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Technical Topics => Equipment => Topic started by: JCMaxwell on December 14, 2019, 2229 UTC

Title: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JCMaxwell on December 14, 2019, 2229 UTC
I plan to do some CW decoding on a Dell windows laptop connected (hopefully) to a standalone receiver.  The laptop does not have a mic input, like most recent models, but of course it has several USB ports.

I have seen devices on Amazon which purportedly transform a USB jack into a headphone/microphone jack.

Has anyone used one of these devices successfully and if so is there a brand/model you would recommend?

Thank you
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JimIO on December 14, 2019, 2306 UTC
Get a generic "usb sound card". Don't pay more than a few $$.

~
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: Josh on December 15, 2019, 0404 UTC
try to get the best one for the buck;
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWKDG8VAs4E
http://www.daqarta.com/dw_gguu.htm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DuLABU6tI7Q
https://www.thewindowsclub.com/pluggable-audio-adapters
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: redhat on December 15, 2019, 0528 UTC
I've had good luck across windows and linux with the Vantec cards.

https://www.amazon.com/Vantec-NBA-200U-External-Channel-Adapter/dp/B004HXGJ3S/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Vantec+NBA-200U&qid=1576387669&sr=8-1 (https://www.amazon.com/Vantec-NBA-200U-External-Channel-Adapter/dp/B004HXGJ3S/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Vantec+NBA-200U&qid=1576387669&sr=8-1)

+-RH
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: ChrisSmolinski on December 15, 2019, 1557 UTC
Get a generic "usb sound card". Don't pay more than a few $$.

Been down that road, got the t-shirt. Those cheap USB sound devices usually have horribly inaccurate sample rates, and also often drop samples.  Caveat emptor.

I have had excellent luck with the Griffin iMic, which you can still find now and then on eBay, often new in an unopened package.
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JCMaxwell on December 15, 2019, 1649 UTC
Thanks for all the input.

Once I review and decide and get it setup, Iíll report back on my results.
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JimIO on December 15, 2019, 1652 UTC
He wants it for CW decoding, not recording studio mastering.

~
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: ChrisSmolinski on December 15, 2019, 1754 UTC
Dropping audio samples can screw up CW decoding. And will be fatal for SSTV decoding, should he go down that route later on.
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JimIO on December 15, 2019, 1938 UTC
Fatal is a Windows term. A Usb sound card is just a DAC/ADC with a USB 1.0 IF.
If samples are being lost it must be a software problem.

~
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: ChrisSmolinski on December 15, 2019, 1951 UTC
The [poorly implemented] USB interface is where the samples are lost. You can confirm it's not a software issue by changing the USB sound device and watching the problem go away.

There's other issues with the cheap USB sound devices, such as really poor quality A/D converters. I wonder if some of them are really just 8 bits instead of 16. Kind of like the Pride of China electrolytic capacitors with a smaller, lower value, cap inside the case. Or the AA batteries that are light weight because they really have a AAA battery inside.

(https://i.imgur.com/FtZWwKY.png)
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JimIO on December 15, 2019, 2031 UTC
Must be a bitch to set up the machines that make those   ;D
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: Josh on December 15, 2019, 2302 UTC
At least they used rubycons.
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: ChrisSmolinski on December 16, 2019, 1210 UTC
At least they used rubycons.

That's probably a fake shell also, with a fake 100 uF capacitor inside it,  and so on and so on... You finally get down to a 47 pF ceramic cap. Chinese Matryoshka Capacitors.

Saving a buck and spending hours of troubleshooting time is not frugal.
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JimIO on December 16, 2019, 1625 UTC
About AA batteries. I have a radio that takes 3 AA's. I use 2 "Fake" AA's and a 14500 instead. Works perfect.

~
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: chanito on December 17, 2019, 2320 UTC
Stick with name brand USB sound devices. Anything cheaper than about $30 is garbage. Anything that comes from eBay with the drivers on an unmarked mini cd is bound to be malware. Some of the really crappy ones will destroy the USB port.


USB sound devices should be absolutely plug n play these days until you get up into the high end recording hardware.
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JimIO on December 18, 2019, 0131 UTC
Should I take that on point by point or just call the whole thing BS
or leave it alone?    8)

~
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: JCMaxwell on December 18, 2019, 0217 UTC
As the OP may I request a moderator to lock this thread?  I just wanted some advice.
Title: Re: Question regarding USB / microphone input adapter
Post by: chanito on December 18, 2019, 0221 UTC
As the OP may I request a moderator to lock this thread?  I just wanted some advice.



Lol


You asked. You received.


If you wnat to cheap out, this will work and is safe. https://www.amazon.com/Creative-Labs-70SB173000000-Sound-Blaster/dp/B06XBZ38ZJ/ref=zg_bs_3015427011_5?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=G1V58R1SX6TP95PS4JAB