Daqarta
Data AcQuisition And Real-Time Analysis
Scope - Spectrum - Spectrogram - Signal Generator
Software for Windows
Science with your Sound Card!
The following is from the Daqarta Help system:

Features:

Oscilloscope

Spectrum Analyzer

8-Channel
Signal Generator

(Absolutely FREE!)

Spectrogram

Pitch Tracker

Pitch-to-MIDI

DaqMusiq Generator
(Free Music... Forever!)

Engine Simulator

LCR Meter

Remote Operation

DC Measurements

True RMS Voltmeter

Sound Level Meter

Frequency Counter
    Period
    Event
    Spectral Event

    Temperature
    Pressure
    MHz Frequencies

Data Logger

Waveform Averager

Histogram

Post-Stimulus Time
Histogram (PSTH)

THD Meter

IMD Meter

Precision Phase Meter

Pulse Meter

Macro System

Multi-Trace Arrays

Trigger Controls

Auto-Calibration

Spectral Peak Track

Spectrum Limit Testing

Direct-to-Disk Recording

Accessibility

Applications:

Frequency response

Distortion measurement

Speech and music

Microphone calibration

Loudspeaker test

Auditory phenomena

Musical instrument tuning

Animal sound

Evoked potentials

Rotating machinery

Automotive

Product test

Contact us about
your application!

Peter Knight's Windows 10 Guide for Daqarta

Daqarta power user Peter Knight has generously provided the following guide to setting up Daqarta on Windows 10 systems. This is based on information he has produced for various Amateur Radio related forums.

Windows 10 Sound Settings and Sound Cards:

Windows 10 sound settings have become quite complex, as it's now a mix of the original (and comfortable) Control Panel "Sound" controls, and the Windows 10 "Sound Settings" controls, most easily selected via a right-click on the loudspeaker icon on the Taskbar.

The original Control Panel "Sound" Program is available from the Windows 10 "Sound Settings" page, as is the "Microphone Privacy" and "External App Access", and between these four it's possible to configure various sound cards to operate exclusively with differing Windows programs.

The main problems come from the types of sound card installed, each having differing parameters or issues:


Connections:

A typical on-board sound card (Intel, Realtek, etc) usually has a rear Line In jack (Blue) and a (Pink) Front Microphone jack. As noted in Microphone vs. Line Inputs under Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 Issues, Windows 10 will not recognise these jacks as being enabled until a 3.5mm plug is inserted. Furthermore, PC manufacturers often bundle sound card software with their machines, which can again enable/disable on-board jacks.

Windows 10 may not differentiate between the various on-board jacks, and may just associate both the Front Mic and Rear Line In as "Microphone" Inputs (or just as a single Microphone Input).


PCI/PCIe and External USB Sound Cards:

Windows 10 may recognise the different jacks on these devices (2, 2.1, 5.1, 7.1 channels, etc). If not, then the manufactures' drivers should pass the correct info on to Windows 10.

With PCI/PCIe/USB sound cards, the bundled software will most often have apps that can cause many problems when using the card in a "professional" manner. These apps can, by default, enable all sorts of "effects", such as Spatial Sound, Reverberation, Enhanced Stereo, etc. For this reason, you may want to purchase only sound cards that are fully recognised by Windows, and never install the bundled software. (It's often the less expensive 96/192 kHz cards that give the best results.)

Windows 10 also offers many "enhancements" found in the original Windows Control Panel Sound settings. Each sound card is different, so it's imperative to go right through the Control Panel Playback and Recording settings and disable everything that is not needed.

While in the Control Panel Sound settings, it's a good idea to select the best possible sample rate and bits for the sound card to be used. Typically this could be 24 Bit 44100 or 48000 Hz, with many Cards supporting 96000 and 192000. Beware - not all software will support these higher rates, and many older Windows programs may not recognise, or operate, at 48000 bps. (Note, however, that Daqarta currently only uses 16 bits.)


