Ticking Noise as Cassette is recorded and played back

Windows 10 Pro
Aud acity 2.1.1
.exe installer

I have a collection of Chinese Mandarin casette tapes purchased from Seton Hall University over 40 years ago. They are identical in content to the reel-to-reel training tapes issued to me while in Chinese Mandarin language training at The Presidio of Monterey, combined forces, languages training school. The tapes are in excellent condition physically due to proper storage over the years, SONY CHF 60, 90m, Type 1 (Normal) Position.

Using an ENCORE Model 2040MO Cassette Converter Tape 2 USB purchased through Sharper Image, Distributed by Electro Brand, Inc. Westchester, IL connected via USB cable to my high-end HP ENVY notebook, when I am recordeing the Chinese speaker on the tape, there is a constant, audible, rythmic ‘ticking’ sound at about 4 beats per second.

Can anyone provide a solution for this problem? Is there a setting on the ENCORE that will drop out the ticking (timing) marks so that the recording playsback normally? When the Chinese Language Speaker on the tape is speaking, there is no ticking sound. However, inbetween pauses the ticking comes on immediately and continues until, again, the Native Chinese Instructor/Speaker begins the next phrase or sentences.

Thanks, I could use an assist on this one.

XieXie Nide Bangmang

First, lets try to figure the source of the problem… Do you hear the clicking from the tape player’s speaker (or with headphones) or is it a problem with recording (digitizing)?

The fact that it starts & stops at specific places in the program makes me think it’s coming from the tape.

If you’re hearing it from the tape player’s speaker it’s probably on the tape but the only way to know for sure would be to try a different tape or a different tape player.

Thanks for your response.

I hear the tape being played and the ticking noise through the speakers on my HP Envy Bang & Olufsen speakers.

And, I stand corrected–the ticking sound in audible even when the Chinese Speaker is speaking a phrase; so it is constantly there.

Are the tapes too old to be recovered, or do I need to send them out to a professional lab?

This is my first time using Audacity and it seems like a powerful piece of software but I’m not sure how to filter this noise if it is possible to do so.

Thanks again,


Can you try another tape deck? Or even a new commercial tape recording in the same deck? Four beats per second is too fast to be mechanical noise caused by the tape going round but it could be electronic noise from the pinch roller.

Audacity has a basic Effect > Click Removal… .