Can not record from USB speakers Windows 8 Audacity 2.0.5

My new computer has Windows 8 O/S 64 bit. I also have Bose Companion (USB) speaker system. In audacity - I have MME selected as the “Audio Host” (options are Windows DirectSound and Windows WASAPI); The Output Device is Speakers (Bose USB Audio) with options to select - (Microsoft Sound Mapper); The Input Device is set for Stereo Mix (Realtek High Definition Speakers and Microsoft Sound Mapper); Input Channel is set to Stereo (with option of mono)

I have tried different combinations with these settings. All I accomplish is that the sound mutes or significantly reduced coming out of my Bose speakers. Nothing records.

Any help would be appreciated. I am first time user on any type of forum. Thanks, Woodie

I am using Windows 8.1; Audacity 2.0.5 and downloaded the .exe installer. Thanks, Woodie

So, you’re trying to record what you’re hearing through the speakers? Your Bose USB driver may not support that. Does your Bose system have an analog input or output you can tap-into?

If you want to record from a microphone or line-input on your soundcard, that should work and your speakers & Bose driver don’t have anything to do with that.

The Input Device is set for Stereo Mix (Realtek High Definition Speakers

But… The audio signal is being routed to the Bose USB speakers, not the Realtek analog output. If you connect analog speakers that should work.

You might try [u]Total Recorder[/u] ($18 USD and up) or [u]Virtual Audio Cable[/u] ($25 USD and up). Both of these have their own drivers, so you are not stuck with the limitations of your existing drivers. (Of course, try the trial version before buying.)

I could not find anything on the Bose System analog or digital. I only know to look in the “sounds”. I did hook up my old speakers to my new pc and audacity will record. I had to disable Bose and use my old speakers and then I can hear the playback as it records. I just wished their was a work-a-round - the Bose system is really great.

It seems like I did read something about Audacity doesn’t support USB sound (I think). I appreciate the info. Is there anything else I can try?



Is there anything else I can try?

Did you try Total Recorder or Virtual Audio Cable?

It seems like I did read something about Audacity doesn’t support USB sound (I think).

Your particular problem is not directly related to Audacity… It’s an operating system and driver issue.

Audacity can record just fine from a USB microphone or any USB audio interface that’s actually designed for recording as long as it has Windows drivers. And, if you open an audio file in Audacity it will play just fine through your USB speakers.

So, this problem isn’t related to USB or any particular hardware… You are trying to “capture” a digital audio stream as if flows through your computer, and that feature is not built-into Windows. It requres a driver, and not all audio drivers support it. In fact, Windows will try to stop you from recording/capturing an audio (or video) stream from a copy-protected source (DVD or Blu-Ray).

That’s it I am sure. Is there anything that I can do to work around this?

Thanks, Woodie

Just so that it is clear, Realtek “stereo mix” can only record from audio playing through the Realtek device. The USB speakers are a different device to Realtek.

Have you tried the obvious (free) solution of recording from the Windows WASAPI host as described in the Manual ( ) ?

  1. Open Device Toolbar .
  2. In the first (Host) box of Device Toolbar, choose “Windows WASAPI”.
  3. In the second (Output device) box in Device Toolbar, choose the Bose Speakers that you are using for listening.
  4. In the third (Input device) box in Device Toolbar, choose the (loopback) input for the Bose speakers.
  5. In the fourth (Input Channels) box in Device Toolbar, choose mono or stereo.
  6. Start playing the audio you want to record.
  7. Press the big red Record button in Audacity.


Thanks for the suggestion but yes I have done that. When I do as you suggest I get the message - : “Error while opening sound device. Please check input setting and the project sample rate”.

Are there any windows drivers that well him record using the bose speakers? Thanks, Woodie

Windows WASAPI should in theory be able to record from a USB playback device.

Try 44100 Hz project rate bottom left of Audacity and ensure Recording Channels in Device Toolbar is set to “2 (stereo)”. Right-click over the speaker icon by the system clock, then choose “Playback Devices”. Right-click over the Bose then choose “Properties”. Then click the “Advanced” tab and set the “Default Format” to 16-bit, 44100 Hz. Below “Default Format” there are two boxes for “Exclusive Mode”. Try it with those two boxes unchecked, and try it with the boxes checked if unchecked still shows the error. Restart Audacity after each change in Windows.

Have you looked in the manual for the speakers? USB speakers rarely provide a recording device that allow you to record them.

If you want a free (donationware) alternative to Total Recorder or Virtual Audio Cable you could try . This may provide a virtual device that has the signal from the Bose and which therefore you could record from.

Naturally we assume you have obtained permission from the copyright holders of the material you want to record. If the material is online videos you can often download the videos (look online for how to do that). You can then install FFmpeg , drag the video into Audacity and Audacity will extract the audio for you.


Thanks – I will give it a try. My wife and I have a music venue called the Pauls Valley Opry. We video some of the songs and post them on Youtube and we make audio files on some of the songs too. That’s why I need to be able to make audio files from the pc. Thanks, Woodie

“I ain’t got time for one more round.
Give me a six pack to go.”

Cool. Did you ever try to get a house sound feed from Lava Lounge rather than trying to do it with the little microphone on the camera? It looks like you’re standing front-row center, but it sounds like you’re in the back of the hall.

Anyway, why don’t you get a sound feed from Mr. McGuffin or get the tracks directly from him? Getting them from Self Recording can be a real problem. Sometimes it doesn’t sound very good, and as you’re finding, it doesn’t work with all systems and pathways. It’s not a guaranteed computer service.