Recording breakup

Required Info: Windows 10 / 2.1.3 / .exe

Hi to all:
Oh gosh, so much to learn.
Absolutely overwhelming info.
But I have been reading two Tutorials:
Editing an Audio File
Your First Recording
Getting Started
Also looked through FAQ’s

Here’s what I am trying to do.
I own a cassette tape collection most of which are information tapes of seminars, etc.
I have figured out how to get sound from my portable tape player, which is part of my portable radio, tape player and CD player, into my laptop computer.
I’m using a new laptop which has a combo mic/headphone port.
I have been able to start my cassette tape and begin recording a track.
However, some parts of my sample recording is fine while some parts are choppe.
In other words, when the speakers are talking on the cassette tape the recording in Audacity seems to breakup at parts.
The breaks are about 1 second or so apart.
I’m not sure why this is so?
If I listen just to my cassette tape on my portable player, it sounds fine.
But the track in Audacity is not smooth.

So, I checked into my recording preferences.
There I see:
Audio to Buffer
Latency Correction
I’ve got a feeling these setting have something to do with the problem I’ve reported in this post.

My question:
How do I fix this?

Thank you

I was wondering if we had a pre-baked step-by-step because this is a fairly common request.

The Latency setting under Recording is to adjust overdubbing. When you play or sing many different parts of the same song, this setting makes sure all the voices or instruments lay on top of each other accurately.

I can see one problem immediately. Many headset connections on Windows machines assume you’re going to plug a headset in—a microphone and some form of headphones. It’s almost always a single microphone. It’s a version of this.

Most cassette machines and most entertainment systems are stereo. Left and Right sound and the sound is different. That’s what gives you the realism of a live performance.

Some laptops can switch between different sound systems, most won’t.

I use a simple USB stereo adapter. That’s a Behringer UCA-202 and my stereo sound mixer on the right.

That’s not the only problem. Most laptops have voice processing to suppress echoes and background noises. Most of the time you want to turn that off to keep them from interfering with the show. They particularly hate music.

I may be re-writing stuff that’s already there. See how far you get with the help postings and then post back when you get stuck.


Have a look at the anti-skipping strategies …

e.g. increase the process-priority of Audacity from “normal” to “above normal”…
Temporarily Change CPU priority in Windows (Vista).gif

I did look at the link to the manual: How_can_I_record_without_small_skips_or_duplications.
I am turning off my internet connection temporarily. Hopefully that will help resolve this skipping/choppy issue.
I also am making sure certain options are off as discussed in FAQ (above).
However, I am using Windows 10 Home ed. and when opening the Task Manager, I am unable to control priority as your recorded diagram shows.

I need to see if my changes have improved my recording.
I only have short times when I can continue my learning and testing of things to accomplish my objective with Audacity.
I have also been viewing some YouTube videos time permitting, which I have found so far to be of much help.
Time now to experiment with things. I’ll report back soon.

Hi to all:
Excuse me for being just a bit over frustrated.
But I just do not understand why this is such a hassle to get this program working for my needs.

This morning, I spent the better part of 2 hours and 40 min and counting fiddling around with this program.
While I have been learning a lot along the way, I realize it is going to take time to become more familiar with things.

At first, I applied some of the above suggestions of others who have contributed to this thread.
At first, I was making some progress too.
But some where along the line, I got stuck in the “mud” quickly sinking into the depths of despair, almost ready to … well, let’s skip the rest of this line.

Now, I don’t get it. I was making progress. I actually almost eliminated the chopped recording that I reported at the start of this thread.
I even changed the “Audio to Buffer” from 100 to 200. Which seemed to help somewhat.
I made sure certain previously explain options were unchecked.
I even shut off my internet connection while attempting to record samples from my portable cassette player.
It worked for a while. But then the invisible monsters came and gave me problems.

It’s just not fair. I was making progress. I was gaining some level of beginners confidence. And then " the Onion [imagine that!] hit the fan!"

Somehow, my computer stopped picking up the sound from my portable player but it picked up my voice saying some in-colorful statements.
Surely you’ve been there before!
Why o why is my computer doing this to me? I went to my privacy in settings > microphone and everything is “OFF”.
I’m telling ya…there’s a gremlin in my computer. A diabolical monster with only one purpose to make me nuts.
This is not fair!

