Playback inconsistent

Operating System is Windows 10
Audacity version 2.1.3 for Windows 10
Audio-technica AT=LP120 USB turntable. The pre-amp selector switch is on “Line” not “Phono”. The RCA cables from the turntable are connected to Blackweb external powered speakers.
Devices set to:
Other choices include:
Windows Direct Sound
Windows WASAPI
Recording Device=Line (USB Audio Codec)
Other choices include:
Microsoft Sound Mapper – Input
Microphone (Realtek High Def)
Playback Device=Speakers (Realtek High Def)
Other choices include:
Microsoft Sound Mapper Output
Realtec Digital Output (Realtec . . .)
Speakers (USB Audio Codec)
Recording: Software Play through is checked. I am not able to do any editing because cannot hear file on playback.
While recording can hear through both the external speakers and internal PC computers
After recording is stopped cannot hear what was recorded through either source
After saving as .aup file still cannot hear what was recorded through either source
If exported to .mp3 file am able to hear file
To remedy, I have uninstalled and re-installed Audacity, watched a multitude of videos and read the Audacity tutorials. On a rare test it will work but is extremely inconsistent. I note the setting that worked, saved the file and am unsuccessful in hearing the file or in re-recording.
Can you please provide guidance?

Do you see a waveform in Audacity after recording or after re-opening the AUP or MP3 file?

The information you gave shows Audacity playing back through the speakers but sometimes when you plug in a USB audio device (the turntable) Windows tries to play-back through the “new” USB device, and of course you can’t play-back through the turntable. So, double-check that and right-click the Windows speaker/volume icon, select Playback Devices, and make sure your speakers are selected as the default.


The pre-amp selector switch is on “Line” not “Phono”.

That’s correct for your powered speakers, but it has no effect on the USB connection to the computer.


If exported to .mp3 file am able to hear file

If you want MP3s that’s fine, but as you may know MP3 is lossy compression. If you re-open the MP3 for editing it gets decompressed. If you then re-export as MP3 you are going thorough another generation of lossy compression. The “damage” accumulates and can become audible. So if you are making MP3s, do all your editing /processing as WAV or AUP and export to MP3 ONCE as the last step.

Also, AUP projects contain multiple files and sometimes “bad things” happen. So if you’re saving AUPs I recommend that you also export to WAV as a back-up. (I rarely make an AUP. I usually just export to WAV after recording. Then, I can re-open the WAV for further editing if necessary.)

If playing to the USB turntable is the problem, do this. Connect the turntable. It may change to being default playback device.

Go into Windows Sound, Playback tab. Right-click the Speakers, and set that as Default Device. Disconnect the turntable.

Next time when you connect the turntable, the speakers should stay as default playback device.

If Windows Media Player lets you hear the file, but Speakers playback device in Audacity does not, try rebooting the computer.

Also, right-click over the speaker icon by the system clock, then choose “Open Volume Mixer”. Play audio in Audacity and you will see Volume Mixer now has a playback slider for Audacity. Make sure that slider is turned up.


Thank you both for your helpful posts! It seems that the playback issue is resolved!! I didn’t change any of the settings but it may have been the disconnect/reconnect/reboot procedure that made the difference and I will take heed of the suggestions regarding the format used to save and export files.
Once again, thanks so much and hope you have a great day :smiley:

I’m glad playback is working again. I deleted your repeat post. What happens is that your posts don’t appear until a moderator has approved them. This is the case for all new users, to prevent the Forum being overrun by spammers advertising “products and services”.