[Guide] Voicemeeter & You: Partners in Audio


#1

Voicemeeter (and its more commonly used program Voicemeeter Banana) is a free wonderful program for lp’ers and streamers that is a pain in the neck to set up and get working, but once you get it working you’ll have no clue how you went so long without it. But don’t worry, I’m here to make you a Voicemeetermaster and get this program working with Skype/Discord, OBS and Audacity!

This guide is a bit long, and has a ton of screenshots and terms around, but trust me, it is worth the effort

What the heck is “Voicemeeter”, and why should I care?

Voicemeeter is a ‘virtual audio cable/device mixer’ program that can do a myriad of amazing things with your audio. It basically functions as a virtual soundboard for your microphone’s audio and your computer’s audio. Normally, if you tried to send your stereo mix (game audio) to people on skype, that audio would double up and echo on stream, but not with this program! Here’s just a short list of things it can do:

  • Let your co-commentators on a stream be able to hear the game audio in real time without worrying about the audio echoing on stream
  • Be able to isolate your skype/discord audio in Audacity (so you can, for example, watch your video with the volume up while doing post commentary without worrying about the game audio being recorded as well)
  • Send your computer audio to multiple sets of wireless headphones, as well as record audio from multiple microphones in the same room and adjust their volume accordingly (very handy if you have 2 people in the same room and want to give each of them a microphone and headphones)

That sounds cool, so how do I start?

Before I begin, I should probably quickly go through my setup, since I’ll be using screencaps of my computer’s setup for examples, and your microphone/headphones might come up under different names. I’m using a Blue Yeti microphone with a pair of wired headphones plugged into the microphone itself, on a Window’s 7 PC. I also use OBS, Skype Discord and Audacity so those are what I’ll be covering for setup, I’m sure people who use Xsplit or other programs will find setup to be extremely similar

So to start off, click on this link to take you to the Voicemeeter page, and you want to download Voicemeeter Banana (about halfway down the page, you can do ZIP or EXE). You’ll also want to go to the “Virtual Audio Cable” tab and download VB-Cable (under the header INSTALL VB-CABLE Virtual Audio Device)

Once you have those programs installed, it’s time to set up Voicemeeter

Setting up Voicemeeter Banana

It should be important to note that for a lot of this setup you may be unable to hear from your speakers or be heard from your microphone. I recommend heavily writing down/taking a screencap of your current working audio settings just in case you have to revert to them in an emergency mid-setup


So this is Voicemeeter. It may look super-daunting at first, but I’ll break down what most of these buttons and sliders mean. Yours may look different than mine, do not worry about it, we’ll be sure to get yours set up in due time!

So before we begin setup, first thing we’re going to need to do is set out default playback/recording devices in windows to basically put VM in charge of those. So first thing you’ll need to do is right click on the volume icon on your PC, and select “Playback Devices”

From there it should bring up a window like this:

like my image there, you’re going to want to scroll until you see Voicemeeter Input and click “set default” when you highlight it. If you do not see this in your input, you may want to restart your computer

[It should be noted that for a lot of these, you will have a choice between “Voicemeeter Input/Output” and “Voicemeeter Aux Input/Output” These are NOT interchangeable, so please be sure to follow the guide on which one to use]

In any case, click “Apply” and then head over to the Recording tab on that window:

and just like my image here, you are going to want to pick CABLE Output and set that as default. It may seem like you want Voicemeeter Output, but trust me, you want CABLE Output

After that, click ‘Apply’ and then ‘OK’. Now let’s move on deciphering what VM itself does, let’s pull up that image we had before and go through what it all means:

Hardware Input 1: This is your primary microphone. For me it is my Blue Yeti. If you need to select a different one, all you need to do is click on “Microphone” and a list of available inputs will pop up

Underneath that you’ll see tabs like “Intellipan” and “Color Panel” and “Audibility”. Unless you’re really into audio engineering, those don’t affect us, so just don’t touch them. The only things you should really be touching in this area are the fader gain (which raises or lowers your microphone volume if you don’t have a gain knob on your mic already) and the B1 & B2 buttons. Basically, you always want those to be on

Hardware Input 2: This will be your CABLE Output, and unlike the normal Microphone we want A1 & B2 only to be highlighted. We’ll go through its meaning in a little bit, but basically this is what your audience will be hearing

Hardware Input 3: if you have a second microphone in a room that you want to use, you’ll want to select it here and set it up exactly like you did Hardware Input 1