My settings in Audacity are:
Windows WASAPI (Note: the MME and Windows Direct Sound do not work for my purposes. I’ve so far had the most success with WASAPI)
Microphone Array (Conexant ISST Audio)
I’ve tried both Mono and Stereo channels. However, when I successfully was recording in Stereo, on playback only the left side of my headphones played sound at a reasonable level, the right side was too low to even be heard. Why? I don’t know…it was the green monster! Same thing happened with the Mono recording.
Speakers (Conexant ISST Audio) (Note: I have no idea what the ISST stand for?)

Let me tell you how I get the sound from my portable player into my new laptop Hp computer Envy.
I purchased two different Ugreen wires from Amazon.
The first wire just allows me to plug into the portable player and the computer. Its got two 3.5mm male plugs, one on each end of the wire. I originally thought that was all I needed to transfer the sound into my computer’ combo port. Nope! That didn’t work. The red maggot stopped it from happening!
So, what does “smarty pants” (me) do? I almost returned the wire to Amazon, but then I found out that I needed a wire that had a microphone male plug. A nice little birdie told me about the difference with the male plugs. You know, some males have the mo joe and some don’t! So, I ordered this other wire from Amazon. This wire splits the signal from the first wire into two different wires. Clever little devil, isn’t it? One side of the split wire allows the first Ugreen double headed wire to fit into a female connector for microphone signal to pass to the other end of the split wire male plug, which goes into my computer. Gosh, you’ve got to love the ladies. Really you’ve got only two choices with 'em. Love 'em or Love 'em some more. That’s it with them. The other female end of the split wire allows you to plug in your head phones. Neat stuff, huh?

So, for a while everything was okay. I was making progress in Audacity land.
But then I got hit with the titlewave.
Audacity was recording my voice but not the sound coming out of my friendly dependable portable CD, Radio, Tape player.
What did I do wrong? The gremlin inside my computer is messing with me. My computer should not be picking up my voice at all.

I noticed something else too.
The pointing tool can be depressed to mark a spot in the recorded tract, but it cannot be deselected without clicking on another tool. I don’t know, but I was wondering if that had anything to do with my recording problems. I didn’t really think so, but I thought I would ask.

Three and a-half hours now. I’m tired. I’ve got to break from this situation and come back another time.
I do not have a mixer. I really do not want to have to go out and buy a mixer either. I just want to learn to use this program, so I can digitize some of my old cassette tapes and transfer those files to a CD-R so I can play 'em in my computer or car CD player.

Can you help me slay these gremlins and monsters, please?
Thank you

Earlier today, I made a reply to the above posts. What happened?
Where is my post from earlier today?

In order to keep this forum free from spam, posts from new forum users are held in a “moderation queue” until one of the forum crew confirms that it is not spam.

It is likely nothing to do with Audacity, if you are still getting dropouts. Other recording applications would have the same problem.

Why not? What are your purposes? To record computer playback?

MME is the most compatible host for recording from a physical input.

You said you had a combo input and output port. This probably wants a TRRS jack plug. So does the adaptor cable you are using have a TRRS plug where it plugs into the computer?

Note that an input like this will be mono, even with the correct adaptor. If you want stereo recording you should not even be trying to use that combo port.

Perhaps the cable came loose or is not the correct cable (see above).

The combo port is not suitable for recording high quality stereo sources. You want to buy a USB recording interface like Behringer UCA 202 and connect your tape player to that, then record from the USB interface.

You can rip CD’s to a WAV file using Windows Media Player. You don’t need to record the CD’s. That is a very lossy way of getting the audio off the CD.



Hello to all:

First, I am very appreciative of any support coming my way by those with more experience than I.

Now, I’d like those of you interested in this thread to please focus on the problem I will now explain.
I have (as previously stated above in this thread) been able to get sound into my computer from my portable player using wires (purchased separately itemized above in this thread). The male plug coming off the splitter wire that goes into the combo port on my laptop is correct. Why? Because it works to get the sound into my computer using this wonderful software called Audacity.

