In this video show you how to solve a common problem when recording your XLR microphone using QuickTime Player on the Mac. The Problem? Your microphone sound only comes out of the left speaker.

QuickTime Player on the Mac is a simple, versatile, and free media-creation tool. But it has a few limitations.

You’ll quickly run up against one of these limitations when you try to record audio using an XLR microphone, connected to a USB audio interface, connected to your Mac.

When you play back your recording, you can only hear your voice coming through the left speaker.

XLR Microphones and USB Audio Interfaces

That’s because USB interfaces typically split the incoming audio signal: XLR, or microphone input goes to Channel One, the left channel in a stereo pair. Instrument input goes to Channel Two, the right channel. So, your microphone signal sits on the left channel and that’s how QuickTime Player records it.

Stereo To Mono

To remedy this microphone on the “left-side-only” issue, we need to switch the microphone input track from stereo, “left-side-only” to mono, which will place your microphone sound on both the left and right channels, so it comes out of both left and right speakers.

Unfortunately, you can’t do that in QuickTime Player. You can’t switch the microphone track input from stereo to mono, like you can in other audio software. QuickTime Player is stereo only. Which is why the microphone signal from your USB interface plays only through the left speaker in the QuickTime Player recording.

GarageBand to the Rescue

There’s a simple solution to this problem. It’s Apple GarageBand, that digital Music Studio that comes bundled with every Mac (at least at the time of writing).

In the video above, I show you how to use GarageBand to convert the stereo, or “left-side-only” QuickTime recording into a mono, or “both-sides recording”.

Tools Used to Make this Video (Affiliate links):

Camera: Canon EOS M6

Lens: Canon EF-M 22mm f2 STM Lens

Camera Microphone: RODE NTG-2

Voice-Over Microphone: RODE NT-USB

Second Camera: Sony a5100 Mirrorless Digital Camera

Lens: Sigma 19mm F2.8 EX DN Art (Silver) for Sony SE

HDMI to Thunderbolt Adapter: Blackmagic Design UltraStudio Mini Recorder

Lights: VILTROX L116T CRI95+ Super Slim Dimmable LED Light Panel 

Editing: Screenflow

Animation: Apple Keynote

Michael Kinney

Michael is an award-winning media creator with 30 years of professional video production experience. He's written, produced, directed, hosted, recorded, and edited a variety of media projects - from TV documentaries to interactive learning.

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