I cannot record


I was hoping you could help me.

I bought a new computer a month ago and I have downloaded audacity and LAME extension and I cannot record anything.

Computer: Dell XPS 8930
Audacity program 2.1.0
OS: Windows 10

I have made certain that the OS is up to date regarding updates. I have poured over all the self help from Microsoft, and also Audacity with no results. I have checked all the settings and everything looks good.

I know the audacity program is working. I will import an MP3 into the program with no problem and export it with no problem as well.

I really feel that there is something simple that I’m missing. I really do not want to call DEll…yet.

When I am recording, i am using a mic and have it plugged into the correct jack as well.

Can someone help me?

Any and all help is very much appreciated, and extremely welcome.

Thank you!

Make sure you’ve selected the correct [u]Recording Device[/u].

Try both the front & back mic jacks. And if you have the appropriate cable adapters try plugging something into line-in. You can plug-in a CD/DVD player, or the analog-audio from your TV, or the headphone-out from your phone, etc. (Of course, you’ll have to change the selected recording device.)

Are you sure the microphone works? I believe you need a microphone with a 3-conductor (or 2-conductor) TRS (TS) plug. Cell phones use a 4-conductor TRRS combo plug/jack for the microphone and headphones and they are not interchangeable. (The headphones connections are interchangeable but the mic-input is not.)

Try [u]Listen To This Device[/u]. With that enabled, you should be able to hear the microphone without Audacity (or any other application running).

But that may be getting ahead of the game. Audacity doesn’t get its sound from the device. It gets it from Windows. Go into the Windows panels (right-click the speaker icon, lower right) and see if Windows is on top of this. You should be able to make a little sound meter bounce.

After you get that working, then launch Audacity and set the recording devices, etc.

Also see above: all the problems getting a “simple” computer microphone to work. The instant you try to use a combo microphone and headphone to work you’re in the Land of Complicated Connections.

And just to clear up a very common question, no, you probably can’t use a computer microphone and built-in connection to record audiobooks and it’s only marginally acceptable to record a podcast. The connection is there so a business executive can conference-call the home office and be heard most of the time.

Windows generally applies noise and echo corrections to any voice whether you want it or not. So it’s probably a bad idea to promise anyone you’re going to have a production done by the end of the week.


Hello to all,

I have the appropriate settings, and have looked over everything one last time.

Everything is set according to the wiki says.

I still cannot record.

I am at a loss.

Any help is appreciated and very welcome.

In december I plugged my phone in and recorded a call through audacity. Today I went to do it again and it doesn’t work. Everything is good with windows.

Responding here: Call recording stopped working


I have the appropriate settings, and have looked over everything one last time.

We need an answer to that specific question. Can you make the Windows sound meter jump with your microphone? Leave Audacity closed.