Modify the audio file in a suitable processing program.
I wish to leave the audio unchanged.
You duplicate your audio layer modify one copy to get the frequencies you want to drive Audio Spectrum and use the other one for audio.
That is your solution.
Is there no other way to do this by directly effecting the spectrum itself?
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If you can't get what you want by modifying the properties in Audio Spectrum then you have to modify the sound you are using to drive the effect. You can do it all in AE:
- Duplicate your audio layer
- Precompose one copy moving all attributes
- Open the pre-comp
- Add audio effects to modify the sound as much as you can in AE (audio effects in AE are not very precise or very good)
- Back in the main comp use the pre-comp as the audio source.
You don't have the control you would have in audition but this is how you would modify the frequencies that the effect is using.
Another option is to purchase Sound Keys from Red Giant. That will give you more options, but if you want complete control you still need to modify the audio used for audio spectrum.
is there no easy way to create an anchor point in the audio wave composition?
No, there isn't. The effect is a representation of the underlying frequencies, not some abstract line. AE not being an audio processing tool, there simply is no way to mute selective frequencies to "pin" the ends in place.