Hello. I am using an Audio-technica condenser mic in a Tascam US-600 audio/midi interface, which is connected to my (Windows 8) computer. I am trying to record using Audacity. First of all, it hardly records any sound at all…very little “wave”. Second of all, it records the first time I turn it on, then stops working altogether. The third problem is that when I DO manage to record something, it is in mono, and I cannot figure out how to turn the mono track into a stereo track. i have searched for tutorials on this problem and have not found anything as yet. Thanks for any advice you can give.
First of all, it hardly records any sound at all…very little “wave”.
Forget Audacity for a minute. Can you get the green signal lights on the Tascam to work and can you overload it (red lights) if you want to — as a test. If you can’t get either one, then you are recording too quiet (or there may be something broken). The Tascam is not a formal sound mixer; it only has 1/3 of the microphone controls available on a real mixer. If you are trying to record your quiet, expressive guitar solo from across the room, then I believe you that you can’t get good sound levels.
Second of all, it records the first time I turn it on, then stops working altogether.
That’s probably a Windows setting. If you are trying to record music, then Windows Enhanced Services should not be turned on.
The third problem is that when I DO manage to record something, it is in mono…
Probably left-only on a stereo show, not precisely mono. If you plug your microphone into Tascam Channel 2, then the show will appear on the right. That’s how it works. It’s a straight digital interface, not a mixer. You can’t mix left-to-right and you can’t mix between microphones.
If your goal is to produce overdubbing/sound-on-sound then this may be an uphill battle. There was another poster trying to do this and I don’t know what we solved their problem, either.
You can try to change the Windows Control Panels to change the interface into “real” mono or see if you can change the Audacity Device drop-down just above the blue waves into mono and see if it still works.
There may be Tascam software or settings that can help here, too.
Audacity is doing what it’s supposed to do. It’s a slave to whatever the computer is doing. While in Windows Control Panels, you should see small bouncing sound meters. Make sure those are good level and if there is a level control, it’s turned up.
Audacity will not apply filters or effects while recording.
A couple more questions -
Audio-technica condenser mic…
What microphone are you using? “Studio Condensers” such as the AT2020 require 48V phantom power. If you are using a mic that requires phantom power, make sure phantom power is switched-on (rear panel of the US-600). Most hand-held condensers run off a small internal battery, or optionally off a battery or phantom power. (Dynamic mics don’t need power.)
Have you tried plugging-in something other than the mic, such as the line-level audio from a CD or DVD player?
Do you hear anything when you plug headphones into the TASCAM? (I’m not sure if the headphone jack is monitoring the internal analog signal, or sound coming-back in through from the computer via USB… But if you can hear the mic in the headphones, it proves the mic is working and that the analog part of the TASCAM is working.)
The third problem is that when I DO manage to record something, it is in mono, and I cannot figure out how to turn the mono track into a stereo track.
One microphone is mono. A true-mono recording should play out of both speakers. Or, you mix the mono mic track into the left, right, or both channels of an existing stereo track, etc. Or, if you are recording something like a guitar, some people will “double track” (record twice) putting one track on the left and one on the right.
If you have something set-up wrong and you end up with “mono” sound on only the left or only the right channel of a stereo recording, that can easily be fixed in “post production”.
If you have something set-up wrong and you end up with “mono” sound on only the left or only the right channel of a stereo recording
I think that’s normal, not wrong. The USB output of the interface is default stereo and the two microphone connections default to all the way Left and all the way Right.
Yes, you may be able to adjust your way around it, but that default is a serious problem if you wish to do overdubbing. Audacity can’t apply effects and filters in real time.
it records the first time I turn it on,
It would not do that if the phantom power was turned off and the microphone needed it.
Thanks very much for the suggestions. It works! The problem was with the Windows settings in my computer itself. I fiddled around with disabling various microphones as you suggested. The external microphone through the interface still records mono, but at good sound levels, and so I can first split the recorded track to mono, then duplicate the track that has the the sound and turn it into “stereo”. The Tascam was working–all the green signal lights were on. I had been using phantom power for the condenser mic. Hey! I’m relieved, and my frustration levels are low. thanks and “merci beaucoup” from Canada.
i have also this soundcard connected to a pair of KRK rokit 8.
When i turn on the card and the speakers connected to the pc, they play alright but after a while the speakers start to make a strange static noise like “snow” while the music plays on the back. But when i have the guitar connected to the card and play it doesn’t make any noises.
This is a problem from the soundcard or the speakers?
Any help would be appresiated.