Embarassing Question

So I’m trying to figure out what I’m going to do this Halloween, and I decided I want to do something I did about 20 years ago:

Sit out front with a dark hooded cowl on
The table in front of me has a tablecloth and a single candle on it
Under the cowl I have a headset microphone on that is connected to “some method” of dropping my voice by an octave

It does wonders for scaring the kids.

A long time ago, I did this by somehow jury-rigging a headset mic that a friend provided to my Roland GP-16 (and using an expression pedal to shift my voice up and down a full octave). For some reason I can’t figure out the levels on the headset mic I now own.

It works if I plug it into my computer directly. But if I try to plug it into the GP-16 I get nothing. Same result if I try my Tascam US-144.

I know this is a voltage level issue, but I’ll be damned if I can find the expected level of a mic jack on a PC so that I have some way of debugging this. So I’m turning to you all since you’re the experts and I’m just a newbie.

Help save Halloween!

does the headset mic plug look like a 3.5mm stereo plug but have either three or four connections?

If so try pulling the plug out a bit to try and get the mic connections to connect if you know what I mean!!!

Wear a cup. :mrgreen:

Nah, it’s a “standard” 1/8" plug. The headset part has a separate 1/8" plug.


It does wonders for scaring the kids.

You foolomon you. :laughing:


TC Helicon’s Voiceworks has a setting called ‘Monster’ which would be perfect for what you’re doing, Larry.

I’m hoping to use Cantible Performer on the laptop (which can host VST plugs) and then find a freeware pitch shifter online. That plus the Tascam US-144 plus my Yamaha powered monitors = win.

The last time I did this, some young man dressed in a macho football player outfit refused to come to my side of the street much less actually ask me for candy. :laughing:

Aloha f,

I think yours is a really neat and kool question and no reason
to be embarrassed at all.

Hope you get it sorted.

Happy Halloween.

What’s halloween?


It’s when I dress up as Crocodile Dundee to scare little kids. :stuck_out_tongue:

I gave up on this. I hooked up the headset directly to my laptop but the latency sucked, and for some reason the levels just aren’t right for the Tascam USB audio interface.

I take it you’re using a jack to XLR converter rather than plugging the jack into the interface?

Well, you know, there are no embarrassing questions, only embarrassing answers…

…and I’m embarrassed to say I can’t help you here… :blush:

No. I was using a 1/8" to 1/4" converter and plugging it into the right channel of the Tascam. Setting the line voltage to guitar or line did nothing, i.e. no signal.

It’s not the headset mic because if I right click on the speaker and select Recording Devices I see the levels rising on the mic entry when I tap-tap on the mic.

It’s not the Tascam jack because I then swapped this for a guitar cable, plugged in my Strat, and saw the levels rise in Cubase.

Very odd, so you are saying that the computer is seeing a level from your mic when plugged into the interface instrument jack, and Cubase sees a level from the same jack when a guitar lead is plugged in, but Cubase sees no level from the mic when plugged into the same jack?

Yeah. I suspect this is due to the rewrite of the audio subsystem in W7, i.e. this is why Windows sees a signal when ASIO doesn’t. It makes no sense, I know, but I’m at a loss to find another explanation.

right after I bought this computer I was fiddeling around with dead audio inputs.
Turned out that Win7 in it’s infinite wisdom had the sampling frequency reset from 44.1 to 48kHz.
I don’t know if that’s of any help to you but worth a try? :slight_smile:

If the instrument input on the interface is active (confirmed by your test with a guitar lead) and you get nothing from the mic plugged into the same input then the fault must be before the input, working backwards from there, adapter 1/8 to 1/4 faulty? mic itself faulty? a mic can give a signal when thumped but still not give a signal when spoken into!

That’s what’s weird. The adapter is what I use for my cans, so I know it works well.

This whole thing is just screwed up in my opinion, and I don’t want to buy a decent quality vocalist headset mic just for Halloween.

So if you’re using a stereo adapter with a mono mic see Split’s first post :exclamation:
( 'scuse me if I 've got it wrong :blush: )