Why is my USB headset/mic only buzzing when I use Dragon Naturally Speaking?
February 17, 2009 9:43 AM   Subscribe

buzzing noise in Dragon Naturally Speaking, but not on other programs. Using VMWare fusion to run DNS on my Mac, and recording/listening through a Dinex USB headset with microphone. Any suggestions?

Hi. Here's the problem:
There is a changing amount of buzzing when I use DNS (version 10). Sometimes a lot, other times only a little. There is always some. I'm using it on my mac (OS X 10.5), running VMWare Fusion to run it on Windows, as necessary.

When I heard the buzzing noise, I thought it had something to do with the mic, but there doesn't seem to be a problem on Photobooth, so I'm guessing it isn't hardware problems.

So I thought it was the fact that the USB headset/mic was being shared by both the mac and VMWare. So I changed all the mac settings, trying different combinations (also changing VMWare's sound settings, and then the control panel's sound settings) all to no avail. Also, when I downloaded "Free Sound Recorder" to use with VMWare fusion, the noise was a lot less, almost inaudible. So I think it's actually DNS that's messing up.

Please help. I'm trying to overcome pain in my wrists, and all this trouble is just exacerbating the situation. Thanks!
posted by omnigut to Computers & Internet (3 answers total)

This is probably not the suggestion you're looking for, but have you tried the version of Dragon for the Mac?

Then, for actual troubleshooting steps for you, you're hearing the buzzing through the earphone. Have you tried recording any audio using Windows Sound Recorder and listening to that to make sure your input is clean as well.

Dragon usually comes with a regular, non-USB headset. Have you tried using that to see if you get the same issues?
posted by reddot at 12:49 PM on February 17, 2009 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I'm guessing the issue is due to hard disk activity interfering with the audio outputs of the macs - you get this kind of thing on PC's with cheap audio interfaces all the time (though I always thought the interfaces on the Macs were well sealed...)

The high level of hard disk activity is probably due to vmware using up a fair bit of memory, along with Dragon being a fairly memory/hard disk intensive utility. I'd agree with reddot and say try the Dragon for Mac version.

Can you go to an Apple store, and speak to one of the assistants there?

Hope that helps!
posted by Admira at 1:30 PM on February 17, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks guys. Yeah, looks like I'll go for Macspeech Dictate. Jeeze, what a long process...
posted by omnigut at 3:07 PM on February 17, 2009

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