Recording my keyboard sound with laptop not working


I have purchased Yamaha PSR i455 model and i want to connect it with my laptop Lenovo T460. After some research, I purchased Hosa Cable CMS110 1/8 inch TRS to 1/4 Inch TRS Adapter and yesterday i tried connecting it. The issue is that when i play the keyboard, nothing is getting recorded however, if i enable the microphone button (image attached was taken when i disabled the mic), then i see that Audacity can detect my voice (but not keyboard) and i can later hear it as well.
Headset with mic.png
Keyboard mic option.jpg
I did check the forum and found this link where DVDdoug mentioned that a special 4-conductor TRRS plug will be required to make the microphone connection OR one could go for a USB audio interface such as Behringer UCA202. Although i can buy that if that’s really going to solve my issue but at least for now, i would prefer a relatively cheaper option if that’s not really going to make much difference in the recording as compared to the one done using Behringer UCA202.

My ideal kind of setup would be to have an option (some splitter sort of thing) to record as well as listen the same with my headphone because with a common port for both mic and earphone, the recording will happen but i think i will not be able to hear the output. Please correct me if i’m wrong.

I also checked few online links and i’m not sure whether these are alternatives to Behringer UCA202 that i can explore:

  1. Sabrent USB External Stereo Sound Adapter

  2. AV CONNECT Headset adapter for headsets with separate headphone / microphone plugs - 3.5mm 4 pin to 2x 3 pin 3.5mm M/F - This looks quite cheap although i can look for a better alternative in the same category if it will suffice my purpose.

If both of them are really alternatives to Behringer UCA202, which amongst these (or if you can suggest any other alternative) will be a better one to serve my purpose?

I purchased Hosa Cable CMS110 1/8 inch TRS to 1/4 Inch TRS Adapter and yesterday i tried connecting it.

Wrong cable/adapter. You need a 4-conductor TRRS plug like the AV CONNECT adapter you were looking at. A regular 3-conductor plug will work with headphones but not with a microphone.

But, that still wouldn’t be right… The line-level or headphone signal out of your keyboard is around 100 times stronger than a microphone signal and you’ll usually get poor quality.

  1. Sabrent USB External Stereo Sound Adapter

No. That would solve your connection problem, but these “USB Soundcards” are like laptops with only mic-in and headphone-out. (And, you have to be careful because the advertising can be misleading.) What you want is a “USB audio interface”, or you can use a desktop/tower computer with a regular built-in [u]soundcard[/u] or soundchip (which will have separate mic & line inputs).

You might find something cheaper than the Behringer but [u]most audio interfaces cost more[/u] (and most audio interfaces have inputs for studio/stage microphones, which you don’t need).

Thanks for the valuable information @DVDdoug! :slight_smile:

For the misleading ad thing that you mentioned about “USB Soundcards” vs “USB audio interface”, i saw this link yesterday. It’s just a 5 min video. The lady warns that though this USB device is fine but it allows recording only in mono but for listening, stereo works. Should that be a concern?

About UCA202, i read that it has no mic inputs. Is that true? Does it mean that keyboard sound can be recorded but i cannot connect studio/stage microphones and record voice using them?

In UCA202, i just noticed that there are two (L & R) for inputs and similarly two for outputs but in my case, i only have one Line Out from my keyboard. Will this device work in my case? If yes, can i connect the input to either one of them?

Can anyone kindly help me with my queries?

Yes that’s correct. You’re not going to find a good microphone USB pre-amp at this price.
The specification for the UCA 202 is available on Behringer’s website:

You cannot connect a microphone directly to the UCA 202.
Behringer do make relatively inexpensive USB pre-amps that can be used directly with a microphone (or an instrument), such as their UMC series.
I’d also suggest looking at the ART range.

Thanks Steve for the replies. For the time being, i have decided to focus on just recording my keyboard sound properly because for mic support, my budget is definitely going to be a constraint. :frowning:

So as mentioned in my last post, on my keyboard, i have only one Line Out (PHONES/OUTPUT shown below) and similarly, i have only one input in my laptop (common for both mic and earphone).
PSR i455 ports.png
When i was checking the image of Behringer UCA202, i noticed that there are two (L & R) ports for input but in my case, i will be having a single cable coming from LINE OUT of my keyboard. Will UCA202 work in this case? If yes, can i connect the input to either one of the L/R inputs of UCA202 or will i still need some extra connector to get it working?

Also, similarly for output from UCA202 to my laptop, do i have to use the L/R output of UCA202 or will the USB cable of UCA202 suffice?


The headphone socket in your picture looks like a full size 1/4" jack socket (rather than mini-jack), so if that is correct, then you need:

1/4" stereo jack to 2 x phono plug

These types of leads are quite common and inexpensive (from less than $5 )

To connect the UCA 202 tou your computer, just use the USB lead that is permanently attached to the UCA 202.

The stereo outputs from the UCA 202 may be connected (with a suitable lead) to powered speakers, or a hi-fi amp. Or you need not connect it at all and just plug headphones into the UCA 202.

Yes, you’re right Steve that it’s a 1/4" jack socket. That’s exactly the reason i purchased Hosa Cable CMS110 1/8 inch TRS to 1/4 Inch TRS Adapter Cable earlier though at least for now, that cable might just keep lying around.

Anyways, i now have clear answer to both the queries. :slight_smile: Thanks for the reply and also for the image. That was really helpful.

Thanks again Steve! :slight_smile:

Hi Steve,

I checked for the cable online but i couldn’t find a good one on any of the Indian websites. There was this available but on Amazon UK. There is this Hosa TRS-202 cable which seems similar but not sure whether this is “stereo” because i could not find that “stereo” keyword anywhere in the description on the said URL. Do you have any idea about the same?


“TRS” is “Tip, Ring, Sleeve”, which refers to the three connectors on the 1/4" jack. That means that it is a stereo jack plug (Tip and Ring are left and right, and the sleeve is “ground”).
So assuming that Hossa have not wired it up in a really weird way (I think that’s highly unlikely), that’s the correct configuration.

Thank you for clearing the doubt Steve. :slight_smile:

I have a Behringer UM2 USB adapter.

It will accept an XLR microphone, supply 48 volt phantom power if your microphone needs it and has local monitoring so you can use it for perfect overdubbing. It has an instrument connection, too, so you can plug in your guitar without the amp.

There is a more expensive version the UMC22.

It has different microphone electronics and a nicer front-panel layout.


Thanks Koz but as of now, i have just started with keyboard and would initially like to take baby steps. As of now, my only motive is to record the keyboard sound as is through Audacity. :slight_smile: For this, UCA202 along with the suggested cable should suffice my needs.

The problem of this thread is similar to a problem I’ve encountered with a Thinkpad T440 “Combo audio/microphone jack” and a desire to get audio into the Thinkpad from a “line out” audio signal (specs: I authored a question already, but I’ll summarize it here.

The four conductor TRRS adapter I have plays the stereo output fine, but when I plug the line audio (rec out) from my PA into the third connection of the TRRS adapter, I get nothing from the OS, nothing in Audacity 2.3.3. The mic that’s built into the laptop does get disabled when I plug in the TRRS plug, though.

So I’m thinking my options include some kind of audio to USB device. I don’t need high quality sound, just something better than the mic built into the laptop (so I can control the mix, primarily, and I can do that on the PA).

This question is just to verify that nobody has found a ‘trick’ that gets ‘rec out’ from another device into the Thinkpad as ‘line in’ would on a typical PC, and that something like the Sabrent USB device (referenced above as will probably work.