Transferring Cassette from Tape Recorder to PC

  calonlan 16:14 08 Sep 2007

I have read the excellent articles on this subject in Digital Postings, but mine is slightly and annoyingly different.
I am a " Silver" ex Entertainer and for many years have used a Technics Tape Recorder which was adapted to make another line out, apart from phonos, by putting a jack socket in the back which then went to my Amp which fed my speakers.
Fine, but now I want to transfer tapes to my PC via the Windows Sound Recorder, I have tried but no sucess.I have a Jackplug Hi fi size which goes into my socket on Tape Rec and the other end has a smaller ( Computer ?) jack for input.
When I try recording the bar on the SRrc goes across quickly and the reording ends half way or less., there is no sound. Obviously I am doing something wrong and would appreciate your expertise.
On my Soundcard at the back I have 3 sockets. Yellow marked Mic, White with a squiggly arrow which has my Monitor speaker wire and also my Aux speakers both in an adaptor. The third socket Grey, again with an arrow thingy ( sorry I am completely untechnical). Ihave tried the Outline fom the Tape Rec in all three but no success.
I have not tried it in another Mic socket I have on the front of my PC as Iam told it will be distorted
My PC is a 6 month old ACER Aspire and I am running Windows XP. I have tried the Sound Recorder HELP but it is too complicared for me., what they say about recording does not work for me.!!
I do hope you can understand my very unprofessional attempt at explanation and if possible help me (in easy terms) !!!!!
Many thanks.

  holme 16:42 08 Sep 2007

This topic invariably triggers lively debate!

Some say you can simply connect from the headphone socket of a cassette player to the Line In socket of a PC and use the Sound Recorder.

Others (me included) say that doesn't (and indeed cannot) work because the sound level is far, far too low for re-recording purposes.

Use the microphone socket instead and, as you say, that invariably results in massive overload and mega-distortion.

Have you any way of finding out what the "Grey socket with an arrow thingy" (!) is for? If it's an OUT socket, then clearly it can't help. The LINE IN socket is normally black.

I'm afraid I don't have a definitive answer for any of this except to say I've never got it to work satisfactorily either. But depending on whether you wish to throw serious money at it, I see Maplin have (potentially) the very thing, with a USB connection to the PC, and just reduced to £99.99, see click here HTH.

  DJ-Garry 16:43 08 Sep 2007

You need one of these:

click here

  holme 16:56 08 Sep 2007

Clearly SupaGaz and Holme are on the same frequency! (If you'll pardon the pun).

Just a thought. Although no detail are given, you may well find that the 'recording software' will give you lots of extra features not present in Sound Recorder etc, e.g. noise-reduction circuitry etc. But note that the track divisions on tape are not automatically detected so manual editing may be called for.

  calonlan 17:22 08 Sep 2007

Yes thank you Holme and Supagaz for your help.
I am afraid that as I am not particularly affluent at present, I will have to shelve the idea for the moment. I think the new USB recorders sound brilliant. I have another, partly related, problem inasmuch as I am going blind rather quickly, and thought if the way I suggested was easy I could get the job done before the inevitable happens, but you never know, if I drop enough hints, my rather large family might put one in my Xmas stocking.!!!
Thanks and Regards,

  hastelloy 17:34 08 Sep 2007

I use my PC's mike socket and input direct from a cassette player headphone socket, the Aux Out from a reel to reel tape recorder or from a record deck through a pre-amp (less than £10). I'm not very technical so don't understand the system but was advised by my local HI-Fi dealer (NOT a chain) and it works. I use Magix Audio Cleaning Lab to remove extraneous noises (mostly from vinyl).

  hastelloy 17:35 08 Sep 2007

Audio Cleaning Lab controls the input volume to eliminate distortion.

  Diemmess 17:38 08 Sep 2007

You don't need to wait for Christmas....

I have used this pre-amp from Maplin to transfer both vinyl and tape played on Technics separates.

The signal from both players needs to be "adjusted" by the pre-amplifier and fed into the normal Line_in socket on the sound card.

The pre-amp comes with phono leads and any extra you might need can be bought at any half-decent HiFi/TV shop.

Download the freebie Audacity, it is a splendid program for saving and simple editing of the track you have just recorded. you can also export the file in a number of formats.

  Diemmess 17:39 08 Sep 2007
  holme 17:39 08 Sep 2007

If it's any consolation, someone with exactly the same need to transfer cassettes to PC recently did a trawl and couldn't find any suitable hardware for less than £350!

If you can only find a conventional LINE IN socket on the PC (usually a 3.5mm jack socket, coloured black), I believe connecting that to the phono OUT sockets or the extra jack socket on the tape recorder will do the job.

I haven't used it myself, but Audacity seems to be recommended by many people for recording software (free), see click here

Best wishes and good hinting [sic]...

  calonlan 18:08 08 Sep 2007

Thank you again everybody your info will be very helpful to me Marvin42 and Diemmess, I think I have cracked the Soundcard connections but I don't have any coloured Black. The Mic is obvious, the middle one is to the speakers and monitor on a connector so I can only assume ( good eh ) that the last one is the line in Whey Hey !!!!

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