Welcome to Piezo

Piezo makes it easy to record audio on your Mac. With just a few clicks, you can record audio from any application, as well as from audio input devices like microphones. Piezo requires almost no configuration, and it's a blast to use.

Getting Started

This manual provides you with a useful overview of the application, including an outline of the interface, as well as details on using the application. We recommend a quick read-through, but you can also just dive in if you like. Refer back to this online manual for assistance at any time, right from Piezo's Help menu.

Additional Assistance

The following resources will supplement a read-through of the manual and help you get the answers you need.

icon-support Created with Sketch.

Visit the Piezo Support Center

Our searchable Piezo Support Center provides answers to common questions, as well as tutorials, tricks, and more.

icon-contact Created with Sketch.

Email Support

Rogue Amoeba's top-notch Support team is always ready to assist, both before and after purchase. Select Contact Support in the Help menu to get in touch. We're amazingly responsive, and strive to reply within 24 hours.

Information for Users of Previous Versions

If you've used Piezo before, this information should prove helpful.

icon-release-notes Created with Sketch.

Release Notes

The Release Notes window always provides a comprehensive list of improvements and fixes made to Piezo. Access it from the in-app Help menu.

Using Piezo

Get started with details on the main Piezo controls, as well as information on recording formats and editing audio!

Piezo's Main Window

Piezo's Main Window
Piezo's main window

Piezo's main window contains all of its essential controls to make recording audio a snap. When you open Piezo, you'll see this window. The VU meters at the top show audio activity: when the needles move, audio is being received from the selected source. Best of all, the decibel scale on the meters is calibrated and accurate!

Below the VU meters is the Source selector, used to choose the application or device from which to record audio. Once the desired source is selected, clicking the Record button allows Piezo to record audio from the source.

When you're recording, you'll see the Record button illuminate, along with the VU meters. When you're done, click the Record button again to end your recording. Depending on your preferences, the recording may be automatically shown. If not, click the magnifying glass to reveal it.

You can adjust your recording settings from the settings popover. Click the file name or the settings button to reveal the recording settings popover.

Recording Settings Popover

Piezo's Settings Popover
Piezo's Recording Settings

From this popover, you can change the filename of the recording you make, add a comment to the file's metadata tag, and change the recording format.

Audio Play-Thru

By default, Piezo allows audio to play-thru from application audio sources, but mutes audio device sources to prevent feedback loops from occurring. Using the Play-Thru toggle found in Piezo's Record menu, however, it's possible to manually modify this behavior. Adjust this to silence the play-thru of applications, or to hear the audio from input devices.

About Recording Formats

Piezo's Recording Formats
Piezo's Recording Formats

Piezo offers several options for recording in its Options (Gear) popover. The names provide a basic guide for when each format should be used, but here's a bit more information:

AAC file format: The AAC audio format offers the best quality at a given bitrate. However, while widely supported, it is not as well-supported as MP3. Because of this, it's listed under "For personal use".

MP3 file format: The MP3 audio format has good quality levels, but not as good as AAC for the same bitrate. However, it's nearly universal - just about every audio player in the world supports MP3. As such, it's listed under the "For Internet distribution" heading.

Bitrate: The bitrate is shown after the file format (For instance Music (high quality) is "AAC 128 kbps Stereo"). This number gives you an idea the quality level, as well as the amount of disk space the recording will use. Higher bitrates will give you higher quality recordings, but also use more disk space will be used. A simple estimate is that a 128 kbps file uses approximately 1 MB of disk space per minute.


Piezo's preferences can be accessed from the Piezo menu.

Piezo's Preferences window

Recording Settings

Save recordings to folder: All recordings made with Piezo will be saved to the location specified here. The default location is a folder called Piezo, inside your Music folder (~/Music/Piezo).

Show file after recording: When checked, this setting causes a Finder window to open after each recording is finished, showing the recorded file.

Software Update

Automatically check for software updates: With this option activated, Piezo compares itself to the most current version available from our server and alerts you when a new version is available. Leave this on and Piezo will help you stay up-to-date.


Quick Link: To buy a license key for Piezo, visit our online store.

Why should I buy Piezo?

Put simply, you should buy Piezo because it isn't free. We provide a free trial, so you can test out the program and all its features before you buy it. It's like test driving a car, for as long as it takes you to decide.

In trial mode, all of Piezo's features are available to try, but it won't work for full-time use. During the trial, audio quality is degraded after ten minutes of recording.

If you use Piezo and find you like it, please purchase a license key - support the software you use and love!

To purchase your license key, just visit https://rogueamoeba.com/store/.

After Purchase

How do I unlock the full version?

