How to Change the Pitch of a Song

Last updated on August 26, 2021 by , Posted to edit audio

pitch shifting

Have you ever started a song only halfway through realizing that the melody is too high or too low for you? Maybe it will sound better for your voice when you sing it a whole step lower. There is an opinion that you should choose a key so that your voice can easily reach all the notes of the tune. So how do you change the pitch of a song?

1 Pitch shifting software

Musicians who mix songs in digital audio workstations can re-record individual instruments to get the sound you want. But this is too time-consuming and doesn't justify itself for electronic music. An alternative method would be to pitch shift everything that will not be re-recorded. Even if it sounds weird or has artifacts, this option is justified.

For the average person who sings to Karaoke and does not have access to expensive professional software, these options look too complicated. Maybe there are simpler tools?

Changing pitches is an incredibly common tool in sound editing. Most audio editors have a pitch/stretch tool that can be used for pitch and/or tempo changes. The most common recommendation on the Internet is that this can be done in the free editor Audacity. However, the quality of sound effects in this editor is too low, and the graphical interface is too cluttered. We need a simple audio player that can change the tone in real time and save the processed song so we can play it anywhere.

2 Change the pitch in AudioRetoucher

AudioRetoucher was created to solve such problems. It uses professional time stretching and pitch shifting algorithms adapted for real-time applications. The algorithms provide pitch shifting within very wide limits and deliver an incredibly smooth sound. It is a very transparent pitch shifter with barely audible artifacts compared to the sharper sounds produced by the free programs. In addition to changing the pitch, the program gives you the ability to change the tempo of the song. The inevitable changes in formants can be partially compensated by the Bass and Treble sliders.

music pitch shifter screenshot

Before you start, download and install the program. The free trial version allows you to play as many audio files as you like, but the save function is blocked.

To qualitatively change the pitch of a song, you need to know what key the original song is in, as well as what key you want to put it in. Then you can simply calculate the number of semitones you need to sweep. If you don't know the key of the sample, there is key detection software to help you find it. Note that they are not always accurate, so always use your hearing (or someone else's) to estimate. In case you don't know music theory and are doing it for fun, you can change the key as you see fit until you like the result. To do this, you can use the arrow keys and change the range in fractions of semitones.

3 Conclusion

By now you should know how to change pitch for songs with vocals, but be prepared for a chipmunk effect if you transpose far away. Don't forget that this instrument is not limited to vocals and allows you to practice playing your favorite songs on the instrument in different pitches. Have fun experimenting!

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