Under The Microscope

Audio Hijack Pro 2.7 Visual Tour

While we’re currently working hard on a some new products, we’ve also put together Audio Hijack Pro 2.7, a fairly substantial update. This is mainly a feature release, with a couple bug fixes thrown in for good measure. Herein are the highlights of version 2.7.

VOIP recording for fun and profit

Despite its popularity as a Skype and iChat recorder, Audio Hijack Pro was never really designed for the task. Because of this, setting it up to simply “Record iChat” took a dozen or so steps. It worked, but it should be much simpler.

And so, for v2.7, we’ve simplified it down to the following:

Step 1. Create a new session for iChat, Skype, or Gizmo Project
Step 2. Click Record

Not only is there no Step 3, there isn’t even a joke “There’s no Step 3” step. Make your session, hit Record, and it just works.

Below you can see the Advanced window, showing the new MegaMix mode which pulls input and output audio from an application. Skype, iChat, and Gizmo will all default to this mode so it really is just two clicks to get things going. Users wishing to separate channels (a la this post) now need merely click a checkbox.

MegaMix

Inside the voice actors studio

For most people, the above is all you really need to know. For the inquisitive though, there is a bit more. Under the hood we made the biggest upgrade to the audio hijacker subsystem since the rewrite for Audio Hijack Pro 1.

The default mode for Audio Hijack has always been to capture audio output streams, typically the first such stream in an application. Thus, you play something in RealPlayer, Audio Hijack picks the first audio output stream, and records it. Simple and effective.

But then you try to record a Skype call, there are both input and output audio streams. Your caller’s audio exists as an audio output, but your voice only exists as audio input (and isn’t played locally). Audio Hijack Pro thus ends up being blind to your voice, and can only hear the caller.

To fix this, we added a new mode to the hijacker in 2.7, called MegaMix. Simply put, MegaMix will capture and mix every audio input and output stream from an application, all together. Thus if you have a conference call in iChat, it will correctly record your voice as well as all other parties involved.

MegaMix is automatically enabled for new iChat, Skype, and Gizmo Project sessions, and can be enabled manually for other applications (or existing sessions) through the Advanced Hijacking Options dialog.

Clambake Veratus Nicktoo

For all your pseudo-latin storage needs, we’ve added a support for Lyrics tagging:

Lyrics

The Lyrics tag can store a near limitless amount of text, although you are probably asking for trouble if you go into the megabyte range.

The best thing about the Lyrics tag is that 5G iPods will display the text for the playing track if you press the center button. This makes it a great place to store notes for podcasts and the like.

Recording Bin Bits

The Recording Bin has two new small features. The built-in Preview has been turned into a sheet with a standard QuickTime controller so you can skip around in the track. It will also load large audio files much faster.

Preview

As well there is a new toolbar button, “Open In Editor”, which allows you to quickly open recordings in the audio editor of your choice (set via the Preferences window).

Open In Editor

We categorically deny any relation between Open In Editor and this.

What’s the Frequency, Kenneth

And finally, an couple tiny updates for RadioShark users. First, we’ve updated our tuning (again) to mimic what the RadioShark software does. This should prevent the rare but annoying roar that was occasionally heard. As well, the frequency text is now editable, allowing you to do super-fine tuning of the Shark. If the station doesn’t come in well on 89.8 FM or 89.9 FM, you can now try 89.85 FM.

Radio Tuning

All the rest

That’s it for the big stuff. There are some other minor tweaks and a handful of bug fixes (including a nice one for Menu Bar Meters) that you can read about on the Version History page of Audio Hijack Pro’s manual.

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