12 Best Computer Audio Recorders [2024]

Use Movavi Screen Recorder:

  • Capture system audio and your microphone

  • Schedule and annotate your recordings

  • Edit your recording with ease

Edited by Ben Jacklin
9 557

Finding a solid computer audio recorder can be tough with all the available software options. Here are the 12 best audio recorders for your computer.

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Best PC audio recorders

Multi-track editing with a wide range of effects

Audacity
Bestseller

Simple audio recording and editing

Movavi Screen Recorder

Top choice for musicians

Ardour

Best for: users who need high-quality video recording to accompany high-quality audio recording

Movavi Screen Recorder

  • OS

    Windows, macOS

  • G2 rating

    4.5 out of 5, 50 reviews

Movavi Screen Recorder is a screen-recording program designed to capture audio and video. It allows you to record your screen, system audio, and external audio using either a connected or built-in microphone. And users have the ability to make simple edits to create the perfect track.

With its user-friendly interface and useful features, such as built-in editing tools and a variety of export formats, it’s one of the best desktop audio recorders available. Plus, it comes with useful tools for audio-focused users, like recording scheduling.

Key features:

  • Capture all sounds from a desktop PC – system audio, mic and speakers – for clean and easy-to-understand recordings
  • Schedule recordings of important meetings and podcasts and watch them later
  • Streamline your work environment with in-app sharing to YouTube and Google Drive

Pros:

  • Connect with your team on a new level – record your voice as you present on a call and share the video later

  • Capture button clicks and cursor movement for in-depth guides and explainers

Cons:

  • The full version has no restrictions on your creativity

Best for: users who want multi-channel audio capture

Free Sound Recorder

  • OS

    Windows and macOS

Key features:

  • 3-step process to record audio

  • Auto-detects best audio formats for your sound card

  • Audio enhancement effects

Ranked as one of the best free computer audio recorders for years, Free Sound Recorder offers a breadth of excellent features. The app runs on both Windows and Mac and allows users to record both system sounds playing on your device and external audio sources – like a mic or webcam.

The program’s three-step recording process and easy-to-use interface make it a solid option for anyone looking to record desktop voice and audio. Plus, it comes with a built-in editor that enables you to modify your recordings. However, the app’s key feature is its range of enhancement effects so you can remove noise, boost bass and treble, and more.

Pros:

  • Easy-to-use interface

  • Excellent for mixing internal and external audio

  • Completely free – it's in the name!

Cons:

  • It’s overall easy-to-use, but the interface has some confusing elements

Best for: users who need a free tool with a robust set of features

Audacity

  • OS

    Windows, macOS, and Linux

  • G2 rating

    4.5 out of 5, 425 reviews

Key features:

  • Offers multi-track recording

  • Tons of third-party plugins available

  • Exports in a wide range of formats

If you want to record music, start a podcast, or simply need a tool for compiling and converting audio samples, Audacity is an excellent choice. It’s a powerful, open-source, and, most importantly, completely free recorder that’s been around for years. Plus, it records up to 32-bit/384kHz audio seamlessly and includes built-in dithering.

Audacity enables effortless importing, mixing, and merging of audio tracks (stereo, mono, or even multi-track recording) while rendering the final output as a single track. And the editing interface provides precise editing down to the sample level, as well as spectrogram and spectral views for frequency response analysis.

Audacity remains the preferred option for many users seeking quick and straightforward audio tasks. Overall, it’s a premiere mic, webcam, and desktop sound recorder.

Pros:

  • Always totally free

  • Fully-functional multi-track editing

  • Capability to handle professional audio recordings

Cons:

  • Because of its robust feature set, it can be difficult for new users to get the hang of things

Best for: composers and musicians who want to enhance their tracks

Ardour

  • OS

    Windows, macOS, and Linux

  • G2 rating

    4.1 out of 5, 11 reviews

Key features:

  • Ability to record and edit multiple tracks

  • Large portfolio of plugins and add-ons

  • Easy-to-use drag-and-drop interface

Ardour is an open-source audio recorder for Windows, macOS, and Linux, offering versatile multi-track editing and recording tools, including the ability to edit an unlimited number of multichannel tracks. Users can also extract audio tracks from videos and export files in multiple formats, like WAV, AIFF, and Ogg.

With Ardour's built-in Monitor feature, users can keep track of their audio recordings continuously. The software enables organizations to manage and edit audio clips, extract soundtracks, add blank frames, and route multichannel tracks to separate mixer strips.

It also offers a mix groups functionality to control basic soundtrack properties like solo, record enable, or mute. Ardour is an ideal solution for musicians and creators, providing comprehensive editing tools and effects to enhance recorded audio across all major platforms.

