iRig MIC Cast Hardware Review

iRig MIC Cast Hardware Review

Sep 3, 2013

Stretching smartphone functionality will always be my hobby, and finding accessories that enable me in this quest is always fun. Checking out the iRig MIC Cast? Fun. And there is no need to wince at the name; yes, it supports iDevices, but Android is not just a cheap add-on; IK supports the platform fully.

The review box had the Cast and a handy dock included. Physically, the Cast is small and lightweight, almost diminutive, which makes it infinitely portable. It’s a small square with coaxial pin, and plugs directly into the 3.55 mm audio jack of Android phones. It has a sensitivity switch, and its own mini-jack for real-time audio monitoring via headphones.irig6

Thus, in use, the Cast sits securely on top of the device, not too large or big to be make the phone unwieldy. This is where the dock can come into use, as it can hold up the newly created microphone to be used without hands.

A big part of the Cast’s usability is tied into the companion app, which makes the mobile device a full fledged recording portal. After installing the app (I did the extra step of registering the app as well), user interface pops up and provides a record button. The rest is quite intuitive. Tapping the record button invokes the microphone to start recording. The app also helps with processing and trimming the recording, which is perfect for podcasting.

The actual recordings underline the usefulness of the item; I noticed some background noise, but the playback sequences were surprisingly clear, and with the distance toggle, it did create noticeably better recordings. The software editing tools are straightforward, and the end result of manipulations were favorable. The pro version of the software is required for advanced features. It will probably be off-putting to some users to have to shell out more money, but the free build may alleviate some discomfort in that regard.

All in all, the MIC Cast is a great idea that is implemented quite well. The amalgam of hardware and software is great for the price, and it’s true value is in its portable utility.

The iRig MIC Cast is available (at the time of this review) for $39.99 from the IK Multimedia website and for $37.49 from Amazon.

Call + Voice Recorder and Auto Call Bring New Features to Calling on Android

Call + Voice Recorder and Auto Call Bring New Features to Calling on Android

Jul 30, 2012

Call + Voice Recorder does exactly what it says on the tin: it does simple voice recordings, along with recording phone calls. Voice recordings are simple: just boot up the app, hit the record button, and go. Calls can be either be initiated in mid-call, or can be configured to record automatically at the start of a call. Note that not all phone software supports call recording, and that it may be illegal in some states to record a call without the permission of both parties. Call + Voice Recorder is available from Google Play.

As well, there’s Auto Call, which is designed to use that classic technique to escape awkward social situations: the fake call. It’s possible to schedule fake calls from other people in order to get out of that uncomfortable conversation. Perhaps the fake call tactic won’t work? Then schedule actual calls to real people, because there’s no better escape call than a real one. It’s also possible to schedule recurring calls, such as to schedule wakeup calls. Auto Call is available from Google Play.