The problem I am focusing on solving, at this point, is why sometimes when I record a track in Audacity, as a sample less than a minute test, it picks up the sound coming down the wires connected to the combo port on my laptop. But other times, it doesn’t pick up that sound. It rather picks up the sound of my voice; that is if I say something after not seeing the Audacity track picking up the sound. Now, I’ve gone into setting in my computer, and I’ve made sure to turn off the internal mics for applications in my Windows 10 Home Ed operating system. This means that there are now only three ways for me to get audio sound into my laptop: 1) with and external microphone (I have a $10 or $20 independent external microphone). 2) Using a wire coming from my portable player’ headphone output to a wire spliter which allows audio sound to connect to that wire which connects to the combo port on my laptop, so my laptop can pick up that sound as if I was speaking into a microphone. 3) If I used a combination headset with a microphone attachment. That’s the only three ways my computer will get sound when I’ve turned “off” the laptops internal microphones.

With that in mind, please understand that sometimes I have been successful at getting Audacity to pick up the audio sound from my portable player which travels down the wire connected to the headphone jack on the portable player to the splitter wire to the combo port on my laptop. When this works I am thrilled because I’m more than halfway home for what I ultimate am trying to do. However, even with that setup (just explained), my computer will not pick up the sound from the portable player as evidenced by the Audacity track not being created. What it does do is pick up the sound of my voice. But I am not speaking into a microphone. And the microphone settings have been turned “off” in my computer. Duh! I am baffled by this! I have no idea what is causing this to happen.

So, I tried calling Hp tech support, who eventually connected me to their Smart Friend (pay for) service, which I did not buy into. However, I did get a brief amount of insight into what to ask when I research the answer to this problem on my own. I was thankful for being told some things to ask about when doing my own research. I was told to Google: How to turn cassettes into CD’s? I’ve done this already both on Google and YouTube, and it is how I found out about this Five Star program called Audacity. I was told to ask: How to prioritize where my computer gets its audio input from? I’ve tried doing asking that online, but haven’t found anything helpful to this point in time. And I’ve also asked this on YouTube.

What I have gotten to understand is how to get to my Sound window controls. Now, under the recording tab of the Sound window, there shows only one option and it is: Microphone Array, Conexant ISST Audio, default device. Now, to the best of my knowledge, there is no way to add another option in the Sound window recording tab. So, figuring out how to prioritize where my computer picks up or receives its audio input is impossible.

All I am trying to do is get the audio off of a cassette of 60 or 90 minutes into Audacity, so I can create a digital file and transfer it to a CD-R. That’s all I want to be able to accomplish.

There must be some kind of a way that I can tell my laptop computer, which again is using Windows 10 Home Ed, to only pick up audio being input through the combo port via the wires that I’m using (described above and previously). There’s got to be a way to stop my laptop from ignoring the audio signal coming into the combo port from the wires connected to my portable player and picking up my voice, when I’m not even speaking into a microphone and I’ve shut “off” the microphone in settings for all applications. There’s got to be a way to do this. And, by the way, I’ve made sure that the 3.5 male plug connected to the splitter wire is seated properly in the combo port on my laptop computer.

Also, there is no way on my laptop computer that I can get audio sound into my computer using a USB port. I’ve inquired at Hp about this possibility. And they told me that the only purpose of the USB ports on my computer were to supply power to external devices. That these USB ports are not set up to receive audio coming into my laptop computer. They told me the only way to get audio input into my computer is via the combo port (described clearly above).

Also, regarding the Windows Media Player suggested above, there is no Windows Media Player for Windows 10 Home Ed. Windows Media Player is exclusively for Window XP systems. So, although I used to like the Windows Media Player on my now donated old computer, it is no longer available for Windows 10 Home Ed. So, thanks for suggesting that, but it is not what I am trying to do anyway. I am not trying to rip music off a cd.

Also, attempting to setting priority for Audacity to Above Normal was also not possible on my Windows 10 Home Ed.

I am going to review the Frequently Asked Questions again, but when I did so in the past I did not find any answers to what I’ve discussed in this post.

Picking up the sound at some times as one channel only but at other times picking up your voice could be symptomatic of the wrong jack plug. Combo ports are almost always TRRS, not TRS.

“Microphone array” sounds like the internal microphone. You can use Windows Sound (Recording tab) to see if you can enable the combo port as an external microphone.

As we have told you before, you do not have the proper port on the computer to record cassettes. You need a USB audio device that can take the connection from your cassette player in stereo without distortion. I refuse to believe HP’s assertion that the USB ports cannot be used for an audio device, unless they are only micro USB ports. What is the model number of this HP computer?

Consumer editions of Windows 10 do have Windows Media Player. See How to locate and open Windows Media Player in Windows 10.


