn it into the leading Tech news and facts site online.