UltraStar: Setting up the Microphones

Please note: my UltraStar guides now have their own dedicated website on UltraGuide.net. An updated version of this article can be found here

Probably about time this game was actually playable, right?!

There are a couple of options when it comes to microphones for UltraStar. You can simply plug one into the microphone slot on your computer (this can be any working type that fits that slot), or the best option is to simply buy some SingStar microphones, complete with a USB connector, like the ones below:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B001J6N8BM/ref=s9_simh_gw_p63_d1_i1?pf_rd_m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=0JE19CC93DQD8STWVY7A&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=467128533&pf_rd_i=468294

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B001TK3GVU/ref=s9_simh_gw_p63_d1_i2?pf_rd_m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=0JE19CC93DQD8STWVY7A&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=467128533&pf_rd_i=468294

I haven’t tried the second option yet (wireless mics), but I’m hoping to get some soon and I believe that they’re very good. Obviously, it means a lack of wires, which is always a bonus. The only way to have over 3 people singing at once is to fix it up so that there is a ‘dual display’ (that is, having both the computer screen and another TV/computer screen connected). I’ve never tried this, but if you know your stuff, setting this up won’t be too hard. For everyone else, this means that you need 1-3 microphones (probably best to buy 2 lots of 2 mics, that way you have a spare if one of them breaks!). I currently have only 1 USB connector, as one went missing. I therefore have it set up so that 2 SingStar mics are plugged into their USB connector, and 1 is plugged into the microphone slot in my laptop. As these are what I have at my disposal, I will demonstrate how to set up the microphones in this manner. However, I’m fairly sure the microphone input on the laptop is not quite as sensitive as the USB connector (poor player 3 is at a disadvantage!) – I would recommend using 2 USB connectors, with only 1 microphone plugged into 1 of them (into the blue slot), and 2 plugged into the other.

Left: Red microphone plugged into default computer soundcard (player 3)

Middle: Blue microphone plugged into USB connector (player 1)

Right: Red microphone plugged into USB connector (player 2)

So, you’ve got your microphones, and you’ve set them up as demonstrated (if you only have 1 or 2 microphones, this guide still applies). Before you go into UltraStar, you’ll need to edit the settings on Windows (sorry Apple fanboys, you’ll have to find instructions elsewhere). If you go to the Control Panel -> Hardware and Sound -> Manage audio devices, and click on the ‘Recording’ tab (or something to that effect if you’re not on Windows 7), you can test the microphones to see if they’re working. You’ll notice that the USB adaptor is listed, and its settings need to be configured separately to the default soundcard.

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For the USB connector with 2 microphones, you’ll need to tell the computer that the adaptor has a dual input, or else it’ll only recognise 1 microphone. Right click on the 2 USBMIC option, and click ‘properties,’ then select the ‘advanced’ tab.

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As shown above, select any one of the ‘2 channel’ options (preferably the highest quality setting if possible). Apply the other settings above, too, if they’re not in place already.

For a USB connector with 1 microphone, you can leave the settings as they are. Nothing needs doing to the default soundcard (i.e. the microphone plugged into your laptop’s ‘normal’ input), though you might want to adjust the settings to make it as sensitive as possible. This way, player 3 will be at less of a disadvantage. You don’t want to go making the microphones plugged into the USB connector too sensitive, or they’ll pick up too much background noise.

Once the microphones are set up in Windows, load UltraStar Deluxe. Once loaded, go into tools -> settings -> ‘record.’ At the top of this section, you’ll see one of the inputs listed at the top. This just means that you are altering the settings for one of the inputs (USB adaptor or default soundcard) – it does not mean that you can only use one input at a time. It does not matter what is left there when you exit the settings configuration. Use the left and right keys to select USB adaptor. If you have more than one USB adaptor, you can determine which is which by talking into the microphones (the program will respond to your voice).

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The numbers alongside the ‘Channel1’ and ‘Channel2’ channel indicate which player will be assigned to which microphone. For the USB adaptors, the left channel is the blue mic, and the right channel is the red mic. Make the left channel player 1 and the right channel player 2 (as demonstrated above). Then select the other input (either the other USB adaptor or the default microphone slot). Again, test to make sure that you have the correct microphone selected. Make this microphone player 3 on the left channel, and leave the right channel at ‘Off.’

