How to Setup a Mix Minus for Recording Skype

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Want to record Skype calls for your podcast interviews? This is how you do it.

Below is a complete photo walkthrough of the mix-minus setup demonstrated in this video.


Recording a Skype conversation or any other VOIP program on your computer using professional (XLR) microphones with the ability to mix in other sounds all without having the person on Skype get a feedback loop of their own voice, requires you to setup a mix-minus via your audio mixer.

The basic concept of a mix-minus is inputting multiple sources of audio into an audio mixer (your microphone, sound FX, Skype, etc.) then sending that audio back out to Skype, minus (a.k.a. without) the Skype callers voice thus preventing a feedback loop.

To do this you need a mixer with at least one auxiliary send channel. This is a dedicated output on your mixer that allows you to select which audio sources coming into the mixer get sent back out through the aux send channel.

In this video I’m using the auxiliary B (post-fader) to send my microphone and a soundboard (Bossjock app) with sound effects back to Skype. If your mixer has both pre and post aux faders, you can use either one. Don’t get too confused between the two but here’s some explanation of the differences between the two.

Post-fader simply means that the aux send passes through the main channel fader before getting sent out of the auxiliary channel. In this case, you must turn up both the Aux B send fader and the corresponding channels main volume fader in order for Skype to hear the audio. If we were using aux A (pre-fader) then the main channel fader would have no effect on our audio leaving the mixer via the aux send for each channel we are sending audio out of the aux A output.

Why would you choose a pre fader over a post fader and vice versa? If you were recording your mix to an audio recorder, as seen in this video, I could use aux A (pre-fader) to send audio to Skype without being affected by each channel’s main fader so that I could use different audio levels to go to Skype than I’m sending to the recording.

Using aux B (post-fader) would allow me to easily control what level of audio Skype gets by simply adjusting the main channel fader.

In this video the setup is as follows (see the links below for a list of gear used including the best cables*)

  • My microphone (Heil PR40) is plugged into channel 1 via XLR cable.
  • My iPhone is plugged into channel 5/6 via a stereo 3.5mm to Y cable (1/4″ left and right) for sending sound FX into the mixer.
  • My computer (Skype) is plugged into channel 7/8 coming from my computer’s headphone output using another stereo 3.5mm to Y cable.
  • The mixer is sending audio to the computer (Skype) via Aux B using a 1/4″ to 3.5mm stereo cable.

To achieve the mix-minus setup, the aux B fader on my microphone’s channel as well as my iPhone’s channel is turned up (set your fader at whatever level is good for Skype. I like my Skype audio meter (can be viewed in Skype’s audio settings) to register about 70 to 75%).

The aux B fader on my computer’s channel (7/8) is left in the off position or turned all the way down so that no audio is going out of the aux send. This is the minus part of your mix-minus. All the audio in the mix is going out to Skype through the aux sends, minus the Skype caller’s audio on 7/8. If we had this aux send turned up then the person on Skype would hear their own voice back because we would be sending it back to them after it came into the mixer.

In this video’s setup, each channel that we are sending audio out of the aux B must also have its main channel fader turned up as well or else the audio won’t leave through the aux because we are using a post-fader as explained above.

It’s much more complex sounding that it really is. Take your time and go through each step repeating as necessary. Skype has a test calling service (echo123) that will allow you to place a test call just as if you had an interviewee on the line. Add this to your contact list and use this to test your setup as often as you need.

Step by Step Mix-Minus Walkthrough with Photos


****KEYRed Arrows = cable, Yellow Box = mixer input, Blue Box = Mixer Controls****


Step 1 – Mixer Requirements and Cabling

For a proper mix-minus setup you’ll need a mixer with an “Auxiliary (Aux) Send” (yellow box in image). This channel allows you to choose which individual channels get sent out of your mixer (blue boxes in image). For a mix-minus, I’ll be sending all of my audio in the mix, minus the channel that has Skype on it.

Step 1 Mixer with Aux Send

The yellow box in this first image (above) shows you where the AUX SENDS are located on my particular mixer. You see that this mixer has two (A (pre), B (post)). Your mixer needs at least one auxiliary send in order to properly setup a mix-minus. The more aux channels you have the more separate instances of Skype you can include in your mix.

It’s important to note that many mixers label the auxiliary send channel differently. For example, my Mackie ProFX12 labels them as Mon (monitor) Send and FX Send. Depending on what mixer you are using, they could be called something else but a quick check at the specs should tell you how many aux sends your mixer or the one you plan to buy has.

In the blue box you see the controls for the aux send channels for each individual channel on this mixer. This is where you will set the amount of volume that comes out of the aux send channel for each channel on your mixer including sending NO audio (level all the way down/off) on the channel that has Skype coming into the mixer.

Remember, this is called a mix-minus because you are sending the “mix” of all the audio coming into the mixer back out to Skype, “minus” the Skype audio.

This prevents the person on Skype from hearing their own voice back causing a feedback loop.

Cabling – Mike Phillips (@McPhillips) wrote an excellent article on choosing the best cables for setting up a mix-minus with your computer. The cables recommended by Mike can be seen in the following images.

