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I'm trying setup my Casio CTK-6000 electric keyboard to be able to be recorded through my Windows 10 computer using Audacity. I have this cable connected to the two "L/R Line Out" spots in the keyboard and I have connected the keyboard to the computer. Windows asks if what I am plugging in is a headphone or "speaker out". Whichever I choose, the keyboard appears nowhere under "recording devices".

I turn on the keyboard, open Audacity and go to Edit -> Preferences -> Devices. The option for the keyboard is nowhere in any of the dropdown menus (it's still just the default stuff). How do I get this setup to work?

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    Seems that you are connecting it to an output instead of an input. You need to connect the Casio to the microphone input, not to the headphone / speaker output (both share the same type of connection). – Lyd Jul 7 '16 at 2:08
  • Also, you have to search for your audio card in Audacity (the audio card is the one receiving the audio from your keyboard), not for the keyboard. – Lyd Jul 7 '16 at 2:09
  • It Archundia's comments don't solve your problem, tell us the exact make and model of your computer, or at least the model of the motherboard if it was home-built. – user19146 Jul 7 '16 at 2:11
  • @Archundia I don't think my computer has a microphone input. There seem to be two audio inputs, one that I would plug headphones into, and one that I would plug an external speaker into. They have different type of connections (the same plug wouldn't work on both - the external speaker port is smaller). Audio card? Basically I only see the same default options that are available when I don't have anything plugged in (the microphone, "windows input", and such). – Infamous911 Jul 7 '16 at 15:14
  • @alephzero My computer is an ASUS UX51. Not sure about more specific information right now since I don't have it in front of me. – Infamous911 Jul 7 '16 at 15:15
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Windows asks if what I am plugging in is a headphone or "speaker out". 

I would have expected you had three options, not the two that you mentioned: "headset", "headphones", and "speaker out". The "headset" option should let you record sound, but...

Like many laptops, according to this page https://www.asus.com/sg/Notebooks/UX51VZ/specifications/ your ASUS UX51 has a "combo audio socket". This is not really intended for what you want to do. The fundamental problem is that the computer can't both record and play back sounds through the one audio socket, so at best you would be continually swapping the plugs between your Casio keyboard to record, and your headphones or speakers when checking the recording you made with Audacity.

The cheapest option would be to get a simple "USB audio adaptor" like this one: https://www.scan.co.uk/products/dynamode-external-usb2-sound-card-20-adaptor-(usb-stick)-pc-mac

Note, this is not a recommendation for this specific device (I've never used it) - it's just an example of what these adapters look like, i.e. a "thumb drive plus some audio connectors". There are many similar devices available in the same price range.

That plugs into a USB port and gives you two sockets for "microphone in" and "headphones out". Audacity should recognise it as two Audio devices, one for input and one for output.

There are many similar devices for sale, and some only provide audio out (for example 7-channel surround sound) so make sure you get one that has an audio input socket - and if you don't need surround sound output, don't pay extra for something you will never use!

If you get serious about recordings, you would probably want to upgrade to a USB audio interface (not adapter) but that would be in a price range of say $100 and upwards, rather than $10 for a "get you started" adapter.

  • That USB device looks good. So I would plug the stereo end of the cable connected to the keyboard into the yellow port and my headphones into the black port and you think this setup will work? – Infamous911 Jul 7 '16 at 17:08
  • Would this work as well? Or are the types of connections this requires different? – Infamous911 Jul 7 '16 at 17:15
  • "Woould this work as well?" I would expect so. Note, all these adapters will only record your Casio in mono, if that's important to you. Actually, I only just noticed that the dynamode device also supports 5.1 surround sound output, which you probably don't want. – user19146 Jul 8 '16 at 2:58
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This is regarding connecting your Keyboard / Synthesizer to mac computer for recording. Make sure both mac and keyboard are switched on. Connect a stereo cable between the Keyboard and Mac computer. Click on system Preferences > Sound > Input and in the option "Use audio port for " Select Sound Input from the drop down menu. The sound input will change to Line in option and the Type will change to Audio Line-in port. Now open audacity. Increase the Mic volume to max or according to your requirement in Audacity as well as in the keyboard. Now click on the record button and start playing in your keyboard. You can see the keyboard sound getting recorded in Audacity. Once completed you can export it to your required choice.Stereo Cable

Sound Input

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If you are using Windows this answer is for you.

Requirements:

  1. aux 3.5mm male to male cable.

  2. USB 2.0 external sound card.

  3. Jack converter 3.5mm female to 6.35mm male.

Setup:

laptop <--> sound card <--> aux <--> jack converter <--> audio output/Phone slot of keyboard.

Setup Images: enter image description here

enter image description here

Sounds Settings: It will automatically select the USB device for sound but still, if it does not you can choose it and check whether it's connected or not anytime.

enter image description here

Audacity Settings:

Select 2-USB audio in both speaker and microphone as per shown in the image. enter image description here

Hope this helps. Enjoy recording.;)

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While USB audio is an option, there is an alternative simpler option that may be a bit more robust, i.e. use a TRRS mic / headphone slitter cable. Sometimes it comes in form of what is called a "Y" cable, that take the TRRS (i.e. a combined mic + headphone) jack, into a combination of TRS (for stereo headphone or speaker output) and TS (for mono mic input).

This combination may be preferable because:

  • It avoid the mechanical damage that most USB dongles suffer from lateral motion, push and shoves
  • It uses the high quality DACs that are already on-board most modern PCs
  • It is one less device to carry around and lose
  • It leads to slightly lesser battery power consumption on laptops (because most USB audio dongles are bus-powered, i.e. powered by your PC's USB socket itself)
  • It avoid adding another audio interface in the drop-down audio device selection menu for many audio applications, making it simpler for the user

On the other hand, a USB audio dongle is so inexpensive (only few dollars more than a TRRS Y-splitter cable), that it's perhaps something you won't fret over, if it broke or you lost it.

For those getting the TRRS Y-splitter cable, make sure that the 2 split ends are one for mic, other for headphone. Sometimes, there are Y-splitters available that are really duplicators / replicators, which makes the mic+headset combined connection available on 2 split ends. The latter is not what would help in this case.

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