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Conference recordings (part 2): choosing the right format for conference call recordings

Candice Evans

One of the best ways to extend the reach of mission-critical virtual communications is to record and distribute them.

Whether you plan on sharing a downloadable file, uploading video to a site like YouTube, or editing portions of a meeting to create a podcast, you need to determine which conference call recording format will best suit your needs. Here are some tips to help you choose.

Audio Conference Call Recordings

The most common audio-only recording formats are .mp3 and .wav. An .mp3 is an audio file that has been compressed, reducing its file size, and making it easier to download, store and share. A .wav file is not compressed, making for a larger file size and, potentially, storage, streaming or download issues.

So, .wav or .mp3? In most cases, we recommend an .mp3 for its universal compatibility across apps and devices. If, however, the audio is needed for research or archival purposes, or may require editing later, the full-spectrum sound of a .wav file should be your choice.

Video Conference Recordings

For video, the two most popular conference call recording formats are .mp4 and .wmv, both of which provide high-quality playback. The biggest difference between these two formats is compatibility; an .mp4 can be opened and viewed across all platforms while a .wmv requires a special plug-in for Apple devices.

While an .mp4 file is typically larger than a .wmv file, if you plan on uploading the video to YouTube, it may be the better option. (YouTube provides guidance on the ideal set up for uploading files to the platform:

If you are uploading to YouTube (or another web player, like Vimeo), uploading your .mp4 along with an .srt will enable viewers to turn on captions. Likewise, if you embed captions in your .wmv, your viewers can enable captioning within their playback software (for example, Windows Media Player) to display them.

So, .wmv or .mp4? While a .wmv may be the right choice if storage capacity is an issue, we most often recommend an .mp4 to ensure ease of playback across PC, Mac, iOS and Android devices.

Managed Distribution

Getting the format right is important but getting the content to users is essential. If you need to make your conference call recording available for dial-in replay or to host your video recording in an access-controlled environment, talk to Intellor about how we can help.