Thank you for your reply Gale:

In response to things you’ve just shared:

I have just learned about the different types of jacks used in the audio world. Now, I don’t completely understand everything I just read, but I did get an overall idea of how to identify what you are talking about referencing TRRS v TRS jacks. I viewed this website:

With that said: I have a TRRS plug being put into my computer’ combo port socket. I’ve actually view the plug, even with a magnifying glass, and I see the separations for the TRRS plug. So, it is correct.

Gale, I think what will help you help me further is to understand the wires which I am currently using to connect my portable player to my laptop computer. Both wires come from Ugreen:
Wire #1 is:
UGREEN Slim 3.5mm Stereo Auxiliary Cable with Slim Aluminum Case for Your iPhone, iPad or Smartphones, Tablets, Media Players White, 2m/6ft
This was the first wire I purchased, but the male plug that went into my laptop wasn’t correct, so I had to purchase another adapter wire:

Wire #2 is:
UGREEN Headset Adapter For Headsets With Separate Headphone And Microphone Plugs 3.5mm Stereo Audio Male to 2 Female Headset Mic Y Splitter Cable Adapter
This wire allows me to put the plug from the #1 wire (above) in the adapter wire #2’ microphone socket. The other end of the #2 adapter wire has a TRRS plug which goes into my laptop computer’ combo port. “Yippie!” This seem to get the sound into my laptop computer and into the Audacity software. However, it doesn’t solve the problem I described in my previous post. Sometime Audacity picks up the audio from my portable player traveling down the wires #1 and #2 (described above) into my laptop computer. However, other times it doesn’t pick up that audio but picks up the sound of my voice, when I may say something after realizing the track in Audacity isn’t picking up the audio sound from my portable player. I find this confusing. I don’t know why this is happening.

Standby…I just ran into a problem quoting your reply. I’m going to continue this on another post.

Okay: I’m going to go to: Missing features - Audacity Support
Note: Quoting the above site reference was not happening when I tried quoting it. But I’m going to go there now.
Okay, I’ve gone to that page. I’ve even tried to do step #1 on that page:
“Right-click anywhere inside the Recording tab and choose “Show disabled devices” then right-click again and check “Show Disconnected Devices”.”
And I can’t get any results. So, this isn’t helpful.

Here you are saying: “You need a USB audio device that can take the connection from your cassette player in stereo without distortion.”

I have no idea what kind of USB audio device I need. You’ve made absolutely no recommendation of a USB audio device. And if such a USB audio device exists, which it probably does based on your knowledge Gale, then it must be able to receive audio sound from my headphone socket of my portable cassette player and transfer it out to the USB audio device to a USB plug which will go into my computer’ USB socket. (Hey, will you, at least, give me credit for learning how to speak in audio terms? This stuff is so new to me that I feel like I’m learning a different language. But, Gale, believe me, I’m really trying to do my best. But this stuff is so complicated. I will figure this out! I am determined to get to the bottom of this.)

You say: “I refuse to believe HP’s assertion that the USB ports cannot be used for an audio device, unless they are only micro USB ports.”
Well, I do believe my USB ports are the standard size, not the micro USB ports. A micro USB port, as I understand it, can be found on my LG K7 cell phone, which is not in use right now. It requires a separate wire called an A to B cable with one end having a smaller USB plug and the other end having a standard size USB plug. If I need to charge my cell phone, when I decide to use it, the A to B cable allows me to charge the phone by connecting the phone to my laptop computer’ USB plug.

The Hp rep told me that my USB sockets only supply power to external devices. He said they are not for receiving sound from an external device. So, even if a USB audio device exists, as you’ve indicated Gale, then it is senseless to even try going down that road to find a solution to my objective of trying to transfer sound from a cassette player into my laptop computer, so I can create a digital file and transfer it to a CD-R or even make an MP3. (But let’s not worry about making an MP3 for now. I’d be happy to make just a CD copy of a Cassette audio tape.)

You’ve asked for the model # of my laptop computer. Here is the Product #: X6V56UA#ABA
Hopefully that will help you.

The link reference you’ve posted is:
See [url=Redirecting
I am going there right now.
Okay, I see that I can press the Win Key + R to get to the WindowsMediaPlay.exe file.
After clicking Enter it appears in my Task Bar.
If I Right click the icon in the Task Bar for the WM Player then I can pin it to the Task bar, but I did not do this for now.

