A veteran in the voice recording software industry, GoldWave has evolved over the years to its present version. GoldWave offers endless possibilities to both inexperienced users and veteran audiophiles, like filters, special effects, editing, multiple file format support, the ability to record from multiple sources, and adequate help and guidance. Its only real drawback is the notable absence of an optical media burning tool, but many computers come bundled with one anyway.
Many voice recording programs are simply too technical for inexperienced users to grasp. But GoldWave overcomes this problem with its user-friendly interface and “How Do I” section in the help file. Most of the topics are appended with detailed explanations in plain language, ready for you to use at any step during your process, ensuring that you’ll never get stuck.
The majority of the tool and effect icons are conveniently placed on the main toolbar or the effects toolbar. You can customize various attributes of the interface to make it easier for you to use. A keyboard shortcut menu lists the available options and controls. Commonly used edit commands like cut, copy, paste, trim, replace and overwrite are easily recognizable from the interface as well.
One of the best features found in this kind of software is its voice- and level-activated recording functionality. You can tell the program to only record when it hears voices or when any sound goes over a certain decibel level that you specify.
The software includes digital and analog rip capabilities but inexplicably lacks a burn option – a function that’s common within this kind of software. It does allow you, however, to compress files. If having a burn option is critical to your workflow, however, consider RipEditBurn.
The program offers non-destructive editing for your audio files, and you can process multiple files at once, even splitting or merging them. GoldWave boasts numerous audio filters and special effects which help you filter, edit, enhance and apply special effects to a voice recording. These effects can make a substantial impact on the finished voice recording, especially when the original voice feeds are sourced from a weak line with plenty of background noise, breaks, distortions and disturbances.
Some of the software’s most useful filters and effects include: noise reduction, pop and click removal, trim silence, amplify, time warp, equalizer, reverberation and fade ins/outs. There is an option to convert your audio files from mono to stereo as well.
GoldWave supports a variety of file formats for opening and saving audio files. You can open files in WAV, MP3, XAC, AIFF, AIFC and other formats. Files can be saved to WAV, MP3, XAC, AIFF, AIFC, IFF and others. Conversion between popular file formats is supported, both for files you’ve recorded with the software as well as any you upload from other compatible sources.
The audio recording software is compatible with all recent versions of Windows, from Windows XP forward. However, it lacks compatibility with Mac OS X.
A highly detailed and well-compiled help file is bundled in with the software. A user manual, tutorials, a FAQs section and a community forum are available online. Free upgrades are included for the program upon purchase, so you’ll always be working with the newest technology. GoldWave is available in two license versions, yearly and lifetime. Both options are reasonably priced, making it not just one of the best voice recording programs but also one of the most affordable.
GoldWave has been serving audiophiles with its numerous practical features and tools for over a decade. Over the years, its scope has expanded to include many new and advanced features, maturing to its current version. An optical media burning capability is the only tool lacking from this otherwise complete audio recording program. And while the user interface may need a facelift, GoldWave is great all-around voice recording software.