Audacity vs Reaper – Side-by-Side Comparison with FAQs & More

Once you’re done recording your audio narration, the next important step is to clean it up and make it ready for your online course videos. 

There are a number of tools that can help you achieve this such as these two tools we’ll look at today: Audacity and Reaper. 

In this post, we’ll delve deep into what each digital audio workstation has to offer and determine which one would be best for you as an online course creator. 

Price5 out of 53 and a half out of 5
Ease of Use4 out of 54 out of 5
Tools for Audio Cleanup and Mixing4 out of 54 out of 5
Audio Formats Supported4 out of 55 out of 5
Supported Operating Systems5 out of 54 out of 5

Now that you have an idea of where each software stands in terms of its different aspects, let’s have a closer look at them to see which one’s more suitable for online course creators. 

Audacity Review – Free and Easy to Use

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When you look at Audacity and everything it has to offer, it’s very surprising that this tool is free. 

Firstly, there are no limitations when it comes to the length of your audio or how big your files are. 

Furthermore, you can add an unlimited number of tracks within its multi-track editor. 

Compare that to Adobe Audition which costs $20.99 per month and still has a 128-track limit. 

Audacity has all the tools-of-the-trade that one typically uses to clean up voice-overs including EQ, a normalizer, a compressor, and a noise reduction tool. 

Features of Audacity

  • Efficient audio cleanup tools such as EQ, Normalizer, etc.
  • Intuitive interface for beginners
  • Lightweight software that doesn’t use a lot of computer resources
  • Can record audio straight into Audacity 
  • Multi-track editing
Pros Cons
No project length or size limitations

Available on Windows, Mac OS, and Linux

Adequately equipped for audio cleanup and mixing

Easy to set up and use


Lightweight; Does not use a lot of computer resources

Can be used for background music production
Interface is not customizable

Plugins are clunky to install

Benefits of Audacity

When we discuss benefits, the first thing we have to mention is the fact that Audacity is completely free software. This means you can download it from their website any time you want. 

Secondly, when you consider how it has a ton of features and it’s able to handle large files, you’d expect Audacity to crash and freeze a lot. However, that’s not the case at all. 

It’s an extremely lightweight and well-optimized tool that is able to edit large sound files without lagging, freezing, or crashing. 

As mentioned earlier, it has all the tools you will need to clean up your audio for your online course lectures. 

Furthermore, these tools are extremely easy to use and you can get the hang of them within just one session. 

You can also record your audio directly into Audacity which makes for efficient recording and editing. 

Factors to Consider Before you Decide to Buy Audacity


You can’t go wrong with the price for Audacity since it’s completely free. 

For an online course creator, this is a great benefit as you’ll most likely already need to pay for other tools and might not have the money to spend on a paid DAW. 

Ease of Use

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Audacity perfectly balances functionality with ease of use. 

Even if you’ve never done audio editing before, you’ll find that you’ll be able to get the hang of Audacity and all of its important features within just one session. 

Tools for Audio Cleanup and Mixing

Audacity comes equipped with all the tools you need to clean up your audio narration and make it clear and crisp for your students. 

Not only does it have all the bells and whistles such as EQ, a normalizer, a compressor, and noise reduction but all of these tools are also designed to be incredibly easy to use.

What Do the Customers Think?

It’s very common to see people being astonished by how a free DAW is able to have as much functionality as Audacity does. 

People also love how easy to use it is thanks to its barebones interface. 

Some of the reviews we came across said: 

answers posts

Best Free Audio Editing Tool

The best free audio editing, MIDI recording, audio prototyping, and music production tool is Audacity. It’s a program that’s available on Windows, macOS, and Linux. It also is great to clean up voice-overs and make them crisp which is great for online course creators.

Reaper Review – Powerful and Fully Customizable


REAPER is an acronym for Rapid Environment for Audio Production, Engineering, and Recording. 

It is difficult to compare Reaper to Audacity because both of them excel in wildly different departments. 

Reaper is great because it lets you hear any effects you put onto your recording as you’re recording it at the same time. This is something that Audacity does not allow you to do. 

Reaper is quite a lightweight program, just like Audacity, and does not use a lot of your computer’s resources when you run it. 
Furthermore, it also comes equipped with all the tools you need to create clear and compelling voice-overs.

