Guide 8. Audio Recording soft-, share-, freeware:Audacity, Total Recorder, PolderbitS



Oct 30, 2003
Any one of Audacity Freeware (OS X or PC), $12 Total Recorder PC shareware, or 30 Euro Polderbits PCsoftware will capture sound from audio cassettes, LPs, computer played programs, etc, directly or indirectly into mp3 files which can then be converted manually using iTunes (mac with iTunes and Apple Scripts) or automatically (using $15 MarkAble - PC only), into m4b bookmarking iTunes/iPod files. The Pluses and Minuses of these Sound Recording software programs follows (will be happy to hear other input on this).

Have a look at these two:

Audio Hijack for Mac

Tunebite for PC
Simple, logical, flexible, and fast. Inexpensive, but not free. Will capture at up to 4X playing speed. Long files require converting partial files to AAC. Must not run other software or sound during a conversion. iLounge Tunebite thread, specifically the last post in thread. Also see
Tunebite Preference and Options Settings for Recording to MP3s Guide/Tutorial

EDIT: Try SoundTaxi for conversions (though Audacity (click here for Audacity Tutorial) or Total Recorder for sound capture). It appears to me much more intuitive, easier to set up, more hands off, faster, and with greater capabilities than Tunebite such as multiple file conversion in one step, and direct conversion to AAC) .

Primary Output Folder = default iTunes Music Folder\Special Named Folder followed by <SOURCECHAIN\SOURCENAME>
Audio Encoder = MPEG4 AAC (Results in m4a file)
Compression = 64 kbps to achieve 32kpbs stereo
Uncheck Auto convert files from folder and Automatically start conversion to maintain more control.

In this thread the posts that follow this post are guides/tutorials to three of these programs.

You will find many sound recorder programs available. Google converting sound into computer files and for a long list.

See the guides in signature below for additional information, and especially how to connect and set up line in devices.

MarkAble also sports a CD Wizard that hugely facilitates converting commercial audio book CDs into bookmarking iPod files. See the MarkAble guide in signature below.

Although utilizing these programs can be daunting, a beginner should be able to step by step follow the one time set up and recording instructions. The processes that MarkAble manages, unattended, are those that seem to cause the most problems for beginners.

Some iPodloungers use dbpoweramp and downloaded codecs. I found it more complicated.


-Mac OS X, PC, Linux, etc.
-Easy to use file selection split, append, cut, edit
-Sound Graph that makes it easier to edit out silences when recording. E.G., cassette tapes (can record timed with Total Recorder, import resulting file into Audacity, and edit out silences.)
-Cassette tape editing much easier with exception of no timer. Can continue to record, if player will stop automatically, and silence adds little to size of file. Unfortunately my player repeats several times, so must monitor.
-Fairly intuitive
-Virtually unlimited record time
-Easy to use. Settings are a little complicated, but just follow the guide
-Easy to use and prompted tag input
-Variable recording bar views. Zoom in or out.
-Moderate computer resource consumption allows performing other tasks while recording
-Apparently, current version has greatly improved stability and reliability
Requires dowload of lame_enc.dll

-No timer
-No system sound suppressor
-Requires separate mp3 conversion
-Command proximity makes it easy to error in saving complete file instead of section.
-Does not convert to mp3 on the fly. Saving selections as mp3 is time consuming.

Total Recorder

-Timer up to 24 hours
-Unlimited time without auto stop
-Inexpensive, but not free. $18
-On-the-fly mp3 conversion
-Play last or first 4 seconds to permit selection boundary adjustment to prevent word clipping.
Systems Sound Suppressor, but it is necessary to disconnect mic
-Command for place beginning of selection at pointer (makes next segment beginning marker very easy).
-Accelerated Recording under limited circumstances.
-Moderate computer resource consumption allows performing other tasks while recording
-Easy to use file selection split, append, cut, edit
-Scheduler for Podcasts, etc. Not covered in guide.
-Tag ID, but requires searching out and filling in advance of recording
-Converts to mp3 on the fly. Much faster than Audacity or PolderBits because of this.
-Sound graph to facilitate locating silences and ends. Probably easiest to save each cassette to a separate mp3 file by locating silences between cassettes and end and then merging mp3 files. Requires free download Spectrum/Graphic Analyzer here
Or, could record with TR and edit with Audacity by importing TR file into Audacity.

