How do I transfer cassettes with Cubase 8?


Apologies for such a newbie question but I would really appreciate help transferring my old stereo cassettes into Cubase. I have connected the Left and Right Audio outs from the cassette player to Input 1 and Input 2 of my UR22 but after that I’m stuck! Hopefully some kind person will explain the steps needed e.g.

In Cubase, do I add 1 “stereo” track or 2 separate “mono” tracks ? And what do I set the Input routing (Stereo left in?) and Output routing (Stereo out?)

If it is 2 mono tracks, do I have to pan the left 100% left and right 100% right in the Mix Console before I export to WAV ?

Your help will be greatly appreciated.



Search youtube on basics of cubase input output routing, then search recording and you’re basically ready to transfer tapes.

Then you should research how to enhance these recordings by eliminating noise etc etc.

We could give you a step by step instructions but I believe you’re better of by learning the basics first, and a picture works better then words in my opinion.

I googled on “Cubase tutorials” and took the first hit:

after you have figured out the basics, i have found indispensable for transfering and fixing old cassettes/vinyl/reels


I agree it’s a cool tool, you can have also a look at Sony Oxford restoration vst plugins and izo-tope also has some audio cleaning stuff.
Captan is very expensive (5 day rental is 199 dollars!!)

Thanks Mroekalea. I have recorded a lot with cubase (guitar, vox, vst synths etc) but have never connected an external stereo audio player(cd/cassette), hence the question. If you or someone could provide the steps it would be much appreciated. Thanks, Harvey.

OK, I’ll give it a try. It is basically not much different as recording an analog synths outputs. The outputs of physical synth have the same characteristics as a cassette device, the important thing is to get a good input level, my advise would be to stay about -3 / -6 db under 0 DB.

First make sure that the input is configured as a stereo input in vst-connections (press F4, you can assign the inputs multiple times like 2 mono’s at input 1 and 2, and stereo using the same input 1 & 2). You could do 2 channel recordings mono but at some time it must be stereo again so no real benefit in doing this, besides the fact if you want to edit or apply FX/dynamics it must be done twice and 100% with the same procedure.

Add a stereo channel and set the input to the stereo input, connect the cassette player.

Start recording and then hit play on the cassette deck.

note: Cassette decks have line level output, so no specials things like +48 power, no filters.

Oh yeah I did this explanation without sitting in front of Cubase…

The only way you’d want two mono tracks is if the R and L tape output required different processing. And this would almost certainly indicate that you needed to clean and/or align the playback head.

Tweaking the head alignment for maximum treble and (maybe) equal levels on each track is a vital first step. And it might have to be re-done for each cassette, if it wasn’t recorded on the same machine at much the same time.

Another option to using Cubase is using the free software Audacity. Very easy to record through your normal computer mic/sound card input. I did all my reel to reel, casette and vinyl using it. Nice.

Regards. :sunglasses:

If you have a usb dongle for your version of Cubase then I would say to download the demo version of Wavelab8.5 to transfer the cassette to the computer and also clean up and remove any noise problems. You will get 30 days with the trial of Wavelab which should be ample time to complete your conversion. Unless you have a vault full of cassette tapes to do :wink: