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Author Topic: External Microphone (Audacity)  (Read 15973 times)
InTheWoods
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« on: March 08, 2008, 12:57:43 pm »

How does one use a laptop external microphone?

I have a Toshiba Tecra M2 with a cheapo Business Depot microphone plugged into the side. If I can get it to work I will go buy something better.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2008, 01:33:52 pm by InTheWoods » Logged
InTheWoods
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« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2008, 01:32:57 pm »


Turns out my problem is not the microphone. It's Audacity!

Whenever Audacity is installed (from testing repo) I lose all sound on the laptop. The onboard speakers and the ability to use earphones.

Jack is not installed but there are other options in the device preferences and none of them seem to work. Further I don't see why I should lose sound for the machine as a whole.

Any suggestions either on how to fix this or on another app suitable for a simple novice recording?

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nightflier
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« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2008, 02:39:18 pm »

Not sure what the problem may be, but I use Audacity for recording in 5.8 SOHO. I don't even have JACK installed.

It may just be a matter of fiddling with settings and options. Open your mixer and start moving sliders around. Make sure sound is not muted. Open Audacity's preferences and select ALSA for input/output.
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The Headacher
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« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2008, 12:08:06 am »

Sounds to me like something alsa related may have been "upgraded" when you installed audacity. What was the exact package you installed, and what VL version are you using?
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kc1di
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« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2008, 02:59:53 am »


Turns out my problem is not the microphone. It's Audacity!

Whenever Audacity is installed (from testing repo) I lose all sound on the laptop. The onboard speakers and the ability to use earphones.

Jack is not installed but there are other options in the device preferences and none of them seem to work. Further I don't see why I should lose sound for the machine as a whole.

Any suggestions either on how to fix this or on another app suitable for a simple novice recording?



I Have yet to get Audacity to work in a 5.9 install  it does not work in 5.9 SOHO Alpha either.

Though it does not stop all my sound it simply wil not record no matter what settings I use. and I have jack installed too.
hope someone figures it out soon.
Cheers!
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Dave
( Living Somewhere in Maine USA)
Registered Linux User #462608
nightflier
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« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2008, 05:50:17 am »

Hmm... I just tried it on a 5.9 installation. There does seem to be a problem with selecting the proper sound driver in Audacity preferences.
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InTheWoods
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« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2008, 06:55:55 am »


Quote
It may just be a matter of fiddling with settings and options
I tried every setting I came across.
Quote
What was the exact package you installed, and what VL version are you using?
I am using Vec 5.9. There is only one package for Audacity in the 5.9 testing repo. I also tried the package off of Dweeberkitty's multimedia disk version 2.3.
Quote
I Have yet to get Audacity to work in a 5.9 install  it does not work in 5.9 SOHO Alpha either.
Quote
Hmm... I just tried it on a 5.9 installation. There does seem to be a problem with selecting the proper sound driver in Audacity preferences.

Yep! I'd say there is a problem.

I have been able to make a test recording with the microphone using ffmpeg.

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overthere
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« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2008, 05:37:59 pm »

I found audacity from the repos on VL5.9 std gold was not very good. it did work for me but all recording was choppy and only one setting allowed recording.

I use the Ardour with success for recording on VL5.9 std gold and it can record multi track and play while recording. but you do not get the effects. to get the mic to record I hit tab. after increaseing the alsa mic volume.

 I can import an ardour file to audacity and add an effect and save as mp3, with pops and stuff.  Audacity does not like to record for me. The gui was not fully functional either, the slide controls did not function but could be moved back and forth. may be a snd card issue. I do not know. I removed audacity and have ardour but would like some effects to improve my ally cat muzak.

I'm suggesting you try Ardour instead I guess.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2008, 05:45:08 pm by overthere » Logged

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rbistolfi
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« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2008, 07:38:44 pm »

I can confirm a problem with audacity. It will hang badly is I try to reach the settings dialogs.
Overthere, you may want to check the several ladspa plugins packages in the repo, they will add lot of possibilities to Ardour and they are more professional than Audacity ones imho. They work pretty much like VST plugins in Steinberg apps if you are familiar with them.
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Dweeberkitty
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« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2008, 07:49:13 pm »

Hey guys. I'm working on the Audacity problem. I was the one who packaged Audacity for the MMBD (and is the same version in the testing repo) but apparently there are some issues with it. I'm sorry for the inconvenience but I'll see if I can figure out the problem soon. Oh, btw, the ladspa plugins also work in Audacity as well. It may be an audacity bug since the version I packaged is a beta version. I'll let you guys know if/when I fix the problem (hopefully soon!)  Cheesy
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Dweeberkitty
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« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2008, 07:51:34 pm »

The gui was not fully functional either, the slide controls did not function but could be moved back and forth. may be a snd card issue. I do not know.

