using Audacity to copy tapes to laptop

  Carafaraday 13:55 18 Nov 2008

Can I copy from the hi fi to the laptop using the microphone socket as input? There seems to be some doubt as to whether this is a good idea - something to do with volume level - but there is no other input option as far as the laptop is concerned.

  hiwatt 14:24 18 Nov 2008

Yes.Take a line out(or headphone socket) from your hifi to the line in(mic)on the computer.Just go into control pannel and sound and audio devices first and make sure the volumes aren't full.Don't have the volume on the hifi to loud either just incase you blow anything.You can alter the level in audacity.

  Carafaraday 14:27 18 Nov 2008

hiwatt - many thanks for your r eply. I didn't know you could adjust the volume intake (?) from control panel - that's reassuring. Have you any tips as to what level I should set the volume at either in Audacity or via control panel (or both). I'm pretty nervous about the whole thing! I've got the cable but haven't yet been brave enough to download Audacity - just need a wee bit of encouragement.....

  Carafaraday 15:09 18 Nov 2008

OK, I've downloaded Audacity and am trying to make some sense of it all. I have a choice of input of 'mic volume' or 'stereo mix' - which should I pick?

  Technotiger 15:45 18 Nov 2008

Just experiment, you will not blow anything up! Start with mic volume for input.

  Carafaraday 16:04 18 Nov 2008

Have tried both mic volume and stereo mix - sadly there is a total lack of response. Presumably I should be able to see the green and red monitor things dancing around a bit? I am concerned that the old hi fi simply can't communicate with the laptop. Have tried jacks in all possible outlets but without success. Am I doing/not doing something very stupid?

  Technotiger 16:20 18 Nov 2008

On your laptop make sure that you have checked the settings in Control Panel>Sounds and Audio Devices and also make sure that if you are using say, the mic volume, that mic is not muted - you should have a volume control icon (a little speaker) in your System Tray at bottom right of screen, right-click on that icon to check settings.

  Carafaraday 16:24 18 Nov 2008

Have checked both the wee speaker in system tray and control panel - everything looks to be ok - nothing muted that I can see. Thanks for your interest.

  Technotiger 16:29 18 Nov 2008

Any old hifi with at least a headphone outlet, should be able to communicate with any pc with a mic inlet. However, I am not familiar with Audacity, have never used it, so can't fully advise you what settings to make.

  Carafaraday 16:39 18 Nov 2008

I think the problem may be that I am using (or trying to use) two jacks for the outgoing bit - there is a choice of different outlets on the back of the hifi but none seem to work - I am using the microphone input bit on the laptop. It could well be that the hifi simply isn't capable of communicating this way and I should have gone for a basic headphones to microphone lead - but I still feel that it may just be me doing something daft.

  Woolwell 16:40 18 Nov 2008

In Audacity - Edit - Preferences and on the Audio I/O check that you have mic selected.

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