I've been needing to use a dictaphone in lectures at university, and the ones I've been using (Olympus digital one) has been pretty good. The built in mic has been picking up sound really well (it has 3 settings, and lecture is one of them, so it's been mainly on that setting) but there can be a bit too much background noise to be heard brilliantly, so an extra better microphone would be a big help.
I'd guess it would be good if you need it for a meeting or to dictate a letter, but I haven't been needing it for that. I have used a different one in the past (still an Olympus model) for a voiceover for a short film, and the sound quality has come out brilliantly. It didn't pick up outside noise, and it's better using it in a smaller, possibly soundproof room (as these were the conditions I used it under)
I can't fault it, apart from it would be a little better if there were a case included to protect it.
The size of a mobile, this handy little gadget will help anyone who is suffering from memory loss or if like me you are just overloaded with information at work. This can become your second brain!
Ill get to technical stuff in a minute but will try and intersperse with my thoughts on the day-to-day use and functionality, which I hope, will be more help. Errrr .. Well I think that was my plan? . Ill just check the Dictaphone. (Sorry poor attempt at humour!)
Ok; so as I say, small and compact, slimmer and a tad smaller than my Nokia mobile, practically weightless this is NOT a brick to carry about. Trust me this weighs about the same as two AA batteries. There is a handy clip to attach to shirt, trousers or wherever you fancy placing this about your person. Personally it just sits in my pocket and I often forget its even there.
Simple to operate, a hold switch on the side operates as on / off. A menu wheel, like many mobile phones allows you to stop/play/locate recordings with ease. There are separate record, erase, display and menu keys.
The Dictaphone has a clear screen, which displays all the information you need such as; battery life, folder, time remaining to record, date and time.
Digital technology means no tapes to replace or get tangled as with the old type Dictaphones.
As there is no tape please note that if you want to save your recordings then make sure you get the PC version (i.e. VN-120PC) as this has a USB terminal for connection to your computer.
There are three levels of recording quality and hence differing recording times.
HQ - 43 mins approx.
SP - 65 mins approx.
LP - 121 mins approx.
Two levels of sensitivity are available. I use LOW, as this proves best for dictation, as the microphone tends to be uni directional in this mode. HI sensitivity picks up sound in all directions.
As I say I use my machine mainly for dictation and the quality is excellent. If you wanted to record other stuff such as music, birdsong your screaming kids! Im not sure about the quality. There is a socket for an external microphone that Im sure would boost the quality.
Battery life is about 25 hours for ordinary batteries but the machine can run on rechargeable Ni-MH and you will get about 19 hours from these. The machine takes two AA batteries.
The machine has three folders A, B and.. Yes you guessed it C. Clever arent they!
Within each folder it is possible to record 100 files. Practically speaking this helps to organise and locate your recordings. I tend to use A for work related topics, B for home/domestic stuff and C for any Leisure/ general interest information.
I work in a College for students who have various Speech and Language difficulties and we use these machines as aide memoirs for many students with memory loss. They do work well. Some students take a while to get to grips with the technology but the beauty is these machines offer adaptability as we have some students just using one folder and others who can navigate their way around all three.
Well that it except to say I picked mine up for £29.99 but as I seem to say at the end of these reviews trawl the Internet A bargain is often to be had but watch for added post and packing charges.
I am a qualified Amateur Radio operator and I am slightly dyslexic. By law I have to fill a logbook out and record the details of other operators I have made contact with over the radio. I was constantly writing the call signs backwards. Call signs are comprised of numbers and letters that are unique to each operator. I hit on the bright idea of using a Dictaphone (small tape recorder) to tape the conversations. This enabled me to record the details correctly in my logbook. I also use it to tape the weekly Amateur news as this allows me to get on with other things on Sunday mornings. They give a lot of information that is easy to forget – e.g. e-mail addresses. My son uses it to help him learn French but it would also be useful for learning lots of other subjects. I have thought of using it for dooyoo purposes – dictating opinions and ideas and writing them later on the PC. It would also save me carrying pen and paper around. It’s compact and easily fits in a pocket. The instructions for use are clear and easy to follow. The tapes are micro cassettes, are readily available and fairly cheap. It uses two AA batteries which seem to last a long time. Most models seem to have fast forward, rewind and cue (use this to find the end of a conversation but has several uses). On this model there is a function that allows you to have normal or up to 2 hours record time. An external microphone can be used although the built-in microphone is more than adequate. For privacy you can plug in an earpiece. These accessories are not provided. The built in speaker gives excellent quality audio. The model I bought is a Dictaphone 3226 with LCD display. I bought it four weeks ago not realising at the time that it was old stock. I was lucky because it is 2000 compliant and a similar recent model is at least twice the price. All makes of Dictaphones seem to have a price range from £19.00 upward but are well worth it.