level too low and distorted

I’ve been trying to record via Audacity v2.1.3 with MacOS Mojave 10.14.3 via USB from a Jensen turntable (with its own preamp) with USB out but I get too low a level and it’s distorted. If I increase the level, I increase the distortion.

I’ve successfully used my current setup for other USB recording (for instance, using Elgato video capture from an old cassette player) without a problem.

(As recommended in this forum I did set Privacy setting in System Preferences to allow use of the microphone for Audacity.)

I’m flummoxed. What am I doing wrong?

Which version of Audacity?

Have you selected the USB turntable as the recording source in the device toolbar?

Is the turntable connected to the computer only by the USB cable?