Stereo recording looks like Mono

I use a Rode NT4 to record classical guitar solos. It is a single mic with a stereo head in fixed x-y configuration. The single cable splits into a y-cable for input into my Fostex FR2LE hard-disk recorder.

When I import the file into Audacity, it displays two identical sound waves for left and right. My previous audio editor showed me two different captures for left and right.

Am I only editing a mono file in Audacity? Is it a composite of both channels, or am I seeing just one channel copied to another?


Possibly. To answer this question, you could Split Stereo To Mono, select one track, then Effect > Special > Invert, select all tracks and Tracks > Mix > Mix and Render.

If you are not getting stereo with this configuration, it is likely some setting between you microphone and your recorder.

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And… That subtracts left from right leaving the difference. If both sides are identical you’ll get total silence. I wouldn’t expect much difference with one guitar in the “center” but there should be some difference depending on room acoustics and how far you are from the mic.

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Thanks jademan and DVDdoug. I gave that a go. Seems I’m only editing in mono, which is on the one hand annoying. On the other hand, I’m actually getting a great sound, the best recorded sound I’ve had, so maybe close-micing solo guitar in mono is not such a bad thing. With a touch of reverb it sounds spacial enough with headphones on. I’ll give it some thought, but pleased with the sound I’m getting. Again, thanks for your help.

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