The cables you see in the video above are fine but as Mike points out, anytime you use a adapter (i.e. 1/8″ to 1/4″) you create another point of potential failure. I’ve never had any issue with the cabling you see in the video but why not start with the best option and take Mike’s (expert) advice when it comes to selecting the proper cables.

Cables you’ll see in this walkthrough


Step 2 – Plug in the Microphone(s) and Get Initial Levels

Step 2 - Plug in Mic and Set an Initial Level

Here you see I’ve plugged in my microphone (Heil PR40) to channel 1 using an XLR cable. I’ve turned the gain knob (first blue box below the mic input on the mixer) to its center position and the fader for channel 1 (lowest blue box on channel 1) to the center as well. I’ve also turned the fader for the “Main Mix” (blue box on far right, bottom) to the middle position. This knob controls the overall level of all the audio that is feeding into the mixer.

These levels are just an initial setting to make sure I’m getting audio from the microphone into the mixer. Simply talk into the microphone to see if you are registering levels on your mixer’s LED audio meter.

If you have more than one microphone, repeat this step as outlined above. You can see on this mixer I can plug in three more XLR microphones.

 Step 3 Plug in Aux Send Cable to Mixer and Computer Input

Step 3 - Plug Aux Send into the Computer


The next step is to take a cable out of your mixer’s auxiliary send channel and plug that into your computer. This will be how Skype will receive the audio coming from your mixer.

In the picture above you see the red arrow points to the type of cable you want to use. Referring to Mike’s article on cabling for a mix-minus it’s important to note:

Most Internet broadcasters and podcasters are (or should be) using an auxiliary send on the mixer to send a mix-minus feed to Skype. That feed is mono. Most desktop and USB computer sound cards have stereo inputs. Skype really only looks at the left channel for its input, but some cheap, no-name sound cards may actually get the channels reversed internally. Therefore, it’s a good idea to feed to audio from the aux send on the mixer to both the left and right channels of the computer sound card.

A good solution is to use the Hosa CMP-105 cable, pictured here. The CMP-105 has a 1/8 inch TRS plug on one end and a ¼ inch TS plug on the other. The tip of the ¼ inch plug is connected to the tip and ring of the 1/8 inch TRS plug. The ¼ inch mono plug connects to the mixer’s aux out jack, and the 1/8 inch plug connects to the computer sound card. Even though Skype is mono and only sees the left channel of the audio input, the CMP-105 causes audio to appear on both the left and right inputs of the computer sound card.

In this setup, I’m using the aux B or post fader on the mixer to send audio to the computer. You can use either pre or post fader depending on your own preference. For another explanation of pre vs post faders see the end of the video starting at 9:20.

Next you’ll notice that the input to the computer is being handed by a device called an “iMic” made by Griffin. This is an analog to digital converter which takes the 3.5mm input (seen here plugged into the “in”) and converts it to a digital signal which is taken into the computer via USB.

If your computer doesn’t have a 3.5mm microphone input (e.g. Apple Macbook Pro models later than 2011) then you’ll need a device like this to input your audio to the computer from the mixer. When you setup your Skype audio preferences, you’ll want to select this device as your “microphone input.”

Step 4 – Plug the (Skype) Computer into the Mixer 

Output from Computer to Mixer

Step 5 (optional) – Plug in a Soundboard or Additional Audio to the Mixer

Soundboard to Mixer


If you have another source of audio such as a soundboard with music and effects, listener feedback, or any audio from another computer/device, then you can use one of your remaining open channels to bring in those sounds. In the picture above you see I’ve inputed an iPhone using a CMP-159 ?” stereo to ¼” dual mono cable. I’m using one of my remaining stereo channels because the app I’m using as a soundboard (Bossjock for iOS) will be bringing in stereo audio such as music and sound FX. If you are bringing in a mono source such as voice, you can use one of your remaining mono inputs (1/4″ plugs below the XLR inputs) and only plug the left channel ¼” mono plug (gray lead labeled “Tip”) into the mixer.

You can see I once again set an initial level (blue box on channel 5/6) to confirm I’m receiving audio from the iPhone.

Step 6 Plug in an Audio Recorder to the Mixer

Step 6 plug in audio recorder


Finally, we get to the final step in this setup which is plugging in an audio recorder so we can record our Skype call/podcast. Check the “alternative setups” section below to see how you would wire this setup if you wanted to record into your computer.

If you do chose to record into a computer, I still strongly suggest getting an audio recorder to record into as a backup. There are also other ways to handle recording a backup by using other software.

But having an additional hardware device can save your recording if your computer crashes. It can be really painful to be 20, 30, 60 minutes into an interview only to lose it because your software decided to crash.

In the picture above I’m using a 1/8″ stereo plug to dual RCA and outputting the mixer’s audio through the “Tape Out” output. This will capture a recording of all the audio going into your mixer including the person on Skype.

Alternative Setups

Record to separate channels


If you have a mixer that has either a FireWire or USB2.0 or higher output, you can record all the channels your mixer provides on separate tracks inside audio recording software that supports it. However, most mixers do not have these types of connections. When you only have a stereo mix out of your mixer how do you record audio on separate channels? Panning.