Pros:

  • Carefully crafted range of tools

  • Perfect platform for composers, DJs, and musicians

  • Offers a UI that’s stylish and sleek, yet functional

Cons:

  • Finding the best add-on can turn into a rabbit hole

Best for: users in need of a basic, no-frills audio recorder

Ashampoo Audio Recorder Free

  • OS

    Windows

Key features:

  • Ability to trim videos

  • Solid audio player built into the program

  • Offers a loopback feature to record directly from the sound card

This PC audio recorder offers a user-friendly program designed to capture audio from microphones or sound cards. It's an ideal dictation machine that allows users to record high-quality voice tracks for their videos.

The loopback feature enables recording of any audio played through your speakers, regardless of the originating application. And the intuitive interface allows users to select audio sources, output formats, and recording quality, supporting formats such as MP3, WMA, Ogg, WAV, FLAC, Opus, and APE.

With sampling rates up to 48 kHz, the software ensures excellent audio quality for streams, podcasts, audiobooks, and music. Users can easily trim audio and manage their recordings in a built-in media library, which includes a preview player and file renaming capabilities. Overall, it’s a superb PC sound recorder.

Pros:

  • Modern and sleek interface

  • Outputs in a wide range of formats

  • Superb media library organization

Cons:

  • No effects to smooth out recordings

Best for: users who like hotkeys

RecordPad

Key features:

  • Customizable Interface

  • Voice-activated recording

  • Recording from any channel

RecordPad is a user-friendly and efficient system audio recorder for Windows and Mac. Designed for recording voice, sound, music, or any other audio, the program is ideal for digital presentations, audiobooks, or simple messages.

RecordPad offers a wide range of features, including saving recordings in WAV, MP3, or AIFF format, voice-activated recording, direct CD burning, system-wide hotkeys, and search functionality with speech engine integration. Users can also send recordings via email or upload them to an FTP server.

The software supports MPEG Layer-3 encoding, Wave encoding, and command line options for automation and integration with other programs. Additionally, RecordPad can be integrated with their WavePad editor for enhanced editing and effects, making it a robust solution for professional and corporate recording applications.

Pros:

  • Offers higher-quality recording over many competitors

  • Integrates with WavePro to offer a wide range of effects

  • Option to upload audio files directly to an FTP server

Cons:

  • Dated interface

  • Limited file formats for export

  • No editing features (requires WavePad)

Best for: users who only need to record and edit a single track

Ocenaudio

Key features:

  • Real-time previewing for effects

  • No time limits

  • Spectrogram view

Ocenaudio is a user-friendly, cross-platform audio editor suitable for anyone who needs to edit and analyze audio files without complications. Available for Windows, macOS, and Linux, Ocenaudio boasts powerful features that cater to both novice and advanced users.

Based on the Ocen Framework, this software prioritizes usability, offering an intuitive audio-editing and analysis tool. Key features include VST plugin support, real-time effect previews, multi-selection for complex editing, and efficient handling of large files.

Plus, Ocenaudio also provides a fully-featured spectrogram for clear spectral content analysis. With its clean and easy-to-use interface, it’s an ideal option for editing and recording general audio files.

Pros:

  • Has additional plugins available

  • Runs on multiple platforms

  • Allows you to multi-select portions of your track

Cons:

  • Only offers single-track editing

  • Slow to process edits

Best online desktop audio recorders

Best for: users who need a fast, effective online tool for recording computer audio

Screen Capture

Key features:

  • Has solid privacy features for online recording

  • Customize where you source your audio from

  • Works on nearly any browser

Screen Capture works as an online audio recorder on any computer. Capture your browser activity, computer desktop, and webcam, along with sound. Compatible with Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Opera browsers, it requires no software installation and can be used as many times as you want.

To record your screen with audio, simply enable the microphone icon to include your voice and the sound icon for internal system sounds. The online video recorder offers high privacy during the recording process, fast HD video saving, and advanced recording tools with the desktop screen recorder option.

Pros:

  • Very easy to use

  • No download required

  • Start capturing in a few clicks

Cons:

  • Free version has a watermark for videos

Best for: users who want no compression for their recording

Apowersoft Online Audio Recorder

  • OS

    any, web-based

Key features:

  • Saves to local disc for security

  • Doesn’t compress files for recording

  • Offers excellent step-by-step guide and tutorials

Apowersoft is a free online audio recorder that supports unlimited audio recording on any browser with no extra fees, subscriptions, or hidden costs. Users can record system sound and microphone audio, capture music and gaming sounds, meetings, and more.

