General Question

laureth's avatar

What's the best way to make an mp3 of an answering machine message?

Asked by laureth (27174points) May 15th, 2012

Tech advice needed. I have a telephone message that has been sitting on the answering machine for better than a year, because I don’t want to delete my (now deceased) grandfather happily rambling away to wish me a happy day. I sort of fear losing the message to an accidental slip of the finger on the delete key, or maybe a power outage, so I’d like to transfer it to a more permanent and stable storage device, like my computer (as an mp3?). However, I can’t find any kind of mic or speaker jack on the phone, and the most high tech solution I can think of is to buy a tape recorder and hold it up to the phone just as if I were in high school again, recording “Wait!” by White Lion off of the radio. Is there a better way? It’s 2012. There must be. And perhaps you will tell me. Thanks!

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5 Answers

serenade's avatar

Get someone with an iPhone to record it like you’ve suggested using the “Voice Memos” app that’s on every iPhone, and then have them e-mail the file to you. It will probably sound fine.

laureth's avatar

Hm, I didn’t know iPhones did stuff like that. Now, to make a friend with an iPhone! :D

AshlynM's avatar

Since the message is irreplaceable, the tape recorder is your best option. Most mp3 players or any iDevice have built in voice recording functions.

blueiiznh's avatar

I did the very same thing recently with a Birthday message from my Father.

I used a computer phone dialer program (in my case Skype), dialed the voicemail to listen. I then started a sound recorder program (Sound Recorder etc) and set the input to be the PC. I muted the PC mic to ensure it did not pick up background noises.

Priceless recording.

jerv's avatar

I did that for a widow.

Thing is, I also had a VoIP setup so that I was using the PC as my phone. That avoided any loss of sound quality. Doing it that way, I just used the built-in features of my VoIP program to record the call as she played back her husbands voice, took a sound editor to it to crop out the relevant part, and saved that file.

If it worked for fussy perfectionists like @blueiiznh and me, I think it may be your best bet.

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