recording voicemails from iPhone to computer

I’m running Windows 7 and Audacity 2.1.1.

I’m very new to Audacity with little experience in the recording world. I have a number of voicemails from my daughter and aged father that I would desperately like to keep. I now have no room for any new voicemails, but I can’t bring myself to erase any of those from my family. To solve the problem I was excited to find Audacity on the web. Unfortunately, after reading the directions and quite a bit of time trying I cannot figure out how to move the voicemails to my computer. Can anyone tell me what settings to use? Of course, I’m assuming, maybe incorrectly that I’ve connected everything the right way.

My iPhone is connected using the headphone jack directly to the computer’s headphone jack. The Audacity set-up I’m using is: MME for the Audio Host; Microphone (Realtek High Def) for the Recording Device; 2 (Stereo) Recording for the Recording Channels; Speakers (Realtek High Definition) for the Playback Device. I’ve also checked the Overdub on and Software Playback on.

Can someone please let me know what I am doing wrong? Thank you. :slight_smile:

My iPhone is connected using the headphone jack directly to the computer’s headphone jack.

Those are both outputs… It’s like talking into someone’s mouth instead of talking into their ear. :wink:

First, I’d try transferring the files digitally via USB. You may need to check your phone’s user manual for how to do that.

For an analog connection with a desktop computer with a regular soundcard, you can connect the phone’s headphone-out to line-in. If you have a laptop with a separate microphone-in, you can try that but it’s a mismatch and the headphone output will probably overdrive and distort the mic input. If you have a newer laptop with a combo mic/headphone jack, you’ll need a special cable to make the mic connection and you’re still in danger of distorting.

You can buy an [u]audio interface[/u] with line-inputs, but I’d try copying the digital files first. (You’d need a different adapter/cable for that particular interface.)

It’s not a setting. Headset systems tend to be aggressively non-symmetrical. Headphone signals are powerful stereo and microphone signals are tiny, very delicate mono. So no, you can’t jam one into the other. That and what you probably did was connect the two headphones to each other and the two microphones to each other. Strike 2.

The simplest possible way to do this is start Audacity recording on your laptop built-in microphone and push the phone earpiece up to the microphone and play the tracks.


Next up is the Olympus TP8 microphone plugged into the Mic-In of your laptop. You put that in your ear, record through audacity and that will give you both sides of the conversation. That one may have problems with the radiation energy in the cellphone causing buzz. I haven’t figured out how to get around that yet.


The actual hard-wired solution is buy a cellphone break-out cable that features the cellphone plug on one end and a series of RCA connectors on the other. You should have one microphone and two headphone RCA plugs (attached, scroll down). This is only an example. You have to find the right one for your cellphone.

Plug the two headphone RCAs into a Behringer UCA-202 USB sound adapter. Plug the USB into your computer and tell audacity to record from “USB AUDIO CODEC.”

That’s the setup for my sound mixer, but they all connect the same way.

The microphone RCA in your cellphone adapter cable isn’t used.


Google your brains out for a way to save the messages without going through all that. You can’t be the only person who’s had this problem.

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The files are already digital. No need to record…

Here’s a complete how-to for transferring the voice mail to your computer using iexplorer:

That is, IF your iphone has been synced to your computer. You do have iTunes installed, I presume? In that case, the files are already on your computer, in the backup that iTunes keeps.

Keep in mind that I don’t have an iPhone… :mrgreen: