Digital recorders have a wide range of applications: they are ideal for students who need to record lectures; they are the instrument of choice for lawyers who need to keep an accurate audio record of client meetings; they are fantastic dictation helps for doctors and other professionals. If you are in the market for a professional digital recorder but are not sure what kinds of features to look for, read on.
-- Record Time and Record Quality
The storage capacity of your unit will determine the total amount of record time that is available to you. In most cases you will choose the mode of recording: LP, SP, and ST. The mode is connected not only to the length of time you may record, but also to the quality of the recording you will make. For the best quality recording (ST) you may only get 40 minutes worth of recording time even if the advertised maximum is 6 hours. In short, the better the quality of sound you choose, the more memory space you will use. For your own personal digital dictation, then, you would want to use the lowest quality grade perhaps. It's up to you.
-- Built-In Memory or Removable Memory?
If you are a doctor who needs to have dictated materials transcribed, you will probably want to choose a unit that offers a removable memory card. This way, you can simply remove the card that needs to be transcribed, send it off, insert another memory card and keep working. However, there are times when a high degree of built-in memory is really useful. Some models come with 4G of built-in memory that allows musicians or other professionals to record up to 1,000 or more hours without having to change out a memory card!
-- Options for PC Connection
There are generally two ways to connect your device to a PC for easy download: it can either be plugged directly into a USB port (which is convenient for use with a laptop on the go), or it can be connected to a computer using a docking station that also serves to recharge the device.
What Brand Should I Buy?
Olympus, Sony, and Sanyo all make excellent products for the digital recording market. The brand you choose depends greatly on the features you are looking for. Depending on the model, some may offer longer built-in memories; others may have more advanced dictation software. So it's really important to nail down the features you most value, then contrast and compare among brands and models.
Today's modern professionals have come to rely on professional digital recorders to simply their lives and keep their records straight. Since your unit will become a valuable tool for your future success, take the time to choose yours carefully.
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