There is a wonderful little gadget for making radio recordings called the dradio-Recorder. It’s issued by the Deutschland Radio (hence the name).
A word of caution: whether recording for private use will most probably be legal, what you do with the file afterwards might not be. Ask a lawyer, if in doubt.
But back to the underappreciated dradio-Recorder:
It’s ultra-reliable, easy to use, but it comes with a major drawback: there is no English version.
But don’t fear – I’ll walk you through!
Once you installed it, you find it in your app list in Windows. (I have no Mac OS to test out whether it works there or how it looks like.)
It will probably take some time updating and syncing the station database – usually around five minutes.
Theoretically, you can scan the database to choose directly which program to record. If you want to do that, you’ll figure. For now, I’ll stick to the simplest way to do a recording:
For the recorder to work, your PC needs to be on, obviously. While you are recording, I would always choose “Sleep – never” in the control panel settings under “energy options” of your PC. Also I would turn off anything else on the pc that goes “pling!” like notifications. Theoretically, the recorder might even manage to only record the intended audio, but better safe than sorry. You might want to try it out before you actually need it.
Pick a channel
Back in the dradio-Recorder, there is a section right on top which says “Sender” – Stations. Once you click there, there is a selection of stations covered by the program. Most are German ones. So, once you start typing in the little box up left, you see the selection changing and you should find the channel you are searching for quite quickly. (If it’s not included – bad luck; you might need another tool.)
For example, let’s say we want to record Kulturradio rbb. I select this channel, right there on top now. Now here is the one thing that is a little tricky about that program: See the little slider on the right?
Once you click or hover over it, it slides out, and you can select “aufnehmen” – record. Choose that.
You are guided to a little popup where you can assign the time-span, and name your file. Best pick a name you are likely to find again later. (I’m talking from experience.) The time is your local time. (At least I am almost 100 % sure about it.) Be sure to convert if necessary, and again, try it out before you actually need it.
Now, this is important, choose “einplanen” – schedule.
Once you do, this recording is listed under “Aufnahmen” (recordings) as planned – “geplant.”
Where does my file go?
As in most programs, you can assign the file location. This is hidden under yet another slider. See the little triangle there, under the amp display?
Once you click it, you see a two-pages menu appearing. Down there you can set the quality (.mp3 or .wav) …
… and choose the file location. Make sure you got enough space on the partition you choose! Just for orientation: an hour of best quality .mp3 will be around 100 MB. An hour of .wav is going to be around 1 GB.
That’s all for now!
Oh, one last thing. After so many prosaic words, let me teach you a few others, because German is actually a beautiful language.
Zauberstimme (noun, f.) – ‘miracle voice’ or ‘enchanting voice. It’s a compound noun, comprising of two other, shorter words: “Zauber” (noun, m.) – something between mystery, miracle, magic and enchantment. “Stimme” (noun, f.) – voice.
engelsgleich (adj.) – like an angel (literally)
kuschelig (adj) – cozy doesn’t quite encompass it; cuddly is a little closer. ‘kuschelig’ can be applied to persons (rarely), animals, and things alike. It’s something that’s homely, cuddly, fluffy, …
Anyway, have fun with the dradio-Recorder!