improving quality of recording

Hi there
i have recently purchased a USB turntable (an ION) to digitize all my vinyl and the Audacity software came with the turntable.
i’m able to record to my PC and convert the files to itunes no problem. some of the recording are fine, good quality, no problem, but others are crap.
Distortion, hiss and crackling are effecting the quality. the turntable is brand new and the records are decent quality and cleaned before use
i’ve been messing with the SW but i’ve no idea what i doing really! i’ve tried the tutorials but they dont (seem) address my issue and to be honest are a bit beyond my novice ability.
what i need is an idiots guide for - HOW TO MAKE YOUR RECORDINGS SOUND BETTER - try this, that and the other
if someone could advise or point me in the right direction it’d be appreciated


some of the recording are fine, good quality, no problem, but others are crap.

Does it happen to be the 78s that are crap? 78s take a different needle than 33 and 45. If you use a 33 needle on a 78 record, it tracks down on the bottom of the groove where the dirt and cat hairs are. That and the fidelity will be terrible because the needle isn’t positioned where the music is.

It could be something else, but that’s the most common problem affecting vinyl quality and noise.

There is no Make Do. You have to have a 78 needle. If you don’t, you can try the Audacity vinyl rescue tools. They give mediocre to OK results and it could take days. Each record is slightly different.


The second listing is for a 78 rpm ION stylus.

I’m still guessing. I don’t even know that the ION has a 78 speed. We need the model number to tell.


Have a look at these links:,_LPs_or_minidiscs_to_CD

From the second link that Steve provided there is a particular sub-tutorial which should help you:

My favoured tool for click and pop removal is Brian Davies’s excellent ClickRepair - it costs a little but works like magic. See this stickty thread:

Do make sure that your stylus is clean and dirt free and that your records are as clean as possible before playing them. A static-free environment is good too - which is where living in the “moist” climes of Manchester helps. :slight_smile:


They are 33’s and ive given the records a good clean too

no its just 33/45

steve - thanks i’ll givethem a try

cheers i’ll have a look

Nobody is giving the ION turntables any awards for quality, just to throw mud in the game. Their tracking and stylus accuracy is pretty awful and there’s at least one packed in the garage when it turned out that revamping an existing high quality turntable worked out much better.

Just to give you an idea of the quality issue, you’re going to keep and cherish the ION and give it to your son, right? No, you’re probably going to put it in the trash along with the last vinyl album. It’s throw-away.