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Audio Solutions Question of the Week: Can I Listen To My USB Turntable Through My PC Speakers?

Question: Can I listen to my USB turntable through my PC speakers?

Answer: The quick answer is yes, but note that computers are designed to be “playback” devices and not necessarly “play through” devices, such as a stereo receiver, so you may need to change some settings in your computer for proper operation. Doing so will allow you to monitor the input and, if properly set to the turntable signal, pass the audio from the turntable through the computer speakers.

Configuring your PC:

  1. Begin by having your turntable properly set up. (Check past blog posts for setup information for your specific Audio-Technica turntable.)
  2. Turn on the turntable and computer and plug the turntable into the USB port on your computer.
  3. Locate the Speaker Icon in the task bar on your computer. It is often located at the bottom right of the screen.Configuring your PC 1
  4. Right click on the Speaker Icon and select “Playback devices.”
  5. The Sound window will open up on the Playback tab, allowing you to select the playback device. Make certain the green check mark is next to your computer’s internal speakers, indicating they are selected as the default playback device. They are often labeled as Realtek High Definition Audio.
  6. Make certain the USB CODEC is NOT selected as the default playback device with the green check mark. If it is, right click on the computer’s internal speakers and select “Set as Default Device.”
  7. Once the computer’s internal speakers are set as the default playback device, click on the Recording tab to select the input device.Configure Your PC 5
  8. Make certain the green check mark is next to the USB Audio CODEC, indicating it is selected as the default recording device.Configure Your PC 6
  9. Make certain nothing but the USB Audio CODEC is selected with the green check mark. If another device is selected, right click on the USB Audio CODEC and select “Set as Default Device.”
  10. Now that the correct playback and recording devices have been selected, you may right click on the USB Audio CODEC and select “Properties.”
  11. A new window will open. Select the Listen tab.
  12. Click in the box next to “Listen to this device.” A check will appear.
  13. Click Apply and OK. You are now set up and ready to listen to your records. You may drop the needle on your records and begin listening. While playing your records, you will see movement in the recording status bar of the USB Audio CODEC.

You may adjust the computer volume as needed and listen to your records while doing other things on your computer. Each time you unplug the turntable from the USB port of your computer, you may have to reset the parameters. This is the nature of the beast with computers. Feel free to bookmark this page to refer back to it at any point.

Next week, we’ll show you how to listen to your turntable through a Mac, which requires a slightly different setup. Until then, if you have any further questions or issues, feel free to reach out to the Audio Solutions Department, who will be happy to help.