Maybe the you have an older version of wxGTK installed. Try installing wxGTK-2.8.7
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Registered Linux User #443399
Desktop: Intel Pentium D 3.33Ghz, 320GB hard drive, 2 gigs DDR2 533mhz RAM, NVIDIA Geforce 7800 GS, X2GEN 22" widescreen monitor;
Laptop: Dell Mini 9, Intel Atom 1.6Ghz, 1GB ram
Multimedia Bonus Disc website: http://www.vectorlinuxsolutions.com/
kc1di
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Morse Code Early digital mode. John 3:16


« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2008, 02:29:45 am »

Hey guys. I'm working on the Audacity problem. I was the one who packaged Audacity for the MMBD (and is the same version in the testing repo) but apparently there are some issues with it. I'm sorry for the inconvenience but I'll see if I can figure out the problem soon. Oh, btw, the ladspa plugins also work in Audacity as well. It may be an audacity bug since the version I packaged is a beta version. I'll let you guys know if/when I fix the problem (hopefully soon!)  Cheesy

Thanks for working on it Dweeberkitty,  will be waiting to hear the results.
Cheers!
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Dave
( Living Somewhere in Maine USA)
Registered Linux User #462608
overthere
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« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2008, 02:49:56 pm »

Thanks for all your hard work Dweeberkitty it's almost there..I will try the ladspa plugins and the wxGTK287 next play time...will go get them now thanks
Hope in the woods finds something to satisfy
Cheers
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Dweeberkitty
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« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2008, 04:26:50 pm »

Okay, I've been playing with it and I do not think it is a problem with my package. It took me a couple of minutes to get the settings right on STD but it worked perfectly afterwards, recording was clean, no pops or crackles. I had to set it to use the correct input and output settings. Also, I set it to use 24-bit audio instead of 32 and do 48000Hz instead of whatever was default as it didn't work. Once this was done, I found that I could indeed record but my microphone was so weak; it was hard to get any kind of signal. To fix this, I enabled "Mic Boost" in the little sound icon in the taskbar under "Advanced". With this option checked, it boosted the microphone signal so that I could finally do some recording. It works great too! Oh, also I bumped up "Audio to Buffer" to 700ms instead of 100ms, this may or may not be a good thing on your computer.

Here's a screenshot of my preferences:





If after fiddling with these options and you still cannot get Audacity to work, try a stock Slackware Audacity package. You can download it here: http://repository.slacky.eu/slackware-12.0/multimedia/audacity/1.3.4/audacity-1.3.4-i486-1sl.tgz

If after trying that package and everything miraculously works, I'll reconfigure and recompile Audacity.

EDIT: If you are using SOHO alpha, you will have to enable Mic Boost using alsamixer from the terminal.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2008, 04:28:43 pm by Dweeberkitty » Logged

Registered Linux User #443399
Desktop: Intel Pentium D 3.33Ghz, 320GB hard drive, 2 gigs DDR2 533mhz RAM, NVIDIA Geforce 7800 GS, X2GEN 22" widescreen monitor;
Laptop: Dell Mini 9, Intel Atom 1.6Ghz, 1GB ram
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InTheWoods
Vectorite
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Posts: 302


« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2008, 11:43:30 am »

Quote
I had to set it to use the correct input and output settings.
I will hopefully be able to give that a try tommorow.

Quote
Hope in the woods finds something to satisfy
Actually as I posted above I used ffmpeg to make a test recording. This was with a 14 dollar microphone plugged into the microphone jack of a laptop. The goal was to make a simple recording of my son on his cello and if that worked buy a better microphone to make a simple home recording on the cheap. Well I've looked around on the web since I first posted; and it seems the next step up from  the cheapo talk to your buddies while you play counterstrike mic is in the hundred dollar range. This in turn requires a several hundred dollar hardware interface with your computer. Not what I had in mind for surprise recording for his mother of my son and his teacher playing a duet.

The Audacity problem is either solved or will be solved by Dweeberkitty. At least this helps all of  the Audacity users. But the problem of a little bit better microphone to record to my laptop doesn't look so promising. Unless someone can point me in another direction.

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