Using HDMI Screen Inputs:

Many new Intel PCs are fitted with an on-board HDMI Output, which carries stereo audio as well as video to a monitor. Depending on what was enabled on the PC when Windows was installed, the HDMI Audio Output will be "Device 0" and the on-board sound card will be "Device 1", or, the on-board sound card will be "Device 0", and the HDMI Audio Output will be "Device 1". Windows 10 uses the Device Name for identification, but some Windows apps only identify sound cards with the Device Number which is not easily discovered, so it's a case of "test and see".

The HDMI Sound Output is most useful when used as the default Sound Output Device. This may seem counter-intuitive, but it means that all Windows Sounds will now only go to the screen, leaving any true sound cards to be used exclusively with sound programs and applications. These can be selected from within the app/program itself, with basic Level adjustments made from within the Windows 10 Advanced Sound Settings.


Windows 10 Privacy and External Application Settings:

By default, Windows 10 enables access to all hardware within the computer, including the microphone and the camera. Laptop users can find this disturbing, as it means that a skillful hacker could gain access the laptop Mic and Camera, so many PC utility apps can be set to disable all Privacy settings, which can also be performed manually. However, this does mean that legitimate applications cannot access the on-board camera, or the microphone jack, or the Line In jack! So, it's imperative to check the Microphone Privacy and External Application settings when using Sound Apps that require access to the Sound Card. (See steps 13 - 16 below.)


Daqarta Under Windows 10: Visual Step-by-Step Setup:

1) Disable any sound card utilities or applications, or check that all application "enhancements" for the card are turned "off".

2) If you are using an on-board sound card (motherboard audio jacks at the rear of the computer), then connect a pair of short 3.5mm stereo Male-Female extension cables to the rear Audio Line In and Line Out jacks. A bit of blue (Input) and green (Output) insulation tape around the cable jacks will enable easy identification. This is also useful as it brings the rear jacks out to the front of the PC. Now fit a temporary loopback or "jumper" 3.5mm Male-Male extension cable between the Input and Output jacks. Fit a similar "jumper" cable to an external (USB) sound card if that is what you are using. (Doing this ensures that Windows "knows" that the sound card Inputs and Outputs are enabled.

3) Start Daqarta and immediately head to the menu bar Edit - Start Preferences. Make sure that the required sound card is set for both the Input and Output Devices. Change as needed, and if so, restart Daqarta. Leave Daqarta running.

4) Head to Windows 10 Sound Settings by right-clicking the loudspeaker icon on the lower right Taskbar. Click on "Open Sound Settings".

5) Make sure that the desired sound card is selected as the Main Output Device, and that the Master Volume is set to 100%.

6) Make sure that the desired sound card is selected as the Main Input Device.

7) Scroll down (if needed) to Advanced Sound Options "App volume device preferences".

8) Recheck the Master Input and Output Devices remain at 100% and the required sound card is selected as the default for Input and Output devices.

9) Turn the System Sounds volume slider to 0% (Zero).

10) Beneath this, you should see Daqarta as an External App. If not, make sure that Daqarta is running! Move the associated volume slider to 100%.

11) Return back to "Windows 10 Sound Settings", and select "Sound Control Panel" on the top-right.

12) Make all necessary changes to the Recording and Playback Device settings for the specified sound card. This varies from device to device. Below are screen shots of some of the more common settings.

Playback Settings:

Line Out Properties - General:

Line Out Properties - Levels:

Line Out Properties - Advanced:

Line Out Properties - Spatial Sound:


Recording Settings:

Line In Properties - General:

Line In Properties - Listen:

Line In Properties - Levels:

Line In Properties - Enhancements:

Line In Properties - Advanced:


Communications Settings:


13) Return back to "Windows 10 Sound Settings", and select "Microphone Privacy Settings" on the top-right.


14) Turn On the switch "Allow Apps to access your microphone".


15) Under this, deselect all Windows apps that you do not regularly use (most of them!)


16) Below this, turn On the switch "Allow Desktop Apps to access your microphone". Daqarta should now show as a Desktop App below this.

17) Exit all Sound Settings and return to Daqarta. Now go to the Calibration menu and perform an Auto-Calibration.

For technical work that involves absolute measurements of voltage or sound level, you should perform a Full-Scale Range calibration.


See also Troubleshooting

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