-PC only
-Complicated and spread out set up. Following the guide makes this a one time chore.
-Command proximity makes it easy to error in saving complete file instead of section.

-Installs Total Recorder Sound Driver as default. Causes choppy sound in windows apps. Guide tells how to fix this.
-Not intuitive


-Filters (can take out tape hiss) I never use.
-Relatively easy to use
-Versatile. Has other uses not covered in these guides.

-Now very expensive at 30 Euros
-PC only
-Limited to 6:45 at 32 kbps mono (convert to stereo later to avoid iPod bug).
-Limited file editing. No merging or appending. Combination of 6:45 limit and edit limit requires careful file size management.
-Will record systems sounds of other software operating.
-Separate mp3 encoding step
-Creates huge WAV files in first recording step
-Consumes huge system resources and it will crash if not dedicating computer to PolderbitS.
-No tag ID

Applies to All three programs and conversions

Homemade Mono Lockup iPod. iPod mono m4b files need conversion to stereo. 4G+/mini.See avoid 4G & Mini Lockup & keep iTrip out of 4G+ Shuffle.

Make iTunes conversion in stereo, limit final recording segments to 5 hour maximum to avoid playback, bookmark, erratic jumps, and hang up problems.

After utilizing one of the three programs to convert sound to mp3 files, use MarkAble, All-in-one PC Shareware. Merges, converts, & renames CD, MP3, WAV to bookmarking & places in iTunes Library ($15 PC Shareware) to avoid all the following steps. Mac, use Apple Scripts. PC perform the following steps for a manual conversion

Set up iTunes import options :

a. Edit>Preferences>Select Import Tab>Choose:
b. Import Using = AAC Encoder.
c. Uncheck all boxes.
d. Channels = Stereo. NOTE:there is a mono lock up bug.
e. Setting Custom, select kps bit rate (32 = best) Min. 128/stereo for music.
f. Sample = Automatic

1. Open iTunes, click on File>Add File to Library>Browse to the File location>Highlight the file>Click Open

2. In iTunes Library with all Genre, Artist, and Album selected, locate the new file:
a. Click on Date Added Column head until arrow points down (Add Date Added by right click while cursor is in column headings area, and check Date Added in drop down)
b. It may be necessary to push the right hand button hard up to the top and to click on Date Added column a couple of times or exit/ reopen iTunes to see newly added file.

3. Right Click on the new file, choosing Get Info, select Info Tab and enter:
a. Name = Book Name 01, etc. Should be there already.
b. Artist = Author
c. Album = Author (Later you can use R click, get info to change album to X of Y so that iPod display will show that. For now, file organization is simplified by using author.
d. Genre = Audiobook, Books & Spoken, Spoken Word, or create a new genre if you wish.
e. Click OK

4. highlight the new file
a. Right Click
b. Select Convert Selection to AAC on drop down (having made settings above)
c. Wait: 8.5 minutes/hour for conversion to complete.

Rename file extension of newly converted file - mac users see quoted posts in first post of thread re renaming.
5. Upon completion of conversion, iTunes will have added the AAC file to iTunes. Click on Date Added column heading and push right hand button up until a second file appears with the same book name as the original wav file.

6. Right click on the latest file, select show file:
a. The AAC/m4a file should be highlighted in the window. If you entered Name, Author, Artist in steps above before converting, will be in iTunes/iTunes Music/ under the authors name, not under unknown Album.
b. Click on Rename This File in list on the left
c. Change m4a extension to m4b so that the file extension is m4b. Any file renaming other than extension must be done with an iTunes R click, info tab, key in change. If you do not see file extension, in the window that appears from show file, click Tools>Folder Options>Select View Tab>Uncheck Hide Extensions for Known File
d. Press enter and say ok to change name file
e. Highlight renamed file and double click it
f. File will appear in iTunes Library and begin playing.

7. Create an iPod Smart Playlist, if you wish, containing the genre and playcount = 0
8. Synch or Drag newly converted AAC/m4b file to the iPod icon and smartlist will show automatically and drop listened to files out of smartlist.

Delete temporary files

9. R click>clear the unneeded first two file entries (the Wav file, the AAC conversion file listing with an ! (this m4a file no longer exists), and all the temporary wav files wherever you placed them. Empty these huge files from your recycle bin.

One time set up to connect external sound source to sound card

1. With Y connector, connect the two male RCA stereo ends on one end to the output of a continuous play cassette tape deck or CD player from old stereo system (or buy one from e-bay). Connect the 1/8 inch
mini stereo connector on the other end to the Line In of the sound card of your computer. (My Dell Line In is the blue plug of a Turtle Beach Sound Card. See How to Connect Cassette Deck to PC sound card

2. Does not require an amplifier unless vinyl LP.
For LP, connect turntable to amplifier, amplifier RCA out jacks to computer sound card Line In.
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Oct 30, 2003
Guide 2 supplement. Audacity Freewareto convert sound into bookmarking iPod files

For PC, Mac OS X, Unix and others. Captures and converts audio and files and exports selections of the file into mp3 for easy $15 MarkAble or free manual conversion to bookmarkable iTunes/iPod files. Audio cassettes, LP records connected to sound card line in (see first post this thread) or any sound played on a computer can be converted. Freeware. No timer, but you can easily truncate silent endings. Recommend by Stensvaag who says it doesn’t use disc space for recorded silence. Systems usage allows running other software, totally unattended recording once set up and begun. Can save recorded files into segments and resulting file can be edited. ??? represents areas not as yet fully understood or explored by the author.

See Guide 2 for manual or MarkAble shareware guide below in signature for conversion of the resulting mp3 files to bookmarking iPod files.

Download and information link:

Audacity freeware for Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, GNU/Linux, and other..

Audacity Settings (one-time):

File>Preferences>Audio I/O Tab[/b]
Playback: Your Sound Card

Recording: Your Sound Card

Channels : 2 (Stereo) [stereo, to avoid iPod bug]

Check Software playthrough only if sound source is external to computer. If this is checked and sound source is computer internal, sound will blast and distort.

Quality tab:

Default Sample Rate 22050 (= format 4)

Default Sample Format: 32 bit float (= fomat 4)

Real Time and High Quality sample rate converter: High-quality Sinc Interpolation

Real-time and High-quality dither: None

File Formats:
● Read directly from original file (faster)

Uncompressed Export Format: Wav (Microsoft 32 bit float)

OGG Export Setup
OGG Quality: ??? 5

MP3 Export Setup

MP# Library Version: Lame v3.90

Click on Find Library button to browse to folder to which you have downloaded or will download Lame v3.90 codec onto your computer. To see if your computer already has this codec downloaded, do Start>Search>For Files or Folders>All Files and Folders> and key in "lame_enc.dll" without the " marks, and click on search. If you have it, note the location in the window listing search results.

Set Bit Rate at 32 or preferred

Spectrograms Tab
Set FFT Size at ???
Set Max Hz at 44100 Note: no comma allowed

Click on Location Choose button and browse to largest HD, preferable large external hard dirve. Create a folder something like: I:\Temp\audacity_temp\ Should be the drive on which the ultimate file will stay. When told file does not exist, say OK to create.

Interface, Keyboard, Mouse Tabs
Leave all at default settings


1. Quit or turn off sound, in ALL sound producing software so that your recording does not place those sounds in the recording. Audacity, unlike Total Recorder, does not have an option that silences all systems during recording. Think, mail alerts, etc. Open Audacity, having made the settings above.
2. Go to File>Preferences>Audio I/O Tab> and Check or uncheck “Software Playthrough (Play new track while recording it)” according to
a. Uncheck if recording sound played by computer software
b. Check if Recording sound played by external device (cassette deck, etc.) check

3. Prepare external player connected to line in or open software which will play sound. Choose appropriate sound source on volumne slider line. Line In, if Cassette deck, LP player, or other external device connected to sound card Line In. Chose Stereo Mix for audio playing on computer, etc.
4. Click on Audacity Red Record Button
5. Begin playing sound source
6. Observe sound bars to be sure that sound is being recorded and at adequate level. Adjust sound slide bar accordingly.
7. If sound source is external and you have followed step 2.b. above, you may adjust the playback volume with the left slider (all the way down to zero. If you are playing sound with computer software, you may open the Sound Mixer (speaker icon in sys tray bottom right) and slide Master sound volume to zero.
8. Audacity has is no timer. Allow the sound to play to the end of audio. One file is created and may be broken into segments with Audacity.
9. At end of recording, perhaps double checking pointer time against time of recording and that you have a long segment of flat line on recording volume bar, Click on square beige Stop Button. Note: Stensvaag observes that recording well past the end does not appreciably increase file size, so you could reasonably leave the sound playing and Audacity recording overnight and discard the silent segment end of the recorded file.
10. Determine number of selections (segments) you will need to keep selections under 6 to 8 hours and under 300 MB Edit: maybe just 5 hours. Files larger than this will not operate satisfactorily on iPod This step is the only opportunity you will have to segment, or split, the recorded file.
11. Adjust calibration of recording bar with magnifying glass icons to zoom in or zoom out. Adjust the scale with zoom in/out so that you can more easily drag the shaded area to the points determined for end of selection.
11b. To eliminate silences (cassette recording, for example) zoom in sufficiently to spot silence gaps, drag from beginning of silence to end of silence to create shadowed selection, then click on scissors icon to remove from selection.
12. Place cursor at beginning of recording bar and drag the shading to the point you determined will be the end of the first selection segment. Place the cursor on the end of the segment shading and slide the pointer to a flat line point between words. When at end of a selection segment, you may need to zoom in to more easily find flat line breaks between words and drag the selection boundary back and forth to make the selection end on a silent flat line. Note this time to aid in recovering from missteps in process.
13. Go to File>Export Selection as mp3 (may have to download a lame codex or tell Audacity where one is on your computer.)
Note: Be absolutely certain to export the selection. I inevitably have used export sans selection command and have one file that is the whole book. An avoidable recovery problem.
Also, if overwriting an existing file with an edited file, BE CERTAIN to close any window (explorer) containing the file lest you go thru the entire time consuming mp3 export and get the message at end cannot save because file is in use.
14. Fill in File name in save window (E.G., I:MP3 Folder\Book Name 1_2.mp3) , fill in tag information in tag window.
15. After export/conversion is complete, with cursor remaining at end of first selection segment, go to Edit>Move Cursor>to selection end. Cursor is now at beginning of subsequent selection segment. Drag the shading to the point you determined will be the end of the next selection segment or end of audio, if this is the ending selection segment. If Audacity recorded well beyond the audio length, just stop saving segments at the beginning of the continuous flat line of the recording.
16. Place the cursor on the end of the segment shading and slide the pointer to a flat line point between words. Note this time for future reference.
17. Repeat steps 12 -16 for each selection segment, keying in a differentiation for each file for future identification. I.E., Book Name 1_3.mp3, Book Name 1_3.mp3, etc.
18. Before closing Audacity, hold cursor over each Audacity exported mp3 file to view properties to make sure that they contain approximately the number of minutes that you determined for segment size. Way too much or little time could indicate a export without using selection command, a miscalculation of segments, or a misplacement of selection boundaries.

Convert mp3 files to bookmarking iTunes/iPod files

Easiest, especially for beginners, is to download $15 MarkAble (see links in signature below) and add the mp3 files to MarkAble and request it to convert all. MarkAble will then unattended cause and oversee iTunes conversion of all the mp3 files to AAC iTunes files, rename them from m4a to m4b to make book markable, place the proper files in your iTunes library and remove temporary files. See MarkAble guide in signature below and steps in lead post of this thread for manual conversion.

Free manual process entails ensuring iTunes settings are set appropriately, individually importing/converting each of the mp3 files created with these instructions to AAC into iTunes. You must then, one at the time, rename each file, add the renamed file to iTunes, and delete the iTunes index entries for the now non-existent files which were renamed. See last part of Guide 2 in signature below.

Mac users will have to use apple scripts to convert mp3 to m4b. Do forum search or look thru guides below.
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Oct 30, 2003
Guide 2 supplement.$12 Total Recorder to convert sound into bookmarking iPod files

Captures and converts PC only audio and files on-the-fly into mp3 for easy $15 MarkAble or free manual conversion to bookmarkable iTunes/iPod files. Audio cassettes, LP records or any sound played on a computer can be converted. Inexpensive, total timed recording up to 24 hours, systems usage allows running other software, suppresses systems sounds during recording, converts to mp3 on the fly, totally unattended recording once set up and begun, can save recorded files into segments, and converts files from one format to another. ??? represents areas not as yet fully understood or unexplored by the author.

See Guide 2 for manual or the MarkAble shareware guide below in signature for conversion of the resulting mp3 files to bookmarking iPod files.

Before downloading and installing Total Recorder (TR) click here, and free download Spectrum/Graphic Analyzer click here determine your current soundcard assignment:
Start>Settings>Control Panel>Sounds, Speech and Audio Devices>Sounds and Audio Devices>Voice Tab. Note Voice Recording and Voice Playback Default devices.
After installing TR, if any Windows program or iTunes playback is distorted
Restore Voice Recording and Playback to the original default settings after performing steps A 1-4 below. That is, in Voice Tab (see above), restore Recording and Voice Playback to default to your computer's sound card, changing from the Total Recorder Driver to which TR assigns default. and/or
Check your Quicktime settings:
1. Close iTunes
2. Open Quicktime, go to edit, preferences, Quicktime preferences
3. Click sound out from the first menu there
4. Under choose a device for playback click waveOut, waveOut: Windows' preferred device or Direct Sound to waveOut: Sound Card Name

SETTINGS: One Time Set Up of Total Recorder for recording audio sound into iPod m4b bookmarking files

A. Total Recorder>Options>Settings>System item
1. Check Turn off sounds assigned to system events (Prevents systems sounds so that they do not record)
2. Set Audio Playback and recording devices to original default sound cards.
3. Check both use directly boxes. This ???
4. Choose the radio button “Audio playback and recording devices selected above.”
5. Check use preferred devices only box. This ???
6. Check High Priority box at bottom of window. Gives TR priority and prevents other software degrading audio quality.
7. Click on Restrictions button and check disable scheduler if you are not going to use TR for scheduled recordings.

B. TR >Options>Settings>Open/Save:
1. Choose or confirm file for temporary files. Best if on same hard disk as final save so that files do not have to be copies from one disc to another. Better still if all file folders on a large internal or external hard disc.
2. Check Flush the temporary file every 5 seconds (recommended).
3. Default file name for Save as/Save selection as:
Choose radio button for Generate according to Rules using File Tag.
4. Choose radio button “Save the old one with confirmation, if not saved.

C. TR>Options>Settings>File Name item:
1. Click “New” button
2. Key in rule name: “Title.mp3”
3. Select “Title” from Insert Field into template Field drop down.
4. Minimum = 0. Max = adequate number of characters for titles
5. Click Insert box
6. Key in .mp3 so that file name template example looks like this:
<Title-0-255>.mp3.wav (wav will go away)

D. TR>Options>Settings>Formats item:
1. Choose MP3
2. Select MP3 codec. Will list all available from windows or installed codecs. Try different codecs until the kbps and HZ parameters available in E 3 are your preference. See TR site for download mp3 codec sites.
3. Change File ID3 tag to: ???

E. TR>Options>Recording Source and Parameters:
Choose 1 or 2 according to source of sound.
1. Choose Software if playing sound with software
a. Choose Softwear radio button (eliminates choosing mixer source)
b. Check “Convert using ‘Recording parameters’ specified below.”
c. Check Accelerate recording (silent mode) so that compatible software programs ??? will fast recording without playing sound.
d. Choose Max speed.
e. Set Recording level at 100% of the original
f. Set balance at 0%
2. Choose Soundboard if line in or sound card is source of sound
a. Choose original sound default device
b. Choose source of sound. Line in, if external device attached to sound board sound in (cassette tape, LP, etc.). If not in accelerate recording, the sound bars will show sound graph. Play with Use this line until see sound when recording.
3. Set Recording Parameters by clicking change button and selecting the kbps and HZ settings you want. It is futile to exceed the original recording’s parameters. Lower settings require less storage. 32 kbps and 16,000 HZ = format
4. Key in descriptive name of these settings and click Save As at top of window. Subsequently, you can choose this name without individually setting each parameter.

F. TR>Options>Playing volumes and recording level:
1. Set volumes at nearly max until only occasional single red bar shows.
2. Do not utilize Automatically set optimal recording level, especially for software source. Will result in lower quality recording.

G. TR>View>select Full View so that you will have all the needed controls accessible.
TR>Process>Spectrum Analyzer for sound graph.

H. TR>Options>System Settings>Sounds tab:
Leave as is

I. TR>Options>System Settings>Audio Tab
1. Sound Playback
a. Default device: Playback through TR ???
2. Sound Recording
a. Default Device: Record through Total Recorder ???
3. MIDI music playback
a. Default device: Original default sound card
4. Check Use only default devices ???
J.TR>Options>System Settings>Voice Tab
5. Both default devices original sound card
K. TR>Options>System Settings>Hardware Tab
No changes

RECORDING with Total Recorder to convert sound into bookmarking iTunes/iPod files.
Once TR settings described above have been set, possibly revising step E to change of source or Recording parameters, AND mic is disconnected (sound supression does not block mic) begin recording:

1. Open sound playing software or prepare sound playing equipment, e.g., cassette player.
2. Open TR
4. Click on Red Record button in lower right corner of TR window
5. Click Play or begin playing sound from sound source
6. Adjust playing volume and recording volume with TR window sliders until sound level is adequate and not too much (no red in bars)
7. If volumes have been adjusted, stop the recording by clicking on the stop button in lower right corner.
8. Adjust recording source back to beginning of audio.
9. Click on Record button, answering do not save the file that was created while you adjusted volume
10. Click on or begin playing sound from sound source
11. Sound must show on status bars unless recording in Accelerated mode. See E on how to change recording source settings until sound shows.
12. Once recording has satisfactorily begun:
a. click on Auto Stop Recording Button (combo red button/clock, to left of clock icon in TR)
a. Check Auto Stop Recording and set duration radio button
b. Key in or use buttons to set the total time of recording, up to 24 hours. TR will split files and save as well as append files. If step Key in or browse to save recording to file name. Choose the same hard disk for temporary and final recordings to avoid extra copy time.
c. Click on OK.
d. go to TR>File>Tag and fill in tag id information for the audio file.

Upon completion of recording:

A. If Selection panel is not visible, select TR>“View”>“Full View”

1. Click on stop button if not time recording.
2. Determine length of each portion of audio recording. Limit each to 5 hours max to avoid iPod play problems.
3. Create tag with TR File>Create Tag
4. Position Selection pointer to beginning of file
5. Click on Set Beginning of Selection icon |-v-|
6. Click on icon to right of Selection bar and key in time ending (probably multiples of 5 hours) of segment of audio or select one of the previously used times. I find there is no need to try to split files at silence.
To eliminate recording silences between cassettes, locate them with free download Spectrum Analyzer graph (TR>Process>Spectrum Analyzer) and make an mp3 for each cassette by ending at silences, beginning next one at resumption of sound.
7. Click on Set End of Selection icon |-A-|
8. Click on Save selection as file icon between Set End and Set Beginning icons. Alternatively, File>Save Selection As) to save as, but this alternative makes it easy to mistakenly save the entire recording instead of just the selection.
9. Insert selection (segment) unique identifier into file name that resulted from step 3. I.E., Folder\Book Name 1_3.mp3, Folder\Book Name 2_3.mp3, Folder\Book Name 3_3.mp3
10. Click SAVE
11. Without moving selection pointer, click on Set Beginning of Selection icon |-V-|
12. Repeat steps 6-11 until all sections saved.
13. Go to folder with saved Selections and look at properties (highlight or right click) of each file to ensure that no file was a save as – which would save the entire file -- instead of a Save Selection as. Much safer to save using "Save selection as" icon instead of File commands.
18. Use MarkAble or guides below to convert the mp3 files into m4b files and place in iTunes or see lead post in this thread for step by step manual conversion utilizing only iTunes.

Total Recorder Description and Download site
free add on download Spectrum/Graphic Analyzer
Recommend download and play with before purchasing. Unregistered software inserts buzz every 60 seconds.
Total Recorder pdf Manual
Stensvaag who inspired us all to the solutions, uses Audacity freeware for Mac OS X, Microsoft Windows, GNU/Linux, and other. Total Recorder splits files and allows editing of files.
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Oct 30, 2003
30 Euro PolderbitS Software Guide

To capture sound played directly from a file on your computer with another application , close all sound producing applications -- Not required with Total Recorder -- ("You've got mail" bongs, bells, etc.). Check volume control panel (click on speaker icon in systray) to determine which volume control to use. Play with volume control panel and Polderbits Sound Source set to Stereo Mix and when Polderbits vol bar shows sound playing.

Download Sound Recording Software:

Download PolderbitS Sound Recorder and Editor 30 Euros. Two week full function trial.

Record audio cassettes, CD's, LP’s or sound played on computer into a temporary file.

