How to Recording Internal Audio in Ubuntu

This how-to should show the steps required to record whatever audio is playing on your computer, similar to recording "stereo mix" in windows. This makes recording audio played by any application, including flash videos, possible.
We are  using the Sound Recorder application that comes in standard Ubuntu installations. To set this up using other programs (like audacity) just substitute it in these instructions.

1. Install pavucontrol (PulseAudio Volume Control) using apt-get or the Ubuntu Software Center.
2. Open PulseAudio Volume Control. It should be in the applications menu under Sound and Video.
3. Open Sound Recorder and start recording. Playing any sound at this point would be helpful, as your level indicator should react once you have finished.
4. Go to the "Recording" tab in the PulseAudio Volume Control window.
5. Make sure that "Applications" is selected in the drop down menu on the "Recording" tab.
6. Choose "Monitor of Internal Audio Analog Atereo" from the "Record Stream from" menu in the Sound Recorder entry of the application list.

This appears to be persistent so that you will only have to do this once, but you will have to repeat these steps to record in another application.

Source from here

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27 thoughts on “How to Recording Internal Audio in Ubuntu

  1. Easier way here:
    Steps:
    1. Install all restricted multimedia packages.
    2. System—> Preferences—-> Sound
    3. “Hardware tab”, select ANALOG STEREO OUTPUT in PROFILES.
    4. Play any music or flash vid from web.
    5. Open Default Gnome sound recorder, Set to CD quality lossless [flac] or any format of ur preference.
    6. Click RECORD.
    7. Stop Recording and save file, use audacity or any program to edit and save in your favourite format.!!!!

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    ducdorleans Reply:

    muchas gracias, Boratsuckdev … :-)

    line 3 was the important one, and did it (ie produce sound !) for me

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  2. Thank you much for this tip. It was effortless and I was able to do it in first shot (though it looked a bit difficult to achieve initially).

    Wish it was there by default rather than requiring the need of installing another application. But nevertheless, it works well so it’s worth it.

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  3. Thanks for this article. At least I’ve solved how to record audio from my sound card now in Ubuntu. I still can’t figure out how to record with Audacity though. Linux really needs to fix the problems with recording audio. Your article is a step in the right direction, but recording audio should work out of the box.

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  4. @Boratsuckdev – your solution solved my problem with recording in Audacity. Thanks a lot to everyone for contributing. I really appreciate helping me figure this out with your tips and suggestions.

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  5. Thanks for publishing this tutorial! I was searching for a something like this to record streaming audio.. @Boratsuckdev’s method is effortless…

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  6. @Boratsuckdev , thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!!

    I spent hours reading lots of different instructions, I thought I was going to have to install and configure a different sound system but with your advice in less than 3 minutes I was recording from the sound card!

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  7. Thanks soooo…muuuch, after installing a million and one apps finally sound recoder worked with above instartuction!

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  8. Sadly doesn’t work for me (nor does anything else). Only way I can record is in Windows. This linux sound really is a mess

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  9. Boratsuckdev’s solution worked perfectly for me on the first try on my Ubuntu 10.04.1 LTS system, running on a Shuttle XPC machine with 2.4 GHz AMD Athlon processor. Although .flac isn’t the most useful file format, Audacity for Linux works fine for cropping, normalizing and generating either .wav or .mp3 files. This had stumped me since I started playing with Linux nearly three years ago, and whenever I needed to capture audio from the ‘Net, I was always forced to resort to a clunky, old Windows 98SE machine and Creative Sound Blaster Platinum card. One more tie to the world of Microsoft just got snipped. Thanks!

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  10. For those who might have problems with Boratsuckdev’s abbreviated description, I’ve expanded it in excruciating detail and changed the order of the steps slightly. Although it may look daunting at first, once you’ve done it a time or two it becomes second nature.

    The following description pertains to Ubuntu 10.04 “Lucid Lynx”. Your installation may vary slightly.

