Audacity on Mac recording my voice way too low!

I am on a Mac OS 10.6.8 and while Garageband works great using my little mixer box (pre sonus audio box 22Vsl), when I go to Audacity also using the same mixer box , audacity records my voice very, very low … which makes it impractical to use. Please help if anyone knows how to get Audacity to record voice levels in normal db range using the pre sonus audio box.


I think it’s better than even chance you’re actually recording your laptop built-in microphone, not the PreSonus. Plug the Presonus in and let it settle down and then start Audacity. Change the Device Toolbar > Recording (microphone symbol) to whatever the Presonus looks like when it mounts. Some popular devices are named “USB Audio Codec.”

In general, the volume sliders drop dead when you connect a USB sound device, but you might check Go (top of the desktop) > Utilities > Audio MIDI Setup. Make sure the volume sliders aren’t depressed.

Any of that help?


Thank you for your response. Audacity is recognizing my interface (the Audiobox) and I see it correctly represented. The volume at the mic symbol is slid up to 95 to get sound and waveform.

I went into AudioMidi Setup and cannot find volume sliders in that area. How do I find them?


Thank you, Koz! Found the volume sliders for the AudioMidiSetup, unmuted them, raised the volume, and I believe you have solved my problem! Thanks for taking the time to help me, you are brilliant!

Hello Koz-

I spoke too soon. When I tested another recording, I discovered that the Audacity volume sliders had been raised to maximum levels automatically, which picks up too much ambient noise for a good recording.

which picks up too much ambient noise for a good recording.

Volume sliders affect everything. If the ambient noise is half as loud as your voice, then it will stay half as loud no matter where you put the volume slider. There’s no such thing as turning your voice up and not affect the ambient noise.

It may seem like you’re separating the two sounds depending on where you have your speakers or headphones set.

Get rid of the ambient noise. Do you have the computer and its fans in the same room with you? That’s usually a bad idea. AudioBook instructions suggest you put the computer outside the room and use extension cables for the keyboard, mouse and monitor.


Hello Koz-

I can only hear my voice recording if volume sliders are at at least 95 and volume on the Mac is at full. Set any lower, it quickly becomes inaudible with no waveform. This was never the case when I was recording on a different machine.

Computer and keyboard are well separated from recording area.