TASCAM US-144 Rookie Problems...PLEASE HELP!!!

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Member Since: Jan 03, 2011

I am brand new to recording, I just bought a tascam us-144 interface, and two condesor mics for recording basic guitar and vocals, my computer has a built in mic already. I am pretty sure everything is hooked up right because the lights are turning green when you speak into the mics, but it will not record. I am using audacity (it worked with the built in mic but sounded bad, which is why I bought the interface and better mics) when I disable the built in mic, the input level on audacity is stuck at the bottom and if I move it, it automatically turns mute on??? I am so lost, any help would be greatly appreciated

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Prince CZAR-ming
Since: Apr 08, 2004

Jan 05, 2011 08:10 am

Hey Logan, welcome to the HRC.

Yes, PC recording can be daunting, but there's hope, as most issues are resolvable, though not always easy to see.

First, I'd suggest a better multi-tracker program. Audacity is OK, but not very DAW - robust. I'd suggest Reaper, as it's shareware, and very competent. I've been using it for years, and am very pleased.


Now, I'd disable the onboard mic, as you have, and forget it exists.

You have the US144 basically working, as you can see movement / lights. That's good.

Plug in 1 MIC to left channel, then turn on phantom power, as condenser MICs need the DC voltage to operate. BTW, it helps us to know what equipment you have (PC, MICs, etc). Turn up the gain until you see the light for signal coming on most of the time signal is present, but just under clip. I think the signal light turns red when clipping. Avoid clipping =).

In software (I'll assume Reaper, cuz that's what I know), change your audio preferences to indicate you're using the US144 inputs and outputs. Create a track (CTRL-T) to receive the incoming signal. Click on the little meter and select which input to listen on (input 1, or left). Arm the track for recording. You probably need to turn on the MONITOR button too (below the ARM and Track meter, looks like a little speaker).

Now you should hear what you're sending into the MIC. Plug in headphones so you can hear yourself, but that sound doesn't get re-recorded back into your track, and you should be able to record a track.

You can use the two mics for a stereo track, or create 2 mono tracks to receive each MIC signal separately.

To create more tracks, Un-ARM the tracks already recorded, and create new tracks, tell them where to listen on, ARM them for recording, and turn on those MONITOR buttons. Press record and you'll hear the previous tracks along with hearing your incoming new tracks.

Repeat these steps, 1 or 2 at a time, and create your masterpiece. Viola! Musical Nirvana!

Hope that made sense, have fun.

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