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Preview: Comments on: Help new podcaster with Skype voicemail/audacity

Comments on: Help new podcaster with Skype voicemail/audacity

Comments on Ask MetaFilter post Help new podcaster with Skype voicemail/audacity

Published: Mon, 13 Feb 2006 14:54:43 -0800

Last Build Date: Mon, 13 Feb 2006 14:54:43 -0800


Question: Help new podcaster with Skype voicemail/audacity

Mon, 13 Feb 2006 14:25:47 -0800

I have Skype-In with voicemail. How can I download the voice messages for use in a podcast?

I'm setting up a podcast (if you'd like to know more and possible participate please email me at Using caller voicemails is a big part of the idea behind the show. I have a skype account with voicemail and skype in so people can call from any phone and leave a message. The audio quality is sufficient, now I just need to get the files onto my computer so that I can edit them into my podcase. Anyone know how, other than playing them through a mixer (which I don't have, and want to avoid as long as possible)? Budget solutions are best.

In a related question, does anyone know how to fade the level of an audio track in Audacity? I've just started with Audacity, and the level slider on the left lowers the volumn of the entire track. I'd like to pick a point and have it fade to a lower level several second later and stay at that level. I can do this in my video editing software, but don't want to have to use my video editing software for an audio podcast.

Seriously, if you'd like to know more, please email me at I have the domain (whatcha think?) but it may not be working yet.

Thanks. James

By: Olli

Mon, 13 Feb 2006 14:54:43 -0800

Skype does store voicemail locally after you've played it but it uses an odd format.

I'm not sure if you can convert Skype's voicemail format to something useful. However it seems you can play back the voicemail in Skype while recording it with Audacity (set Audacity's input to "mono out").

By: missed

Mon, 13 Feb 2006 14:57:52 -0800

If you're an OS X user you might want to check out Audio Hijack Pro, which lets you record in real-time audio from other applications.

By: damnjezebel

Mon, 13 Feb 2006 16:05:13 -0800

James, to fade the audio in Audacity, highlight what you want to fade, then go up to effects (i think - i'm not looking at it right now) and select "fade out". The bigger the highlighted selection is, the longer the fade will be.

That's how to fade it completely OUT.

Now, the only way I've found to fade music to a low volume is to fade it out on one track, then have a second track pick up and stay at the low volume. It'll sound like the music faded and stayed there, but you'll be using 2 separate tracks.

I'm still learning audacity so I know my way is probably not the only way to do it - so if anyone else has a trick, please let us know.

Also, I'd be interested in learning more about your site. My email's down right now, but if you get any other inquiries, could you cc your response to me at miajezebelATgmailDOTcom? I'd appreciate it.

By: JamesMessick

Mon, 13 Feb 2006 16:34:46 -0800

Well, I've kind of figured out the first part of my question, and the Audacity answer was very helpful. A little kludgey, but what can ya do? Someone else may know how to do what I want.

BTW, I am using Windows XP Pro, not a Mac. And I have an Acer 4650 Laptop, to YMMV from mine.

To capture the Skype voicemail start Audacity.
On the main window set the input in the dropdown box to Stereo Mix OR Mono Mix.
Under File/Preferences/Audio/I.O/Recording set Device to Realtec (on my machine, play around) & set channels to mono if you want the sound to be captured to a single track.

Now just click Record in Audacity, jump to Skype, and play the voice mail. I was also able to capture soundtrack from a DVD that was playing, and I imagine it would capture anything that normally plays through the speakers.

This solution records audio in real time, so it may not be as quick as downloading a file from Skype, but it worked great for me.

miajezebel, I don't understand how your web based email is down but I'll send you the info after I work it up. Thanks.

By: JamesMessick

Mon, 13 Feb 2006 20:24:52 -0800

Ok, I have a lot to learn about Audacity. Lowering the level of a section isn't nearly as hard as I/we were making it out to be. There's something called the Envelope Tool which does exactly what I wanted it to do. A pretty good tutorisl is here!

By: blag

Tue, 14 Feb 2006 15:12:00 -0800

Hot Recorder?
Replay Telecorder?