Having the Windows Media Player is only good for a couple of functions: Play Music. Rip Music from a CD. Play a movie. But it is not going to do anything for me in terms of my objective of getting audio off of a cassette tape into my laptop computer, so I can create a digital file and burn a CD from that file.

So, for now, I am not going to concern myself with the Windows Media Player. It is nice to know that I can get it for my Windows 10 Home Ed, if I need it. However, I do have the VLC player. And I did go out and purchase a Blu-ray DVD Writer/Player from LG. It came with Cyberlink Media Suite 10. Which turns out to be an older version of the full Cyberlink software program, which on my last look, is now at (I believe) Cyberlink Media Suite 16 (or something like that).

I just need to point out that even learning how to use the Media Suite 10 is going to require some time to learn about. So, for the moment, I’ve tabled that learning process. I didn’t like buying the LG product only to find out the software coming with the product immediately pitched the purchase of a costly upgrade to their software. To me you buy a new product to do what this LG Blu ray Player/Writer can do then it should, in my opinion, contain the latest and greatest version of the software produced by Cyberlink. But, even though I didn’t like finding this out, I guess this is the way things go now in the computer world. I don’t have to like it.

However, for now, if I can pop in a dvd movie and watch it then I’m okay with not fully understanding the Cyberlink software. If I can send a data file from my Word 365 software to a CD-R and write that date file to the CD-R then I’m also okay with that. When I have more free time to learn more about the Cyberlink software than I will do so. But for now that is not my priority.

For now, I’ve got to get past what I’m trying to accomplish using the Audacity program. (My objective has already been explained several times now.)

I now await your next posted reply. And I hope to find some more time for this situation soon. Thank you for your patience and assistance.

By the way, this is where I found out about the Audacity software program to accomplish my objective:
Please note this YouTube video has had, at this writing, 217,255 views to date.
So, I would imagine that they know what they’re talking about.
And I would gather that a lot of people have the same issues that I face.
However, they make it sound so easy to do.
Little did I ever expect to be running into such a complex amount of stuff to make this happen correctly.
I am extremely impressed however, with finding out about the Audacity software.
I still think it is a five star program for what I found out about what it can do. And I’ve only scratched the surface of this wonderful program.
But somebody ought to tell these guys in this video that all is not as easy as they make it seem.
And I may just see if I can find a way to do that.
I just thought you’d like to know how I found out about the Audacity program.

Well, I was just going to add a comment on the YouTube video that told me about Audacity.
And, since I do not want to post a public comment, I decided against posting a comment and referencing this thread in Audacity.
I just don’t want to risk saying anything publicly that would not be the right thing to do.
But I do feel somebody ought to tell these guys on their YouTube video about the possible complications one will run into when expecting to get the results they say are so easy to accomplish.
Thank you

I cannot guarantee to have read your very long posts thoroughly.

The problem is in your computer, not Audacity.

I understand you now have an adaptor with TRRS plug that would let you connect a headset or TRS mono computer mic to your combo port. That does not make the combo port suitable for connecting a cassette deck. The port is a mono input, which is why I believe you record only the left channel (when it does record the tape).

The “microphone array” is normally the built-in microphones - you don’t want to use that, obviously.

If “Show disabled devices” and “Show Disconnected Devices” do not show you any more devices than the microphone array, and that choice switches randomly between the combo input and the mic array (that is, when your voice gets recorded) I would call the built-in sound device broken.

If you want attempt to fix it even though it is the wrong device for your cassette deck, go to and download/install the latest Conexant “High-Definition (HD) Audio Driver (Windows 10 v1607)” driver.

You could also ask HP, for reference, what name the combo input should have on the Recording tab of Windows Sound, and whether you have to go into some special control panel to switch the combo to an input, as well as connecting an input.

According to HP ENVY - 15-as133cl Product Specifications | HP® Customer Support you have External ports: 3 USB 3.1 Gen 1 (1 HP Sleep and Charge); 1 USB 3.1 (Type-C™); 1 HDMI; 1 headphone/microphone combo. The two 3.1 Gen 1 ports that are not sleep and charge should in theory be backwards compatible with old USB standards and should support standard USB audio devices. See your computer manual for where the different USB ports are located on the computer.

Koz already suggested the Behringer UCA 202 USB audio device. See Recording breakup - #2 by kozikowski I recommend to keep it simple that you accept his advice. Other suitable USB devices are listed on Missing features - Audacity Support.

