Hi Balint, That's exactly how many GoToWebinar Organizers utilize our systems. Feel free to make recordings with no attendees present, just keep in mind there is a 2 hour maximum to broadcasts where you are the only participant.
Will the video you play back during the webinar be recorded in the recording? I have never used the GTW video playback feature. I know that the folks listening on a telephone connection can not hear the audio from the video, and I think I read that the video did not get recorded on the recording?
If you playback the video from your computer and patch the audio out of your computer and back in the audio input, then it should work fine. That's how I show videos during GoToWebinars.
So therefore, when you play back your recording within a new webinar in order to record that webinar online, you need to route the audio output to the audio input.
GoToWebinar is set up to share anything the computer sees as a microphone (only). This means GoToWebinar will not see the audio coming out of a video, PowerPoint, web browser, or computer game, etc. You have to capture that audio and get the computer to see it as a microphone.
There is third-party software for both Mac and Windows that will let you route the output of programs to the input. I have never used any of them. They have been mentioned in these discussions a few times.
You will have to practice this a few times to get this right. Create a short (5-minute) video to play with. Once you get the audio settings right, then try it with a full-length video.
If your computer has a mini-plug for headphones as well as for the microphone input, then you should be able to get a cable that has a mini-plug on both ends and connect the output and input together. You will have to watch the volume levels, since the speaker output will probably be too strong for the microphone input. This means keeping he speaker output level/volume low, and keep adjusting it until you get a good clean sound.
It is possible that putting the microphone near the speakers will allow GoToWebinar to record the audio. However, you might loose lots of quality by having the sound come out of cheap speakers and go into a cheap microphone. And you have to do this in a quiet room without any room sounds that would also get picked up in the microphone. It is possible that the audio will get out of sync with the visual image. This is only a problem if a talking head is part of the presentation, and might not be noticeable. Your computer might also be too smart for this method to happen by blocking all output sounds that are picked up with the microphone.
I have a standard miniature headphone output on my computer, but no microphone input. I use the USB input as my microphone input. I send the headphone output to an input on an external audio mixer, then send the output from that audio mixer to a box that converts analog audio to a USB signal that the computer sees as a microphone connected to a USB port. I use the Blue Icicle to do this conversion. I have been doing professional sound reinforcement for forty years, so this makes the most sense to me. Here is a comparison of the Icicle to others. If I had to do it again, I would get the Shure X2U http://recordinghacks.com/2009/07/04/usb-interface-review-icicle-micportpro-micmate-x2u/
Some newer computers do not have a headphone output or input. In that case you need a box that will pull the audio out of a USB port and another box that will push it back into the computer through another USB port as a microphone. This gets trickier dealing with different kinds of audio signals.
Oh wow. Thanks Chris for this detailed explanation. It seems like a rather elaborate and complex plan and you would need to use the same computer where you set stuff up for these video recording shenanigans. But I guess after the initial testing and setup doing this the second time would be much easier.
I do have a separate Mic In on my computer so maybe that makes this slightly easier.
I might have additional questions regarding this if you don't mind, but first I will need to re-read this a couple of time so I actually understand every bit of it .
Edit: "There is third-party software for both Mac and Windows that will let you route the output of programs to the input. I have never used any of them. They have been mentioned in these discussions a few times."
I've tried searching for this third-party software with a couple of keywords here in these forums bu no luck. If you are able, can you tell me what I should be searching for specifically? Or even better if you actually has links to these.
"If your computer has a mini-plug for headphones as well as for the microphone input, then you should be able to get a cable that has a mini-plug on both ends and connect the output and input together. You will have to watch the volume levels, since the speaker output will probably be too strong for the microphone input. This means keeping he speaker output level/volume low, and keep adjusting it until you get a good clean sound."
Is this solution separate from that software you mentioned before? Or they should be working side-by-side? As I said I have a mini-plug for headphones so I guess I would just need to get that cable for this to work. Edit2: It seems this is not that simple. So far I was unable to find a place that sells such a cable. Any suggestions?
My only concern was that the signal was too high for the microphone input and would need some sort resistance or capacitors added to cables. I am guessing it is not an issue here then? Or I would just need to adjust the sound levels very carefully.
If you use either type of cable, you need to adjust the sound levels carefully.
Start with the mic level set mid-way (if it is even adjustable) and the speaker volume as low as it goes. Gradually increase the speaker volume while watching the sound meters in GoToWebinar.
For the non-attenuated cable, you will have the speaker volume at a very low level. With an attenuated cable, the speaker volume would be higher.
It will take some amount of adjusting the levels until you find an acceptable sound quality.
Some computers have a lot of noise coming out of their speaker output, which is not noticeable at higher levels, but is very noticeable at lower volume levels. In this case, the attenuation cable is necessary so you can have the speaker volume up high enough so you don't hear the noise floor.