Convert Tape to CD: Recording in Mono?

Dennis Faas's picture

Infopackets Reader Dion E. writes:

" Dear Dennis,

I am trying to convert a tape to CD by transferring the audio to my computer, and then recording it to CD using my CD burner. To convert the tape to CD, I am using an audio cable to go from my earphone jack of my tape player to the sound card of my computer. The problem is that my computer is recording the tape audio in 1-channel mono sound (and not stereo!). I am reasonably sure that the original recording is in 2-channel stereo. What should I do? Thanks in anticipation for any help you can offer. "

My response:

I have a few suggestions off the top of my head. Either one (or more) of the following may apply:

a) The recording isn't true stereo [possible]. Listen to the recording with *stereo* earphones and ensure the recording is in true, distinctive stereo with left and right channels.

b) The cable you're using to go from the tape player to the sound card is a mono cable [unlikely]. This is highly unlikely, but you would need to somehow verify this. If you purchased the cable recently, check the packaging or call the store you bought it from. If the cable has a left and right RCA connection on it, it should be stereo.

c) The cable isn't plugged in all the way [very possible]. Make sure the cable is plugged in all the way -- snugly -- on both sides of the connection. From my own experience, earphone-type connections are very finicky connections.

d) The software you're using isn't recording in 2-channel stereo [very, very possible]. When you create a new recording, make sure your preferences are to record in both left and right channels (hint: the recording *should* display both left and right channels on the screen). If it does not, download an audio editor that supports stereo recordings.

Freeware Sound Editor, Part 2

e) You're using the MIC port to record the audio to your sound card (instead of the "line in" port). Note that the MIC (microphone) port of a sound card only records in mono; if you have a "line-in" port on the sound card, use that instead of the MIC port. Of all the suggestions listed, I would bet on this as being the cause of your problem.

RE: "How do I convert or record ... ?"

If you have any questions on recording or converting either: audio cassettes (tapes), records, 8MM, or VHS to CD or DVD, please search for the topics via our search engine. I've covered these topics extensively [to death!].

Click to search for: Convert, Record, Audio, Video, 8MM, Tape, DVD, CD, VHS, MP3, rip.

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