I'm an amateur when it comes to all things audio, but I've been put in charge of the audio system at our church.

We're making the switch from recording sermons directly to CD to recording to a laptop. I've set up our Mixer (a Phonic Impact II) so that one of its aux channels feeds into the laptop via a Berhinger USB audio interface ( a U202, IIRC). We're using Audacity to record.

Recording works OK if we use a lapel mic. In other words, we get a good level of signal showing up in audacity's waveform. But if we use our shotgun mics on the lectern, the signal is too quiet on the laptop (very low peaks in the waveform).

I've just installed two AKG C747s on the lectern in the hope that that would solve the problem, but it hasn't altered anything.

I've tried turning up the gain on the shotgun mics, but that hasn't helped. Neither does turning up the gain in audacity itself - it doesn't bring the signal to anywhere near the level of the lapel mic.

What am I doing wrong? And how can I put it right?

  • Just to be sure: you have phantom power turned on, right? – leftaroundabout Mar 31 '12 at 1:49
  • I think so. We accidentally had the channel turned on when we plugged the microphone in, and it made a big bump of a noise. Would it do that if phantom power wasn't on? – Samuel Jack Mar 31 '12 at 7:28
  • Also, we can hear the output from the shotgun mics fine over the speakers: would we be able to if phantom power was off? – Samuel Jack Mar 31 '12 at 7:44
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    Normally, without phantom power, plugging microphones in should be silent – not always, though. But you wouldn't be able to hear the output fine over the speakers. If that works already, the problem can only lie with the mixer. Have you tried comparing the lapel microphone and a shotgun microphone on the same channel? Another obvious reason would be a turned-down Aux send on the shotgun's channel. – leftaroundabout Mar 31 '12 at 11:48
  • I haven't tried comparing on the same channel. Good idea - I'll give that a go later. – Samuel Jack Mar 31 '12 at 13:47

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