It’s important to understand that because you don’t have FireWire or USB2.0, you can only achieve two separate channels. However for many podcasters this will be enough because it’s just you (the interviewer) and Skype (the interviewee).

You’ll notice in the image above that channel 1 and channel 7/8 have their “pan” knobs turned all the way left and right respectively. Because you are sending a stereo mix (2 channels on a single track) to your audio recording software, you can create two separate channels with the left side of the stereo track containing audio that you panned to the left and the right side containing all the audio you panned to the right.

For example, in the above image, my microphone on channel one will be on the left side of the stereo track and the Skype caller on channel 7/8 will be on the right side of the stereo track. The resulting audio file will look something like this:

panned stereo recording

Once you begin to edit your audio, you can break apart this stereo track creating two separate mono tracks each containing only the audio that was placed on each track as a result of using the pan knobs. Now I have much more control over my audio in the editing process because the persons voice on Skype is not mixed with my own.

Some examples of what this allows you to do in the edit:

  • Apply different effects to each audio track – Each person’s voice will be different from the other. When adding effects such as EQ, Compression, Gates, Denoisers, etc. you’ll want each person to have their own unique recipe of effects. By having yourself on one track and you Skype caller on the other, you can handle how each track is processed separately.
  • Remove unwanted sounds – Your interviewee might cough while you’re talking and you’ll want to remove that. Having them on their own track will allow you to remove any part of their audio without affecting your own. If you recorded a stereo mix with panning your two channels, that cough could not be removed without also removing your own audio.
  • Creating cleaner audio – My audio editing workflow consists of removing the parts of an audio track where there is no talking. For example, if I’m asking a question and the interviewee is just listening, I remove that part of their audio. This also removes the noise floor (hiss) from their track thus making the overall mix cleaner. There are other ways to accomplish this such as inserting silence or using noise gates but for me this is the most effective workflow.
  • Fix crosstalk – If your guest speaks at the same time as you are speaking it can cause both or one of the person’s audio to get lost in the crosstalk. This always seems to be the case just as someone has made their most important point. Having each person on their own track allows you to shift the two pieces of audio on the timeline thus allowing each person to be heard. This is an incredibility powerful tool to have as an editor.

Recording into the same computer that’s running Skype

If you want or need to record your audio into the same computer you are using for Skype, you’ll need to run another audio feed out of your mixer and into another input on your computer for your recording software.

For example, you can take the Main Mix out of the mixer and input that into your computer (using a separate sound card explained/input on your computer) and use that feed to record into software that is on the same computer as Skype. This feed will contain all the audio including the Skype callers voice.

The key to this setup is that you have a second sound card. You need this because each piece of software you use (Skype, recording software, etc.) will need to have its own input.

If you are using only one sound card, both Skype and your recording software will only have one option to get its audio from and as we learned in this tutorial, the aux send will not contain the voice of the person on Skype. Your recording software of course needs to have an input with all voices. This would be the main mix out of your mixer.

If your mixer has USB output then the mixer becomes your second sound card and you can simply tell your recording software to get its input from the USB mixer. Skype would then still get its audio from the input on your computer that contains your aux send output from the mixer.

Other alternatives to getting a second sound card would be iMic that I mentioned above, and audio interface or another sound card that you install into your computer.

Recording with two computers

Another way to handle the recording of your Skype interviews using a mix-minus setup is to use two computers.

Having two computers allows you to dedicate one computer (can be a much older computer) to just running Skype. This allows all of the computers resources to be dedicated to Skype which may help improve your Skype connection and thus quality.

But primarily, using two computers allows you to send your aux send into the Skype computers input and the main mix from your mixer into another computer for recording the interview. This is another way around not having two sound cards in a single computer.

CABLING (for best results, use these cables)

*Gear used to make this video:

*all links should be considered affiliate links. Purchases made using these links help support this website. Please read my ethics statement for details and thanks for your support!




About Ray Ortega

Host of The Podcasters' Studio and Podcasters' Roundtable. Podcasting is my full time job, co-producing for a large non-profit network of podcasts. In my spare time I enjoy sharing my experience and helping others produce high quality podcasts.


  1. Ray,

    Great Video! Thank you! It looks like I may have a little tweaking to do. Our Skype calls have been "ok" , but levels have been an issue and I think it's because I am not using sends from my mixer properly. I use an external M-Audio Firewire interface box that takes the analog audio from my yamaha audio mixer and "Sends" it to my HP computer via a firewire cable.

    However, the issue for me is getting proper Skype audio levels BACK to the mixer for a full mix for recording and broadcast streaming. Right now, somehow, the same firewire cable that connects the M-Audio box to the computer is ALSO bringing the audio BACK from Skype to the M-audio box. So i'm getting audio in dual directions over the one firewire cable. I'm not sure how or why that is happening, or if that is a normal connection.

    I then have to use the Headphone jack on the M-audio box to send the audio to another input on my audio mixer so that all hosts are hearing the audio from Skype. But I can't raise the audio level very high because of feedback. Then I monitor the entire mix using the headphone jack on the audio mixer itself. So obviously none of this is optimal. The issue I am having is that if the input in my mixer for Skype is too high, we get some weird feedback.