Virtual Inputs: With any luck, this should be one of the only setting you’ll be changing in Voicemeeter on a constant basis. What this does is take your internal computer audio (for example: game audio or a youtube video you’re watching) and sends it a different output. Essentially, if you are on a skype call and you want the other people on the line to hear your game audio, click B1 on both of the Virtual Inputs and they’ll be able to hear exactly what you’re hearing. The way we have it set up, you’ll just want to avoid clicking B2 for this. Aside from that you’ll want to avoid all the other settings in Virtual Inputs as well. Just click B1 when you want co-commentators to hear your computer audio

Hardware Out: The only thing you should be concerned about on this section is A1-A3. Essentially these are your output devices. A1 should be your primary listening device. This is usually normal speakers when I’m not streaming, but I’ll be sure to switch it over to my headphones when I go live. To do this, just click A1 and pick where you want to hear the audio from the drop down menu


In the example here, if I wanted to hear my audio from the headphones plugged into my microphone I’d go "Speakers: Yeti"
If you wanted to put audio through two sources (ie: headphones and speakers) you’d select your second audio device by clicking on A2, and then go to your other settings and make sure there whereever A1 is selected, you also select A2. If you want to remove audio from that device click A2 and go “remove device selection”. (That is pretty much what the “A1-A3” buttons on Hardware/Virtual Inputs signify: clicking on A1 means the audio will be pushed through the A1 device, etc)

So what the heck is B1 and B2
Short Story: They’re the same output audio, but B1 is for your co-commentator, B2 is your audience. It’s done to avoid having audio loop/echo
Long Story: B1 is for Voicemeeter Output, B2 is for Voicemeeter Aux Output. Remember I said to not use those interchangeably, well this is why. We’ll be carefully selecting which devices get the Aux Output and which devices get the non-aux output to avoid having audio loop into itself. This will also be able to let Audacity record just commentary, and not the game audio

So let’s set up some applications!

Setting up Skype: You’ll want to go to ‘settings’ in your skype window, go to audio, and set it up like this:


Microphone should be Voicemeeter Output (not Aux) and your speakers should be CABLE Input

Setting up Discord: You’ll want to go to ‘settings’ in discord, go to ‘voice’ and set it up like this:


Just like Skype, Microphone should be Voicemeeter Output (not Aux) and your speakers should be CABLE Input

Setting up OBS Studio: You’ll want to go to ‘Settings’ in OBS, go to ‘Audio’ and set it up like this:


Desktop Audio Device should be Voicemeeter Input and Mic/Aux Device should be Voicemeeter Aux Ouptut

Setting up Audacity: Open up Audacity, on the upper-right side of the screen you can see a microphone selector


you want to set it up so that Voicemeeter Aux Output is selected. This will allow you to play a youtube video with the volume on, and talk over it with a person on skype/discord, and audacity will only record your commentary

And there you have it! A bit of a mountain to climb, but it lets you do a lot in terms of letting your commentator’s hear audio and let you hear audio while recording LP’s. I wish you luck in setting this up, and feel free to ping me here or on my twitter @bearpigman if you have any questions!


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#2

BTW, biggest problem that people have after setting up Voicemeeter (I can’t find xx or yy in my inputs) can usually be solved by just restarting your computer after you’ve installed Voicemeeter Banana and VB-CABLE

(I’ll also save this post to put in any other answered FAQ’s or Troubleshooting)


#3

Thank you for this guide, I’ve managed to get a working system with voicemeeter but this will help a lot in being able to more finely control it.

Quick Question: On OBS is all the Audio going to be registered under one source?


#4

Nah, you can set up several audio devices in OBS using the Audio section of the settings. Most people won’t need this, but it’s there.

Personally, I have my OBS set to record different combinations of devices on various tracks. I do this so I can have my voice, the game audio and potential music I’m listening to on different tracks.

E: Ha, I think I might have misunderstood your question. Each source in OBS can be its own audio device, though.


#5

Yeah, I had it set up for my voice and my the game to be on separate tracks. After following the guide it seems like everything is all on one track, is this the intended outcome?


#6

The way this guide sets it up, yes.

I suppose you could still use other devices, but due to the way Voicemeeter works they can’t be properly used by Voicemeeter at the same time you’re trying to use them in a different program. Because Voicemeeter demands exclusivity. That’s a problem I ran into in the past.


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#7

#8

#9

On OBS it should be set up so that all game audio will be under ‘desktop audio’ and all spoken audio (discord/skype and your mic) will be under Mic/Aux, so it’ll technically be two sources


#10

But you can also set it up so that your mic source and your skype/discord source come through different inputs in OBS. This is how I recommend doing it since it gives you more control over the guest audio mix, which is always good to have even if you don’t end up needing it.


#11

Ok that’s what I thought I have everything go to one source in OBS and am trying to figure out why.


#12

Yeah, I prefer doing my guest audio mixing in discord or Windows volume control, but that’s just my preference!


