Audio Technica AT-PL50 Turntable

I bought the AT-PL50 because of the built-in preamp, but the input is too high with the preamp on, and too low with it off. I have had this problem with the Magix audio cleaning program as well as with Audacity. I am using the built-in audio subsystem on the Intel D975XBX2 motherboard, which is an 8 channel system based on the SigmaTel STAC9247D audio codec, with IDT driver version 6.10.5713.7 (problem existed with earlier driver versions as well). I was considering buying the M-Audio Audiophile 2496 Audio Card, but am reluctant to do this if I can’t resolve this problem with input levels from the AT-PL50.

Check the record settings in the Windows Mixer. Uf you are recording through “Line In”, then that is the recording input that should be selected (rather than “Mix” or “Stereo Mix”). You can then control the input (record) volume from the recording section of the Windows Mixer.

There are some pictures indicating the bits you need to be looking at on this page, but SigmaTel sometimes use customised mixer control panels instead of the standard Windows one, so it may look different.

I am using the “line in”, but have to turn down the input level to 2 in order to keep the VU meter in a normal range, and even with it that low I am getting places that clip. I was hoping someone had experience with either this turntable or the SigmaTel codec to help me figure out where the problem lies.

I remember reading a similar posting a few weeks ago where the poster solved this problem in hardware by building themselves a simple gain/volume control with RCA in and out and a volume control knob that was placed in line between the deck and the PC - but despite some searching I can’t find this post.
Update: I finally stumbled across it - it is (currently) the last posting in this thread by Mikeymike:

I had a look at the manual for your deck and it doesn’t look like they’ve fitted a gain control on the deck itself - but have you checked that?


Thanks waxcylinder. I have checked for a gain control on the turntable, but don’t find one. I have queried Audio Technica about it. FYI, here is info from their site on output from it:

Output Level Pre-amp “Off”; 2.5 mV nominal at 1 kHz, 5 cm/sec
Pre-amp “On”; 200 mV nominal at 1 kHz, 5 cm/sec
Phono Pre-Amp Gain 38 dB nominal, RIAA equalized

Thanks for the link to previous discussion. I have asked Mikeymike for more info on his DIY volume control.