    In your video, you are using sends from your audio mixer to a Mac via a USB interface. So I need to re-think everything I believe because I am almost doing the same thing (I thought) with this firewire box, but the results are not the same. I think my problem is that I don't fully understand how firewire or USB interfaces work. I am a old analog guy, and I understand wires and input and outputs.

    Can you point me to good tutorials that explain how devices like these work? Your video does a great job explaining how to "Wire" your mixer, but it doesn't explain the role of the USB interface in this example. Also, the Mixer you are using is a firewire Mixer, but I didn't understand how it is connected to your Mac. That might be something to cover in future videos as well. Thats what I personally really need to understand better. Digital Audio Interfaces.



    • Thanks Michael. Take the firewire box out of the equation and just hook up the mixe minus the way I do it in this video. The little audio interface you see, the Griifen iMic, is only used if you don't already have an analog (3.5mm) input on your computer. That is how I explained it in the video. Check it out again. I show both of these methods just depending on which option you have.

      The mixer you see in the video is not using the firewire function. I never plug that in in the video. The only part that is important is the part I point out in the beginning which is the Aux send. You need that to do a mix minus.

      Soon I will put together a complete wiring diagram that puts everything you see in the video into text and images which should help. In the meantime, try hooking up your mixer with only analog connections. Aux send to computer's mic input and the computer's headphone output into a channel on your mixer. Let me know how it goes.


  2. Awesome post. Truly awesome. I have one question though; how can I do a three way skype interview and get each voice on a separate track. I can see how using pan enables you to split an audio file into mono channels in the DAW. But what if there are two callers?

    • Thanks Jon. You\’re probably looking at a mixer that can send multitrack like the Alesis USB2.0 on my gear page or a firewire mixer. I haven\’t played around with multiple soundcards into one machine but if you had more than one that you could input to then perhaps your DAW could take each one as an input.

    • Hi Jon, did you ever get this figured out? You would need a separate computer for each person on Skype. Fortunately most mixers with an Aux have two Aux's.

  3. Gami Rosd says:

    – We are doing a lot of Skype and maximum 4 users plus me so 5 users at the same time doing mix minus, I mean the host is the 1st Skype on a laptop and another 4 guests on another 4 laptop (this is the maximum) running a Skype for each computer or laptop.

    – So number of aux or send and return or receive are very important unless I am mistaken.

    – Please may you tell the exact number of aux and send or return I need for my setup? so when I search for a mixer I can figure out exactly the number of inputs and outputs or aux and send or return that should be included or exist in the mixer.

    • Hi Gami, you need an Aux send for every instance of Skype you are going to want to bring into and out of the mixer. So in your case, if you have 4 people on separate computers/Skype instances each person/laptop will need it's own Aux channel. This is tough because most mixers that are affordable have two. There are however ones with 4 but after that it gets REALLY expensive. This is one of the most interesting new mixers I've seen lately and it has 4 Aux's. Unfortunately I haven't been able to demo it yet to hear how good or not good it is but it might be worth looking into. This mixer does lots of cool things and that is (believe it or not) a good price for what you get

  4. Chris Smith/Out Of Chicago says:

    Dude. This must have taken a lot of hours to put together! Thank you for the help. I think I'm a mix minus master now. :)

    • PodcastHelper says:

      Thanks Chris! Yes, this tutorial probably tops my most time consuming to date. Appreciate the feedback and so glad that this helped you understand a mix-minus and not make you more confused;)

  5. Amazing tutorial. Thank you so much. One question my cohosts are still having a issue hearing my sounds does the single computer setup allow for system sounds to be played for the Skype caller?

  6. Thanks so much for this tutorial! I just finished recording my first interview on Skype with the mix-minus. It's so nice to be able to hear myself while recording. (Before I used two computers, recorded Skype on one, and myself through the mixer on the other.)

    I understand that I can record myself in the left channel, and my interviewee in the right channel (or vice versa), but I was wondering if it's possible to use two computers, record myself with one, record the interviewee with the other, but have them both connected to my mixer in such a way that the interviewee hears me through my studio mic, and I can hear myself and the interviewee. I am using a Behringer Xenyx X1204USB mixer. I figure there must be a way to do it, but I haven't yet been able to figure out how.

    Thanks for any light you can shed, and thanks again for this phenomenal tutorial! It's so great that you have the video AND the text walk-through with pictures. So very helpful!

  7. Hi Ray. No I didn't figure it out. I tried using the other Auxiliary Send to send to the other computer, but I must've done something wrong because there was a LOT of noise in the audio. I'd really like to figure this out, because with my set-up I have to use 2 computers if I'm going to use a mix-minus while recording with Skype.

    • Lex, why not just use a single computer with the panning method? Otherwise you would need more Aux outs. You would use the other Aux out on the channel (on the mixer) that is receiving Skype. Aux 1 sends your audio only back to them and Aux two sends their audio back to one computer with recording software. For your own voice on another computer you would need to send that out via another Aux. A mixer with 4 Aux sends starts to get pricey.

      An interesting "hack" to try might be sending the Skype audio out of one computer via a splitter with one lead going into your mixer for a mix-minus and the other lead going into the input on another computer to record. That would only contain the Skype person. Then you could record only your voice on the other computer.

