Plus, you can even do some editing so you can eliminate extra blank space at the beginning or end of your tacks. Or, if you've always hated listening to some performer talk between tracks YOU CAN ELIMINATE extraneous dialog (the performer who won't shut up between tracks) with Windows Sound Recorder too. And that, you could never do with your LPs. Copying to CDs is great!
Oh, and one more thing. If you think that Windows Sound Recorder is limited to just 60 seconds like it comes when you get your computer, you're in for a big surprise.
So, if you do want to use Windows Sound Recorder to record a message or a presentation that you want to be more than just 60 seconds, I'll show you the big secret here too.
So, in short, don't sell this little program short. You'll get perfect sound. It's quick. It's easy and you can use it right now.
Using Sound Recorder To Copy Your LPs To CDs Or Anything Else Too.
|Here's the Windows Sound Recorder. It's a little utility that comes free.
It's included with every Windows 98, ME and XP machine. And you can instantly
use it to 1.) Record your LP tracks. 2.) Separate tracks, 3.) Edit your Tracks
and 4.) Save your wave files so that you can make your audio CDs.
Sure it's a little more cumbersome than using Musicmatch which we recommend, but it will make your LP copies. And what's most important it that it will make them perfectly every time.
Let's see how. There are just a few little tricks that I'll show you that almost nobody knows about. So, now you're a real pro and like any DAKonian, you're way ahead of the crowd.
|So, first, where is Windows Sound Recorder? It's in your Start Menu. So just
go to the bottom left of your Windows desktop and click the Start Button.
|OK, depending on which operating system you're using, just pick all programs,
or programs and then Accessories, then Entertainment and finally Click on the
Speaker Icon that says 'Sound Recorder'. Now we're ready to go.
But first, we have to set sound recorder up to make the .WAV files we need
for audio CDs. So Click the properties button.
|So here we are in properties. I've put arrows to show you that
your sound recorder comes set up at PCM 22050kHz, 8bit, mono. This is because
it's really set up for a microphone. What we're going to do is click the 'Convert
Now' button to the right of the 'all formats' drop down menu. Oh and it's important
to do this now BEFORE you record, because you want to capture the sound in the
same quality that you'll use for your CDs.
So when we click Covert now, we get this popup box which lets us adjust the
sound. Interesting isn't it that this little sound recorder can do so much. Look
at all the options you have.
Anyway, at the bottom, we're going to select 44,100kHz, 16 Bit Stereo. That's the right setting for audio CDs. It's already set for PCM which is Pulse Code Modulation, which is what we want to make .WAV files. Finally, we want to click the Save As button because we want to save this setting.
Sound Recorder won't remember what you've set, so you'll have to come here to reset it whenever you turn on your computer. But don't worry, you won't even have to do that when we're finished.
|So this is the dialog box for giving our settings a name. I chose LPcopy,
but you can call it anything you want.
OK, now comes the super secret of how to use Sound Recorder to copy your LPs.
If you've ever used Sound Recorder you know that it only records for up to
one minute. Well, that sure won't copy a 2-1/2 minute to 3 minute track.
Ah, but I've got a workaround for you that YOU WILL ONLY HAVE TO DO ONCE. OK, here's the big secret. We're going to make a copy LP template. And here's how to do it.
Start Sound Recorder with nothing turned on. No sound. It will start to record and the little green line will stay flat. Around 40 or 50 seconds, click the stop button (the square one). This is where it gets good.
Then click the Record button again and guess what. You've just increased the time from 50-60 seconds up to about 100 seconds. When it gets near the end again, (about 100 seconds but it really doesn't matter) Click Stop again and then click Record.
Let's look below.
|You see here I've stopped the recording at 92.90 seconds (no particular reason)
and I'm ready to click record again to add another 50 or 60 seconds onto my LP
Look Below again.
So here we are at 240.20 seconds (4 minutes). This is more than enough to copy
most songs (tracks) and this will be your first template.
It's all easy once you know how to create these easy templates.
|So, here we are saving our template. Remember, you can call it anything you
want. Just pick something that makes sense to you and that you save somewhere
you can easily find it.
|Now comes the fun part. You're ready to record. Here's what you do. Just open
Windows Recorder and then select and open your Template file that you just made.
Viola, you've got 240.20 seconds to record onto. And guess what? You've also got the settings already set to .WAV 44,100. Remember I told you you wouldn't have to do it again. So in short you're ready to go.
