How do I record a phone interview on an outgoing call?
April 12, 2013 5:10 PM   Subscribe

I'm doing some freelance journalism-y things, and I sometimes need to interview people over the phone whilst plugging away at my "day job." How do I record these calls? I have an iphone 4, if that makes a difference.

Every iphone app that I've tried thus far has crapped out on me - Call Log Pro was promising, but didn't actually record anything. And made my phone freeze.

I have google voice, but it only records incoming calls, and a lot of the time I have to fight to get someone on the phone. (I.e., they're not going to call me).

When I am able to interview someone in the evening or over the weekend, I put them on speaker and record the call using my computer. I can't do this at work - it might work, but I don't think it will be quiet enough anywhere in the building for me to get away with it.

I am willing to pay for this magical, phone-call recording app. But what is it?
posted by ablazingsaddle to Technology (11 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Are you able to use your desktop/laptop?

I use something called GrowlVoice for my Mac. When I place an outgoing call using GrowlVoice and I have my browser window open, it calls me and then connects to the caller. Since it looks like an incoming call, you might be able to use this method. (I can't test it right now, or I'd be able to tell you for sure. But GrowlVoice has a three-week free trial, so if this sounds workable, you could try yourself.)
posted by veggieboy at 5:16 PM on April 12, 2013

Free call recording via Google Voice. [LINK]
posted by skywhite at 6:44 PM on April 12, 2013

Response by poster: Yes, but, from that page:

It's not currently possible to record outbound calls made through your Google number at this time.

Google voice won't work for me unless I use a tricky work-around like the one suggested by veggie boy.

I would really like to find an app that just straight up records a phone call.
posted by ablazingsaddle at 6:48 PM on April 12, 2013

Tape a Call app
posted by benbenson at 7:13 PM on April 12, 2013

Best answer: Honestly, the only thing that has consistently worked for me has been putting a call on speakerphone and recording all of that with my trusty digital recorder. I've tried other things, apps and such, but they've always failed (and made me look totally incompetent I'm the process.) It would be great to find another solution - I'll be watching this thread with interest!
posted by cannibalrobot at 7:41 PM on April 12, 2013

I don't have a better solution myself, but I would not recommend Google Voice for recording essential interviews. I actually use it for my personal voicemail, and I still wouldn't ever attempt to record interviews with it again.

Someone in the linked thread said they began using Skype (plus some add-on software or something?) for this purpose, though, so you might look into that!
posted by limeonaire at 8:54 PM on April 12, 2013

I use Skype with the program Pamela with my iPhone headphones - with the built in mic - for this and it works perfectly.

You'll have to buy minutes on Skype, but they're pretty cheap. Pamela also costs a bit ($26 or something). There may be other third-party software programs for recording skype calls that are cheaper/free.
posted by k8lin at 10:31 PM on April 12, 2013

Skype + Audio Hijack Pro on OSX does this.
posted by thewalrus at 2:59 AM on April 13, 2013

Best answer: If you're willing to spend a little money on physical hardware, pick up a basic digital recorder and something like one of these. It plugs into the mic jack on the recorder - the earpiece is double-sided, so you hear out of one end, and record using the other.

Not an app, I know, but this is what most of the journalists I know use for recording calls.
posted by eponym at 6:56 AM on April 13, 2013 [3 favorites]

You could try speakerphone and then use the voice memo function of your iPhone. I've never recorded a call, but I've used it for meetings and it's worked really well.
posted by lulu68 at 11:09 AM on April 13, 2013

Response by poster: I ended up just buying a digital voice recorder. It worked beautifully, and I'll pick up that extra thing that eponym linked to.

Spent an embarrassing amount of money (almost $30) on apps that didn't work.
posted by ablazingsaddle at 6:10 PM on April 17, 2013

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