iPhone XS - Stereo Recording

iOS & iPadOS


2 Days ago I became the owner of the new iPhone Xs, and for me one of it's most exciting features, is it's ability to record in stereo, ... or so it's been advertised. Sure enough, when recording video, the sound is stereo, and a nice, clear sound at that, with a reasonably low noise floor. However, I'd like to record plain simple audio in stereo, and have tried various apps and methods, including RecUp, Voice Memos, Auphonic, and a few other voice recorders. Unfortunately none of these apps record in stereo. I've also looked through various settings to see if there's a way to adjust the phone's settings so that audio would be recorded in stereo by default. However, seems like I have no luck.

It seems logic to me that, if the phone is able to record video in stereo, audio should not be a problem, right?

If there then is a solution, could someone please shed light on it for me?

Thanks very much.

All the best.



Submitted by Serena on Friday, October 19, 2018

hiya, nope there's no way to just record in audio on the new mics. my guess is, apple will at some point bring out an update of iOS, in which they will proudly announce that we now can record in stereo in audio only! ... lol.bit silly really, adding stereo mics, but only making them good for video. personally i think they should have put both forward facing and backward facing stereo mics, and even enabled it for all calls and so on. IE, facetime and the like. that could have been really interesting. but nope, as of yet, no luck on audio recording with them.

Submitted by Q on Friday, October 19, 2018

Thanks for clarifying. Pardon me for saying so, but that's such a retarded approach. I can't help wondering about their logical abilities. lol.

Submitted by Remy on Friday, October 19, 2018

While it seems unusual that Apple might not have thought ahead for their own apps, I wouldn't be surprised if other audio recording apps will have an update in the near future. Then again, Airpods have been out for a couple years now, they have a microphone each and you still can't record in stereo with those. So maybe I'm wrong.

Submitted by Bruce Harrell on Friday, October 19, 2018

Have you tried recording with Audacity, Garage Band, or any of the other medium to higher level recording apps? I can't imagine they would record mono only.

Submitted by aaron ramirez on Saturday, October 20, 2018

It's not all that battery efficient but you can make a Shortcut to record a video, then convert it into an audio file.
Regarding Airpods and stereo recording, the sound profile they use when the microphones are active doesn't support stereo, whether it's recording or playback. The majority of bluetooth headsets out there are the same way, from my understanding.

Submitted by Adrian Wyka on Saturday, October 20, 2018

Unfortunately, only movies are recorded in stereo.
This is probably due to the fact that other microphones are used for audio recording.
I also regret, but so far in the system there is no option for recording audio in stereo in audio materials.

I wonder if Apple will ever give such an opportunity.

Submitted by Chris on Thursday, March 14, 2019

As far as I know, nothing has changed. Apple will probably keep this under wraps until iOS 13. One of the big new features of iOS 13 will be stereo support for FaceTime and stereo recording for Voice Memos and other audio apps. This is ridiculous and just goes to show how arrogant the folks at Apple are. The hardware is there, it's just not being used. Just like with anything else, the tool itself isn't bad or lacking, it's all how the person who controls said tool decides to use, or in this case, not use it.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Friday, March 15, 2019

Hope in the new iOS that will come out in September this will be address. I agreed what is the point of having stereo in video and not just in audio.

Submitted by Ishkabibble on Friday, March 15, 2019

I personally have never tried this, but I know there’s an audio recorder specificallyfor podcast recording, but the audio could be used other things (it could be exported.) It's called Hokusai 2, and it can record stereo. Hope this helps.

Submitted by Ishkabibble on Saturday, March 16, 2019

When recording on an iPad, and going through the list of tracks, it labeled my recording as stereo. I also heard my recordings through headphones and it seems to be stereo to me.

Submitted by Ishkabibble on Sunday, March 24, 2019

A shortcut to record stereo, you mean? If that's what you meant, I don't think there's a shortcut for that, just record something in Hokusai and if it comes out as mono go to the track listing and swipe up or down to go to the "convert to stereo" option.

Submitted by dix on Saturday, May 25, 2019

Using "convert to stereo" in Hokusai simply creates a dual-mono file. No stereo information.

Until Apple deems us worthy to record audio via the stereo mics used for video recordings, the best way I've found to record stereo is to simply use the video recorder...with my finger over the lens or whatever. The video files are huge of course but sound pretty good considering its from a phone, and have a decent stereo field

Submitted by Fantasy, RPG&action-gamer on Tuesday, September 3, 2019

nowadays I am happy to tell you that I am using the screen recording function in iPhone integration. this function gives the option to record in stereo by using iOS 13 Beta. All the best happy recording

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Tuesday, September 3, 2019

I am a beta tester of ios 13, where did you see this? I sure didn't see this and I was trying to do a screen recording but it broke. Lol Plus the voiceover still comes out the ear piece wich I don't want.

Submitted by James L on Friday, March 20, 2020

Can iOS 13 now record in stereo? Do you need a third party app, or you can do it in voice memos?

Submitted by Brian Giles on Thursday, April 16, 2020

I made a shortcut that encodes the audio from a video into an AAC file. So now I can record a video, pull up the share sheet, run my shortcut, and I've got a stereo AAC file saved in my iCloud Drive. Kind of a long way around, but hey, it works!