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Music, Audio, and Podcasting Do you use your Mac to create music? This is the place for discussions on creating and editing music on the Mac!

Vinyl Recording on Mac

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Member Since: Jul 25, 2008
Location: Manchester, England
Posts: 45
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Hi All,

I have read various other threads on this topic but they leave me a bit unsure so I was hoping to create a definite answer for me (and others!!)

I have a large collection of house records I want to digitize and need advice on the best way to do it.

1) I have a turntable, mixer and amp. How can I connect these up to my MacBook? Will I need a preamp or does the mixer do this

2) What is the best software to use to capture the sound? I have recorded some records previously using a Cowen iAudio. This captured the sound fine but levels and quality are all over the place. Am I better getting some software just to clean up this sound. Or is it better to start again and clean up the sound as I go

Ideally, when I finish, I want all the recordings to be of the same sound level and quality.

Hope some of you can help me with this as it's a project I've been trying to get done for ages.
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Hi. I have made hundreds of vinyl rips, so can help here.

Ok, you can conceivably use your amp, depending on it's outputs, but, the problem with using line-in on the Macbook is getting a good connection with a suitable level. You are far better getting a USB interface to be honest. I use and Edirol UA1-EX. It gives you many more options for quality for a start, being capable of recording at 96000khz/24 Bit. This you can't do using line in.
Now, getting a device like this (£60 btw) will allow you to use your current equipment, because you can connect directly to the Edirol from the normal line out sockets on the amp.
I personally use a small pre-amp in between my turntable and the Edirol, as it's cumbersome using my home cinema amp!
Software wise, you can't beat Audio Hijack Pro to be honest. Loads of format and quality options once again.
Something else to consider. Your turntable may have a built in pre-amp, many do, and you can just connect this to your Macbook if so, and if you can get the right lead. You will still need software though.
Audacity is a pretty good alternative to Audi Hijack too, and is free.
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