Setting the PowerBook up as Lecture Recorder (iMic?.. what software?)

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Thussy, Aug 7, 2005.

  1. Thussy macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2004
    Hey Everyone,

    First and foremost, when this whole podcasting thing came out, I was like that is the stupidest thing I've ever heard of. Who would want a radio station on the go? Well... eversince 4.9 I've been biting my tongue. Podcasting is an amazing use for the iPod, I find myself using the iPod more for that then music now. The amount of information you can consume at your convenience is pretty astounding and super useful.

    That said, I'm hoping to use my iPod a lot like those Duke students from last year (they had a partnership with Apple to outfit first years wiht an iPod and had lectures available for download... so pretty much podcasted lectures!) So I'm sure you're catching on to what I'm hoping to do this year.

    Last year, I never really tried to use my laptop to record lectures, as I found that taking actual notes with the keyboard would overpower the sound I collected with the built in mic. So I'm hoping to outfit my powerbook with the best portable external mic and the easiest to use sound capturing and converting software (Freeware would be prefferred.. actually my only option lol).

    Right now I'm thinking iMic, as it's USB and shoudl be easy enough to place far enough away. Last year I had no real sounding recording software, I'd capture it and had no idea what to do to make it an MP3 aftewars (SoundStudio is pretty proprietary).

    Maybe I can start a Lecture Podcasting trend at school. Your help will be appreciated like nothing else. Thanks.

    Oh for those who care, I'll be entering Second Year at Wilfrid Laurier University... Hon. Econ and Financial Mgmt.

    Hopefully next year, I'll be capturing video lectures with my PSP.
  2. intrepkid21 macrumors regular

    Apr 6, 2004
    Long Island, New York
    I have actually used the internal mic on my ibook to record lecture notes into Word worked pretty well! Well enough to hear the lecture.
  3. Jay42 macrumors 65816


    Jul 14, 2005
    I am pretty sure that the iMic is not actually a microphone. It just replicates audio in jacks from a usb connection. If you have a powerbook you most likely won't need this. Maybe you should take a look at
    Belkin's Tune Talk or Griffin's iTalk. This way you could just record straight to your iPod, and then sync to your PowerBook after class.
  4. ckeck macrumors 6502a


    Jul 29, 2005
    Has anyone used either of these? Interested in getting one, but would like to know which works better.

    Also, I am curious what a good mic would be for the PowerBook as well...any thoughts?
  5. devilot Moderator emeritus


    May 1, 2005
    Did you record while you were typing? I might think about doing giving this a try this semester; how do you record, anyway? :eek: Sorry, I don't know the least bit about any of this...
  6. WinterMute Moderator emeritus


    Jan 19, 2003
    London, England
    If you have QuickTime Pro, you can record directly to disc via the QT player, it's very easy and will record from the internal mic or from an external.

    I suggest you look at something like the range of electret stereo mics from Sony or Sennheisser, the ones designed for ENG (electronic news gathering) applications.
  7. The_Man macrumors 6502


    Jun 10, 2005
  8. Project macrumors 68020

    Aug 6, 2005
    Do iBooks have an internal mic?

    I was considering getting the iTalk to attach to my iPod so that I could record lectures when I start my second year at University soon. They aint a bad price. Does anybody know what kind of space they take up?

    My idea is to record the lectures then upload them to a Gmail account or something for my friends to be able to access while they nurse their hangovers from the night before. Or even make it available for PodCast as was mentioned before. Thats a truly great idea and soemthing ALL universities and colleges should be looking into.
  9. skubish macrumors 68030


    Feb 2, 2005
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    Yes iBooks have an internal mic. It is the little hole on the top right next to the screen.

    Is there a free app for recording from the mic?
  10. chucknorris macrumors 6502a


    Jun 28, 2005
    Moscow, ID (No Kremlin here!)
    Does anyone know anything about the F-V320 ? I'm looking at it on amazon for lecture recording in conjunction with quicktime pro. It's listed as a "vocal microphone," but it's I'm assuming it would pick up a lecture pretty well.

    Am I correct in this assumption? Any thoughts?
  11. Thussy thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2004
    I definitely don't want to use the internal mic. When I tried first year, the mic picked up my typing and it at times overpowerd the lecture.

    Anyway have any other suggestions for setups (software/mic combo) for recording?
  12. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    Have you considered getting a tape recorder or digital recorder their pretty cheap and they'll get much better sound clarity. Since professors will normally allow you to put the recorder on their desk. Rather than a computer mic at your desk designed for for picking up near by sounds. Most computer mics are omni directional while tape recorder mics are more focused on a single direction for sound.
  13. dvdh macrumors 6502


    Apr 6, 2004
    I have recorded my studio reviews . . . .

    . . . . with my iBook (which has a built-in mic) and SoundStudio (which works fine for this type of thing. You could also use Audacity (good open-source app from the Linux side of things). In terms of mics, any small computer-type mic should work when hooked into your mic in on your power book. You will be able to adjust the gain in program with SoundStudio or Audacity, or with the sound panel in Preferences.

    About recording your lectures: get the professors permission or you will be committing a copyright infringement. So profs take this very seriously as do a lot of universities. (In other words- get caught doing it without permission and you might be out of university quicker than you think.)
  14. MacHarne macrumors 6502

    Mar 3, 2005
    Virginia, U.S.A.
    The Griffin iTalk works very well; you may be surprised at how well it will pick up sound in a lecture hall (given ample amplification, either electronic or a vocal professor).

    With that said, though, I prefer the DVForge MicFlex. I've used it once for lectures and it was wonderful. The only reason I didn't use it anymore was because I found how useless it was for me (in my particular classes etc.) to record lectures since almost all of it is sketched on blackboards or from slides. The MicFlex also is great for GarageBand work; given a nicely dampened room, the recording quality is Fantastic.

    As far as recording software, GarageBand always works and then there's Quicktime Pro (my choice). Using an internal microphone has varied success since it entirely depends on ambient noise and how well the speaker is amplified; and as dvdh mentioned, check with the prof first about recording - most will be glad to know a student cares enough, but a few could be sticklers if the topic is per current research.
  15. Thussy thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 19, 2004
    Thanks for the advice about asking the prof, I never knew it would be taken so seriously. I'll make sure to ask.

    I'm not the biggest fan of the iPod sound recorders, I've tried the iTalk and wasn't all too happy about the quality.

    I'll check out Audacity program wise. I used SoundStudio but found that it had no option to export to MP3 , or at least i couldn't find it. Thanks for the suggestions guys.
  16. devilot Moderator emeritus


    May 1, 2005
    That's the one thing I miss about UC Berk, the webcasted lectures... and the freedom to essentially record at will.
  17. WinterMute Moderator emeritus


    Jan 19, 2003
    London, England
    My students record and occasionally video my lectures, I have no problem with it, although I can understand how a research based professor could be delivering material to be included in a forthcoming book etc. and that material could turn up in students work prior to publication.

    Omni-directional mics are probably the best for this job, or maybe a PZM, a vocal mic is designed for very close range work, you need a mic that works at distance, i.e. is very sensitive, a condensor or electret mic is a good start.

    Video camera mics are a good bet, they are designed for ambient recording.

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