Loving Audacity, this is such a great tool. We had been using Audacity with a Blue Snowball mic for podcasting but we just upgraded our equipment to a pair of Rode PSA1 USB Podcaster mics for our two hosts. Only problem - we purchased the gear before realizing Audacity can’t accept more than 1 USB mic.
Does anyone have any suggestions on how we can use Audacity to record two tracks from these 2 USB mics?
Thanks Gale! The aggregate function works, at least as an interim solution. Bummer is we have one booming voice speaker and one soft voice speaker so without separate tracks, looks like we’re not going to be able to do the balancing we need?
Is there a solution out there, even with an external audio interface device, that would enable USB plug in for separate track recordings in Audacity?
If you set Audacity to record in stereo in Device Toolbar do you get one mic in left and one in right? If so you can use the Track Drop-Down Menu to Split Stereo Track then use the -…+ gain sliders on the track control panels.
If you recorded a mono track or if stereo left and right have the same content, try Effect > Compressor to even out the dynamic range.
However you should fix unintentional volume differences before recording, ideally. Can the loud voice move farther from the mic? Is the aggregation causing a volume disparity?
There is no solution using a mixer or interface with left/right inputs, given you chose USB mics. Mixers and interfaces only accept mics with XLR or TRS connections.
You hit the “Microphone Wall.” Super convenient, all-in-one USB microphones don’t scale well and they don’t lend themselves to production management. It gets worse. Even if you do manage to smash two or more USB microphones into one show, If you talk long enough, they’ll start to drift apart in lip sync and since everything is in one sound file, there isn’t a thing you can do about it. If you try that Mac trick, one of the decisions you have to make is which microphone you want to be the “Sync Master.” You can’t have both.
There are extraordinary ways out of this. Two computers or recording devices will work just fine. Two different sound files will let you manage volume and timing as you wish. Most people use a small analog mixing desk with multiple microphones and a few people are experimenting with multiple channel recorders in one package. I have no hands-on with those — they’re too new (to me) — but there’s no reason it wouldn’t work.
Ha, that about sums it up. We spoke with the dealer we purchased the Podcasters from yesterday and they admitted to not really knowing much about this new item from Rode; other than that it was targeted at solitary podcasters looking for flexibility and ease of use. Great news is they’re going to swap out our Podcasters for Rode Procaster mics and we’ll be able to pick up one of their audio interfaces as well to get everything set to more of an industry standard. Whew!
If the aggregation was smart enough to put each mic in separate channels
What are the chances the show’s guests are seated in individual soundproof rooms? If they’re not, then you will get cross-performer leakage which means your track timing repair has to be exact and perfect to avoid comb filter audio effects.
“Why do my guests sound like they’re talking into a wine glass?”
I got Mavericks to record two different USB sound devices split left and right. Attached is the Audio MIDI Setup panel and a test clip. The older of the two USB adapters is the C-Media and the younger of the two (as far as can tell) is USB PnP. From the outside they’re very similar.
True but you would have the same issue if using two computers. And individual soundproof rooms would sound very dry.
Actually I don’t think the results are bad considering you are using cheapo telephone mics and cheapo Startech adaptors. The USB whine is fairly prominent, but that noise isn’t worse because of aggregation, is it?
Zooming in, the right channel mic was consistently about 22 ms late. So I am not sure why it started to sound desynced in the last 15 seconds, but the WAV file after synchronising sounds quite good to me. Of course you would have to make a longer test to see if the speed drift required a speed change to correct it.
You have said previously that aggregating two UCA 202’s and recording from the aggegated device produced excellent four mono channels. Do you choose four channels to record from in Device Toolbar in that case?
You have said previously that aggregating two UCA 202’s and recording from the aggegated device produced excellent four mono channels.
Not with my lips I didn’t. This test was my first experience with multi-channel aggregation. And even at that, I had unexpected acoustic problems with the shoot on top of the other more obvious problems. Two “identical” microphones had different acoustic signatures — and it seemed to follow the microphone. I was expecting problems, but not that one.
Twilight Zone moment.
And yes, on a very, very quick test, the beginning of the clip was as far off time as the end. So fixable without extraordinary means. If you mix them to mono, I bet the effect is not so benign.