      This one gets pretty tricky cause you're trying to separate so many things. You could probably also hook something up with virtual cables like Soundflower to route some of the audio internally for recording.

  8. The reason I was trying to figure this out is that I'm recording gaming sessions that are 4 hours long, and it gets annoying only hearing myself in one ear. I also would prefer my players to only hear me in one ear. :) I would also like to have a back-up recording of everything in case someone has a problem with their audio (I'm effectively doing a double-ender with 5 people).

    Is there a way to use the panning method, but have the callers hear stereo audio?

    My mixer (Behringer Xenyx X1204USB) has a USB out, which gets a cleaner sound than using the analog mic ins. I was hoping to figure out a way to record everyone in the call, including myself, on one computer using the USB out (and maybe use the panning method so I can split myself and the Skype call into two tracks) and record the Skype call minus myself on the other computer.

    In the past I've done two-person interviews using two computers (one records the Skype call minus myself, the other records myself through the mixer). I'd like to go to a mix minus so the caller hears my studio mic. I'm also using a headset mic pluged into the Skype computer (that's what the caller hears) and I'm using my studio mic plugged into my mixer and the other computer, and I'm worried that the two mics may cause noise(?).

    My mixer only has two auxiliary sends (one pre-fader, and one pre- or post-fader) so this may just not be possible if I can't figure out a way to make it work with the USB.

  9. Jan Mueller says:

    Thank you very much for this post ! Just what I needed.

    Quick but possibly not so simple question. If I have multiple guests calling in via Skype or Google Hangout, can I still use just the one mix-minus with my mixer?

    Also, it seems some people use a compressor-limiter-gate unit to enhance the sound coming via Skype from callers who may have variable quality microphones and speaking practices on their end. Where does that go in the chain?

    I would be glad to arrange for a paid consultation if that is the appropriate way to figure out the set-up I need.

    Thanks much, Jan

    • Thanks Jan, yes if the people calling in are coming from the same source (same Skype session or G+ Hangout) you can use one mix-minus to send back. You are essentially hearing everything on that Skype call and everyone on that one call is hearing you only, they are hearing each other via the conference call that Skype is doing.

      An effects unit like a compressor/limiter/gate gets plugged into your mixer via Insert channels and the audio goes into the mixer, passes through the unit and then comes back into the mixer and out of the output. Feel free to get in touch via the contact page here if you'd like to work together.

  10. Awesome tutorials Ray – they make the whole "mix minus" setup easy.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Brent Price
    The Web Marketing Show

  11. Awesome and thank you so much! I use skype, for now to take live callers on a live relationships talk show (The Art of Relationships Radio Show) and use to use just mixxx and spreaker… Then starting using a mixer, same mixer as you showed in video, well USB, not firewired! :) Everything worked great except listeners could not hear callers! This video is awesome! Thank you!!!!

  12. Really helpful, Ray. I generally do a group skype call for both my co-host and guest(s). With this set-up, they will be able to hear my voice and sound effects, but how will they be able to hear one another?

    • Thanks. If you're Skype callers are both on the same call (conference like you say) then they hear each other through that connection. Just like if you made a conference call without this setup. Does that make sense?

  13. bosskland says:

    I used this setup for the first time last night. It was so easy to setup and worked perfectly. Thank you!

    • That's great to hear! Thanks for letting me know. What is your setup/gear?

      • bosskland says:

        Last night I used my Behringer UB1002 mixer and an ATR30 mic, but I have a ton of equipment that you can see on my website: In the past I used to have live bands perform on the show; therefore, I have an excess of microphones. I did not use my limiter last night. It needs taken out of the rack case for that to happen. 3 kids under 6 kinda changed the way I do things a bit lol

        • LOL, yes I know how kids can change a setup;) Sounds like you have plenty of fun toys to play with and I bet it's a lot of fun to record live music. I'll check out the gear page, thanks. 

  14. Great tips. It helps even more that I happen to use this exact mixer :)

    • Cool, thanks! Hold on to that mixer, it’s a gem that you can’t get anymore. As long as the drivers continue to work for multitrack;) But even great if you don’t do multitrack. Wish they still made it.

  15. I had just used my mixer to send sound into my mic port on my computer. All was well. Setting up mix minus causes a buzzing sound. I have moved cables, adjusted dials, settings for my audio in control panel, all to no avail. The buzz gets louder if I adjust levels for my mic, main mix, or any channel I use.

    I am using onboard sound as my SB X-Fi sound card was contributing to hum that is now gone after I removed it.

    Any ideas?

    • Aaron did we discuss this somewhere else? I feel like we did. Did you get it solved? Sounds like maybe the output of your mixer is causing an issue or however you are bringing in Skype to the computer is having a problem.

      • Hi, Ray. Never spoke with you previously. I am having major problems with this. Tried different cables. Re-doing the set up from scratch, etc. I have an audio interface arriving tomorrow (A Mackie unit) and hope it will help.

        I have tried different surge protectors. Everything on same circuit, and my mixer on another circuit.

        Any ideas?

        • Do you think that the audio interface might help? I have heard that using one keeps computer noise away from your mixer and your recordings. I hope it does. I don’t know of anyone who has had this problem, My co-host just hooks his stuff up and it works. I get a constant buzz.