1. Polderbits may interrupt if not getting enough computer power. May want to perform recording accordingly, perhaps leav to recording overnight
2. Insert first two audio book cassettes or CD's into the cassette decks or up to 5 CD's in the player. (If your player plays only one deck or CD, adapt by processing only one tape or CD at the time).
3. Open PolderbitS software
4. Enter PolderbitS setting on the window that opens:
a. Sound Source = Line In (If playing sound with another application and recording, Set at Stereo Mix and exit all sound producing applications)
b. Set Recording Quality (Mono for books to reduce file size, Stereo for music -- AAC conversion later in Stereo for books):
ii. CD Mono = 44,100 Hz. Recommended quality setting. Will record up to 6:45--both sides of up to 4 cassettes or 5 CDs. Calculate and load CDs and cassettes or play program so that total sound time does not exceed 6:45. See EZ Guide below for much easier cd to m4b MarkAble CD Wizard that creates fewer files than there are CDs.
5. Adjust sound level:
a. Set sound on cassette deck or CD player at max?
b. Play sound and adjust slide until sound stays below an occasional red at top of meter.
c. After setting volume level, rewind both tapes or < CD to beginning.
6. Set timer by clicking clock icon button at top right of the first PolderbitS window.
i. In window that opens, select manual, then
ii. Check Stop After
iii. Set time to 3:00+ for single deck play, 6:00+ for dual deck play or 6:40 for CD's.
iv. Click on Apply and Close.

7. Start audio cassette deck, software, or CD player play

8. Click on PolderbitS Red Button to begin recording
a. PolderbitS will choose the hard disk with greatest capacity. The files created by this process may require substantial temporarydisk space.
b. Optional: click button in lower right hand corner of PolderbitS to select disk manually.

9. Upon completion of recording, click stop and PolderbitS will display Polderbits Sound Editor. Define the beginning and end of the file and cut out silences between cassettes. See PolderbitS help. If you are not a perfectionist, skip cutting and just live with the silences between cassettes.
a. Slide button to where sound begins (flat line stops) and position green line there.
b. Check Start Point.
c. Slide Green indicator to flat-line end of book.
d. Look for silence at reverse/tape change points. Use > and || buttons to listen and validate end of book.
i. Change scale to 1, so that you can more easily find flat lines, and click button to positions in multiples of roughly 45 minutes to locate. BOT vary considerably in side length.
ii. Check start Cut or R click choose Start New Cut
iii. Locate end of silence and Check End Cut or R click
iv. Adjust cut beg/end with small arrows
v. Repeat for each approx 45 min of play
ii. Adjust beginning or end points of cut or file with sm arrows, or click the Undo button to start over
vii Or, just bear with the silences while listening and skip step d.

e. Apply Filters to tapes or noisy audio: Click on Advanced to display Filters. I have had good luck with unfiltered tape recording and skip this step.
c. Apply filters by clicking on Continue:
d. Choose the Noise Filter Tab. Reduce tape hiss: sllide button from low to 1/3+ depending on tape condition. Experiment.
e. Click on the Save As button.

10. In the window that opens:
a. Choose MP3 [*.mp3]. Smaller than wav and allows MarkAble to merge, convert, and rename mp3s. iTunes will convert wav (very large) or mp3 files to AAC if you do not wish to use MarkAble.
c. Choose Sound Quality that you selected above (Mono )
d. Name the File Book Name 01, etc. -- a unique name for each file created for this audio.
e. Browse a location to save the file. Desktop is easy to find. Note the location to find file later.
f. Click on the Save button
g. Do not close Sound Editor
h. Locate File on desktop or wherever you saved it. Hover your cursor over it, or R click file and choose properties, to make certain it has content. If content = 0, you did not follow step 9a properly. Saving again will require deleting or a new name.

See Guide 2 or first post of this thread for how to convert the mp3 files to bookmarking m4b iPod/iTunes files.
Last edited:


Oct 30, 2003
Garbled Sound from iTunes

If iTunes plays garbled sound, it may be because a sound recorder program took over Sound Output of Quck Time (The iTunes sound player).

Close iTunes and Open Quick Time from programs, select Edit>Preferences>QuickTime Preferences>Sound out > under 'choose a device for playback', click waveout. Wave out:Windows' Preferred device worked for me.