The rest is easy. Just make sure that your slider is all the way to the left at 0, and start your turntable or cassette deck and hit record. Make sure you don't start the actual sound on the record before you hit record or you won't have a nice intro. So, you can even start Sound Recorder first and we'll edit it in a few minutes. It's really easy.
OK, now I assume you've recorded a track or two, or even a whole side. Anyway, wasn't it just as easy as I said? Now let's edit our track(s).
Oh, this is going to be fun. Here' how you get rid of the blank space at the
beginning and end of the tracks that you don't want.
AND LOOK AT THIS. EVEN IF YOU'RE USING MUSICMATCH OR SOME OTHER EDITOR, YOU CAN USE SOUND RECORDER TO GET RID OF TALKING AT LIVE PERFORMANCES at the beginning and end of your tracks HERE TOO.
Here's how you do it.(First, either record your track into sound recorder, or open a track or tracks you've recorded elsewhere in Sound Recorder).
Then, Click the play button and then grab the handle of the slider while it's moving. Play with it a bit and you find that you can adjust the position pretty easily till you get it right at the start or end of your music. (You'll get used to ANTICIPATING the sound breaks just before you want to stop pretty easily.) When you're there, click the stop button. This is really easy to do after you play with it a few times to get the hang of it.
You may have to futz with the slider a bit till you get used to it. But, you'll find pretty quickly that if you look for the long black space at the beginning or end of your track that it's not hard to find. And the only time it's at all hard is when you're removing someone's dialog that comes right up to the music.
You'll be able to do it. It just takes some practice to get used to it. But, it's really worth the effort to get rid of the talking so you don't have to listen to it every time you want to hear the track. You see, the CD is really much better than the record.
Anyway, once you've got the music stopped right where you want it, scroll down to the next picture.
And, here it is right in the edit menu. You can click EITHER Delete
Before Current Position if you're at the beginning of your track or Delete After
Current Position if you're at the end of what you want to keep.
And that's it. You've now recorded AND edited your track with perfect fidelity using the Simple Windows Sound Recorder. And I want to assure you that whether you choose to use our suggested Musicmatch recording software, a $500 recording program, or Windows Sound Recorder, the quality of your copied LPs will be 100% identical. The same. No difference. It's just that simple.
|Oh and one VERY IMPORTANT thing. DO NOT SAVE the file you just made
of your LP. Use SAVE AS and give it the name you want to use from now on.
If you save it over your template file, you'll have to make a new template, which
while it's no big deal is a bit of a pain. I always make a second copy of my template
and keep it in a folder in case I mess up and hit save instead of save as.
Oh and speaking of messing up, remember you can't really hurt anything when you're copying your LPs or editing them. Feel free to edit them several times if you want to get just the right breaks. As long as you use SAVE AS, you'll never have to re-record your LP copies. This is really easy and fun to do.
Now that you're done, it's time for you to pass your newly copied files through the Click, Pop and Hiss filter so that you sound will be totally awesome before you burn your CDs.
Enjoy your new digital sound.
| A few last things that I want to mention.
Oh, one more thing. If you have a Sound Blaster Sound Card, you may have a really powerful .WAV editor that works just like Sound Recorder but is much bigger and allows for some really impressive editing.
Most people don't even know they have it. If you have a Sound Blaster Sound Card, or if you're not sure, just open your start menu (like I have above) and see if you have a folder marked Creative. If you do, then look for 'Wave Studio'. Open that and follow my instructions for Sound Recorder. You'll get exactly the same quality recording, but editing is more sophisticated and you can even remove a few words in the middle of a song, fade intros and exits and more.
But, remember Sound Recorder will give you the exact same quality sound. So either way, just consider this an extra tip.
Need I remind you again at this point that it's illegal, immoral and fattening to share your musical treasures with others? Don't make copies for friends. Don't sell them. And well, don't cheat. It's easy to forget that our old treasured albums are still under copyright. But chances are that they are still protected.
So why not head for the beach, the park or the hills and sit down and listen to your great sounding music. And whether you're listening to standard audio CDs or the new MP3 CDs with up to 10 hours per disc, you've just given yourself a lifetime gift that you'll enjoy for many, many years to come. And you did it all with Sound Recorder which came with your computer for free. Isn't that neat?
Enjoy. . . Drew
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