Record your Skype calls. Whether you’re conducing an interview you want to reference later, starting your own podcast or just preserving your memories of chatting, sometimes you might want to record a call with Skype. Skype itself does not provide a way to do this, but Mac users can find a variety of tools for the job on the web.
How hard is the process to record a call with Skype? Well, as the old adage goes, you can find a simple, high-quality tool but it won’t be free; you can find a free, simple tool but it won’t be high quality; and you can find a free, high-quality tool, but it won’t be simple.
Confused? Don’t be. Let’s outline your options.
Note: legally, in many jurisdictions, you cannot record a phone call unless the other party is aware they’re being recorded. Where you live matters, but so does the location of the person you’re recording, so know that in most cases it’s simplest to ask permission before you start.
Another note: I’m not a lawyer, and my notes do not constitute legal advice. Duh.
Paid And Dead Simple: Call Recorder for Skype
Want a zero-fuss solution? Check out Skype Call Recorder from ecamm.com, possibly the best tool for recording Skype conversations on the planet. This little app adds a Record window to Skype.
Hit it and your audio – and video – will record. That’s it.
There are tools for splitting the audio into multiple tracks, if you want, and a bunch of different conversion tools – you’ll find them in the Applications folder after you install the plugin. The settings give you a lot of control over how the video will look:
One notable thing to check is how the program handles video for the multiple callers. Should one person be in the corner, or should the callers be side by side? If you’re interested in video you should check this setting out before you record anything:
Put simply, there probably isn’t a better tool out there for recording Skype calls, and this one is only for Mac. The demo is free for 7 days; the full version costs $30. Download Call Recorder for Skype here.
Free And Fairly Simple: Using Quicktime
Want to record a call, but don’t want to pay for the privilege? This is commonly overlooked, but you can do this on your Mac without installing any software at all. Recent versions of QuickTime include a screen recording feature. Just open QuickTime, then click File and you’ll see it.
When you do you’ll see the recording window. Be sure to turn on your microphone in the settings, if you want to record your side of the conversation:
In my experience you’ll need to leave the speakers on to record the other side of the conversation as well – use headphones and you’ll only hear yourself – so this might not be entirely flawless for professional-quality recordings. Still, for most people it’s more than enough.
Not sure how to use this tool? YouTuber Daniel Greene demonstrates this method here, so check it out:
Free and Complex: LineIn and More
Not digging Quicktime, and not sure you want to pay for an app? Don’t worry: there are many methods to record a call with Skype, and we’ve outlined more than a few in the past. Let’s go over some, shall we?
Longtime MakeUseOf writer Simon outlined using Audio Hijack Pro to record Skype calls back in 2009, and that process still works.
The app’s less user friendly than the above, but works great once you figure it out.
More recently, Angela outlined quick and easy ways to record Skype calls for Mac and Windows. Her methods include using Piezo, which allows you to record audio from any application on your Mac:
If nothing else, it’s the best looking app outlined here.
My podcast partner James worked out another method, which we briefly used for Technophilia. It involves broadcasting the show to Mixlr, an online radio service, but works for just recording too. You can read about James’ method here, if you’re willing to do some work. And let me know how your online radio show turns out, will you?
Looking for Windows?
Did you arrive on this page accidentally, and are now wondering where the Windows tools are? Don’t panic, because there are a few.
Q. Which one of these apps should I use?
A. Honestly? It’s up to you. But if you have $30 – and I’m sure you do – get Call Recorder for Skype. It just works.
Q. I had no idea QuickTime could record the screen! Why didn’t I know that?
A. Great question. There are so many tutorials on the web for recording your Mac screen, and they all involve third-party software. My guess: this is a recent addition to QuickTime, because it’s much easier than many other methods.
A. That’s not a question, so I’m going to have to shut this thing down. Everyone else can ask whatever they want in the comments below, though, because I love answering them.