unable to control input levels

Have just (today) downloaded Audacity, from the exe.installer, intending to transfer LPs to digital format. Have a record deck, good amp and a jack-to-phono lead. Operating a laptop with Windows 7 SP1

Everything going well until I started recording from disc. The left channel input level maxes out all the time, while the right channel is more controllable. Playback is very distorted, and emphases treble tones. Am using default settings throughout. Please advise.

What settings are available in the Device Toolbar, and which settings are currently selected? http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/Device_Toolbar

If you want to jump ahead and troubleshoot it yourself, the answer is probably in the Windows Sounds Control Panel: http://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/Mixer_Toolbar_Issues#vistacp

Do you have the amplifier connected to the Mic-In of your computer?


settings available in device toolbar:
Audio host - MME; Windows direct sound. Selected - MME

Output device - MS Sound mapper; speakers and head[hones IDT…; Independent headphones. Selected: Speakers and headphones

Input device - MS Sound Mapper; Integrated microphone array; Stereo Mix (IDT HD); External Mic (IDT HD); Selected: Integrated microphone array

Input channel - 2 stereo selected

Confirm that the amplifier is connected to the MIC IN of my laptop

You can correct for this post-capture with Audacity’s Normalize effect (see http://manual.audacityteam.org/o/man/normalize.html ) - but it would be much better to find what hardware problem in you TT/amp is causing this and correct it there.

Possible Causee:
Badly wired cartridge - check connections carefully
Broken/damaged leads in tone arm - tricky to troubleshoot and trickier to fix
poor connectors TT=>amp=>PC - check and clean plugs and sockets, try alternative leads

Sounds like you may not be getting the RIAA Eq alpplied (if the sound lacks bass and sounds tinny). You need to be using a phono input on the amp or pre-amp - note a line-level input (for a tape-deck say).


In which case you are likely to be overloading this - unles your laptop has one of those “magical” inputs that auto-detect signal level and adapt accordingly to mic and line-level signals (most don’t).

So if that is not the case and your laptop doesn’t have a lin-in socket (most don’t) you should be a candidate for one of the USB interfaces that we know work well with Audacity - see this sticky thread: https://forum.audacityteam.org/t/sound-card-reviews/8375/1