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09-11-2019, 01:06 PM
JPMedia JPMedia is offline
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I'm currently working on a project that requires capturing a recording from a 1994 broadcast of the Nickelodeon programming block "SNICK."

Normally I would use my XP capture rig for this task, but I believe my Turtle Beach Santa Cruz sound card is malfunctioning. For reasons beyond my understanding, when recording audio with my Santa Cruz the left channel is both muted and distorted. Troubleshooting further up the capture chain confirms that it is in fact the sound card and not cables, capture devices, etc. CD, DVD, and previously recorded audio playback is unaffected by this distortion. I have not yet attempted to reinstall the Turtle Beach drivers, but I am curious if anyone on the forum might have suggestions as to how I might fix this problem. Otherwise I may purchase another Turtle Beach Santa Cruz.

In the meantime, I am capturing using a Windows 7 laptop and an ATI 600 USB capture device. After some initial test captures in VirtualDub, I quickly became aware of consistently peaking audio levels. A few searches later led me to discover that editing the Windows registry entry for the ATI 600 USB allows a user to manually set the recording volume. However, after a number of failed attempts at editing the registry, I have decided to use an amplifier with a volume control knob to manually lower the volume of the incoming audio signal. This solution seems to work for the time being, but I can't help but wonder if there are any potential disadvantages to using this method.
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09-11-2019, 11:59 PM
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jwillis84 jwillis84 is offline
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The Turtle Beach Santa Cruz sound card is "very" advanced for its day.

It defaults to 4 channel (or more commonly called 4 speaker mode). This gives you (4 sliders) for positioning the sound. If any one of those sliders is acciidentally "knocked" to zero. You could get the effect you are observing.

First suggestion:

Open the Turtle Beach Santa Cruz "Sound Mixer" (its specific to the Turtle Beach Sound Card and should be in your system tray. Look over to the Left, the mode will say "4 speakerl". Use the dropdown to select 2 speaker mode.

Using it in 2 speakermode is simply "stereo" mode and eliminates the possibility of other controls being mistakenly set by a half.

Next find the Up and Down "sliders" for output and the lookup (up) at the top for the Left and Right "sliders" for position, make sure its centered. < That should take care of what you hear from your computer in "playback"

The recording "sliders" are on a different page and can be set differently from the playback "sliders"

4 speaker mode has 16 "sliders", that's 16 chances of getting something "set wrong" by mistake.

2 speaker mode has 8 "sliders", that's 8 chances of getting something "set wrong" by mistake.

My guess is reducing the haystack by 1/2 will make your troubleshooting easier.

NOTE: its also "possible" your source signal is "mono". VCRs started all mono, then added an extra track for dubbing in music later.. then added a wholey new feature called "stereo" with dual tracks. A single switch on the VCR could switch between those tape sources, and if its in the wrong position that can also cause the problem your describing. [Mono/MIX/STEREO] on high end late model VCRs, earlier VCRs might have any mixture of settings, on defaulted to output mono only.

Depending on whether the sound that is coming into your capture card is stero (2 channel) or mono over stereo jacks, your capture may interpret the mono feed as stereo with one silent track. In that case you can simulate stereo by putting the single feed on both tracks..or properly format the capture file as a mono-audio track video file.. so that playback software knows its mono.

Audio "engineering" used to be a complex thing.. and it became more so when sound cards for gamers added in various versions of 3D sound.. lots of controls, lots of choices, lots of mixing.

Last edited by jwillis84; 09-12-2019 at 12:34 AM.
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09-12-2019, 12:28 AM
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lordsmurf lordsmurf is offline
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BTW: I never use the TBSC software. I use Windows volume/mixer controls.

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01-28-2020, 06:01 PM
JPMedia JPMedia is offline
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Late update:

It has taken a significant amount of time to finally convince myself to purchase another Turtle Beach Santa Cruz, but I finally have. After a successful installation earlier this afternoon I am happy to report that the audio distortion that I had described in my original post has gone away all together! 139 days later I've found that the moral of the story is to act, not to wait.
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amplifier, ati 600 usb, distorted audio, peaking audio, turtle beach santa cruz

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