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how to identify songsHave you ever watched a TV episode, a YouTube video or a movie, and encountered a really beautiful song in the soundtrack? Or the soundtrack sounds really familiar but you can’t place a finger on which song this is? This has happened to me a million times, a most memorable one is when I tried to identify a Coldplay song on one unforgettable Six Feet Under episode. If only Audiggle existed back then!

There are several ways to identify songs these days, two of the most prominent ones being the lightweight Tunatic Identify The Name of That Song with Tunatic Identify The Name of That Song with Tunatic Read More and mobile apps such as Shazam and SoundHound Shazam vs. SoundHound: Looking For The Perfect Song Identifier Shazam vs. SoundHound: Looking For The Perfect Song Identifier Read More . Tunatic is a very solid option that can easily identify almost any song in the world, and to top it all, it’s completely free. We’ve covered Tunatic in the past, so today I set out to check out Audiggle and find out whether it has something to offer that Tunatic doesn’t, and how well it can identify songs.

Installing Audiggle

Audiggle is currently only available for Windows, but a Mac version is in the works. Download Audiggle from the website and go through the regular installation process. The first serious thing you’ll have to do is choose your recording device. This is important for Audiggle to work properly. Options change between different computers, but you don’t have to worry about it too much. Simply choose one that looks good and run the audio test. If it passes, you’re good to go.

how to identify songs

Next you’ll need to create an Audiggle account, if you don’t yet have one. You can’t use Audiggle without it, and signing up will get you your 5 monthly credits (more on that soon). You can now start using Audiggle!

identify song by lyrics

Identifying Songs

To identify a song that’s playing on your computer, simply hit Control+Alt+A or click the “Search” button on the Audiggle window.

I started off easy, and tested Audiggle with a simple MP3 played on Foobar. Success!

identify song by lyrics

I went on to try several YouTube clips, all of which did well. This one was an especially hard one with fire crackling and talking in the foreground, but Audiggle still recognized the background song quickly (much faster than Tunatic on this one).

identify song by lyrics

I did manage to trip Audiggle a couple of times. It failed to recognize Bear McCreary’s Battlestar Galactica cover for All Along The Watchtower (Tunatic did this one easily), and also failed to recognize Pomplamoose newest song (Tunatic failed at this as well), but did a good job with an older Pomplamoose song (Tunatic failed to recognize this one).

What I liked about Audiggle is how quick it is to admit its failure. It takes about the same time to recognize a song as it takes to admit that it doesn’t know the song. Tunatic, on the other hand, takes quite a while to admit that the song is not found, sometimes even half the song.

Downloading & Sharing

When a song is identified, you can choose to share your find on Twitter or Facebook, or to download it from iTunes or Amazon. The window provides direct links for all these options.

identify song

You can also set up Audiggle to automatically tweet new songs you find. This is done from the Settings.

identify song

Another cool Audiggle feature is the search history. You can access it from the search window on your desktop, or through your account on the Audiggle website. here you’ll find a list of all the songs you’ve ever identifies using Audiggle, complete with iTunes and Amazon download links and the ability to sort the list according to date, artist or track.

identify song

Audiggle’s Different Options

All in all, Audiggle did a great job recognizing songs on various videos, but after revealing 5 songs to me (failures don’t count), I got this message:

audiggle-4[4]

As I mentioned earlier, when you sign up for Audiggle you get 5 free credits. These will renew themselves each month, which means you have 5 free (successful) searches every month. If you don’t need to identify a song often, this might very well be enough. If it’s not, there are several paid options you can choose from.

how to identify songs

You can also choose to pay £10 ($15.50) a month for unlimited queries, and get the Spotify and Last.fm plugins which will be coming soon.

Bottom Line

Audiggle is a great option for identifying those stubborn songs. If you don’t need more than 5 a month, or if you like having Audiggle’s feature-rich interface to use, I highly recommend it. If you use a Mac, don’t want to pay and don’t mind the bare-bones interface, Tunatic is an excellent option as well.

Do you know any good solutions for identifying songs? What do you use? Share in the comments!

Woman with headphones image via Shutterstock

  1. Casey
    October 30, 2012 at 9:01 pm

    Anyone know of any similar software available for Linux?

    • Yaara Lancet
      October 31, 2012 at 6:24 pm

      I'm not familiar with one, but if it exists, someone on MakeUseOf Answers will know. You should ask there!

  2. Vijaynand Mishra
    September 8, 2012 at 10:03 am

    music lover should read this ///

  3. April Alboc
    July 21, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    Yeah, Audiggle is totally on the money. Finally, I can go download that tune that kept spinning on in my mind for months, Thanks!

  4. Krishnapriya
    July 6, 2012 at 7:06 am

    I'm really impressed with this amazing program. I tested it with some Tamil songs by Malaysian artists and it could identify it correctly. I also purposely tried a song recorded from the radio using really a crappy china made phone, an amr file with very low quality. Audiggle even identified it too. I think it's worth to pay for it. Awesome :)

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 6, 2012 at 8:54 am

      Wow, Tamil songs! That's pretty amazing. I didn't give it such a hard test, although I do have some non-English songs on my computer, didn't even occur to me it might recognize them!

  5. vineedcool
    July 6, 2012 at 6:27 am

    y dont use midomi.com

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 6, 2012 at 8:53 am

      I haven't tested Midomi, but heard about it. I was looking for a desktop app, and Midomi is a web app, but I'm sure it's a good option.

  6. musicphann
    July 6, 2012 at 3:13 am

    I listen to a lot of radio in the car so SoundHound has been indispensable for me. It'll even identify a song if I sing it into the phone. Only if you're a decent singer though.

    • Yaara Lancet
      July 6, 2012 at 8:51 am

      That's awesome! This happened to me in the car a lot, but I don't have a data plan on my phone so I can't make use of these apps....... :)

      • Tanguy Djokovic
        July 6, 2012 at 10:32 am

        when you use soundhound, or the otherones, usually you can "record" the song as she plays even when you don't have a data plan, and once you reach a free wifi you'll be able to launch the search :)
        hope this'll help

        • Yaara Lancet
          July 6, 2012 at 10:36 am

          Oh, cool! It requires patience, but at least I can find out what song it was when I get home. :) Thanks!

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