Help recording mic and computer sounds with Audacity 2.0.5

I am using a desktop with Windows 7 and have Audacity version 2.0.5 and I am trying to figure out how to record both the sound that I hear and the sound that I make. I would also like to be able to play sounds to have other people hear clearly if I were talking to them on Skype or hosting a Google Hangout.

I am unable to find out the sound card that I have, my computer just lists it as AMD, but I do know that I have a line in and a line out as well as a mic, left speaker, right speaker, and sub woffer jacks on the back as well as a mic and head phone jack on the front.

I am almost positive that I have this set up working in the past while trying to help out a friend, but I am unable to get it working again. I have also messing around with stereo mix but that either won’t record the sound the computer is making in audacity or won’t record any sound, computer or my mic. I am open to using new programs as well as buying a USB sound card or a mixer if I need to, however I am not sure how they work nor have I read up enough on them to make a good choice that won’t break the bank.

Thanks for the help,

The Ghostly Glowing Holy Grail of Podcasting.

I’m not sure where to go with this. Usually, we can hand you a laundry list of ‘do this’ and ‘buy that’, and even if the list is completely out of the question, we can demonstrate that the process can be made to work. This is one task that doesn’t lend itself to that kind of simplicity.

It’s entirely possible you got one to work. People have. This guy for example, just plugged everything up, turned it on and started cranking out podcasts. Two directions, live conversations, bi-directional music, etc. etc. He can’t explain what’s magic about his setup, but most people can’t get similar ones to work.

I got close once with two computers and a mixer.

Skype Processes and Management on one, Music Playback and Audacity Recording on the other. Even that was missing one of the directions of music.

“Koz, if you’re playing music, I can’t hear it.”


There is another affliction associated with this process. Once somebody gets one to work, they vanish and we never see them again.

You might look through his forum postings and see if anything pops out at you.

Also by now, somebody may have a Podcasting Package that takes care of all this in one swoop.
There was another podcast that did multiple microphones and music and did it very well, but they won’t get back to you how they did it. I need to look that one up. The link isn’t on this machine.

Here’s Chase’s Podcast.


Another piece. Voicemeeter virtual mixer software.

See if that helps.
As we go.


Another Piece:
The Morning Stream.

They make mistakes, but they make normal production mistakes (wait, I thought it was your turn to push the button), generally not “I can’t get the computer to work” mistakes.


I found the sound test I did with those two computers and mixer. Note that even though I mucked up the music routing, Denise sounds like she’s sitting right next to me, not 2500 miles away at the end of a Skype call. The faster the connections you have and the less work you make Skype do, the better.

I was wearing a headset. Headphones and boom microphone in front of my lips. I think Denise was just talking in the general direction of her MacBook Air.

So you can see we got painfully close. Had she been able to hear the music, we would have had a complete audio production setup, and the formula how to produce another one.


If that means during a Skype or Hangouts session, Audacity can’t do that easily or well. For Skype use Pamela, or indeed VoiceMeeter.

You can do it (in theory) if you send the mic input to your sound card output then set the Skype microphone choice to “Stereo mix” (or whatever your sound card’s input is called that records computer playback). Then the computer output will contain the mic and the songs you are playing.

To send the mic input to the sound card’s output, right-click over the speaker icon by the system clock, then choose “Recording Devices”. Right-click over the mic then choose “Properties”. Then click the “Listen” tab, enable “listen to this device” and choose the sound card you want to play to.

To see if you have stereo mix, follow:
Missing features - Audacity Support.


Before you get all excited, Stereo Mix contains all the sounds playing on the computer… including the incoming voice from the far end. That means without a lot of tricks, the far voice is going to go back to them after the delays of two pathways and one computer. That’s one of the things I was trying to avoid with the mixer.

“Can you get rid of that echo? It’s really annoying.”


Perfectly true in theory, though the Skype forums seem to recommend that “solution” and some of the comments seem to imply it can work satisfactorily. If so, it must be because of Skype’s aggressive management of sound - somehow it discards the echoes.

A virtual or physical cable to plug only the song into the mic input would seem to be a much better theoretical solution.


A virtual or physical cable to plug only the song into the mic input would seem to be a much better theoretical solution.

No, not really. Then the far end will not be able to hear you speak and they will not be able to hear guests.

The broadcasting people have solved this for decades with Mix-Minus. The field operator (Skype) listens to the Show Mix, Minus their own portion of the show. When I did it they had a large matrix switch panel and you spent the first half-hour with a clipboard coordinating where everybody was and which sound went where. I assume it’s a screen somewhere now. On large shows, two people were assigned sound at once to keep up with changes.

“Control F. Microwave got reassigned. Miklaszewski is now on NEMO4.”

That’s what I was doing with the mixer. The Skype transmission was (intended) to be The Whole Show minus Denise’s voice. You need a mixer big enough to have an independent FX bus. That’s why that picture seems to be a pile of cross-wiring. Because it was. Depending on Skype echo cancellation is one of the things that causes Skype to sound like Skype. Denise didn’t sound like a bubbly Skype connection did she?

Still a mystery why the LA music didn’t go to New Jersey. Maybe it just didn’t want to.


Better wording: I meant, for a two-party call, mix the song into the mic feed without mixing the other party in (obviously, not just plug a music source into one input instead of plugging in a mic).


And that’s precisely what I was doing. The mixer Show was going to the Mac on the left Stereo Line-In and recorded perfectly in Audacity. Both of these Macs have high-level stereo connections, both directions (no Mic-In, however).

The mixer has an Effects Send, which is an independent output connection normally used for a hardware Echo Maker or Reverb Generator as an example. Instead, I had that plugged into the Stereo Line-In of the right-hand “Skype” Mac. The Skype service had been set to pay attention to the Stereo Line-In (as far as I know).

Each mixer channel has the ability, on a coloured knob, to send its contents to the Effects Send connection. I turned all the knobs up except the channel that contained Denise’s voice. Mix-Minus.

Now that I carefully write that down, it’s possible that Skype ignored my desire and was instead accepting the laptop built-in microphone to go to New Jersey. That would account for the result. I was wearing large headphones and had a high quality head-boom microphone so everything was isolated and my voice and the street traffic would have been the only thing she heard. I never checked the activity of the built-in microphone.

You will excuse me while I have a sunrise moment.


I have been looking for some information regarding the ability to record the microphone sound along with the sound from the speakers at the same time.
I am now able to do just that, having tested it in one form so far.
Currently, I have recorded my microphone sound while recording sound from a youtube video playing in the background.
My ultimate goal is to record my google voice conversations using my laptop.

Things to note: I am using a USB headset with mic, Logitec G35, Audacity 2.0.6, and Windows 7.

Why am I posting this? I have been searching google for a while and have not found full information to get this done. I have found part here, opinion there, negative troll response included as well, etc. I’m hoping that placing this information here can help shorten other people searching for the same / similar information.


  1. Right click speaker icon on lower right of your screen.
  2. Select “Recording Devices”.
  3. Right click the microphone being used and select the “Properties” option.
  4. In the new window, select the “Listen” tab.
  5. Place a check mark in the “Listen to this device” check box.
  6. Select “Apply”, and exit all pop-ups.
  7. In Audacity, go to the “Audacity Device Toolbar”.
  8. In the “Audio Host” select “Windows WASAPI” (*NOTE: You may need to select another Audio Host to get the below step.)
  9. In the “Recording Device” drop down, speakers should now be available as the sound source. Select your headset.

Whenever you record with Audacity, since you have set your speakers to play your microphone audio as well, you will record both sound sources. I have attached an image as well for the above process.

(I am aware of the legal requirements for recording conversations within the U.S.)
Audacity - Two Source Record.png

Thanks for posting. Yes that is a known method for Vista and later. You accept with that method that the mic will be recorded a little late.

The better method (if you had a headset that connected to the built-in sound device) would be to go to the playback section, right-click over the audio out device > Properties > Levels, then see if you can unmute the mic. You can do similar on Windows XP. That way you get no latency or CPU processing. However very few modern entry level computers have the ability to directly unmute the mic input.