Routing 1 USB Mic to Audacity + Zencastr

Please redirect me if I’m in the wrong place.

I’m running Pop!_OS 20.10 (Linux) and Audacity 2.4.2 (from the Pop!_Shop which installed via Flatpak). Up until about a week ago I was all set. Something updated in that time and now I’m having an issue.

I am recording a two-person podcast remotely using a Yeti Nano USB mic. My co-host and I each record locally using Audacity. At the same, we connect and record via web browser using Zencastr as a backup. (This also allows us to hear each other.) Audio quality is better from the Audacity tracks as the free version of Zencastr exports as MP3.

Last week, when we tried recording, I was able to record in Audacity but I could no longer connect to Zencastr with the mic - so my co-host could not hear me. I tried quitting Audacity and was then able to connect to Zencastr. When I tried recording in Audacity while connected to the Zencastr session, Audacity gave me “Error opening recording device. Error code: -9985 Device Unavailable”. The Nano is no longer listed in the Recording Devices menu.

I am a real novice when it comes to Linux. I found QjackCtl - JACK Audio Connection Kit - Qt GUI Interface. I am thinking that perhaps I can use that to send the mic signal to both Audacity and Zencastr. I can’t for the life of me make sense of the QjackCtl application.

Any help or redirection is appreciated!

Why not just use Zencastr since (according to it’s website) it is “The easiest way to record your voip podcast”? Attempting to record with two applications at the same time is not only making things more difficult for you, it is much more demanding for the computer and much more likely to fail.

Why not just use Zencastr since (according to it’s website) it is “The easiest way to record your voip podcast”?

Fair question! The free version of Zencastr only records in MP3, not WAV format. We’re not making any money off the podcast so we didn’t want to spend the money on the paid service. My PC handles both applications just fine. It was only getting the mic signal to both applications at the same time.

Thank you for the response, though! Of course, shortly after writing this, I stumbled onto something that pointed to the issue. When I was only sending the mic signal to Audacity, I could simply select the mic as the recording device. But as soon as I needed that signal sent to two applications - Audacity and Zencastr - I needed to select Pulse as the recording device. The mic was showing up just fine in the Pulse controls.

So looks like user error. I’ll leave this here, though, in case it helps someone else.

Thanks for posting the update.
One of the main reasons for the existence of PulseAudio is that it can support multiple clients, whereas (most) ASIO drivers support only one application at a time.

Yeah, using Pulse, I can shoot a video through Cheese webcam, but simultaneously capture the audio into audacity running at the same time; that way I get the (grainy cheesy) video, but with much better quality than the built in laptop mic that cheese defaults to. It’s still there on the video, but I can load the video into Openshot, silence the audio on it, then load my audacity track on track 2 of Openshot.
I wouldn’t be surprised if you could do what you are trying to do with jack, because it is supposed to be the preference of ":professionals’ because of low latency…
I suppose the zen thing’s latency is the same on both of your computers so it matches up; I would read the jack manual if there is a noticeable delay between what you see and what you hear; and you might be able to improve it through jack