An audio interface seizes audio frequency from sources such as a condenser microphone, a bass input, a keyboard, and others. It converts that collected sounds from analog to digital frequency that a computer can analyze through a digital audio workstation or any software program to edit and enhance your recorded audio. However, one might get confused about how to connect audio interface to computer. There are different audio interfaces available in the market as well as there are also other computers or laptops which has various features. Obviously, on the other models of PC’s and laptops, there are standardized set-ups wherein you can manipulate the device in your computer. Not only that, in connecting the audio interface to the computer or laptop, we have to do two things. First, connect the cables of the interface to the computer/laptop. The second thing is to set up the software program to analyze, edit, and enhance the recorded audio signal. With that, here’s an easy guide on how to connect your interface to your computer.
Get Your Cables Ready
Before exploring how to connect audio interface to computer, let us know first the different cables that we need in doing this. There are three types of connectors packed with the interface. One is the thunderbolt; another is the FireWire, and lastly is the USB cable. Whichever is compatible with your computer, you must plug it in before your computer receives the audio signals collected by the interface. If the computer does not have that stereo jacks connected directly from the interface to the computer, you may need a soundcard. A soundcard has that jacks and inputs that are compatible with a computer.
How To Connect the Devices
When you are sure that the audio interface cables are compatible with the computer’s input, we should start connecting them.
- Connect the audio interface’s cable (Thunderbolt, FireWire, USB) or a soundcard to the computer’s input connector.
- Install the device to your computer. Some interfaces are automatically installed when you connect them to the computer, while other interfaces also come with a CD that you will use to install drivers. If not available, look for the device at the computer setting. Click Start Menu > Settings > Devices > Sound Settings > Choose Input Device. Settings may differ from your computer, but this is the standardized setting.
- When you are done setting-up the audio interface to the computer, you can now connect your condenser microphone, headphones, and other inputs to the interface. Just keep in mind that the interface has two inputs, the line input- you turn it on when you are using a condenser microphone, a headphone, and the likes; the instrument input- obviously for instruments like the keyboard, a guitar, vocals, and others. Also, in connecting inputs to the audio interface, there are some cables, jacks that are not compatible with the interface’s input. Thus, you may consider using a 1/4″ adaptor.
- After your line input or instrument, the input is connected to the interface, and the interface is connected to the computer, you can now access the Digital Audio Workstation. Some DAWs come with your interface’s driver. Once the driver is downloaded and installed on your computer, the DAW is also activated. There are excellent Digital audio Workstations that are available on sale that you can choose from depending on your expertise on this thing.
- When the DAW is downloaded to your computer, make sure that the DAW is connected to the interface. In doing this, you need to open the program to the general settings. Select the name of the interface and select preferred set-ups.
- You are done, and you can now start recording through your audio interface and editing such in the Digital Audio Workstation.
- If you still find it confusing, read the interface’s user manual, and there it has a detailed guide on how to connect audio interface to computer and how to handle the device.
You need to consider things that answer common queries on how to connect audio interface to computer. Digital Audio Workstation is a bit of heavy software. It requires your computer or laptop to have a bigger memory capacity than the software’s storage capacity. The computer will probably not function well if the laptop’s RAM is just enough for the software. Another thing is that, in choosing an audio interface, it is best to consider the features that the interface has with the computer. The device’s compatibility helps you save money from other devices such as the soundcard and other extensions.
Moreover, there is also this thing called latency in audio recording. To lower the latency, it means an additional memory capacity on the computer. You can adjust the latency setting on the Digital Audio Workstation program. Also, it would also be best to consider the line out of the input and the output in connecting cables to the computer. That means that an audio interface produces a higher signal; thus, to balance the input and the output, you should insert it to the line input- it is intended to receive higher signals. A microphone input already has a higher signal, and that when you are going to connect it to the audio interface, it causes the audio to be distorted.
Nowadays, recording audios and videos is not just for entertainment but also for income, like making a song cover, creating podcasts, audiobooks, and others; an audio interface is necessary. The problem that may arise for beginners is how to connect audio interface to computer. In joining the two devices, we need simple know-how in doing such. Things that need to consider before doing it are the compatibility of the cables and wires that connect the two gadgets, the computer’s memory capacity, the type of audio interface to be connected to the computer or laptop, and others. This article provides detailed information on the steps of doing it that is easy to understand and beginner-friendly. Learn more about audio interface here!