Question About Behringer USB Podcast Kit

I got this for X-Mas from my lovely wife. My question is in Audacity it does not show up for the source for recording in Audacity. The box for the recording source is grayed out. I am using a Toshiba Qosmio Laptop with Windows XP Media Center Edition and have the UCA200 USB Controller that came with the kit. I hooked it up according to the user’s manual and when I record my Level for the mic and the Main Mix Level are set all the way up. Also, I have to set the trim up pretty high to get it to work and with the trim setup that high it sounds crappy. The CD/Tape To Phones Button is pushed down and the CD/Tape To Mix Button is Up. Any suggestions on how to get it to show the correct recording source through Audacity and how to setup the USB Podcast Kit to get the best sound? If anyone knows of any free video tutorials or websites explaining more on how and what all the mixer buttons do would also be appreciated.

Thanks
Fred G.

Thanks . I was looking for a real answer and not some idiot with their spam. If anyone else can help it would be appreciated.

Fred G.

Spam deleted.

The UCA200 USB has fixed gain, so the recording level is entirely dependent on the signal level that you put into it. For example, put a signal at -6dB into the UCA202 and the signal recorded by Audacity should be around -6dB.

What model is the mixer in your Podcast kit?

The model I have is the XENYX 502 Mixer and the Ultravoice XM8500 Mic with the UCA200 USB Controller. Is this a good mic or would you suggest something else? Also, I appreciate your help and any advice you can give me for getting the best sound recording levels with this unit. Thanks for deleting the spam.

Thanks

Fred G.

I wouldn’t say the microphone was particularly good for recording, but it depends on what you are recording - perhaps ok for rapping, but likely to sound a bit muffled compared to other microphones for speech. I believe that Behringer do a Podcast kit that includes a large diaphragm studio condenser microphone, which have had pretty good reviews.

Most condenser microphones require “phantom power”, which I believe is available on all Xenyx desks, but you should check that before buying a condenser microphone. There are also a couple of large diaphragm condenser microphoes made by Samson that are popular with Podcasters.

It is definitely worth using a “pop filter”. This is simply a couple of layers of thin fabric or other gauze, held in a frame that is placed between your mouth and the microphone. (You can make one from a nylon sticking and a wire coat hanger). Using a pop shield will mean that you can get close to the microphone without recording wind blast from your breath on the microphone (important when using sensitive condenser mics).

You should always have the “trim” adjustment for the microphone input turned fully down before you connect or disconnect a microphone, also before you switch phantom power on or off. (anti-clockwise to turn down). Also, do not connect or disconnect a microphone while the phantom power is switche on - connect the microphone first, then switch on the phantom power. (Phantom power is NOT required for dynamic microphones such as the Ultravoice XM8500, and should not be switched on).

After connecting the microphone, turn up the level adjuster to 0 and then adjust the trim adjuster so that the meters on the mixer peak up to 0dB. With a studio condenser microphone you will probably not need to turn the gain up as high as you do with your dynamic microphone. The dynamic microphone that you are using now is really designed for holding right up to the mouth for (loud) on stage performance rather than for recording, and is therefore not very sensitive.

You should be able to connect the UCA 202 to either the main outputs of the desk, or the recording outputs (I think the output is identical from either, just different connectors).

When you have it all connected up to Audacity, adjust the microphone level, or the main level to achieve a good recording level (over -12dB, but never reaching 0dB on the recording meter).

Check out the Audacity Tips and Tutorials (links at top of this page) for more hints and advice about recording.

BTW, I didn’t delete the spam, one of the other moderators beat me to it :wink:

Thanks Steve,
Great information and was very helpful. A couple more questions for ya if you do not mind. When I am in Audacity it does not show my recording source, any ideas why? Also, when I goto my control panel to set the Recording Source it will show the Behringer USB and the volume and advanced buttons are grayed out. I have tried everything I can think of and still cannot get it figured out. I have a Toshiba Qosmio G-35 Laptop and it has SigmaTel Audio. Do you know how to fix this to get those buttons ungrayed? Thanks for your help it is greatly appreciated.

Have A Great Recording Day and Always Have Fun Recording

Fred G.

I’m not sure where are you looking - but the question below may answer this question.

The input level of USB devices can not be controlled by Windows.

Some USB devices provide a taskbar utility for adjusting the input, but this is essentially the same as using the Amplify effect in Audacity and most USB devices do not have this.

Some USB devices have an input level control on the device itself, but others have fixed input gain. I think that the UCA 202 has fixed input gain, so to change the recording level you simply adjust the output from your mixer.