Microphone Recording Level Slider NOT moving! (Mac Sonoma 14.3/ Audacity 3.4.2)

I don’t know why but my slider bar for recording is pinned to 100% and won’t move. I currently use a Shure MV7X mic with Scarlet 2i2 interface. Any idea how to unlock this?

I’m a Windows guy but I’m pretty sure Mac is the same… You can’t adjust the volume from a digital input. But you can Amplify (or attenuate) after recording.

With a USB interface, the analog-to-digital converter is inside the interface and it’s important to adjust the analog level before it’s digitized, especially before you clip (distort) the analog-to-digital converter.

Your Fosusrite has gain control knobs and LEDs to indicate the level.

There is a “quirk” when you’re only using one input on a “stereo” interface. If you record in stereo, of course you’ll get a silent channel. You can delete it after recording and a mono file will play through both speakers.

Or you can record in mono where both inputs are combined. The signals will be cut in half (-6dB) digitally so they won’t go over 0dB when combined. If you are only using one input, clipping will happen at -6dB but you can amplify after recording.

In either case, you CAN trust the meters or LEDs on your interface because it’s the analog-to-digital converter in the interface that clips.

That is a dynamic mic and like most dynamic mics it has low output compared to a studio condenser mic. Most condensers are about 20dB (10X) “hotter”. And most audio interfaces are optimized for condenser mics. A lot of people use a Cloudlifter with a dynamic or ribbon mic, for regular voice and a regular interface.

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Thank you for the advice Doug. I am a newbie and it’s all information overload. I am currently using this to record a podcast. Would I be better off using my other mic that I have had in the past for voiceovers? It’s an Audio-Technica AT2035. Cardioid Capacitor Mic. It has to switches on the back of it that I have no clue what to do. It shows PAD (with a switch for -10dB and 0dB and the other switch says LOW CUT (it shows a straight line on one side and the other side has a line that starts low and rises to horizontal across) Would this be better for my podcast? I don’t have the $150 for the cloud device you sent a link for.

Use whichever one works best. :wink: The condenser (capacitor) mic will have more output, and my guess is that it will work better. The AT is a “side address” mic. You talk-into the front side, not the end like the Shure. They are both cardioid (directional) mics.

It’s an attenuator in case you are recording something loud like a snare drum or amplified electric guitar. Set it to 0dB (no attenuation) for voice.

Low cut kills the deep bass (generally below voice frequencies). Turn it ON (sloped) and it will help to remove low-frequency room noise.

Condenser mics need power (dynamic mics don’t) so make sure to turn-on 48V phantom power on the interface.

P.S.
digital recording levels are not critical as long as you don’t “try” to go over 0dB and clip . You can turn-down the knob while recording and then Amplify later.

Sometimes weak analog or acoustic levels can be a problem, or an indication of a problem, but it doesn’t hurt anything to turn-down the knob.

You are my Obi-Wan for all of this! I can’t thank you enough. You ever hear of RiversideFM? I don’t have much money so I have been trying different ways to record and upload. I haven’t pulled the trigger yet until I got my mic situation figured out. They Shure Mic records very low for some reason on Riverside and I couldn’t figure out whether to switch or not. I’d love any direction you could offer with what platform to upload podcast to? Using RiversideFM direct vs. Audacity. Or if I keep my Shure mic, the best way to set it up to get better quality vs the AT2035. Sorry for the word diarrhea but finding anyone to ask questions in real time has been a challenge.

Also any advice on how to set up the AT mic with my boom arm since it’s shaped differently than the Shure Mic. Oh and any How to podcast for beginners tutorials would be appreciated as well. I have been following a class I found on Udemy that has everything set up and posted to Spotify for Podcasters but it’s been a challenge.

I also realized that I have been using Phantom Power with my Shure Mic on my Scarlett 2i2 interface. Should I be turning that off?

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