is it possible to record both desktop app AND a voice simultaneously?

Hi all!

I’ve just started using Audacity with a single goal (thus far) - record a conversation in desktop WhatsApp (I will need to STT/transcribe it later)

I’ve started with this:

No luck! Then I’ve used both approaches from here:

Approach 1 (Host = WASAPI; Recording = loopback device) only records the Desktop app, not my voice

Approach 2 (Host = MME; Recording = Stereo Mix) only records my voice, but nothing from the Desktop (even though in all cases I could hear the other party in my headphones loud and clear)

Is it at all possible to achieve with Windows 10 and Audacity?

I am using Windows 10 22H2 (build 19045) and Audacity x64 3.2.3.

Thanks in advance!

I think you need a virtual-mixer, e.g … VB-Audio VoiceMeeter Banana

Usually that requires special software. By default, Window only allows recording from one source at a time and Audacity doesn’t have a built-in way of getting-around that limitation.

Sometimes recording is supplied with the app or built-into the app… i.e. I’m pretty sure you can record a complete Zoom session with a Zoom recording feature and from what I understand recording was added to Skype a few years ago.

Or you can set-up a separate hardware mixer and recorder.

MAYBE this will work… I haven’t tried this or completely thought it through but Windows CAN mix multiple sources for the soundcard output and WASAPI loopback can capture/record everything coming out of the soundcard…

Windows has an option for [u]Listen To This Device[/u]. You can send your microphone signal to your headphones and with loopback you can record everything you’re hearing in your headphones. There will be latency (a delay) and if the delay is more than a few milliseconds it may drive you crazy and make it difficult to talk…

Since recording on-line conversations is insanely popular and insanely hard to do by yourself, Skype, Zoom, and I’m sure multiple other services will record both sides for you. Last check, Zoom will even supply individual files for the participants although I haven’t tried it.

I did a good quality recording at home, but I did it with two different computers and a sound mixer.

One Audacity computer and one Skype. The Skype computer doesn’t know anything about the other equipment. It thinks it’s just doing a simple conversation. That’s the trick. The services are absolutely determined to take over the sound system in your machine and it’s really rough to talk them out of it.

Denise and I are three time zones apart.

Another trickier way to record both sides is set your phone in the middle of the table recording its built-in microphone and then conduct the interview in “Hand’s-Free” mode. This works best if you have an acoustically dead room.

That’s how I shot this interview in a restaurant. No fancy microphones or mixers. Obviously, the restaurant can’t have background music.


Trying to do this in easy, convenient software is difficult because you need to get your machine to host two programs with exact opposite goals.

Do post back if you found a good way to do it.

Since you are just recording for later transcription, it doesn’t have to be theatrically perfect. The hand’s-free thing and phone on the table might be the most reliable and easy.

If you need to do actual theatrical production later, then you’re into getting the service to record it for you.

Trick, for the best results, each participant should be on headphones. If they are, that means the service doesn’t have to juggle directional management which can create gating, distortions, and echoes.


Thanks for all the answers!! So far I love the “mic + hands-free mode” recipe the best; also option with Soundmeeter looks promising…