Audacity Team does not author YouTube videos and is categorically not responsible for any YouTube videos you see, nor for whatever interpretations you put on them. Please note that the YouTube video you refer to is seven years old, before combo audio ports were common on Windows computers.

Also we point out on How to connect your equipment - Audacity Manual that modern Windows computers do not come with a suitable port to connect a tape deck to:

You should not generally connect to the microphone (pink) port or to a sole audio input on the computer.


Why not? I’ve taken an abundant amount of time to be specific and relate to you as accurately and detailed as I possibly am able to do so. It is disappointing to me to learn that you did not read and comprehend my entire post. That’s really not fair Gale! You needed, if you will accept my positive feedback address things I’ve stated by quoting something before replying.

I do not think Audacity is the problem. I never said it was. Matter of fact, I did compliment Audacity is a five star program, a few times, haven’t I?

Well thanks, I’ve been telling you all along that I felt I had finally found the correct plug. And after learning more about plugs, I absolutely confirmed that I have a TRRS plug. The fact the port is a mono port input explains what I did not know about it, and it explains why only the left ear bud on my headset is playing a recorded test track.

Yes, I’m glad to see you finally understand that. I’ve been saying that all along. And I am not trying to be sarcastic here.

Gee, my new laptop is only five and a-half months old. This may be a point worth discussing with Hp. However, I wouldn’t place to much weight on that being correctly troubleshot as the problem. Yet, it may be a slight possibility. I don’t know. I just think it is doubtful.

I don’t have a cassette deck. I have a moderately priced portable player which has the function of playing the radio, cassette tapes and cd’s. It doesn’t have RCA sockets. It only has a headphone socket. I’ve stated this several times. And, your suggestion of “If you want to attempt to fix it…” No, I don’t want to do that. If it is the wrong device (No, please use the right term: It is a socket.) If its wrong then its the wrong port then nothing is going to make it right.

Well, this makes a bit of sense. But it sounds like way too much for anyone to have to do in attempting to solve this problem.

Well, thank you. You finally know more about my laptop computer. However, “backwards compatible” – oh my gosh. Give me a break. The point of telling you the specifics of my computer setup was to help you understand why the Hp rep told me that the only purpose of my USB port was to supply power to external devices.

And I’ve looked at Koz’ suggestion. It seems to be used only with RCA wires coming from the audio source. Therefore, it is not a solution to my problem.

I realize Audacity is not responsible for YouTube postings. And thank you for pointing out that the video is seven years old. You statement has been noted

Again, that statement refers to a tape deck, which probably has the RCA sockets. That is not what I am using. I have a portable player.

Look Gale, with all due respect, it seems to me that Audacity is a really great program. If I was getting audio sound into this program differently then perhaps I would have found this software to be useful. However, from where I see it right now, it is not going to help me solve my problem. I did, however, find something which may help. Here is the site: Convert Vinyl Records & Audio Cassettes to CD/MP3 with LP Software Converter If you have taken my feedback positively in this particular post and not been put off or felt I am being too forward then I’d like you opinion on what’s being offered on that site.

Have a nice day Gale. Pay attention please to what I’ve written exactly. Thank you

Please do not write in green font that we cannot read.


I am confident I got the essential parts. I glossed over your complaints about YouTube for sure.

I suggest you understand that Audacity is free software. The people who staff it are volunteers who have other Audacity tasks to do and other things to do that are not to do with Audacity. We have many people to help. So it is necessary to skim read.

With this reply I already spent getting on for three hours trying to help you with a problem that HP should be helping you with. It is them that you have paid £1500 to.

I understood that all along. When I first mentioned it, I thought you might not understand it.

You seem to think I, or Audacity Team generally, are novices. We are not. The behaviour you describe is wrong, and the cause of random and broken behaviour is usually bad drivers (you have the wrong drivers, or you have correct drivers but they need reinstalling).

Of course it is possible that if there is an additional custom setting to enable the combo input properly, that might fix the issue. We can’t tell you where that setting (if any) is.

It depends what you want. If they are spoken word tapes, mono may be acceptable, if you can fix the built-in sound device and record at low volume to be sure it does not distort.

In that case you can record in mono, or make an unbalanced stereo recording into mono after the recording.

Again, we are not the novices that you seem to take us for. The HP representative might be inexperienced, from the sound of it. The computer specifications say clearly that only one USB port is sleep and charge.