          I have even tested this with no cables. Just my headphones in the mixer and I get a buzz even then. Could my mixer be broken? I just got it a little over a month ago. A Behringer Q802USB, though I have not been using the USB cable most of the time.

          • I set up my audio interface. I have to get a new cable to connect the out from my AI to my mixer, but preliminary tests reveal that the noise has been reduced. By over half. Very strange.

            Hopefully I will have the cable I need later today for more testing.

          • Solved the issue. My co-host brought over his mixer. No noise. My audio interface has no noise on its own. I have now ordered a new mixer. A Mackie. My new Behringer Xenyx Q802USB waa a lemon. Hopefully the 8-channel Mackie will be a good one.

          • Hi Aaron.
            If you are using Windows 7, try going into the Windows recording interface options and pull the recording level for the usb codec down. I had the same problem, now solved by dropping it to <5 in Recording Level Options.

  16. I honestly just made a very modest donation because this one post is so awesome and helpful for me. Thank you so much! I’ve figured out mics, a digital audio recorder, and headphones. Now I just have to decide which mixer is best for me. So many to choose from and so much to know. I am much better equipped now.

    Great site. Thanks again!

  17. This was really helpful. Thank you!
    Now I’m trying to record not just skype calls, buy call through my iphone. I know it should be easy, but I’m having a bit of trouble. Other online solutions don’t seem to be much a help.
    Any ideas?

    • You’re just trying to input your phone into your mixer? That just requires a cable from the phone headphone to the mixer input. Are you trying to do something different than that?

  18. John Kosmer says:

    I use Macs, running 10.7.5 & 10.8. While recording the interview on Audio Hyjack Pro, I would like to be able to play an MP3 file from my mac (through either iTunes or Fission) that the person I am speaking to on Google Voice can hear, so we can discuss it during the interview. Presently I cannot do that. Will this mix minus set-up enable me to accomplish this task? If so, please let me know how if there is any variation to the set up you describe. thanks.

    • Yes you can do that with a mix-minus setup. You might also get it to work with Audio Hijack Pro by setting up iTunes as an input into AHP and having that output to Skype. The newest version of AHP makes this pretty easy.

  19. I’ve configured your setup with my Behringer x1204USB and all seems to work fine…Except for the output to my Roland R-05 is in mono…so both channels are the same. How do I record the skype call with my voice on one channel and the other persons on the other? This would be a nightmare to edit.
    Jim Jensen

    • If you are going into the Roland then the only way to split that would be to hard pan your channels on the mixer. So mic 1 would be panned all the way left and the other mic all the way right which would essentially give you to separate channels that you’ll then need to split apart in post production.

  20. Teri OBrien says:

    Hi Ray,
    You ROCK! I have been looking for months for an explanation that will help me use my Alexis Multimix 8, for not only Skype calls, but also just to broadcast on Spreaker, where I do my podcast. I hate to be such a pinhead, but despite this EXCELLENT and very detailed summary, I have a couple of questions still. First, it appears that you are taking Skype out of a Macbook Pro into that Channel 7/8 on the mixer. Then it appears that your sending the mix back into another Macbook Pro. Is it the same computer? What about the iMac in the shot? Could I send the AUX mix back into my iMac’s headphone jack?
    What about the settings in the computer that has the mixer plugged into it? What settings do you use in Systems Preferences > Sounds? I assume that you set the input and output to the Mixer there, but if I’m wrong, please set me straight. Any other settings I need to worry about?
    I REALLY appreciate your help very very much. I have been very frustrated by these issues for a long time!

    • Thanks Teri! Glad this helped. The audio is coming out of one macbook and going back into the same computer to feed Skype via the Aux Send.
      You could send it into another computer if needed or feed another computer the main mix in order to record both tracks. The only settings you need to mess with on the computer should be Skype or whatever other software you are using to talk online. Set the ins and outs for the headphone and microphone inputs and outputs and you should be good. Hope this helps.

  21. Hi,
    I was thinking about buying Mackie PROFX12 for my online radio station. I would explain my question with a scenario for better clarity. Scenario: 8 callers on Skype and me being the 9th on the conference call. Our listeners will be calling in from different countries for the conference. I want to ensure that each caller is on the separate channel for the best audio quality. How do we go about it? Skype mods told me that the only way to achieve a separate channel is to have different account for each number and each one gets logged on a separate device. Now that means we will have 9 devices running simultaneously and hooked to the mixer. Each device gets hooked to a channel and each call has be answered from a separate device. What would you recommend? I have looked everywhere but haven’t found an answer yet.

    • Hi, yes the Skype mods are correct. In order for everybody to have their own channel you will need a large amount of gear. You’ll need a separate computer for every person on Skype so that each person can go into their own channel on your mixer. The mixer is an even bigger issue because it needs to be able to accept that many channels and equally output that many channels all separately. That is handled via a mixer that has firewire or thunderbolt output into multichannel software. I haven’t done a separate channel call with that many people before. You can take a look at Voicemeeter for Windows and see if it can be accomplished via that software or something like Audio Hijack Pro for the Mac. This would be a really difficult setup primarily because you are trying to record everyone on to their own track. If you mixed it all together you could accomplish it with simple recording software, a small mixer and two or even one computer.