This easy and effective audio tool enables recording of screen sound or browser audio with just a few clicks and supports online listening of your recorded tracks. If you don’t like what you hear, start again!

Leveraging HTML5 technology, the recorder ensures ultra-high audio quality by retaining the original sound without compression.

Pros:

  • Quickly record mic or system audio for free

  • Variety of export formats

  • No add-ons, hidden fees, or subscriptions

Cons:

  • No editing tools with the free version

Best for: one-click voice recording

Online Voice Recorder

  • OS

    any, web-based

Key features:

  • Literally start recording with one click

  • Completely free

  • Simple editing

Online Voice Recorder by 123Apps is a convenient and user-friendly tool that can be used directly in your browser. It enables users to quickly record their voice using a microphone and save it as an MP3 file.

The recorder offers unique features like automatic silence trimming and a cropping feature for the recordings. The free version has a maximum file size limit of 500 MB per day, while a premium version is available for $6 per month.

Pros:

  • Simple, fast, efficient

  • Cut and trim videos

  • Auto-deletes silence at the front and end of tracks

Cons:

  • Limited to 5 files with a 500 MB max per day

  • No direct sharing

Best audio recorders for a PC: Browser extensions

Best for: users who want easy access to audio recording while browsing

Movavi Screen Recorder for Chrome

Key features:

  • Unlimited recordings

  • Doesn’t scan browser data

  • Records audio from any source

Movavi Screen Recorder for Chrome is a user-friendly and versatile recording extension that allows users to capture audio from screens, windows, or tabs with ease. It offers a wide range of features, including recording the entire laptop screen or specific Chrome screens, capturing web page audios, and embedding webcam footage into screen capture videos. 

The extension is secure, easy to use, and doesn't require registration or special plugins. It provides unrestricted recording time and unlimited captures and is ideal for capturing audio for educational content, work collaboration, live streams, online calls, or vlogs. To use the extension, simply add it to Chrome, pin it, select capture preferences, and download the recorded file.

Pros:

  • No plugins or launchers required

  • No registration

  • No time-limits

Cons:

  • Videos have a watermark

Best for: quick audio capture on a single tab

Chrome Audio Capture

Key features:

  • Quickly captures the audio on your current tab

  • Can record multiple tabs simultaneously

  • Ability to mute tabs

Chrome Audio Capture enables users to record audio playing on their current tab in Chrome. It supports recording multiple tabs simultaneously and saves the recordings as WAV or MP3 files. 

You can mute tabs during recording and control the recording through the extension interface or with hotkeys. Once the recording is stopped, a new tab opens for users to save and name their audio file. Just be sure to save the file before closing the tab to avoid losing it.

Pros:

  • Save as an MP3 or WAV file

  • Comes with hotkeys

Cons:

  • Recording is limited to 20 minutes

Tips on choosing a system audio recorder

  • Make sure the computer sounds recorder you choose can do everything you want it to do.

  • A wide range of export formats is ideal.

  • Editing features save a lot of time in the long run.

  • Effects are nice, but make sure the program and your system can process them.

  • Ensure that you like the interface, as you could be spending some time working in it.

Summary

With 12 of the best computer audio recorders to choose from, you’re ready to start recording audio on your computer. It’s a lot to take in, so refer to the tips above if you have any concerns. And be sure to consider all your audio needs before landing on a recorder.

Movavi Screen Recorder

The perfect way to record anything from your screen

Disclaimer: Please be aware that Movavi Screen Recorder does not allow capture of copy-protected video and audio streams.

Frequently asked questions

How do I record computer audio?

You can use Movavi Screen Recorder:

  1. Download and install Movavi Screen Recorder.
    Download Movavi Screen Recorder for Windows
    Download Movavi Screen Recorder for Mac

  2. Open the app and click Screen recording.

  3. Set the recording area and choose your audio sources.

  4. You can use the System Audio and Microphone icons to capture or mute sounds.

  5. Click REC to record and click Stop when you’re done.

  6. Click Save As to export the file, and choose MP3 as an output format to save audio only. 

  7. To finish, click Save.


To learn more options for recording audio, follow the link below.

Is there an audio recorder on a PC?

Windows includes a built-in app called Sound Recorder that is a useful mic audio PC recorder. However, the application doesn’t record system sound. We recommend using a tool like Movavi Screen Recorder instead if you need system sound too.

Movavi Screen Recorder

The perfect way to record anything from your screen

An easy way to record from your screen in HD. Make video footage of any application, record online streaming video, webinars, even Skype calls, and save clips in all popular formats.

4.620,293 reviews
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