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I hope this makes sense! If you want to sing with multiple players now (or just test it), you’ll need to configure the game settings to say you’re playing with more than 1 person. Press escape to exit the microphone settings, and go into ‘game’ (also under the settings menu). At this point, simply change the number of players to 3. Press escape twice to come out of settings, go to ‘sing,’ and test the microphones. Players 1 and 2 should correspond to the microphone colour. Player 3 will obviously be a blue or red microphone, though its colour onscreen is green. To avoid confusion, I dressed that mic with a green ribbon!

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This article isn’t finalised… I can imagine it’s extremely un-user friendly right now. In the meantime, have a play!

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19 Responses to “UltraStar: Setting up the Microphones”

  1. Hi,

    I bought two singstar microphones and installed them in accordance with this blog.

    The microphones seem to be working as I can gain points when singing the song, but cannot hear singing coming out of the computer speakers.

    How can I fix this?

    Cheers,

    Toby.

    • Hi Toby,

      To hear your singing through the speakers, plug in the microphones, and go to the usual Control Panel -> Hardware and Sound -> Manage audio devices, and click on the ‘Recording’ tab. Select the microphone to configure, click on ‘Properties,’ and then go to the ‘Listen’ tab. There should be a checkbox there saying ‘listen to this device.’ Once you’ve selected this and clicked on ‘OK,’ you’ll probably start to hear sound coming through the speakers straight away. You may want to configure the volume of the microphone at this stage – to do this, go back into its properties, select ‘Levels,’ and adjust the volume accordingly.

      Once these settings are in place, you can load up UltraStar and it should continue to work in the game.

      I hope this helps, thanks for reading. I’ll add this bit to the guide when I get round to it! Let me know if these instructions don’t follow.

      – Kokairu

  2. Awesome post man.. Really helpful.. Had been breaking my head over this for quite a while..now..

  3. Do you have instructions for telling the computer about 2 microphones with windows xp?

    • Joe – the official UltraStar wiki used to have the instructions on there, but I am unable to find it – you may have more luck! If I can find a computer with XP on it I’ll have a play around and get back to you. In the mean time, it’s best just to experiment – try and find the equivalent options that are displayed in the guide.

      Sorry I can’t be more help for the time being!

  4. it’s really work.. thanks.. ^^

  5. Thanks a lot!

  6. tatsujin Says:

    What an awesome tutorial. i understood every word and it worked. Thank you so much. i have been struggling for a year now to get this to work!

  7. Kallos Tamas Says:

    THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART !!! I waited for this ever since I got singstar on ps2…I found Deluxe but couldn’t configure the Microphones! I’ve been waiting for this for about 4 years…Thank you again !!!!

    • No problem Kallos – I take it that your post on the “Getting Started” entry has been resolved then?? Sorry I haven’t had a chance to reply until now!

  8. I’m having a problem with my microphone, I’m using one and I’ve done all the steps but for some reason no sound is being picked up by it, the microphone worked on my ps3 and I’m using windows 7.

  9. Sorry, ignore the above comment, I’ve gotten the microphone to work only it stops working when a song starts.

    • Hi Bluestar

      I’m not really sure what to suggest I’m afraid – have you got another microphone to test? Does UltraStar pick it up in the microphones set up stage? Can you get it to work in ChallengeMod?

  10. Hi,

    I’m also trying to configure the Wireless Singstar microphones to be used with Ultrastar with Windows 7. I follow all the steps and I get everything working. However, when we sing, we hear our voices through the speakers being delayed a fraction of a second, which makes it very annoying if not impossible to use.

    I’ve been searching through the web for a possible solution but I couldn’t find any clear solution for me. Apparently, for some people it works to uncheck the “Listen to this device” box, in the properties of the USB microphone (under the “Recording devices” tab), and then go to the Speakers properties (under the “Playback devices” tab) and unmute the microphones in the Levels tab. Unfortunately, in my case, the microphone doesn’t appear in the Levels tab of the properties of the speakers.

    Did any of you had a similar issue with the delay in your voices? If so, how did you solve it? In your case, does the Singstar microphone appear also in the Levels tab of the properties of the Speakers?

    Thanks in advance for your help

    • Hi – unfortunately I’m not sure of what the solution to that problem is (I keep the microphones muted) – though Vocaluxe has options for adjusting microphone delay etc. Have you tried the microphones with that?

  11. You’re fabulous.

    I set up a microphone, got it working on my computer. When I tried to test it on the game, it told me that no microphone was assigned for player 1, and does not read input at all.

    ]I swear I’m not tone deaf!!

    I will be racking the internetz for a solution, but if you have one, will you please let me know? I have tried three different types of microphone, including a professional one.

  12. am switching to v 1.1

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