In this video we show you 6 different ways to connect an audio mixer to your computer. The first four options will give you a mono input to your computer and the last two options will give you stereo input to your computer or laptop.

You may be looking to record audio, stream video, or participate in a video conference. No matter what you’re trying to accomplish, this article will show you 6 different ways to connect an audio mixer to a computer.

Depending on the outlets of your audio mixer, the following solutions will work for you:

  1. RCA to 1/8″ Cable > USB Sound Card > Computer
  2. Dual 1/4″ to 1/8″ Cable > USB Sound Card > Computer
  3. XLR to 1/8″ Cable > USB Sound Card > Computer
  4. XLR to USB Cable > Computer
  5. USB Audio Mixer > Computer
  6. USB Audio Interface > Computer

USB Sound Cards

USB Sound Card

Before you choose one of the first three options, please note that the quality of USB Sound Cards can vary GREATLY. They are the least expensive option for a reason. The quality and consistency are different depending on the company that you buy from and the batch that they are produced in. 

If you can find one that works for you, then you’re in luck, but 99% of the time we recommend avoiding this option. 

XLR To USB Cables

XLR To USB Cable

Although it’s technically possible to use a XLR to USB cable, we don’t recommend this as a good long term solution.

XLR to USB cables are generally expecting a mic level XLR input, since we’re connecting it to the line level XLR output of our audio mixing console this can cause some problems. The output level of the audio console needs to be reduced to about 5% for this solution to work, but it is technically possible to get an audio signal into a computer as demonstrated in the video above.

USB Audio Mixing Consoles

Yamaha MG10XU

Our favourite option is to us a USB Audio Mixing Console like the Yamaha MG10XU

It’s more expensive than the previous options but we believe that it provides you the most value.  

Using a USB Audio Mixer it opens up a whole new world for you in terms of being able to connect directly to your computer, iPad, or any other device without worrying about too many adapters or quality issues. The simplicity of this solution makes it a top choice.

USB Audio Interface

USB Audio Interface

Another high quality option is to connect your audio mixer into a USB Audio Interface. These interfaces can vary between $50-3,000, depending on quality. But they are a great way to connect audio signals into your computer. 

Pricing & Specs For Equipment In This Video:

Topics Covered In This Video

  • 0:00 – Introduction
  • 0:22 – Mixer & Microphone
  • 1:14 – RCA to 1/8″ to USB Sound Card
  • 2:11 – 1/4″ to 1/8″ to USB Sound Card
  • 3:11 – XLR to 1/8″ to USB Sound Card
  • 4:03 – XLR to USB Cable
  • 4:48 – USB Audio Mixing Console
  • 6:07 – USB Audio Interface
  • 7:28 – Summary Of 6 Options
  • 8:18 – Final Thoughts

Disclosure: If you purchase an item or service from an outbound link, we may receive a referral fee, which helps to support Kettner Creative.

Jordan Kettner

I consider myself to be half entrepreneur and half A/V geek. I am never content to settle for what is expected or determined by others to be the “industry standard”. Instead, I work extremely hard to break new ground and deliver value to whoever I meet.

My passion for the audio visual industry drives me to create content that will help others learn the best tools and techniques to learn how to setup their home studio.

"Recognizing opportunity is so difficult for most people because it goes around disguised in overalls, looking like hard work!"
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