Multi-Tool

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Multi-Tool mode on Tools Toolbar lets you access all of the five separate tools on this toolbar at once, depending on the location of the mouse and the modifier keys you hold down.
Selection tool for selecting audio before modifying it.Envelope tool for modifying loudness of audio.Draw tool for changing the values of individual samples.Zoom tool to zoom in or out.Time Shift tool to move audio clips into new positions.Multi-Tool combines the actions of all five tools.ToolsToolbarMulti.png

The image above shows the Tools Toolbar with the Multi Tool selected.

  • Click on this link to learn more about the Tools Toolbar.
  • Click on other tools in the image to learn more about those tools.
Warning icon If you quit Audacity with Multi-Tool selected then it will be selected upon reopening Audacity. Otherwise, Selection Tool will always be selected upon reopening Audacity, irrespective of which of the separate tools was selected when you quit.

Using Multi-Tool

To use Multi-Tool Mode, click the Multi-Tool button button on the Tools Toolbar or press F6 on the keyboard.

Multi-Tool Mode automatically selects one of the five tools on the Tools Toolbar according to mouse moves and key presses. The mouse pointer changes to show which of its functions is currently available (the pointer will appear similar to the button for the relevant tool on the toolbar).

Selection Tool

Selection Tool is available when the mouse is in an area that does not trigger the Envelope Tool or the Time Shift Tool. The pointer will appear as image of selection pointer. See Selecting Audio with the Mouse for more details.

Multi Tool selecting with cursor.png Multi Tool selected with cursor.png
Click to position the cursor Drag cursor to select a region

Envelope Tool

Envelope Tool is made available by hovering the mouse pointer over the waveform either on the blue horizontal envelope boundary or at half the distance of the envelope boundary to the center line. The pointer then changes to EnvelopePointer.png . Click and drag with the mouse and then use envelope tool as you would use the standalone Envelope Tool.

Multi Tool Envelope 01.png Multi Tool Envelope 02.png
You can drag from the half-way point You can drag from the envelope boundary
Multi Tool Envelope 04.png Multi Tool Envelope 03.png
Dragging from the half-way point Dragging from the envelope boundary

Draw Tool

Draw Tool is made available by zooming in until you can see individual samples then hovering the mouse pointer close to the line joining the samples. The pointer then changes to a pencil tool DrawCursor.png and you can use it as you would use the standalone Draw Tool.

Multi Tool Draw 01.png Multi Tool Draw 02.png
Draw Tool prior to making a repair Draw Tool after drawing the repair

Zoom Tool

For horizontal scale zooming right-click (Ctrl + click on a Mac) the mouse at a point to zoom-out by a factor of 2, centered on the click point. Alternatively right-click, drag and release to zoom-in to a drag-selected region.

If you commence a horizontal or vertical drag to zoom by mistake, you can press Esc before releasing the mouse button to cancel the zoom operation.

The illustration below shows a right-click drag zoom-in.

Multi Tool Zoom 01.png Multi Tool Zoom 02.png
A right-click rightward drag to define the horizontal zoom Releasing the right mouse button effects the zoom
Vertical scale zooming works, as normal, with any of the separate tools selected.

Time Shift Tool

Time Shift an individual clip

Multi Tool Time Shift Clip.png To shift an individual clip, hold down Ctrl (Cmd on Mac) while over one of the clips. The pointer will change to the Time Shift toolTimeShiftTool.png. Then drag left or right with the mouse. You may also drag a clip that is fully under a drag bar by hovering over the bar, then drag when the Time Shift pointer appears.

Time Shift an entire track

Multi Tool Time Shift 01.png To shift an entire track hover over one of the drag bars at the left or right edge of the waveform. The pointer will change to image of time shift tool. Then drag left or right with the mouse.


If the audio in the track is not fully under a drag bar, or if the track contains multiple clips, you must hold down Shift while dragging from the drag bar to move the entire audio of the track.