Recording & Editing Software

The king of CD burning software in the Mac world is Roxio’s “Toast.” The full version includes a very nice piece of software called “Spin Doctor.” It’s extremely intuitive and super easy to use. The software will capture your recording as a single stream for up to 2 hours of recording time. Once you stop a session, you can either save to a file or edit it down into tracks on the spot. The interface allows you to send the mix to Toast for a CD copy.

Spin Doctor allows you to adjust the track lengths easily. This is where you want to find an accurate reference for the track lengths of the published CD. If you have matched the track lengths perfectly, then the disc will be recognized by Gracenote. iTunes will fill then in all the artist info, titles, year and other disc info. You may have a bit of editing to do there. I, for one, despise the genre name “Alternative.” To what? The CD will often have a different year from the vinyl, etc… Still, you will be assured that you have set the tracks correctly if everything matches.

After you open “Spin Doctor,” you will want to set the levels, check the turntable speed, and make any EQ adjustments. Listen with monitor headphones to verify the sound. Hit record and play the disc(s).

A few practical notes:

If you’re recording a double album, you will generally have one CD for each LP, as the standard CD holds only 80 minutes of audio recording. Look at the reference docs for the CD to see if you have the same track order, etc.

If making a mix of 45s, you can hit pause in between flipping discs to make sure you don’t extend beyond the two-hour session limit.

Set a timer if you’re going to walk away from the disc. Most LPs are about 20 minutes a side. 

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Wiring directions for connecting your turntable to the mixer, with output to the computer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The jpeg below gives nice BIG arrows to show the basic connections. 

1) Connect the ground cable of the turntable to the grounding nut on the DJ Mixer. This eliminates the hum that you will otherwise have in your recordings. 

2) Connect the RCA plugs with the left output on the left channel of the mix and the right output on the right channel (White – left; Red – right). This way you can easily control and adjust for variations in phono disc mastering.

3) If you plan to record from line level devices (Cassette decks, reel to reel, iPad, laptop, anything that has a plug and makes noise…), add a line input cable. You don’t need to split the signal like for turntables.

4) Connect an RCA to 3.5mm plug to the Record output and connect the 3.5mm plug to your computer. 

5) You’ll want a nice pair of headphones to plug into the mixer’s headphone jacks so you can monitor the sound mix. Other than that, you are ready to start playing around with your home recording studio.

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