Features of Reaper

  • Multi-channel editing
  • VST effects (for virtual instruments)
  • Support for third-party plug-ins (both 32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Customizable interface
  • Free themes available
Pros Cons
Supports the operating systems: Windows, Mac OS, and Linux (beta)

60-day free trial period

Takes up very little space on your hard drive

Lightweight program with impeccable performance

Fully customizable
Unintuitive default interface

Fairly expensive

Benefits of Reaper

While Reaper is considered by many musicians to be the best DAW, we will look at how its tool design and interface help people who want to make voice-overs like you. 

Firstly, just like Audacity, Reaper comes equipped with everything you need to make your audio narration as crisp as possible. 

Given that you record yourself and use Reaper’s tools properly, your audio narration will definitely have a professional finish. 

Furthermore, Reaper is extremely lightweight and it didn’t crash even once during our testing. This was true even when we used it to work with several tracks at once. 

Factors to Consider Before you Decide to Buy Reaper


Reaper comes with a 60-day free trial period. In our opinion, this 60-day period may just be enough for you to edit and clean up the audio for your online courses from start to finish. 

However, if you want to continue to use Reaper to edit your sound files, you have two options: its personal use license and its commercial license. 

The commercial license is meant for individuals like you who mean to profit off of the audio they will create with Reaper. It costs $225 whereas the personal license costs $60. 

Both are one-time purchases and your Reaper is constantly updated every time a new update comes out. 

Ease of Use

Unlike Audacity, Reaper requires some time to get into. 

While its interface is completely customizable, it can be quite confusing when you first start out. 

Tools for Audio Cleanup and Mixing

As mentioned earlier, not only does Reaper have all of the tools you need to clean up your audio, you can even apply these tools and effects beforehand. 

That way you can record your audio and listen to your recording with those applied effects at the same time. 

What Do the Customers Think?

Users love how lightweight Reaper is when they consider how much it has to offer. 

Its customizable interface is also very popular among users who want to work according to their own personal workflow.

Some reviews of Reaper are as follows: 


Best Feature-Full Digital Audio Workstation

The best feature-full digital audio workstation is Reaper because of its support for third-party plugins along with its own huge library of tools and transitions. Despite its many features, it’s an astonishingly lightweight and fast program. 

We have gone over all the features offered by Adobe Audition and Audacity to determine which one would be best for you as an online course creator

audacity vs reaper

Digital Audio Workstations – Buyers’ Guide

Choosing a single digital audio workstation may seem daunting because you want to choose one and stick with it. 

If you end up choosing a software that does not fulfill your audio editing needs, you’ll have to go back and choose another one which will cost you a lot of time and money. 

Thus, it’s important to take your time and do your research to determine which one would be best for you. 

For this, you can think about a few factors to determine whether a software is suitable to edit audio narration or not. These factors are:


The price of the tool you choose matters a ton for a couple of reasons: 

  1. You’ll already need to pay for other tools as an online course creator, so you want to keep your budget tight and ensure you get the maximum amount of value for the least amount of money spent. 
  2. You don’t want to pay a ton for audio software that is jam-packed with features that you may never even use. Remember that you only need it for audio cleanup and proper mixing. 

Ease of Use

Whatever software you choose has to be very easy to learn and intuitive to use. 

You should spend a minimal amount of time learning how to perform various functions within the software to achieve crisp audio narration. 

This is because you want to minimize the time spent learning the software and maximize the time spent working on your online course. 

Tools for Audio Cleanup and Mixing

Digital Audio Workstations are typically not aimed at people who want to clean voice-overs (as you are). 

They are typically aimed towards musicians who want to create their own music at home or in the studio. 

Thus, you want to do your research and ensure that whatever software you intend to get has features and tools that are able to clean up the audio narration and make it sound crisp. 

You don’t want to end up with software that doesn’t even have adequate features to clean up the audio narration for your online courses

Audio Files Supported

The file format of your sound files will depend on whatever tool you use to record audio. 

You should ensure that whatever software you choose supports the format of sound files that you intend to work with.  

Getting into the online course business can be daunting. Therefore, we have compiled a complete step-by-stepguide for you to follow and make the best of your business. 

Final Verdict

With that, we’re at the end of our comparison post for Audacity vs Reaper. 

For online course creators, we have to say that Audacity is definitely the best choice for a few reasons: 

Firstly, it’s free. This means you won’t have to spend extra money to clean up your audio. 

Secondly, it has pretty much all the tools you’ll need to clean up your audio and make it suitable for addition within your online course videos. 

Lastly, its interface is super self-explanatory and you’ll be able to get the hang of it almost immediately. 

Which DAW do you use to clean up your audio? Do you prefer Audacity, Reaper, or some other DAW? Let us know in the comments.