Recording audio from vinyl LPs with MacBook Pro and Garage Band

Jul 13, 2017
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I wish to record music from my old LPs into my MacBook, using the audio output of my hifi stereo.

I have a 3.5mm jack-to-USB lead but, when connected, the Mac 'Sounds' panel doesn't show this as a line input. Should it? Can this be done?

Maybe I need an Audio Interface unit between my hifi and the Mac USB. If so, will any audio interface be OK, or is there a recommended spec.?

Thanks in advance for any advice on this.



Cory Cooper

May 19, 2004
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Hello and welcome.

We'll need a little more information to get started:

-Which model Mac?
-Which version of OS X?
-What brand/model is the 3.5 mm to USB cable? The cable you are using probably isn't an actual analog-to-digital audio converter, which is why it isn't showing as a valid audio input device.
-What are the components/specs of your hi-fi? Are you using a tape out, or possibly the headphone jack because of the 3.5 mm cable you mentioned?

There are many ways and many price points for interfaces to convert vinyl to digital audio files in iTunes. A lot depends on the quality and ease of transfer you are looking for. The easiest is a USB turntable. A more elaborate setup would be a USB audio interface connected between your audio system and Mac. You can then use GarageBand, Audacity, or many of the more professional digital audio workstation (DAW) software packages like Logic Pro X, ProTools, etc.

Let us know the info requested and we'll go from there.


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