Best lecture recording app mac
It offers the basics, including unlimited recording time, basic editing, and the ability to loop audio.
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On top of that, it has some solid organization options, including organizing recordings into a traditional folder structure. You can also back up recordings to a number of different cloud services or password protect memos. The A. Share This Story. Share Tweet. Kinja is in read-only mode. We are working to restore service. In , we looked at eight models, and for this update we looked at four more. Using the above criteria, we whittled down the size of our test pool to these models:.
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For voice recording apps, we consulted 10 editorial roundups covering both iOS and Android apps, noting the apps with the highest review ratings, best-reviewed interfaces, and most-useful features. We also polled Wirecutter reporters and editors about the apps they use for work.
We dismissed transcription and call recorder apps, since this guide is geared toward in-person recording of meetings, lectures, and interviews. We then used the following criteria to choose our finalists:.
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For our update, we tested the voice recorders and apps in three settings: sitting at the back of a college lecture hall during class, in a loud coffee shop to simulate an interview, and in a quiet room to mimic dictation. We hit record on all the hardware recorders at the same time in order to directly compare how each captured the same audio; for the apps, we took turns recording with an iPhone 6 and a Samsung HTC Newer phones may have better microphones, but our experts said that on most smartphones, the app will have more of an effect on recording quality than the microphone.
We recorded with noise cut high- and low-pass filters enabled on the recorders that had it all of our test models except for the Philips and scene-setting features appropriate for a given test situation turned on, based on the recommendations of our experts. Most of the recorders have options to select recording modes for scenes like lectures, meetings, interviews, or dictations. Wirecutter writer Anna Perling recorded MP3 audio at the highest bit rates available on each device in order to get the best possible audio quality—this showed what each recorder was capable of.
That meant Kbps for all recorders except for the Olympus, which maxes out at Kbps though even this should be good enough for voice recordings. For the coffee shop scene, she headed to a crowded Starbucks and sat near the bar with her mom. For the office scene, Anna read a different Seinfeld monologue in a quiet room in her house to mimic dictation, placing recorders on a table 2 feet away from her mouth.
Once she had the recordings, she noted how each recorder and app let her store the files, and how easy or difficult it was to transfer those files to her computer, label and organize them, and then upload them to Dropbox. Anna then conducted a blind listening panel: Four Wirecutter staffers listened to second samples of each unlabeled recording and rated the overall audio quality and intelligibility of words for each.
The Sony UX received the highest overall scores from our listening panel, and it has the best combination of features of any recorder we tested. The recorder is also the easiest to navigate, with an intuitive toggle menu to access settings and recordings.
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The Sony UX ranked roughly the same as two other models in two of the three recording settings. You can kind of hear some room interference, but that's such a minor problem for a voice recorder that it's barely worth mentioning. Otherwise this was a pleasant if somewhat filtered recording. Buttons are clearly labeled, unlike on the Philips DVT, and a back button makes menu navigation much simpler than on the Olympus WS The Philips recorder lacks this function altogether; on the Olympus, Anna was able to rename files and folders from her Mac, but the device no longer saw them the Olympus manual does warn against this possibility.
A covered but easily accessible microSD slot allows for 32 GB more of storage space if you need more recording hours. The UX offers a range of file and recording formats so you can opt for better audio quality or smaller file sizes. Scene selection presets let you optimize EQ and microphone sensitivity settings for lectures, meetings, interviews, voice notes, and loud and soft music scenarios. You can mark locations in your recording on the fly, so you can return to them later as you listen, and voice-activated recording can automatically stop you during pauses in conversation. For better audio quality, you can plug in an external mic, though we think that would be unnecessary for most people given the good results we were able to get with the onboard mics in our varied test situations.
The UX also has a headphone jack for monitoring recordings and listening to playback. The UX is a small, compact recorder that feels nice in the hand, and its matte plastic and sleek design make it look a little less cheap than others that were tested. At just 4 inches tall, 1. It can easily fit into a shirt pocket or in the pocket of skinny jeans, while the other recorders are almost twice as thick and fit better in a purse or bag.
Wirecutter staff writer Anna Perling has been using our top pick, the Sony UX, to record interviews over the past year. I used the recorder [with] my phone as a backup when recording an interview in a retail store, and I was surprised at how much better the recorder did. While I like the look and feel of the matte black finish, it can pick up fingerprints. But no problems with durability—it has held up fine thrown in a backpack.
The Olympus boasts hours of battery life when recording in MP3 at Kbps, or about four times as long as our main pick. The Olympus has one of the largest screens of the models tested, larger than that of our main pick. Navigating the menus is also more difficult than on our top pick. On the other hand, it does have a convenient erase button for one-step file deletion. It also has a low-cut filter to reduce excess low-end rumble.
While playing back audio, the WS can compensate somewhat for problems you might have run into while recording: a noise-cancellation setting can reduce overall background hiss though this comes at the expense of battery life , while a voice balancer setting can even out recordings that were made with the mic sensitivity set too low or high by compressing the overall level for a more even sound though you might run into increased noise.
During our testing, noise cancellation was effective at reducing background hiss, clangs, and the noise from the coffee grinder, while the voice balancer did even out recorded levels though it made voices sound flat. The Olympus is made of shiny plastic and has raised buttons that some people will find easier to use. If you mainly record voice memos in your office, or interviews in quiet rooms, you can save some money by choosing the Sony ICD-PX While our panel ranked the Sony PX lower than the UX in overall audio quality, the PX did get the highest scores for our interview recorded in a quiet office.
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The PX is also slightly larger and bulkier—while the UX is about the thickness of an iPhone, the PX is closer to the thickness of two iPhones. However, with its larger overall size it may be better for people who have trouble using smaller devices like the UX and the Olympus. It has 4 GB of storage with a microSD slot if you want to add memory—similar to what you get with our top pick, but less than what you get with our runner-up. It also has a built-in USB 3. Like the other Sony models, the PX can record in a range of uncompressed high-quality and space-saving compressed formats, and it has voice-activated automatic recording, noise cut and low cut filters, and scene options to quickly optimize for varied recording situations you might encounter.
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Customizable recording settings, along with automatic transcription and cloud backup, make this a better option for important recordings. Just Press Record has an easy-to-navigate interface, with one large red button that you press to start and stop recordings. You can browse files and folders on the same page. Unlike Voice Memos, this app gives you the option to store files in a variety of the commonly used audio file formats.
Although this is frustrating, none of the iOS apps we tested had great organization options. Parrot has the most ways to fine-tune recording and playback out of the free apps we tested. The Parrot app for Android has the best range of recording options and the cleanest interface of the free Android apps we tested. Our office recordings received the highest ratings from our listening panel, and only Hi-Q Pro our upgrade pick, below had higher overall recording ratings from our panel.
The interface is clean and intuitive, and you can choose between a dark or light theme. Multiple buttons at the top of the home screen make it quick to adjust recording settings.
For example, you can access mic source and effects by tapping the on-screen Settings button once.