    Before you can capture internal audio, you must first install all restricted multimedia packages. In the top menu tab, click System –> Administration –> Software Sources and in the Ubuntu Software tab, check the box labeled “Software restricted by copyright or legal issues (multiverse)”. Close the Software Sources dialog box and run System –> Administration –> Update Manager to install the needed packages.

    Recording procedure:
    • In the top menu tab, click System –> Preferences –> Sound.
    • In Sound Preferences, note the current setting in the “Profile” drop-down menu, so you can restore it later.
    • In Sound Preferences “Hardware” tab, select “Analog Stereo Output” in the “Profile” drop-down menu.
    • Launch GNOME’s default Sound Recorder. In the “Record as” drop-down menu, select “CD Quality, Lossless (.flac type)”, or other format of your choice.
    • Click the round red button in Sound Recorder or press Ctrl+R to begin recording.
    • Play music or flash video from the Web or a file on your hard drive.
    • When the audio stream ends, click the square gray button in Sound Recorder or press Ctrl+X to stop. Save the file (click on hard drive icon or press Ctrl+S).
    • Use Audacity or other audio editing program to crop unwanted data from start and end of recording, normalize levels, and so on. Export edited data in your favorite format (.wav signed 16-bit PCM for recording to CD-Audio or .mp3 for use on portable media players). For .mp3 format, click on the Options button at the bottom of the Export File dialog to select the bit rate and compression quality before clicking the Save button. Constant 128 kbps Stereo works for nearly all portable MP3 devices and produces fair audio quality for both music and speech, but you may choose other settings for higher audio quality or smaller file size.
    • When finished with audio capture, reset Sound Preferences Hardware setting as “Analog Stereo Duplex” in “Profile” to return to normal microphone and speaker configuration. (If you noted a different setting before starting the audio capture session, use that instead.)

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  11. Thank you Borat,
    worked for me, …I only had to select ANALOG STEREO OUTPUT. I guess the gstreamer packages were enough.
    I am on an ASUS Eee PC 1000 running Ubuntu 11.10
    And Thank you Andrew P for the very useful excruciating detail.
    I will just mention that I am using Ubuntu 11.10 because it can see my Vietel dcom modem and Ubuntu 10.04 could not.

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  12. For years but only occasionally I have recorded and edited audio that is playing. Every now and then I have to restudy how to do the capturing.
    Is it that new Sound, Volume Control or Audacity versions always reset the configuration.

    With Ubuntu 12.04 and Audacity 2.0 I this time managed to get the recording to work with following steps:
    1. In sound settings (click the speaker icon in Unity menu bar) the ‘Play sound through’ select Analog Output.
    2. In Audacity Edit -> Preferencies -> Recording the device select default:Mic:0 (you can alternatively set it at the microphone icon)

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  13. I haven’t had a problem getting my mike to work; it’s the background hiss and odd heartbeat sounds in Sound Recorder that make it of poor quality.

    It’s somewhat better recording with Audacity, and it’s easy to remove the noise.

    I’m using Precise and have been using pulseaudio for years. It fixes intermittent issues with my AudioHub as well.

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  14. Excellent tip. Works for me on Quantal, where I could choose to record what was streaming into my bluetooth headset. I then edited the ogg file with Audacity to cut before and after cruft.

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  15. 7. Check if this monitoring works
    Go to PulseAudio Volume Control -> Input Devices Tab -> At the bottom, choose to show “ALL input Devices”
    Check if “Monitor of Internal Audio Analog Stereo” is not muted and the volume going up and down as you play the audio!!

    8. Use Audio Recorder
    [How To] Record Audio Streams to MP3 in Ubuntu
    http://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2011/03/audio-recorder-for-linux-easily-record-audio-streams-to-mp3
    ‘Audio Recorder’ to record Audio Source= Internal Audio Analog Stereo(Audio Output)

    Also check command alamixer -> Tab to Playback section > Go go Capture and Capture1
    > Press Space button so the red “Capture” is shown > Adjust the volume

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