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Music has always been an important part of my life. I had my own phonograph before I could talk, and yes, I did know how to use it. I broke my share of 78s in those days, but I was a music fiend. I was probably 8 or 9 when I started making my own recordings, first on disc and wire, then reel-to-reel tape. I still record things, from audio streams to audio chats.

My favorite app has been Audio Hijack Pro from Rogue Amoeba, but it’s overkill for most of my recordings lately. They have a new addition to their software lineup called Piezo. It’s perfect for simple recording tasks, inexpensive ($10), yet it still has a lot of power. It records AAC or MP3, high or low quality, your choice. Want to record a Skype, iChat or FaceTime conversation? The local audio is on the left channel and the remote audio is on the right.

Piezo is simple to use. Select your input, select output quality, then hit record. That’s it

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It even has the old traditional red recording light and sound level indicators for both left and right channels. What have I been doing with it lately? Grabbing sound bites to use as ring tones on my cell phone. My little Pantech phone will use any MP3 file as long as it is no longer than 30 seconds. This is the simplest thing I’ve found for making my own ringtones.

Download a trial copy from Rogue Amoeba. The only limit is that you can only record 10 minutes before it drops in a static overlay, but that should be sufficient for you to test it out and see if it’s what you want. When you are ready to buy, buy it directly from Rogue Amoeba or through the App Store.

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  • http://None Gordon MacDonald

    Thanks for the tip. I use Audio Hijack Pro, an excellent app, but Piezo, at $10.00, should appeal to a great many audio fans.

  • Calvin

    My first response was to ask if your first Phonograph was a Kenner “Close and Play” but that may have been after your time since you said you used wire recordings.

    • Phyllis Evans

      That was way after my time. I think it was an RCA Victor. The turntable was actually a metal drum about 6″ high and it was WW II vintage. And before you ask, the records were not vinyl.