No input from Plexgear Sondsaver Casette player

Windows 10
Audacity 2.1.0

I have a Plexgear Soundsaver USB Casette player, to digitize all my old casette tapes on my computer. Unfortunately I cannot hear the sound in my computer speakers or record anything in Audacity when I play the tapes and choose the “Line in” option on the player when connected via USB. I can hear sound in the casette player when choosing “Casette” and I can hear other sounds on my computer. I have followed the instructions and made the following settings in Audacity:

Interface: MME
Playback: Speakers
Recording: USB PnP Audio

I have also enabled sound to be heard at the same time as recording.

How can I get any input from the casette player? The only setting I could not make was to choose “2 channel 16-bit 44100 Hz” for the recording device settings in Windows. I can only choose 48000 Hz. But this is perhaps not important? I am also wondering if the Levels need to be set on 3-8 for the microphone as it says in the instructions? This is very low. I have increased the recording volume on the casette player.

Thank you in advance!

The current version of Audacity is 2.3.2 and is available via the Audacity website: Audacity ® | Download for Windows

I suspect you are reading the wrong instructions. If these are the instructions from the manufacturer of the Plexgear Soundsaver USB Casette player, they are probably not reliable.

That doesn’t make sense. I presume you did not mean increasing the recording on the cassette player, but changing the recording level for the cassette player (?)
Where did you change that level?
Did changing the recording level make any difference?

It seems that you have two problems: 1) Getting sound from the cassette into Audacity. 2) Getting the sound back out from Audacity.
The second problem is likely to be easy, but we need to deal with the first problem first, so for now, don’t worry about hearing the cassette, we can work with looking at the waveform and meters. We’ll get back to the second problem when we’ve fixed the first problem.

Yes, these were the instructions that came with the player.

I meant there was no difference increasing the recording level on the casette player. I also tried changing the level of the input from the microphone in Windows. According to the instructions, it should be set to somewhere between 3 and 8. No difference here either. So it seems there is no signal whatsoever from the casette player, even though I can choose it as input in Windows and in Audacity.

I can try to download the latest version of Audacity, but I am not sure it will solve my problem. Perhaps there is something wrong with the USB?

This one?

I don’t understand. How exactly are you “increasing the recording level on the cassette player?”

It is this one: Plexgear Soundsaver MC USB Cassette Recorder:

There is a gauge(?) on the casette player where it says “Rec Level”. This is used to adjust the volume of the recording level of the output to the computer.

Thanks. I found the English manual here: Kassettband - Digitalisera ljud & bild |

The “Record level” knob on the front of the cassette player is for when you are recording from the “Line in” to cassette (no computer involved, just an ordinary cassette recorder).
The knob on the back is the volume control.

When you play a cassette and have the volume (on the back) turned up, you should be able to hear the cassette through its built in speaker. Does that work?

Aha, so I should not have it set on “Line in” when recording to the computer? In any case, I can hear the sound in the built in speakers and adjust the volume on the casette player (at the knob on the back), no problem there. But adjusting the volume at the back of the casette player does not influence the input in the computer. It does not show any levels at all.

If you go through the windows control panels and enable [u]listen to this device[/u] you should be able to hear the cassette player through your computer speakers without Audacity (or any other application) running.

If that doesn’t work, there is something wrong with the cassette player or the drivers. (You shouldn’t have to install drivers because these things normally use the Microsoft-supplied drivers, but sometimes the drivers can get “messed up”.)

If that does work, you should be able to record the audio data with Audacity.

when I play the tapes and choose the “Line in” option on the player when connected via USB.

…Aha, so I should not have it set on “Line in” when recording to the computer?

Right. I think that switch is so you can plug something else (like a CD/DVD player) into the cassette player and listen-to or record /digitize that other analog source.

I am also wondering if the Levels need to be set on 3-8 for the microphone

That’s kind-of meaningless but it might be a starting-point. You should adjust for “good meter readings” which will depend on the “loudness” of the particular cassette.


Now connect the cassette player to the computer with your USB lead. Ensure that the lead is connected securely at both ends.

Find the recording device in the Windows Sounds control panel (as shown below):

To the right of the listed device, there is a recording level meter. Play a cassette, and adjust the recording level so that the meter jumps up and down in response to the sound of the cassette.

I still cannot hear the sound from the casette player in my computer speakers, even though I enabled “listen to this device”. Maybe there is a problem with the driver. As I said before, I cannot choose another sampling rate for standard format (in Advanced properties for the USB PnP Audio Device).

The meter does not show any respons at all, regardless of the recording level. I have also checked the USB and connected it to another port, just in case. So it seems there is something wrong with the drivers. I will try to find another driver online.

Thank you for your help!

If there’s no response in the meter in the Windows Sound control panel, then Windows is not receiving audio from the device. If Windows does not receive audio from the device, then there’s no way that Audacity, or any other audio application, will be able to get audio from the device, because the audio comes via Windows.

If possible, try the device on another computer and see if there is any response in the Windows Sound control panel. If there isn’t, then the cassette player or USB lead are probably faulty, in which case, try a different USB lead.

Now I know what was wrong! I had “Stereo Mix” inactivated, because I was not using this. But apparently it had to be activated in order to hear anything from the casette player.