The download of Piezo from our site contains both a free trial of the software and the full version. To unlock the full, unlimited version, you just need a valid license key. When you purchase through our store, you'll immediately receive a license key in your browser as well as via email. Simply enter this key into Piezo to unlock it.

What's your upgrade policy?

While we don't have a hard and fast upgrade policy, our philosophy regarding paid upgrades is simple: We try to do what's right for you and what's right for us. We've got a great track record, with many years of very satisfied customers.

For more details on free updates and paid upgrades, please see this page.

What's your refund policy?

All Rogue Amoeba products are available to try before you buy. We believe that no customer should have to buy software in order to find out how well it works. Our software can be fully evaluated with no limitations in capabilities, prior to purchase. Customers are strongly encouraged to take advantage of these trials prior to purchase. You may also seek any needed technical support from us - we answer support emails rapidly and responsively for current and potential customers alike.

If you would like a refund, please contact hello@rogueamoeba.com within 14 days of your purchase. Because we cannot recover the license key that was sold, refunds are issued on a case-by-case basis.

More Power

Piezo is great to get you started recording audio, but you may want more power and functionality. If so, we may have a product that suits your needs.

Editing Recordings

Fission Screenshot
Fission lets you edit audio recordings.

Piezo enables you to record audio, but what if you want to edit that audio after the fact? There are lots of audio editors out there, all of which should be compatible with the standard formats to which Piezo records. We recommend our own audio editor, Fission. Fission edits audio losslessly, so you never lose audio quality, even when editing MP3 and AAC files. Better yet, it's easy to use. Check it out via the free trial from our site.

More Powerful Recording

Audio Hijack Screenshot
Audio Hijack provides more powerful audio recording options.

Piezo is a snap to get started with, but sometimes you may require more powerful recording options. If so, you should check out Audio Hijack. With Audio Hijack, you can record all System Audio at once, set timed recordings to run when you're not around, record to an enormous variety of recording formats, and more.

See how Piezo and Audio Hijack compare, then download a free trial right from our site.


Installing & Uninstalling

Installing Piezo

As you're reading this manual, it's likely you've already successfully installed Piezo. Still, in the interest of being comprehensive, the following is the entirety of the installation procedure for Piezo.

Drag Piezo from your download folder to the Applications folder, then double-click its icon to begin using it. Piezo will then walk you through the necessary process to install the ACE (Audio Capture Engine) backend, which is required for the application to function.

Uninstalling Piezo

If you wish to remove Piezo, we'd certainly like to know why! You can contact us directly to provide feedback. We're always working to improve our products, so don't hesitate to tell us what was missing or didn't work for you.

To remove Airfoil, first select Uninstall ACE from the Airfoil menu. You'll be walked through the process to remove Airfoil's Audio Capture Engine (ACE) backend from the system.

After that, you can quit Piezo and drag the application to the Trash.

User License


Piezo (“The Software”) is provided as is. Rogue Amoeba Software (“The Author”) is not responsible for any damage to the user's computer system or data and in no event will The Author, its officers, directors, employees or agents be responsible to the user for any consequential, incidental, or indirect damages (including damages for loss of business profits, business interruption, loss of business information, and the like) arising out of the use or inability to use the The Software, even if The Author has been advised of the possibility of such damages. Because some locations do not allow the exclusion or limitation of liability for consequential or incidental damages, the above limitations may not apply to you. Further, the consumer agrees that using this software in any way illegal, or even for the purposes of assessing its viability for illegal usage, is prohibited.

What that said:

Be safe when you use the software. Be aware that it's simply a tool designed to make your life better. Don't use it to do illegal or evil things. If you do, be ready to take responsibility for your own actions.


Unless explicitly stated in writing, Rogue Amoeba Software does not grant permission to sell The Software. Non-profit distribution of The Software in its trial form is generally acceptable, provided that The Software is not modified in any way, the complete works of The Software are included in the distribution package, and Rogue Amoeba has been contacted for confirmation.

What that said:

Don't sell this software. If you wish to distribute it in its trial state, get in touch with us to confirm permission.


Portions of this Rogue Amoeba software may utilize the following copyrighted material, the use of which is hereby acknowledged.

Copyright © Andy Matuschak

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.


The LAME Project ( lame )
Copyright © The LAME Project.("Lame")
Parts of this product contain certain software owned by Lame and licensed by Rogue Amoeba. You may obtain a complete machine-readable copy of the source code under the terms of GNU Library General Public License Version 2 ("LGPL"), without charge at https://rogueamoeba.com/opensource/.

The Lame software is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the LGPL for more details, available at https://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/lgpl-2.0.html.