help with delay in earphones...please

When I record my voice for a podcast in my earphones it has a slight delay that DRIVES ME CRAZY!..seriously it really throws me off. Any way to fix this…ANY help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Chris

after reading alot of these posts it is clear i need to give more info… I am using windows 2000 on an older PC audacity 1.3 and I have the play software through ticked which is obviously causing the delay but without that ticked I can’t hear myself in my earphones while recording Please help me find the direction I needc to go here thanks again Chris

Switch OFF the “play software through” - as you have worked out, that is what is causing the problem.
In order to hear yourself, look in the “Windows Mixer” and make sure that in the playback section “Microphone” is not muted. If you can’t see a slider in the playback section, you may need to go into the advanced preferences to make it show up.

thanks steve…I did everything you said and still nothing in my ears when I talk. The microphone was muted and I un-ticked it and turned it up but still nothing.

allright…thanks again I think I have it figured out…not working like I want…but at least figured out. Would I be happier with a cheap mixer? I am producing a podcast in the tradition of talk radio. A little bit of sound effects and such but mostly just talk…any suggestions on how to produce a more professional product? thanks Chris

If fidelity is not a huge issue, then a cheap Radio Shack mixer might be the way to go. Otherwise you can get decent used Shure mic mixers on eBay for around $20. Just make sure it either has a headphone jack, or split the output and feed both the PC and your stereo receiver, the plug the headphones into that.
If you have a decent cassette deck, you can use that as a mic preamp with headphone output. Connect the line output to the PC. Put it record mode, but paused. Then use the record level control to set the gain on the mic. For what its worth, you could record to cassette too so if the PC crashes during a recording, you have the tape as a backup.

There are two sections in the Windows Mixer - a Playback Mixer and a Record Mixer. To be able to record the microphone it must be selected (or “stereo mix”) in the record section, and the slider turned up to a suitable level for recording, AND the microphone needs to be unmuted and the slider turned up in the Playback section as well (so that you can hear it). Unfortunately not all sound cards support this, which is what Audacity includes the “Software Playthrough” option (which suffers from an unavoidable but never the less irritating delay).

Having said that, there are many benefits to using a little mixer, including the fact that you can use a better microphone, mix in music live while record, use two microphones for interviews, have better control over input levels, and loads more. If you want to go for a new mixer, Behringer do some very cheap ones with excellent sound quality and features at the price.