Audacity not showing midi module with usb


I can’t get Audacity to recognise my midi module as a input when I plug it in with the USB cable.

I have plugged usb midi module into my PC with the usb cable and it has recognised it and appears in the windows devices menu. But it doesn’t appear in audacity as an input.

I am new and illiterate in this sort of thing, I just want to record my robot music with my synth kit.


As far as I remember, Audacity doesn’t have a midi output. What do you want Audacity to do? Control your synth or record it?

Thanks for the reply.

I want to record it. It should appear in the microphone drop down menu in audacity, as per usb turntables which are mentioned in the audacity manual. But it don’t. I want to record different tracks and mix them together, but I want to keep the sound production analogue.

I’m not wedded to audacity but it’s free and easy and that’s the way I want it for now. If there is another DAW that is better maybe I could try that. Or should I just get a 3.5 to 3.5mm patch cable and put it though the microphone jack on my pc?

Sorry if this all seems basic but that’s where I am.

I think you are perhaps confusing midi with audio. Midi is used to control synthesisers, but doesn’t produce sounds. For example, if you plug a midi keyboard into a Littlebits oscillator via the midibit it will allow you to play the osc with the keyboard. If you plug a Littlebits keyboard into an external synth it will allow you to,plat the synth from the Littlebits keyboard. Audacity is an audio recorder, so it doesn’t record midi. If all you want to do is record the audio output from Littlebits, you should plug the headphone out from the speaker bit into the microphone input of your computer. You don’t need the midibit for this.

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You have just explained something I didn’t know and for that I thank you.

You’re very welcome …

The USB output/input bit also works:

Ah, so the usb bit would just transmit sound for recording, or similarly put sound in for messing around with. Is that right.

Would it work better than the headphone jack because I have just connected it and the sound quality is appaling, there is a constant "wind"sound and there is a reaction delay of about half a second

I’m not familiar with the delay through the jack (I don’t know what would account for that!) but the noise is a known phenomenon. If you look at the following link, you will see a discussion of that noise and a solution from member @alexpikkert.

The usb i/o bit provides the same thing - a noise free sound input to your computer. I use it with my synth kit and Audacity, and it does just that. Audacity rocks, and the price is right! :wink:

Hi @robluck and @chris101,

Recording sounds from a littlebits project is a nice idea!
I checked your setup with my laptop and I found some funny strange things… :frowning:

First of all it is possible to record any sound made by littlebits on a laptop.
The sound bits from the synth kit are all analog and the frequencies sent to the speaker bit can be connected to the analog input from a laptop.
When testing I did not notice a severe sound distortion, even when using high quality headphones.
But there are a few things important:
My laptop has no line input but only a microphone input. This input is very sensitive and has a rather high noise level when the recording level is set to maximum and this creates the “wind noise” you have noticed. So setting the input recording level correctly will result in a nice undistorted sound…
I could not find a delay in any of the Littlebit bits, I tested the MP3 player and the oscillator with the little keyboard and also the microphone bit with a cellphone playing music connected to it…

But then I discovered where the delay was coming from… :sweat:
It is in my laptop… The microphone input has a delay of appr. 0.3 seconds. When recording music this way it is not so important, but when recording sharp short sounds like a guitar string or the short sounds from a keyboard it could be very annoying when you hear the sound via two directions, directly and via the laptop…
I do not have the USB I/O bit, so I cannot test if there is a delay and/or a high noise level through this channel also…


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To add to this the USB I/O module shows up as an audio interface so works great to get audio in and out of your DAW. Basically you can assign this output into Audacity and then you are ready to go. I definitely recommend the USB I/O if you want to record from the bits. Just a note in that it is 12 bit so is a little bit less resolution than a high quality interface, but gets the job done. :smile:

I have also used the 3.5 jack from the speaker bit going to a high quality interface and the sound quality is very good from there as well. Noise can be introduced anywhere in the chain and can sometimes be hard to troubleshoot. The bits are also very sensitive to noise and you may not hear it in the speaker bit, but when sending it through a full range speaker you will hear it. For example the delay bit has a fair amount of inherent noise that you wouldn’t notice through the speaker bit, but if you listen through speakers that have a larger range you can hear the noise.

As for the delay, you may be able to adjust the buffer in your soundcard. All interfaces introduce a delay it is just that the higher end interfaces it is so small you would not notice it. Good DAWs also compensate for this delay so that you can multitrack and still sync to the audio you are hearing. Depending on your soundcard there may be an audio buffer setting that you can adjust. Keep in mind that the smaller the buffer the harder the computer is working. Back in the old days it was tough on computers to have a quick buffer, but the power of modern computers typically can handle the smallest settings for most applications.

Hope that helps!


If you want to record audio or video on computer, you can try FoneLab screen recorder
It is easy to use, you should download and install it. Then launch and choose the mode, and take screenshots for what you want.
In addition, you can easily use it to capture computer audio or video on your computer without lag. Therefore, it can be a suitable game screen recorder or music record on computer for users.