      • Can you please explain the process in detail on the equipment, channel separation, software needed to accomplish live calling via multiple Skype ID’s. I mean, with 5 different ID’s, each on different phone/laptop connected through the mixer. How will everyone be able to hear everyone i.e be in a conference call, since each caller is on different device & different number/ID? Would the mixer help in accomplishing this task?

  22. Thank you for this video. Is the diagram online some where? I do have a few questions. I have never done a podcast and have no equipment yet. I found the mixer you used in the video so I’ll be purchasing that along with all the cables. I do have a macbook pro (last years model). I’m using an app with my iphone 6+ to live stream so I want to have skype calls come in on my laptop and have the viewers be able to hear the caller. I also want to use my ipad with bossjock for sound FX. Will it be possible using the setup you have in the video to run everything through the mixer then back out to the iphone so everyone (through the iphone) will be able to hear everything from the ipad and the laptop? Will I need more cables to make this happen? I’m worried the iphone may cause some issues if I don’t have the right cables.

    • You may not have found the same mixer. The USB 1.0 version is easy to find online but that is not multichannel. Only the USB2.0 and firewire versions are multichannel and they are hard to find and cost much more. That said, you don’t need multichannel for what you’re trying to do so it should be ok. What you are trying to do can be a little tricky but I’m actually looking into a new device that might make it happen, to allow you to do a mix-minus to an iPhone. It’s this: (referral link). I don’t know the results yet but that’s how you’d do it. You need to be able to send and receive audio and the iPhone input allows for that with a TRRS connection. So yes it’s possible.

  23. Great tut thanks you for this. My problem is that my co-host on skype can’t hear the music that’s coming from another laptop he can hear the mics perfectly. I have tried both stereo and mono cables from the FX Send port on the board to the mic in on the laptop and it sounds very low and distorted. If I try and turn up the gains it just gets over modulated. I have a Mackie Pro FX 8 Board. Please help.

  24. Hi there!
    I am just starting out and have bought Mackie 1202VLZ4 12-Channel Compact Mixer, Shure sm7b, Cloudlifter CL-1, Shure SRH440 Headphones for my home studio. I am using a MacBook Air & Windows laptop.
    Here’s the setup I am looking at:
    Laptop #1 running skype account 1, Laptop #2 running skype account 1 & Winamp for background music. There will be around 5-6 callers collectively on both the laptops using the same account. The podcast will be running live using Edcast on windows laptop#2. Can you suggest the setup in detail since I am newbie. Thanks!

    • Great gear! You’re starting with a pretty complex setup that you’ll have to really sit down and work through. It’s hard to walk you through it here. But essentially you’ll be doing a mix-minus like you see in my video for each Skype account, sending the appropriate audio via aux sends to the right Skype accounts and then recording it all into some software.You might lessen the difficultly by trying everyone on a single Skype call if possible or using Google Hangouts.

  25. Hi Ray. I just started a podcast, namely The CuteMonster Show which is up on iTunes and SoundCloud respectively. But now I’m ready to actually interview guests via Skype. So naturally I’ve been looking into getting a mixer for the mix minus feature I’ve been reading about for Skype recording. I’m looking at the Mackie ProFX4v2 and maybe the next model up, the Mackie Pro FX8v2, which currently seems like overkill for my needs but has a USB connection, more channels, and faders. If I opt to buy a recorder like the H5 and forego recording into my computer than I can go with my first choice. Here’s my question though, I’m confused with how to set this up specifically with the Mackie ProFX4v2. I have a MacBook Pro 2011 which has a line-in port as well as a headphones out port. Can you walk me through the set up as well including the cables I’d need? This is a link to the mixer on B&H which shows the connections the mixer has, etc. Thanks! Maybe I can have you on my show someday! :)

    • Hi Vincent. Congrats on the show! I’d love to be on it someday, thanks for asking. First question is what kind of microphone are you currently using and how are you getting it into the computer? Secondly take a look at this post the Q802 is a very interesting option in its price range and may work out great for you. Also, the ProFX4v2 is a very interesting and almost weird mixer. Thanks for turning me onto it, it looks like it just came out and I hadn’t heard of it. That said, I don’t see much reason for it existing considering the Mix series which you will see in my post linked above. If you only need what the ProFX4v2 offers then you can likely get the Mix8 and be just as well off unless I’m missing something in my brief glance at the mixer. It looks like it has the on-board EQ and a higher resolution audio meter but that’s about all you’re getting in the increase in price over the Mix8.

      If you get an H5 there is an interesting thing you can do with it to kind of hack it to record Skype, see this video I did: The H5 is just the updated version of the H4n you see in the video. And you don’t need the ATR2100 that I show in the video but in that case, Skype would need to use your on-board computer mic so that the interviewee could hear you which is fine because that part is not being recorded however it is a little less professional if that matters.

      Otherwise the post here on mix-minus will walk you through the setup. You would use you line in and headphone out and not need the iMic. The proper cables are listed in the post. Let me know what you end up going with or any more questions you have!

