Fluctuating volume when I play back!

I am trying to record some audio book cassettes. When the cassette is recording it sounds fine. But when I play it back the voice of the reader fluctuates between soft and loud.
Is this software really only any good for music? If so, can you recommend a programme for Spoken word.
Thanks in anticipation (of lots of help)
p.s. Just tried a music cassette and the same thing happens, so obviously nothing to do with the cassettes. Could it be my soundcard?

It’s not Audacity. I recorded all the live vocal tracks for a theatrical short using Audacity and it worked perfectly.

How are you listening to the performance during recording? Where are your headphones plugged in?

Some sound cards have automatic gain control and they try to even out any objectionable volume changes by setting the level control by themselves. Sometimes that works better than other times.

Is there a pattern to the changes? Is the first word of each sentence loud and the rest of the sentence lower?


There doesn’t seem to be any real consistancy to the fluctuations. However, I agree with you, It is not the programme. I believe I need a better soundcard. I have a really good friend who “looks after” my Pc; I’ll get him to sort one out. Hopefully, I will be back soon reporting “all is well”.
Thank you for getting back to me, I appreciate your time.