right channel overlays left channel

I am using an AV202-B audiograbber. I have 3 machines: an IBM Thinkpad running Win10, a Dell Precision running Win7, and a Dell Inspiron running Win10. The 2 Win10 machines have Audacity version 2.4.2, and the Win7 is running 2.3.3

The Thinkpad and the Precision receive both left and right channels. The Dell Inspiron shows both channels, but what is coming into the left channel is the actually the right channel – so I have the same sound in both ears.

The Dell remote technicians feel that this is a software issue, despite my reply that if 2 machines are working and one is not, software may not be the problem. However, I promised that I would post the question: is there something other than obvious input settings that might be causing this result in the Win10 Inspiron but not in the Win10 Thinkpad or the Win7 Precision?

It’s probably a Windows setting. There is some information [u]here[/u].

I thought so, too. But the advanced settings on the USB PnP Audio Device shows 2 channel, 16 bit, 48000hz. So something else, maybe?

I assume that you are moving one audiograbber between the three PCs (?)

Is everything else the same in your tests? (recording from the same “thing”, using the same leads …)

Hey, Steve. Thanks for your interest.
Yep: everything else appears identical. I am using the same grabber in all three cases, the same mp3 snippet provided by H-Top, the same settings in Audacity, and the same superficial settings in Windows (advanced recording set to 2-channel, 48KHz). So I am wondering whether there is an obscure registry setting that’s somehow messing things up – in which case I don’t know where to look – or whether there is some funky thing about the motherboard or USB controller, or whether unseen forces are conspiring against me … .

If I pass the snippet from the Thinkpad to the older Dell machine, or from the newer Dell machine to the Thinkpad or the older Dell machine, I achieve the desired results. But passing the snippet to the newer Dell machine (or from the turntable amplifier to the newer Dell machine) results in the left channel replicating the right channel.

What does that mean?

Sorry. VTop, the company that makes the audio grabber, sent me a test MP3 file to confirm that the left and right channels should be different. It’s just a one-minute music file. And I spelled the company’s name wrong. Fitting end to a Friday %P

That was a good idea.
How exactly did you test, and what happened?

(Now that you’ve already given details of the PCs, please just refer to them as the “good” computers and the “bad” computer.)

Thanks for your perseverance, Steve! I sent the test MP3 from the good computer to the bad computer, and both channels were identical (bad results). I sent the test MP3 from the bad computer to each of the good computers, and in each case the two channels were different (good results). I ripped a vinyl (Sgt Peppers Hearts Club Band, which has really distinct left and right channels) to a good computer, with good results, and to the bad computer, with bad results. Again, same grabber hardware, and same vanilla Audacity settings. [sigh]

So that we’re covering all bases, please describe in precise detail the exact set-up. What was plugged in where with which plugs into which sockets?

In a word, yes. Your output configuration. Since you are doing all your tests by ear, you also have to check that your output configuration is not compromised.

I hope this helps. :smiley:

Hi, Steve. Not sure how to plug an image into these boxes, so here’s a link instead: https://www.vtop.shop/products/av202-b

The 3.5mm plug goes into the headphones jack of the turntable amplifier (or computer) and the USB plug goes into the USB port of the receiving computer.

A simple test to establish if the problem is in Audacity or in Windows, is to make a test recording using Microsoft “Voice Recorder” (see: https://www.windowscentral.com/how-record-sound-using-voice-recorder-app-windows-10)

Dell support are not likely to be very helpful if you tell them you have a problem in Audacity (Audacity is not their product), but if the problem is in Windows, and you bought the Del with Windows installed, then they should be much happier to help. On the other hand, if Voice Recorder successfully records true stereo and Audacity doesn’t, then that narrows down the possibilities a lot.

Thanks, Steve.
You are correct: Dell technicians wanted to blow this off as an Audacity problem, even though I pointed out to them that I was able to capture left and right channels using the same MP3 file, audio grabber, and software on the good laptops (one of which is an older Dell). We have also confirmed that USB speakers on the bad laptop push stereo sound out of the same USB port.

Unfortunately, I do not have a USB stereo mic, which confounds an attempt to compare Audacity with Voice Recorder. I will scrounge around to see whether I know somebody who has one … although I am beginning to question how desperately I want to be able to rip directly into the bad machine, as opposed to ripping into another machine and porting the .wav files over – seems as though each path is looking to consume the same amount of time!

I don’t see why you need a USB stereo mic. Haven’t you already recorded in Voice Recorder from your VTOP USB Audio Capture Card?