To record with the Procaster mics in the Podcasting Room, you need to first set the gain and the levels using the Mackie Mixer for each of the three being used. (You can just use one, just two, or all three at once.)
Here is an overview of mixer. Anything blacked out is not applicable to how the system is currently set up.
a. Mixer on and off switch
b. RCA to TRRS cable goes from the mixer to the audio jack in the back of the computer (Do not unplug)
c. XLR cables from the three mics plug into the mixer (Do not unplug)
d. Adjusts the gain of a particular mic
e. Adjusts the low/mid/high frequencies of the sound going through a particular mic (use sparingly, if at all)
f. Mute button for a particular mic
g. Solo button for isolating a particular mic
h. Adjusts the levels of a particular mic
i. Adjust the headphone volume
j. Adjust the levels of all the sound going through the mixer
k. Light that blinks when a mic is being soloed
l. Meter for gauging the gain coming from soloed mics
m. Headphone jack for hearing the sound going through the mixer (not playback from the computer)
Setting the Gain and Levels
1.) Open Audacity, the recording application you will be using. To do this, press the Command and F key (for “find”), type “Audacity” in the search box, and click on the application when it appears in the search results.
2.) In Audacity, select in the mic dropdown, “External Mic,” and in the speaker dropdown select “Scarlet Solo.”
3.) Turn on the mixer by pressing the switch in the back [a]. You can plug headphones [m] into the mixer to hear the sound that is going into it. (To hear the recording playback, you will have to use the speakers or headphones plugged into the Scarlett Solo.)
4.) Set the Gain [d] and Level [h] knobs to “Unity,” look for the U for the mics you intend to use. Then press the Solo button [g] for a mic, speak into it at the volume you will be speaking during your recording, and be the distance you plan to be from it.
5.) Adjust the Gain [d] so that the green lights hit near the 0 mark on the mixer’s Meter [l] or just above the mark. Basically, you want to keep the lights green. It can quickly jump into the yellow but should not go into the red. Once you get the gain set, you adjust the levels. The Meter on the mixer does not apply when setting the levels. Instead, you are looking at the levels in Audacity. To see the levels in Audacity, click on “click to start monitoring.”
6.) Speak into the mic for which you just set the gain. (Use the same volume and be the same distance from the mic.) Adjust the Levels [h] for that particular mic on the mixer so that the green in the Audacity meter is somewhere between -12 and -6. If you are not seeing levels, make sure the mic level in Audacity is up. Put the slider in the center so you have room to move it up and down later.
7.) When you are done setting a mic, you take it off solo and then move to the next one and do the same steps: press solo, set the gain, and set the levels. After having set each individual mic you plan to record with, you can adjust the levels for all of them at once on the mixer using the Main Mix [j] option or by turning up the mic levels in Audacity. If you need to, you can silence a mic by pressing the Mute button [f]. You are allowed to adjust the High/Mid/Low frequencies [e] under the EQ options but do so with caution as it will permanently affect your recording. You will probably be better served by adjusting frequencies after you have recorded, which you can do in Audacity or any other sound platform you are using. This way you are not locked into any particular settings. Once you have all of your mics set, you are ready to record in Audacity. (Learn more about using Audacity to record.)