Take Five: Voice Recorder Apps

Take Five: voice recording apps

Voice recording tools are a songwriter’s dream when writing on the go, so Dave Chrzanowski selects five of the best


Price: Free | Web: huawei.com

Huawei is now one of the most popular smartphone brands on the market, and their standard voice recording app is a nifty one. It’s easy to navigate library features a search bar to save scrolling time when looking for recordings, the audio quality is good, editing is limited and you can’t make detailed notes. However, the trim option is useful for pulling bits of audio you want to use from bits that’ll be scrapped. There are four speed options and a tag feature for bookmarking points of the recording.


Price: Free | Web: magix.com

Music Maker isn’t an average voice recorder, it’s a mini DAW with an excellent sample library (in-app purchases are reasonable). This free app spices up the early writing stage. Firstly, it’s easy to use thanks to the tutorial explaining how to change key signatures and timings. The main screen features an eight-track mixer and with every new section, there’s the option to swap samples. So, if the intro uses all eight inputs, by adding a verse you can use eight completely different sounds, and so on.


Price: £3.49 | Web: digipom.com or Google Play

Like the Huawei, this is a much simpler app that’s best used in Airplane mode to avoid interference. The main interface is simply a start/stop button and a level meter with a gain slider to prevent distortion. Changing the sample rate will give better quality recordings, the range is 8-48 KHz. If storage is a concern then save directly to an SD card.


Price: £3.49 | Web: twitter.com/dje073 or Google Play

Sometimes you pay to get the best. This app can record in stereo and skip silences. It’s also compatible with Rode lapel and iRig microphones for a better quality recording. Key features: isolate sections of audio, which is useful when cutting the good stuff from the junk, save separately to phone or SD card, splice bits of audio together or layer lyrics over music and experiment with song structure. Recording live music is easy by disabling Automatic Gain Control.

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Price: Free | Web: cogi.com

Available free on Andriod and iOS, it’s years old but still one of the best because of its simplicity. This app is purely for songwriters looking to take notes. It’s especially useful for collaborating sessions. Simply tap the record button when starting an idea, the app records until you’re done taking notes, and hit record again to stop, there’s no time limit. Can’t find the words? Then add photos of inspiring moments for later. Cogi automatically stores notes by date making it easy to find your creations.

Read more features like this, along with artist interviews, news, tips, reviews and gear in Songwriting Magazine Summer 2019 out now > >

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