Records ok then WHITE NOISE

Hi - this is my 1st post.

I am recording vinyl to MP3. (I did a first batch 2-3 years ago and just restarted).

Problem is that recording is fine - but then sometimes just goes to white noise (filling the whole of the input ‘band’ in Audacity).

I am not sure why this happens. I thought it might be due to other apps being open - but it does not seem to be the case.

My set up is:

Numark TT USB
Windows XP
Audacity 2.0
Lenovo T410

Has anyone else experienced this - and solved it - or got any ideas?

Thanks, D

That is exactly what happens if the USB loses synchronisation.
Just a tiny disruption to the USB audio stream can cause the data to turn to (horrible and very loud) noise.

Check your USB cable is connected securely.
Try using a different USB socket (on full size computers the USB sockets on the back are sometimes more reliable).
Ensure that you do not over tax the computer - USB data flow depends on CPU availability.
Ensure that you have plenty of free disk space in the location where Audacity is writing the data (usually the C: drive)
Defragment your hard drive (Defraggler is free and very good).

If none of that helps, check through the items listed here:

And this is the screen, attached


Thanks very much for your reply.

The last time it happened this afternoon, was during tack 3 of 5 tracks of an album. I was out of the room (and then I heard the dreaded White Noise) - so the cable was stable as no-one else was in the room.

I will try using a different USB port and see what happens.

When you mention free space, where Audacity is writing to can you explain that a bit more? - When I export my Audacity project to MP3 - that is done to my 1TB server: however I am not sure that is what you mean… And of course, the problem is happening during the recording: is Audacity writing to my C: drive at the point? Can I change that setting?

Are there any other setting which could be changed in the Preferences which could impact this?

Thanks again , D

If the turntable has been out of service for two years, that’s time to build up a little corrosion on the electrical contacts. Pull and replug several times to clear – or as above, change the socket.


Are you going through a USB Hub? USB audio hates that. Direct connection is indicated.
I don’t think it’s a drive problem. That usually causes an outright failure or crash. Koz

Good point - I forgot that one.

There’s rarely a half way point with USB audio - it tends to either work or fail horribly. As Koz mentioned, just a tiny bit of corrosion can be enough to tip it over the edge from success to failure. We’ve seen cases where someone can’t record on a Wednesday unless they wear a blue jumper - it can be that sensitive.

If the project has not been saved Audacity will write to its temporary folder which is usually on the C: drive. You can check the location by looking in:
“Edit menu > Preferences > Directories”

If the project has been saved, there will be an Audacity Project file (with a .AUP file extension) and a folder with the same name but ending in “_data”. Recorded data will then be written to this _data folder rather than to the temporary folder.

The recorded data should always be written to a fast hard drive. Network drives are not suitable because continuous data transfer is not guaranteed. When recording, the data cannot wait, it needs to be written to disk immediately.