Audio quality based on interface

This isn’t specifically about Audacity, so I hope it isn’t innapropriate to ask here. I’m mastering my audiobook and noticed there is quite a bit of difference between the sound coming from my HDMI output vs the headphone jack on my M-Audio 192|4 USB audio interface. The USB interface sounds deeper and muddier. Which port gives me a truer sound to what listeners are going to hear?

Which port gives me a truer sound to what listeners are going to hear?

As long as it’s intelligible, you just have to make the ACX Quality Control people happy. Those are the people that get you published. Also See: whatever you do, everything has to match. There is no getting a new “better” microphone in the middle of the book.

I would guess the wired connection to the M-Audio is more likely to be “flat” and accurate The HDMI is more likely to have “theater enhancements” applied and be suffering from Surround or other effects.

You can cheat. Depending on how far along you are, export a chunk of the performance as the ACX MP3 Submission Format and play it on something else.

Doesn’t the M-Audio allow you to hear your voice both ways? Live being recorded and then again later when you play it back? It’s strongly recommended you play your live voice to your headphones during performance. That makes automatic volume setting as you read much easier.

You may find that special effects, filters, and modifications “sneak in” during recording on a computer and it’s one of the reasons I like stand-alone sound recorders and not always do capture on the computer.


What’s the microphone? On a guess, record this ten second voice test and post it on the forum.

Sometimes we can discover obvious sound damage or problems.

One more note. Where is the USB/Direct knob set when you listen? If it’s set in the middle you may be listening to the playback from Audacity and the M-Audio microphone pickup mixed by accident.