What is an audio file

Create audio data

We have put together an example of the procedure for digitizing analog material that is available on an audio cassette or other analog data carrier. The actual practice depends on the existing hardware and software requirements. In principle, however, digitizing audio material works similarly for most configurations.

First establish a connection between the tape deck / cassette recorder and your computer. To do this, you need a special cable with a cinch plug and a jack plug, which is available from specialist retailers. You plug the cinch plug into the output of the tape deck, the jack plug into the socket of the sound card (LINE IN) on the back of your computer.

After you have made these preparations, you can play the cassette and use special software on the computer to record the data transferred to the computer. Read more about this in the next section.

You need special application software to record. In Windows you will find the audio recorder under Start menu> All programs> Accessories, a simple recording program for audio signals, which is not suitable for professional use. With older Windows versions, the recording time is limited to 60 seconds. Even newer versions do not offer any further recording settings and can only save audio files in Windows Media Audio format.

Use other programs when you want to record. Corresponding programs are often supplied with the sound card and are included on CD. We have put together a list of audio programs for you.

To record new audio material with the computer, connect a microphone to the socket labeled MIC or a microphone symbol (usually found on the back of your computer) and start the Windows audio recorder or a corresponding program. Instead of the microphone, you can also use an analog device such as a turntable or cassette recorder and record from this device. In this case, use the socket marked LINE IN on the computer. Now you have to tell the program which port on the computer you want to record from. Therefore, select the source for the recordings (LINE IN, MIC) in the program and start the recording.

In certain situations it can be useful to use a digital voice recorder or mini disc recorder to record. These devices are usually supplied with cables and software to transfer the recorded data to the computer and process it there. Dictation machines usually have the advantage of being very small and handy, easy to use and largely insensitive to vibrations. The use of a mini disc recorder is ideal when digital recordings of high quality are to be made.

Depending on whether you want to burn your audio file on a CD, make it available for download on the Internet or edit it later, you can save the recorded material in different formats. For more information on using the different formats, see Formats and Codecs. An audio player is required to play the saved files. We have put together a list of free audio players for you.

  • Find out more about the further processing and preparation of your recorded material for use on the Internet under Editing audio data
  • Use the specialization in using audio data to find out how you can enrich HTML and Powerpoint documents with audio files
  • Find your way around the various audio codecs and find out which formats are best for your purposes in the Formats and Codecs section
Last change: April 8th, 2015

Print preview

create a PDF

e-teaching.org (2015). Create audio data. Last changed on April 8th, 2015. Leibniz Institute for Knowledge Media: https://www.e-teaching.org/technik/aufbereitung/audio/audio_erstellen/index_html. Accessed on May 19, 2021