General purpose USB 3.1 ports should be capable of supporting audio devices. See for example USB, Firewire & Thunderbolt: Which Is Best For Audio?.

If HP sold you a machine where the USB ports do not meet the required specification for the ports, I suggest you ask for a refund, because if that is the case you will have to fix the built-in sound device or not record your tapes.

All you need to buy is a stereo male TRS to RCA male adaptor cable.

That statement applies to any signal that is stereo and already amplified. The headphones output of your device is stereo and already amplified.

No one is forcing you to use Audacity, but because the problem is in your computer and not Audacity, any other recording application will have the same problem that Audacity has.


Dear Gale:
First and foremost: Let me say a Big Thank You for sticking with me during this rather long discussion and thread.
Second: Although some times I felt you were really not paying close enough attention to what I actually wrote, I do completely understand the challenges of anyone in your position.
Third: I have never assumed that you are not experienced enough to offer advice. Matter of fact, I recall indicating early on in this thread that those of you who are replying are much more experienced than I am on this situation.
Fourth: I wanted to try a different color type in a recent post to attempt to make it easier for the reader to see the difference between what was said and what I was replying too. I did not realize the light green type was so difficult to read until after I posted it. Clearly now, I realize that wasn’t a good idea. I was just trying to find a way to make it easier for the reader of my post. Obviously light green wasn’t a good idea.
Fifth: I do believe Audacity is a five star program. I only wish I did not run into the concerns I’ve pointed out in this thread.
Sixth: Your last post Gale, was much more respectful of making responses to exactly what I wrote previously that you quoted. Thank you. I only wish you would adopt that style in all your replies to anybody. It makes things much easier to follow, and it keeps things focused. Again, it is understandable that you have a lot to do.
Seventh: At this point, I have to make time to discuss things with Hp. And I, myself, am inundated with so many other priorities and things to focus my attention on. I will follow up with Hp soon. And I certainly hope this thread and online conversation between us remains, since I’d like to refer an Hp representative to it. If such representative studies all that we have written and does not just skim through it then perhaps they will be better equipped to solve the problem.
Eighth: I am no where’s near as advanced in technical knowledge as you may be Gale. You need to understand, while I may have some higher level of awareness of some technicalities, I am not a computer technician nor a guru for that matter. I can only try and comprehend what I am being told, do my best to educate myself where necessary, and move forward accordingly. In some ways, people like yourself Gale are teachers. I once worked in the computer industry myself in the distant past. I had to train others needing to gain some computer knowledge. However, as a teacher I always had to remember to be very patient with my students. What I may have felt was easy to understand to me, was a challenge to my students. And sometimes I had wrestle with their minds to get them to accept something which was a bit difficult for them to understand.
Nineth: For now, lets just table this situation, and let me send you an imaginary bunch of tulips to put on the desk of your mind.
Tenth: If I have managed to gain some other information from Hp about this than I will get back to this thread. Shucks, it really is too bad that I can’t more easily make use of this wonderful program called Audacity.
Have a nice day Gale.

I will give you an example. It is quite common for users to try to attach a TRS plug into a TRRS combo input and get occasional recording. You wrote a lot of detail about your cable but until you explicitly confirmed that it had a TRRS plug I can’t rule out a wrong connector as the cause of the problem.

Quoting multiple times in a long post can be irksome. I simply copy the

at the end of the text.

If the posts are very long, it becomes much harder to find relevant and unique text to cite and it’s quicker to reply without quote.

The topic will remain open and available but realistically I think any busy representative would skim read.

You have two questions for the HP representative:

  1. Can I connect a USB 1.1 audio device like the UCA 202 to the two USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports that are not specifically for charging?
  2. Is there are a control to switch the machine over from recording the mic array to recording from the combo input?

If the Windows Control Panel has a control panel for the Conexant sound device, you could look in there yourself for such a control.

And I suggest it really would not hurt to install or reinstall the Conexant audio drivers I recommended. It is not going to make things any worse than they are now. In my opinion, the HP representative should already have told you to try this.

A recurring comment we see here is that the computer or audio device representative gave the wrong answer or did not know the answer. If we say that in principle the general purpose USB 3.1 ports should accept audio devices, you can assume that we are correct.

It is possible that some audio devices may not be USB 3.x compatible, but I don’t recall anyone so far saying that UCA 202 was not compatible.