      • Thanks for insight Ray. I’m currently using a USB mic, specifically the Blue Microphones Spark Digital. If I purchased a mixer I’d also have to buy a XLR based mic which means I’ll be leaning towards purchasing the Spark, the XLR based twin of the Spark Digital. The way I am recording Skype calls now is via software (ecamm’s Call Recorder for Macs). I have a MacBook Pro. I just worry that the software will eventually fail me and I’ll lose an interview recording because of it. Thanks again for your suggestions. I’ll do a bit more research and keep you posted.

        • I’ve narrowed down my choices. Mackie 802VLZ4 mixer, Zoom H5 Recorder, Audio-Technica AT2005USB Mic. Question Ray. Regarding the mic I’ve heard high praise for the Electro-Voice RE20. It retails for $450. I’m of the opinion that it’s better to spend on quality equipment then continually buy sub-par equipment over time which in the end would add up to the cost of the quality piece of equipment. Thoughts? Is the EV RE20 really 10x better to the human ear than the AT2005USB?

      • I set everything up using cables and connections listed in your setup. To be clear, I’m using a Mackie 802 vlz4 mixer, an EV 20 mic, a cloudlifter cl-1, a Zoom H5 and a 2011 MB Pro which has the in and out ports respectively. I’ve set everything up and when I try the test Skype call, I can hear myself clearly via my headphones connected to the mixer. I can also hear the Skype call clearly. But when the test call finishes and plays it back, my mic volume is extremely low and the Skype test call voice is fine. Also, my Zoom H5 is not picking up any signal. It’s on, set to stereo recording, and the cord is plugged into the line in. Yet no readings at all when I’m using the mic or any sounds for that matter from the computer via the test Skype call voice. Help! Do you have consulting services? This set up should work right. Ugh. :)

        • I think I solved the problem. *shakes fist at gear* I went through each step methodically and this time tried the mix out connection instead of the tape out. That seemed to do it. Whether I had the right settings on the H5 the first time is another issue. Need a coach standing over me to talk me through. :) Anyway, will update you when the show is up and running now that I have hopefully conquered the technical hiccups.

  26. Hi Ray! Great video and very helpful. I was hoping you could help me out. My friend and I want to do a podcast with Skype Call Recorder and interview a third person over the phone. The equipment I have is a MacBook Pro, TASCAM DR-40, Audio Technica XLR mic, headphones, and Behringerx1204 mixer. How can I properly configure my equipment to maximize my podcast? Thanks!

    • HI Martin, thanks! In your setup, the best thing to do would be to use a mix-minus to connect to your interviewees on Skype and record that into your recorder while using Skype Call Recorder as a backup. Or you could skip Call Recorder and record the mix into Audacity or other software via the USB. If you have more than one person on Skype then you’ll need to use a conference call.

  27. John Allegro says:

    Hi Ray,

    I thought I had this nailed. I bought an Alesis Multimix8, and followed instructions to a T. Instead of using Skype, I set up an account with a conference call service. I set up the computer with the conference call with the Aux Send and used track 7/8.

    For broadcast, I use a computer with Mixlr.

    I tested everything out, but when I went live – I got a reverb of my own voice in the headset. It was about a 5 second delay, but I heard everything back in my headset – too distracting to carry on.

    Where did I go wrong?

    • If you are monitoring the live feed then you will hear that on delay but if you go and listen to the live feed afterward and there is no feedback, meaning just your voice once, then you are fine. You just can’t monitor the live feed. You need to monitor at the mixer. If you are hearing yourself twice in the mixer then yes something is setup wrong and somewhere your voice is coming back into the mixer. Not really sure how that would happen unless the conference call is sending your voice back for some reason which it should not do.

  28. Would the setup you laid out work for recording Google Hangouts or is that something entirely different?

  29. Joanna Hammond says:

    I have a simple setup that I would like to put together… for broadcasting. I require that:

    1) Skype receives mic but nothing else.
    2) OBS receives PC + skype out + mic
    3) All controlled on mixer.

    Any suggestions on PC setup/mixer setup (even recommended mixer, cheapish)?

  30. You really really save my butt.
    I am going crazy here trying to figure out how to make this work.
    Your video might do it.

    Thank you much Pal, May God or whatever else you might believe in bless you!!!

  31. Jaime Pierson says:

    Hey Ray, I’ve done this set up and a two sound card set up and in either case, the mix minus worked great. But, the problem I am facing is that my guests hear the music and it swells all over the place, overall bad sound for them and when they talk. It gets 10 times worse for them. It was like this over Skype or google hangout. Any suggestions? Thanks and great video!

    • I racking my brain trying to remember where I heard something like this before. I think maybe Skype has some built in processing that might be making the music sound weird but you said it was Hangouts too. I know Skype doesn’t like crosstalk, so if you’re sending music and your cohost is trying to talk at the same time then that could definitely be an issue. You say the mix-minus worked great but perhaps it’s not actually working great, maybe something is set up wrong and it causing a feedback issue. Are you in the G+ Podcasters Community? I would post your questions there since there are thousands of people and likely someone who has personal experience with this issue. Give it a shot.


  1. […] good explainer video, but why bother when there’s one as good as this out there. Go check out Ray’s mix-minus training video if you want to know how to set it up […]

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