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This is my current dictaphone and so far I am really impressed by it. Since going to university I have fallen in love with dictaphone and don't think people give them another credit as they are now viewed as a fairly old school device.
The device comes in a sleek, shiny black case, and is nice and light weight and compact, without being too small. The deuce has a dot matrix display, which even though it sounds retro is plenty good enough for what tryout need it for. The screen also has a backlight to make it easy to see and read in dim light. The device has a headphone socket, a mini USB socket and a Micro SD card slot, so it has plenty of option to transfer the recording onto the computer. (It comes with a cable to connect the dictaphone directly to the computer). The files are stored in the MP3 format. The dictaphone has a large memory of 4GB, bigger than any other dictaphone I have owned. The device is powered by the standard 2 AAA batteries which last a good few weeks. The dictaphone also has a noise cancelling function and allows the file recorded files to be organised into different files.
I brought this device off an ex student for £50 when they left uni, so not sure what the market price is, but for a quick browse it seems rather expensive.
The dictaphone has great quality playback, crustal clear playback, llightweight, durable and stylish. The clarity in the recordings is excellent and the battery life is fairly decent. The device has a huge memory and can easily be connected to the computer to transfer files, either through the cable or an SD card. The device was easy to use, I didn't even use the manual.
A great quality dictaphone, but from what I have seen very expensive and probably not worth the money.
When I first started in med school, this little hand held Dictaphone by the market leader Olympus came in so handy it was unbelievable. Why buy a Dictaphone when most phones have a recording device built in?
We had a lecturer that hated mobile phones and would insist we turned off ours right in front of him as we entered the hall. So to be able to record not only what he had to say during his lectures, but notes and quotes and statistics and the correct way to pronounce the almost impossible to pronounce medical terms, made this an absolutely priceless tool to have
The play back is crystal clear of course depending on surrounding sounds. But the microphone picks up directly what is in front of it, or the loudest thing around and focuses in on that. This is dew to it's brilliant noise cancelling technology. I also would change the quality of the recordings from high, for my lectures, to low for my own personal notes. This saves a lot on memory space and if you use the headphone jack everything sounds fantastic either way. I also would transfare files to my computer using the handy USB slot.
The blue LCD display is easy to read and understand. Highlighted sections are displayed with a heavy bar through them so knowing where you are on the screen is as easy as can be. You can delete one file at a time or all files at once. As each time you press stop it will put it into an individual file. However if you press pause this doesn't happen. The battery lasts a long time which was great for my long lectures it takes 2 AAA rechargeable batteries.
This is of course small enough to have with you at all times and is simple to use with great sound (especially when on the high quality setting)
If you're creative and don't want to forget your ideas or like me need it for studying this is great.
The Olympus DM-550 can be purchased online at Amazon.co.uk for £130 + shipping.
The first i heard of these dictaphones was when I was given a demonstration of one so I could make a decision for my Disabled Students Allowance claim for university. The first thing that struck me was the compact size. It will easily fit pretty much anywhere and not hinder the people around you. In terms of ease of use, you won't get much better. It is easy to navigate the menus, initiate recordings and play back what you recorded. As a person studying film and television production I know a reasonable amount about sound and sound quality and can honestly say the audio files are great! No quality issues at all and you get a huge recording time on top of that! The internal microphone is surprisingly good considering its built into such a small unit but I would still advise a small external microphone, probably a small Audio Technika boundary mic just so you can get better audio. This is one of the better dictaphones I have used and certainly the most compact and useful one.
The dictaphones you can get nowadays are so much better than any from the past. The clarity of playback is a heck of a lot better, along with the amount you can store on them. The size has of course got smaller and smaller over the years, as with many modern gadgets. It seems to be the smaller then better, this isn't always good though, especially for gentleman who do not have small hands! You won't have any trouble with this one though.
The quality of playback is fantastic. This is partly due to the noise cancelling microphones which are built in to the device. This stops the usual fuzzy playback that you can get from older dictaphones. There is also the option of whether you want high quality recording or not. If you want this though just be aware that it will take up more space for that recording rather than putting the quality down a notch and having more recording space. It is up to you. The highest quality really is good though and easy to make out.
I use this for work normally, for when I have an idea which I don't want to forget about or for audio typing for the admin assistant. Having the admin assistant do my typing for me is relatively new as I normally did all my own but I swear, a good audio typist is worth their weight in gold. It gives me a lot more time to get on with other work. I normally spend some of my evenings doing audio for her which does give me more time in the office to do the more important pending tasks. At first I was given a tape dictaphone. This was very outdated and when I saw the audio typing device the admin assistant would be using, I cringed. I work at a company which I always thought was very forward thinking with their technology but when they produced this, I thought again! I suggested the above model and managed to convince them it was a good idea. I now have this on me at all times and the admin assistant is very grateful not to be using the tapes anymore!
The menus are easy to navigate with a folder system for keeping all your recordings. You can erase single files or all files at once. The buttons are easy to work and of a good size for even not so small fingers.
If you need a dictaphone then I would personally recommend this one for its ease of use and high quality recordings. Battery life is fantastic. At around £180 (I got it for £120 through the company because of connections) it does seem quite steep but you are getting a good piece of kit.
Internal memory - 4gb
Micro SD card
USB 2.0 High Speed
Dot matrix display (sounds dated but is fine)
Recording format - PCM (WAV), mp3, WMA
Noise cancelling function
Playback speed - 50-200% (admin assistant as confirmed she finds this adequate)
999 files per folder
Takes 2 AAA rechargeable batteries
Weight - 84g
Menu languages - English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian
Voice guidance languages - Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, Spanish, Turkish, Urdu
I came across the Olympus DM 550 when I first started university last year. I am dyslexic and qualified for DSA and they recommended this model for me and as they were paying for it I accepted. I was very sceptical at first as I have had a different, much cheaper olympus voice recorder while at college and did not use it much due to the quality of play back. I found it to pick up any sound close to it, like paper rustlingand the lecturers voice would be muffled. I did not expect my new one to be any different but how wrong I was -
The Voice recorder
When I first had it delivered I was impressed with its looks and quality alone. It is quite slim (thicker than an MP3 player though) and the funtions on it are easy to understand. Mine is a shiney black colour but I think it also comes in silver. It is heavier than my previous voice recorder but is by no means a brick. It also came with batteries and a charger (it has 51hrs battery life but I have never used it for more than 7 hrs).
It is very easy to use, it has a booklet with it but to be honest it is quite self explanitory. The recording can be played back at different speeds which is quite amusing and the quality is crystal clear. It seems to just pick up the voices and eliminates all background noises.
It has a music store which I have never used so cant say much about it but its there none the less.
It has a USB charge function.
It has built-in Stereo Noise cancelling microphones
Versatile recording quality options, including high quality PCM recording
Enhanced voice guidance system
Simple to manage: five storage folders plus music folder (up to 200 messages per folder), one music folder, plus automatic archiving and synchronisation
Podcast function with bookmarking for easy stop-and-go listening
Advanced Euphony options: expands the sound space to convey more realistic playback
Manual recording level control
Customisable playback speed of 50-200%
Case that converts to table-top stand included
Optimal for blind and visually impared people (tactile buttons and Voice Guidance)
Now here is the not so good bit - it costs a whopping £185 which had I not got mine free I would not have purchased it but in saying that now I know how good it is I may well be tempted. They say you get what you pay for and in this case that is very true. I cannot fault it.
I purchased one of the Olympus DM-550 for my MBA, I can only say that the sound quality is the best you can get with-out spending thousands!!The guys at Speak-IT were really good at informing me of its capabilities and delivery was next day