Can Audacity Remember a Microphone?

Do you make this stuff up as you go along?

steve, I did that in response to Koz’s advice on page 1 of this thread

"And you can eliminate all the steps by playing Order of Appearance.

Close the laptop and/or sleep with the microphone connected. Then disconnect it.

~time passes~

Connect the microphone first. The USB light may flash while the Mac figures out what’s going on. Wait for it to come on steady (you’ll get a feel for how long that is—usually seconds). Then open the laptop. If Audacity is still running, it should have your microphone mounted and ready. No steps, no dance.


so in answer to your question, in this sequence Audacity is always open.

No Steve, I repair serious computers at component level. Most consumer grade computers these days, come with chipsets for laptops, to save power and to make the computer cheaper, lighter and/or thinner. Apple, fi only has one machine left that doesn’t use portable chipsets, that’s the Mac Pro.

A true oldfashioned desktop might still have other chipsets, but I don’t get too much of those as their owners junk them before even considering repair.

Correct. I intentionally never closed Audacity, just put it to “sleep” with the rest of the machine at lid close. In that sequence, Audacity doesn’t “become conscious” again until after the Mac has become aware of the microphone. Only we know that there was an interval where the microphone was not connected.

I did notice that if you fail to wait for the microphone to become mounted, this process will fail, so there is that one awkward interval and you have to pay attention.

It’s not jam the microphone in and flip the lid open. That’s not going to work.


That satisfies your requirement of the simplest path with the fewest steps. If you start closing Audacity…Ummm. That’s harder.


Hi thank you koz. Then I haven’t misunderstood. The way I assessed whether there Mac had become aware of the microphone was by when the led on the mic lit up. Maybe this is still too soon ? I’ll try it again leaving a longer interval before opening the top.

Yes This would be perfect. I actually tend to like leaving Audacity open if I can help it.

This would be perfect.

Which this? I said two different things.

If you leave Audacity running and close your lid with the order I posted, I expect that to work. I can try that on my more modern Air and see how it goes. I did notice my USB light flashes twice, not just once. I suspect the first one is the presence of connection and the second one is the actual mount.

I’ll time it. Also, I’m not using a microphone. I’m using a UCA-202 USB device, also by Behringer. I have a Behringer UM2 which is a USB/analog microphone adapter. I guess that’s closer to what you have. It looks like a microphone to the system.


I’m doing this on a 2011 series MacBook Pro I bought in 2012. The Air is six months old, but my impression is they haven’t changed anything about it since It was designed. It has a poorer display than the MBP, but weighs a fraction.


Which machine have you got?


Welp, it doesn’t work on the newer MacBook Air. Its first birthday was 2016-02-21

Once I close the lid and disconnect the “microphone”, that’s the end of the world. The USB connection will not come back up again with the lid closed and when I do open the lid, Audacity is unstable. Rescan fails.

While the microphone is connected, close and relaunch Audacity and everything is back to normal.

I have not tried to do a sound capture on this machine, so it’s entirely possible it’s going to suffer with all the Power Saving stuttering, clicks and data errors.


I meant that “the simplest path with the fewest steps” would be perfect- specifically, your solution of only plugging and unplugging the mic while Audacity sleeps with the top down. Thank you, I will look out for the second flash.

I have a late 2010 MacBook Air

that sounds ominously like my experience.
I think the Air’s have a funny way of sleeping, which is not like the Pro’s. Not like the old Pro’s anyway.

The MBPs went to significant redesign when they stripped out the optical drive. I don’t think the Stereo Line-In is there any more. My last trip to the Apple Store and I had to look closely to see the difference between the Air and the MBP. It’s down to thickness of the case. The Airs come to a point in front and the MBPs don’t.

RJ45 still there? I have to connect the Air to the wired network through a thunderbolt adapter.


I suppose the El Capitan on it has had the latest updates?

Does it also happen with another audio interface, eg a Behringer?

As of the last backup and update which would have been last week. It’s not Sierra.


OK. Not good news.

OS-X 10.11.16. 13" MacBook Air (2015). Apple updates as of 2016-09-22 21:00. Last update was applied to Safari.

Did you know the Air had a fan in it? I always thought it didn’t. Amaze your friends.

The most serious problem: Apparently, Audacity 2.1.2 does not survive a lid close in good order.

Set up Audacity with both built-in microphone and Behringer UM2 with tiny test microphone working in all conditions. The sound meter monitor works and both will make a successful recording.

Close the lid.

After about fifteen seconds of inactivity, the power light on the UM2 goes out. Unplug and replug the USB and it comes back on.

Open the lid and even though Audacity still has USB Audio CODEC in the recording window, the UM2 will not monitor and I get the error message when I try to make a recording.

Apple > System Preferences > Sound has Built-In Microphone selected. So Audacity and the Mac do not match.

Meanwhile, the built-in microphone will not monitor, either, but it will make a recording.

So Audacity has become unstable. As further evidence of that, at one pass of the experiment, I was able to make a UM2 recording after a lid open, but I couldn’t replicate it.

Transport > Rescan… is available but does not help.

Restart Audacity and everything returns to normal.


Do you have any other audio recorder available for testing?

other audio recorder

I’m not sure what you’re asking. I have an Olympus WS-823 personal stereo recorder. More than one, actually.

I have a Zoom H4. I carry an 8GB USB thumb drive that also happens to be a mono sound recorder.