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Recording from vinyl

Recording from vinyl
January 27, 2008 04:49PM
For Chanukah my mom got me a Numark USB turntable, in part with the hopes that I'll be recording digital copies of the old children's records she had for benefit of my impending progeny. I'm sure that will happen, but for now I'm mostly recording old indie rock 45s.

Sample playlist thus far:

Mary Lou Lord, Some Jingle Jangle Morning (When I'm Straight) (Kill Rock Stars)
Bats, Live at WFMU (Merge)
Syd Straw, 2000 Miles/I Go To Sleep medley (Singles Only Label)
Ida, Poor Dumb Bird EP with Richard and Linda Thompson and Prince covers (Simple Machines)

I'm the farthest thing from an audiophile but might benefit from some guidance on how to do this somewhat more effectively.

I've got the Numark TTUSB, Audacity software (came with the turntable), a USB connection, and a Mac running OSX 10.4 with iTunes.

What I'm doing thus far is recording the songs track-by-track as Audacity projects, trimming vinyl hiss where possible, and using the software to eliminate pops and clicks, which is mildly effective. Then I export as AIFF, since Audacity has no built-in capacity to export direct to MP3 (you're supposed to use a third-party app, rather suspiciously called LAME, but it hasn't installed for me successfully). I find it odd, by the way, that Audacity's "Save As" options keep getting greyed out in the middle of doing the projects, but that's probably user error. When I have the AIFF files, I import the AIFF files to iTunes by converting to AAC (you hold down the "option" key and under "Advanced," select "Convert to AAC".)

Then I add the ID3 tags, find the artwork somewhere online, add the appropriate iTunes playlists, and sync with the iPod for active listening. Could also burn to CD as needed from iTunes, etc.

I imagine there are more timely / efficient ways to undertake this process and would welcome suggestions.
Re: Recording from vinyl
February 02, 2008 03:18AM
I've been through this. What I'd recommend doing is saving files to your desktop, pulling each file into Microsoft Media Player (assuming you have it/can get it easily), then moving to iTunes (assuming that is your preferred format).

The issue isn't Audacity, the issue is Apple vs. Microsoft. Audacity is catering to what they (rightly) perceive to be the majority of users. Apple doesn't make an effort to reach out to Audacity, because they (rightly) feel they are the market leader, and Windows is going down...

That said, it is easier if you go through the WMP. Why the Audacity people thought they were backing a winner there, I don't know.

As far as straight ripping and burning, I've been a fan of Nero for several years, but I've never been able to get that to work seamlessly with Audacity, either.

I hope this helps.
Re: Recording from vinyl
February 02, 2008 11:04PM
That's pretty interesting as a suggestion/analysis on the Apple/Windows front. I hadn't thought to use Media Player.

What I did was find the LAME app (http://lame.buanzo.com.ar/, about which a colleague wrote, "although I realize it looks kinda sketchy, it really does work fine.") I can now export right to MP3, which is advantageous, although I still deal with the usual vinyl hiss and whatnot.

I'm not an audiophile, like I said, so it's nice ot hear the tunes at least.

Recorded today:

1. Material Witness, "Kim the Waitress" promo single
2. k. (Karla Schickele), "Not Here" / "The Plan" 45. "The Plan" is a Low cover.
Re: Recording from vinyl
February 02, 2008 11:32PM

> 1. Material Witness, "Kim the Waitress" promo single

Re: Recording from vinyl
February 02, 2008 11:43PM
Ah, are you dogging on the song or the band? I liked them OK although I would rather listen to the Green Pajamas compilation myself.
Re: Recording from vinyl
February 03, 2008 06:18AM
what about "valerie loves kato kaelin"? winking smiley
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