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Peripherals forum

General discussion

Can I capture a cassette with my equip.

by mustangcp2 / August 22, 2006 7:08 AM PDT

My cassette player is a shelf unit with only output connections for speakers. Can these be used as a line out to connect to the PC?

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(NT) (NT) Yes.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 22, 2006 7:20 AM PDT
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Cassette equip. use.
by mustangcp2 / August 22, 2006 7:27 AM PDT
In reply to: (NT) Yes.

That was fast, short, and sweet, thanks.

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by GeeBee / August 22, 2006 11:53 AM PDT

Not so short and sweet as Bob's reply, and for good reason.

As those are speaker outputs, they have a lot of watts of power running through them. Line outputs from a tape deck in comparison (which would have to go to an amplifier to generate a similar amount of power to drive speakers!) only have milliamps of power.

If you feed speaker outputs into a soundcard's line input, you'll fry it in a microsecond as the relatively huge current destroys the sensitive electronics.

You'll at the very least need a speaker output to line output convertor. These little boxes of tricks aren't expensive but they drop speakers outputs down to the tiny power of line outputs. : speaker to line output convertors

Good luck,


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I've run them into the line in. But didn't crank it up.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 22, 2006 1:03 PM PDT
In reply to: No.

Go figure why I've been able to do this for decades.


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Yes,no, where to go?
by mustangcp2 / August 22, 2006 1:55 PM PDT
In reply to: No.

Thanks for the input. Guess I need to do more homework.

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my simple solution
by linkit / August 22, 2006 4:02 PM PDT
In reply to: Yes,no, where to go?

Purchase, rent, or borrow a cassette deck with a line output (preferable) or headphone output. Not very expensive.

An old boombox or Sony Walkman can do this if you use the correct cable.

The hardware you use depends on what quality you need. For example, do you need a peak level search or Dolby filtering?

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Cassette to PC capture
by mustangcp2 / August 23, 2006 2:05 AM PDT
In reply to: my simple solution

Thanks for the suggestion. I would like to transfer my cassettes to CD so I can listen to the oldies again. As for quality, I don't need much, my hearing isn't what it used to be. My player is probably very low on the power curve, the pamphlet that came with it says nothing useful. Found a converter online, suggested earlier, for $18, might give that a try.

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Line out converters
by mustangcp2 / August 23, 2006 2:10 AM PDT
In reply to: No.

Thanks again. Didn't know there was such a thing. That's what I like about C-Net, I always learn something from fellow members. Found a converter online for $18, will probably try that. Most refer to car audio but this one sounds more general.

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That's where they're used most...
by GeeBee / August 23, 2006 12:38 PM PDT
In reply to: Line out converters

...for head units in cars that have no line out, so cannot usually be used in conjunction with an amplifier. Simply put one in the speaker output and it becomes a stereo line output.

However, if your tape deck has a headphone socket as Linkit mentions, all you'd need is a lead with stereo headphone jack on one end and a miniature stereo headphone jack on the other. Probably cost about $10.

The headphone out, goes to the soundcard line in and no need for converting power levels. But if you've not got a headphone socket....converter it is! Happy

Good luck,


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Headset plug-in
by mustangcp2 / August 24, 2006 12:57 AM PDT

By golly I do have a headset plug-in. All I need is a cable with a 1/4" probe on one end and a mini on the other. I believe the problem is solved. Thanks GeeBee.

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The honour goes to...
by GeeBee / August 24, 2006 8:12 AM PDT
In reply to: Headset plug-in

...Linkit. He advised using the headphone output (if you had one) first.

Lower end decks with only speaker output do not always have a headphone plug (my mum's old deck never had one, which confused her when she bought headphones!), but when you do have one, it's virtually the same thing as a line out, but with a volume in the line of course.

All that's required is a lead with corresponding stereo jack plug at each end....and some free software.

When first recording turn the volume down, and the recording mixer up, as it's best to err on the side of caution. Once you know it's working properly, you can add in some more volume and cut back on the record levels.

Good luck,


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