Analog Recording Question

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MaxRady, Jan 11, 2008.

  1. MaxRady macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2007
    #1
    Hello everyone,

    I have a question for all you audio recording buffs out there. I have the black MacBook (2.16 GHz) and i am trying to take some old cassette tapes and get them on my computer. I dont really know how to go about doing this, what program i need, or anything. I know it's possible, but how is the problem. If anyone out there has any advice, please, your help would be amazing. Thank you!

    Max
     
  2. Shagrat macrumors 6502a

    Shagrat

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2004
    Location:
    London
    #2
    Well, obviously you will need some hardware to play the cassettes on! Preferably a stereo cassette deck, if you have one, assuming that the source audio is stereo.

    You would then need a stereo lead to go to the audio input on your Macbook from the cassette deck. The input is a 3.5 mm stereo jack. The other end of the cable should match the outputs from your cassette deck, usually on RCA phono sockets. So Cassette out to Macbook in. Works fine for me, level wise.

    You could get QuickTime Pro, and that would be all you need software wise. So when connected as above, I launch Quicktime, set audio in to internal input line in, and create new audio recording.

    If you want to edit the recordings, then there are several programs that will do. Audacity is free, and whilst I have never used it myself, it seems to be well thought of.

    Really quite simple!

    Any further ideas, anyone?
     
  3. MaxRady thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2007
    #3
    Ok, well i already have Quicktime Pro, but on my stereo i have an AUX IN that i actually use to play my MacBook through, so the sound comes thorugh the stereo, but i dont know what to do for the Cassette out on the stereo. Any help?
     
  4. Soschil macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Location:
    Copenhagen
    #4
    If your stereo is an all-in-one unit, you could use the headphone socket. Connect that to audio in on your Mac - but remember to turn the sound on your stereo down before you do anything else. Then you have to check the levels to make sure the sound isn't distorted on your mac - trial and error. Remember the output from the headphone socket is amplified, so turn it WAY down to start. I'm not sure but turning it up too high could concievably damage the audio in on the Mac.

    I haven't done this on my Mac, but I used this method more than once on my old PC and I assume it'll work on a Mac as well.

    Good luck :)
     
  5. MaxRady thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2007
    #5
    Yeah that sounds like a good method of attack, now i dont have a 3.5 mm to 3.5 mm cord handy, im assuming i can pick one up at a radioshack or something..but if anyone else has any other method then let me know, if this works then i will be more than happy, thank you!
     
  6. ashjamben macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
    Location:
    Shanghai, China
    #6
    I put vinyl's onto my macbook using two RCA outs from my vinyl player in the 3.5mm input, into garageband. Then import into itunes. done :)
     
  7. Soschil macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Location:
    Copenhagen
    #7
    You didn't need a preamp?

    I'm thinking about doing this, but I'd imagined using getting my trusty old Nad amp out of storage to use it as a preamp.
     
  8. MaxRady thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2007
    #8
    when importing to garageband, do i need to make sure volume levels are at a certain point or will it automatically adjust?
     
  9. DocSmitty macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2008
    Location:
    Lincoln, NE
    #9
    It's possible his turntable has an integrated amp. I suppose it's less likely but also possible that you could adjust the input volume up enough where it was not necessary. Third option being what you mentioned, a preamp.
     
  10. bgalizio macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    #10
    If you do vinyl, you definitely need a phono preamp (or your turntable needs to have one integrated). Why? Because phono preamps provide the RIAA EQ curve to vinyl records. This is essential for your vinyl to sound "right," as the vinyl is recorded such that this non-linear EQ curve needs to be applied to the mix. I think it has something to do with how deep the grooves need to be for low frequencies, so vinyl can circumvent that by applying an EQ curve after the fact.
     
  11. Soschil macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Location:
    Copenhagen
    #11
    I thought so. That you need a RIAA, that is;)

    I didn't know that that was what the RIAA did, though. I thought it was simply an amp, raising the voltage of the signal - whatever amount you get out of the minuscule coils in an MM or MC cartridge it can't be much.
     
  12. bgalizio macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    #12
    I believe it does that as well. But, the main this is the EQ curve. I'm sure there is some sort of software solution out there that would apply the exact curve, though.
     
  13. Oetz macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    Location:
    Germany / Erlangen
    #13
    i am using Audio Hijack for recording my tapes and vinyls or other stuffs.
    my opinion , that´s the best way.
     

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