recording from several sources simultaneously [any lang.]

Hi, i dont know whether this is a good section to post this problem, sorry if not.
I’ve put pretty much effort trying to solve this but nothing helped. What I try to do is:
record from multiple sources at the same time with one sound card.
An example:
Record from mic and line-in simultaneously, or even stereo mix and microphone.
The funny thing is that I wrote everything properly using directsound then run and guess what - the recording that was launched later changed the settings of the previous one, so i record only 1 source on both recorings (try running 2 audacity instances, rec line in on one and mic on the other - the one u start later will switch settings of the other one, so in the end ull record only one audio source).
I really searched the web many times and end up with nothing, please dont ignore this only cause its my 1st post (:P). My sound card is a random AC’97, i just wanna know if its a hardware problem? If not then how can I write a program to support 2 records at once? (technology? library? source code? anything?) Dont answer to buy an external mixer cause id like a software solution. Any help would be appreciated, thanks.

Well it may have been better in the “Windows > Audacity 1.3.x (beta)” section, if that is what you are using, but no worries, let us know your set-up and we can move it later.

I can do this on my computer (“SB Live Value” sound card with Windows XP or Linux), but whether or not you can do it on yours will depend on your audio hardware and drivers.

Better still - don’t try it. Horrible things can happen with Audacity if you try running multiple sessions at the same time, including random crashes, data getting mixed up between projects, and other horrible stuff. The situation has been much improved in the most recent versions of Audacity 1.3.x, in that the program will usually not let you do it in an unsafe way, but as a general rule to avoid problems, only use one instance of Audacity at a time.

Probably not the best starting point. These often have some of their functions permanently disabled in the drivers - they are really just intended for audio playback rather than production. Anyhow, we shall see.

It’s a hardware issue … well hardware and drivers. Unless you know how to write device drivers, then you are stuck with what you have got - either your computer will be able to do it, or it won’t.

This is how I can do it on my machine - if we are lucky it will also work on yours.
I’ll give the Windows XP example, as I’m guessing you are on Windows.

  • Open Audacity and select “Creative SB Live” as the recording and playback device (you will need to select RealTek, or whatever it is) and check that it is all working. (Restart Audacity if I changed anything to ensure that the changes take effect).
  • Open the Windows Mixer - go to the “Record” settings section and select “What U Hear” (Probably called “Stereo Mix” on yours, but that’s the same thing, just a different name).
  • USE HEADPHONES NOT SPEAKERS ! If you must use speakers, turn the volume down real low or you will get screaming feedback. I’ll assume you are using headphones.
  • Go to the “Playback” section of the Windows mixer and enable all the sources that I want to record. For example, CD + Microphone + Line In.
  • Click on the record meter in Audacity so that it starts monitoring, and adjust the playback levels for each of my chosen sources. I will also hear these sources through my headphones.
  • Now start recording.

Note: That this is all set up by the computers system - in this example the Windows Mixer - Not in Audacity. Audacity is just set to record from the sound card, and will record whatever the sound system sends to it.

I don’t think Mac computers can do this sort of stuff without additional software, so if you’re on a Mac we will have to see if one of the Mac people can help you.