#13

I usually do it at those lower levels too, but it’s good to have the option to make adjustments higher up the chain too. A big part of mixing well comes down to how the individual mixer likes to do things. Do what works for you!


#14

I’ve been reading through a couple Voicemeeter Banana guides today, and this so far has been the easiest to follow. I mostly want to use it for sending desktop audio through Discord, and as far as I can tell it’s working.

My problem however is now the volume keys on my computer no longer work? Am I supposed to be adjusting volume a different way now? Or is there some workaround? Any help would be appreciated. I can raise the volume as much as I want and there’s zero difference, and obviously if I turn it all the way down I no longer hear anything.


#15

Hmm, my advice would be to check that your A1 selected device is your computer speakers, and then try adjusting the volume with the keys. Usually the volume keys on a computer correspond to the built-in speakers, and should be able to adjust the volume of any sound coming through there (similarly to when you use wireless headphones instead of speakers, the volume can only be adjusted on the headphones, instead of the knob on the speakers)

If that fails to work, you can left click one time on your volume icon on windows, click ‘mixer’ under the voicemeeter input. This should list all of the internal programs making noise on your computer and give the ability to raise/lower their volume from there. I’ll try to take some screenshots when I get home from work to show exactly where to click :frowning:


#16

Okay, so I am able to adjust my speakers volume if I go into Windows Volume Control and select Speakers instead of Voicemeeter Input. It’s not too much of a hassle, though it does add kind of a needless extra step.

Voicemeeter has an option to hook volume keys for A1 which sort of works as well, though without as much volume control as I originally had. But since going too far above 20 is a little too loud in my headphones anyway, I suppose it’s okay. I still don’t see a way to make my volume keys function the way they did before installing Voicemeeter. If that’s supposed to happen I could live with it, but if it’s something I messed up along the way I’d like to figure that out.

I’m still getting a little confused with the audio lingo since this is my first time messing with this kinda stuff, so I could just be missing something obvious lol. Thanks for your help!

[details=This is what everything looks like.]

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#17

yes, please feel free to stop me if I’m steeping too much in lingo or making things more confusing, lol!

Ok, so from what I can see there it looks like the volume buttons on your computer should be raising the volume on the ‘speakers’, which even if they’re not selected as the default device should still be playing out the audio. There’s a chance that the volume buttons may only work if the speakers are selected as the default device in the windows ‘sound’ menu. I can try messing around with it when I get home and see if I can replicate similar settings/issues. Ideally, it would be best to reroute the buttons to lower the default playback device (which should be voicemeeter) but I don’t know if that’s possible.

I’ll let you know what I can find!


#18

Here’s a thing I learned a bit ago that helps keep things a bit organized. You can right click on the inputs to name them. For me I have 3 set up, Mic, default, and communication.

For me, I set the virtual device VAIO and B1 as my default, and I set Aux and B2 as my communication default. This keeps me from getting mixed up. Now I know if I want it to get to my headphones I use A1, for default b1, and for voice chat b2. So for streams I can send everything to B1 and monitor levels with voice meeter, and if I’m recording an LP I just record from my mic, send only the default to B1 for game audio. Then if I’m recording live with a friend for an LP, I can send my mic and default to B2, so my co commentator can hear what is going on without hearing themselves.

I prefer setting up default devices for normal sound and communication sound, so I don’t have to mess with every application. I know every voice program uses the default communication device, and my input is the AUX and my output is B2.

I keep voice meeter always running, it lets me quickly switch between headphones and speakers without messing with things, I just select between A1 and A2.


#19

Yeah, everything is coming out of my speakers the way that they should. My volume buttons seem to raise whatever the default device is, and I have that set as Voicemeeter Input following the guide. However, raising and lowering it doesn’t actually change my volume. I can adjust the volume of individual programs just fine. They seem to cap at the volume my speakers were set to beforehand, that being 20.

I’m not currently using Voicemeeter for any kind of streaming, just using it to play my desktop audio through Discord, so I might just be using the wrong setup for that? As far as I can tell, the only problem I’ve run into so far is just the volume keys thing. Discord seems to pick up my microphone as well as whatever sound is running through my speakers just fine.

My main goal of using Voicemeeter at the moment is just to be able to schedule movie events with my friends whenever Discord’s screen share finally releases, so I can share my screen and my audio with them. If there’s a simpler way than Voicemeeter to do that than I’d appreciate the re-route, though this program seems like a pretty nice way to accomplish what I’m after.


#20

oh yeah, it’ll do that just fine! (and I’m waiting for that too big time, I’m still using skype purely for screen share when I stream. That discord share feature can’t come fast enough)