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Looking for audio recording software relevant to vinyl LPs


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#1 Village Baka

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Posted 18 May 2016 - 10:32 PM

Hello! I recently bought a turntable with a USB connection, for the purposes of converting a bunch of old vinyl records to audio CDs for easier listening. For anyone curious, it's a Numark TTUSB turntable. It even came with free software for recording the audio and splitting it into individual tracks. Neat!

 

...except the software is just awful. Specifically, you have to listen to the record live and manually insert breaks between tracks (which is an enormous pain) since it has zero editing capabilities, it only saves in WAV format and can't add any artist/album/track number metadata to the files, and it will ONLY record from USB; it can't recognize when you have it plugged in via 3.5mm microphone jack. It also seems to get cranky if you don't finish up the post-recording bookkeeping fast enough, as it's more than once shut down on me while I'm typing in the track names. It's pretty bad.

 

So my question is, never having done any audio work on a PC before, can anybody recommend a good piece of software for recording and editing audio, leaning towards converting LPs to digital? I don't feel like I need a full range of studio-grade features or anything like that. What I'm looking for specifically is something where I can record the whole album in one long chunk while I read a book or something, then easily chop it into individual tracks and add the metadata at my own leisure. As a bonus, some kind of filter to help mitigate the cracks and pops inherent in playing old vinyls would be amazing, too.

 

So, does anyone have a recommendation for me? If there isn't any good freeware audio software out there, I'm perfectly willing to go with a paid program so long as it's not subscription-based and meets my needs. Thank you for your time!



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#2 saw101

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Posted 18 May 2016 - 11:56 PM

Couldn't say for sure as I don't do vinyl to digital, but Audacity https://sourceforge.net/projects/audacity/ may just be what you need. It's freeware & open source.

 

Have a read at the following articles:

 

https://tweakhound.com/2013/05/28/converting-vinyl-records-to-digital-music-a-non-audiophiles-guide/

 

http://www.digitaltrends.com/home-theater/digitizing-your-record-collection/

 

http://www.computeraudiophile.com/content/486-guide-converting-analog-vinyl-digital-files-using-windows/

 

Just Google 'Converting Vinyl LPs To Digital' for more articles.


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#3 hedgeley

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 02:21 AM

Hi Village Baka,

 

I have to agree with saw101, I have used audacity to copy a cassette tape to digital.

 

Audacity will take any input you specify, it will allow you to split tracks, No them and add meta data (artist,album, track name and more)

 

There is also a large selection of filters you can employ (normalise,hiss, rumble, pops, etc)

 

The only downside(if it is a downside) is the learning curve,but you may well cope with that better than I.

 

Some reading from the vast Audacity documentation

 

http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/sample_workflow_for_lp_digitization.html

 

Good luck

 

Hedge 



#4 Village Baka

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 07:00 AM

Can't argue with free, I'll give Audacity a shot. And thank you both for the further reading! I think with all of this, I'll be able to get myself set up and properly converting my LPs in no time. I appreciate the suggestion!



#5 MajesticFailure

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Posted 21 May 2016 - 04:56 AM

I like Audacity. Sadly, its MP3 encoder gets a bit "tinny", you know, like empty, metallic, when you make a lo-fi mp3. But at least, like almost every mp3 encoder (are they all called "LAME encoders"?) you can add metadata.

 

You will still have to manually make the breaks with Audacity and just about any other sample editor or any digital audio workstation, unless they've got one which recognises pauses between tracks? However, splicing out tracks (you'll have to do that, rather than splice out the pauses) should be a matter of select, copy, then paste to a new window. Then save with metadata. 

 

Another thing is, do you really want to be recording via your mic socket? Are you sure the mic socket records in stereo? And would that be 16-bit (CD quality) or 24-bit (studio quality?) bit depth? And the sample rate?

 

Recordings done via your default computer sound card likely won't compare favourably to the original vinyl.

 

I'm not sure how to do this, perhaps connect the turntable via USB (btw why would you not want it via USB? Is USB poor quality?), if your recording software (not the one bundled with the turntable) doesn't recognise it, install ASIO4ALL, then select that as your audio driver in preferences, within the recording software. Mind you, Numark's own ASIO drivers have been pretty good in my experience. So, you then select your inputs bla bla bla, press record on the software, and press play on your turntable.

 

Alternatively, the phono method can be done by getting a soundcard, like the Numark DJ IO. Connect it by USB to your computer, and plug your turntable's stereo phono out pair, into the soundcard's stereo phono in pair. Or use line, if you have line outputs from the turntable too.

 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Numark-DJIO-Audio-Interface-Software/dp/B000S5Q2EK

"2 independent stereo outputs 1 microphone input with gain adjustment Headphones stereo output (jack 6.35) 24-bit audio Sample rate 44.1kHz and 88.2kHz Power supply throught USB or optional 9V external power supply"

 

^^^ appears that actually gives you 24-bit recording. I actually have this soundcard, but never used it for actual recording.

 

So, you can get any sound recording program, preferably one with a good mp3 encoder (l like Sony Acid Pro, but l'm sure Sony Acid Music Studio will have the same mp3 encoder, whilst being cheaper? Mind you, Sony Acid Pro and by extension, Acid Music Studio, are universally thought of as dead projects, no longer developed, l think the next best budget solution is Reaper, but you're in a world of pain if you want to set that up to do basic stuff - it was overcomplicated last time l used it, but l still aim to buy Reaper, but it might not be right for you. Failing all that, just use Audacity, and encode hi-quality mp3s, l'm sure they'd sound great, my only issues were with the lo-fi mp3s).


Edited by MajesticFailure, 21 May 2016 - 05:10 AM.


#6 MajesticFailure

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Posted 21 May 2016 - 04:59 AM

and then select your Numark ASIO driver as the audio device, and specify the inputs bla bla bla, then hit record on the software interface and play on the turntable.



#7 tharpdevenport

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 03:28 AM

I use Audicaity as well.  I've never really had much of a problem with it, except it woudl crash once in a while when I stopped recording, but I got a program Audacity recommends, that just pieces back the audio together with a little effort on your part.  But I'm now using an old version, I think new versions solved that.

 

On the version I got, I had to make some settings adjustments.  The old one I had came set to one channel mono and with a low qaulity recording rate.  I had to fix that and I went up to 96000 (it stuns me when people say they can't hear the difference).

 

With Audacity I do such things as: record from the sound card (I can record live streams in other words, but some other sound card setting changes are required [if you got a quality sound card that will let you] to silence other sources that cause noise), combined tracks, edit tracks, layer tracks, split audio to raise parts in seperate channels, envelop volume rasing, other stuff.  Very nice free tool. Since it works so well, obviously some company like Google will gobble it up and make sure it doesn't work so well any more in the future.






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