Using Audacity to record mixes

Hi,

I’ve been using Audacity for a couple of years for various years for different purposes, and I’ve always been grateful that it’s relatively easy to use.

Right now though, I’m stumped about what to do and would appreciate any help or any suggestions anyone can offer.

I have a Technics SL1200 deck connected to a Gemini PS676-pro 2 mixer and a KORG Quad KAOSS Pad which then has two phono jacks leading to a USB plugged into my Dell laptop, so I can record from my deck with audio input from both the mixer and the KAOS Pad. That set-up - and variations on it work - all well and good! The Gemini mixer has a looping facility, which is excellent for doing edits of tracks.

However any recordings on Audacity from this set-up always pick up any extraneous audio heard during recording as well as the music recorded i.e. me coughing/moving buttons/anything. I appreciate this might not be the fault of Audacity as it happens if I do the same procedure with the demo version of MixPad. I’ve tried changing the audio input options in Audacity but to no effect. Any ideas?

Pat

Please itemize precisely what is plugged into what, including the type of plugs used (for example, whether USB, RCA plugs, mono 1/4" jack, stereo 1/4" jack …)

Hi Steve,

Thanks for the reply.

Technics: 2 male phono plugs are plugged into phono channel on mixer. Master out from mixer to input on KORG pad connected with two white and red male RCA phono plugs x 2 of the same. Output of Pad to laptop is two male RCA phono plugs going to a single male USB type A.

I’ve tried missing out the KORG Pad and going from the mixer to the laptop but still have ‘outside’ audio picking up my background noise as well as the actual audio I want recorded.

I have tinkered with the Audio input for recording on Audacity and with the microphone level on the volume mixer on my laptop but to no avail.

The set-up as described is perfectly fine for me to do a live edit or play anything out loud but recording it - or anything for that matter - always comes with the unwanted background noise.

This is peculiar. Presumably the RCA plugs carry audio signals. USB does not, can not directly carry audio - it’s a “digital data” interface, whereas audio signals are analog. Do you have some kind of cable that converts analog audio signals into USB data?

This is what I bought in order to connect my audio set-up to my lap-top:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1-5-Mt-USB-A-Stecker-Auf-2X-RCA-Phono-Stecker-Av-Kabel-Führen-Pc-Fernseher-Y4L8/382964739696?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

I do have an ION audio deck which I have used in the past to convert vinyl records into MP3. That has a PC link connector which links up with the EZ software to convert smoothly. I figured something similar would work - but the penny is dropping that it won’t, perhaps.

You’re correct. That cable will not work. To get audio into USB, you need an “analog to digital converter”.

That’s probably because you are actually recording from your computer’s built in microphone.

Which model of Korg Pad?

It’s the Quad KAOSS Pad -

https://www.google.com/search?q=korg+kaoss+pad+quad&rlz=1C1AVFC_enGB815GB815&sxsrf=ACYBGNS_yMY2CQQK9AiMZhfiYZMrQRD29A:1575883305712&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjkt5PlnqjmAhUKJsAKHbDkC34Q_AUoAnoECAoQBA&biw=1600&bih=795#imgrc=iveYM4C8X8HMuM

Re. the converter you mentioned - would this suit my purposes?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Converter-Techole-Aluminum-Digital-Toslink-Black/dp/B07MB8VCWQ/ref=asc_df_B07MB8VCWQ/?tag=googshopuk-21&linkCode=df0&hvadid=294797661583&hvpos=1o4&hvnetw=g&hvrand=1954337808827279546&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1006941&hvtargid=pla-616164693116&psc=1

OK, so as I read it, your equipment is (tell me if I’m wrong):

Technics SL1200 deck → stereo analog out
Quad KAOSS Pad: stereo in, stereo out
Gemini PS676-pro 2 mixer: 3 stereo analog inputs, Master, Booth and Record outputs

and you want to record from both the Technics and the KAOS Pad.

Do you need to use the analog inputs on the Kaoss Pad, or are you using it purely as an output device?

No. That only has optical out, which can’t on it’s own, connect to your computer.

I need to build a mental picture of what precisely you are wanting to do, before I can recommend the kind of interface that you need. I’m not familiar with any of these devices, so I’m largely relying on you to tell me what they do, what connectivity they have, and how you intend to use them (I have now found all 3 devices on the Internet, so I have some idea about them).

OK, so as I read it, your equipment is (tell me if I’m wrong):

Technics SL1200 deck → stereo analog out
Quad KAOSS Pad: stereo in, stereo out
Gemini PS676-pro 2 mixer: 3 stereo analog inputs, Master, Booth and Record outputs

and you want to record from both the Technics and the KAOS Pad.

Do you need to use the analog inputs on the Kaoss Pad, or are you using it purely as an output device?

You’re right about the spec of the deck, pad and mixer Steve. Yes, ideally, I’d want to put the signal through the mixer then the pad before arriving at my laptop. I could by-pass the KAOS pad and go straight to the laptop but for the purpose of editing, the effects of the KAOS Pad are really useful.

I’m glad I sent you the link to the converter as that looked to my naive eyes as suitable (but then so did the phono to USB connector)…

I hope I’m giving you enough info?

Please check that this setup works the way that you expect it to:

Turntable → Mixer → Pad → Amp

Turntable → Mixer → Pad → Amp - yes, that works fine. Attempting to go from the Rec out on my Denon amp PMA-100M into my laptop using the 2 x phono to USB male did result in only one channel output, but then you’ve already established that it wasn’t recording anyway!

OK, then with that set-up, you should be good to go after the addition of a 2 channel USB audio interface.

One more question: Does the Pad have an output level control? If it does, then something like the Behringer UCA 202 (or UCA 222) would do the job (I use one myself, and the sound quality is very good, at a budget price of around $25). If it doesn’t, then you may need to spend a little more and get one that has an input level control (the UCA 202 has “line level” inputs, and the input level is not adjustable).

The set-up will then be:

Turntable → Mixer → Pad → USB audio interface → computer + (amp or headphones)

That sounds exactly what I need as the Pad does have an output level control, yes. I’ll get onto to looking for one immediately and thanks for going the extra mile Steve… it’s much appreciated (particularly when it wasn’t the fault of Audacity!) and your patience has been exemplary.

Patrick