Copyright © 2000-2013 by Barbara Brabec All Rights Reserved

The Olympus Digital Voice Recorder

A Review by Barbara Brabec


I TOOK MY FIRST CRUISE in August 2010—a trip to Alaska with my two sisters from California. Anticipating the many interesting conversations the "sisters three" were likely to have on this trip, I purchased a sweet little digital recorder that you might find interesting.

What sold me on the Olympus Digital Voice Recorder was one reviewer’s comments that indicated it might actually be easy to figure out. It did take me fifteen minutes to figure out how to set the time and date and do a test message and then erase it, but any electronic gadget I can learn how to use in fifteen minutes is a winner in my book. (Note that the model I purchased in 2010 is no longer available, but several new models will be found on the search page I've linked to above. Or just search for those keywords on Amazon.

The really nice thing about this recorder is that it is tiny, almost weightless, and perfect to stick in a pocket or purse to capture reminder notes to yourself, sounds of a family get-together, something you're hearing on radio or TV that you want to hear again, or any other sound that strikes your fancy and is worth keeping.

This particular model (there are several) picks up sound beautifully from 12 feet away, will hold 444 hours of recording, and has a PC link for transferring files to/from your computer. The Olympus reads .wma files, and you can move files back and forth between the Olympus and your hard drive using Explore so long as you remember that it won't read the contents of folders; only individual .wma files. It comes with five folders, each of which can hold hours of recordings. You can't identify them by name (only by number), but this is fine when you consider that this isn't meant to be a long-term storage of sounds, but something you can capture, transfer, and then erase to free up for more recordings.

For me, the best part of this new toy was that, on returning home, I could upload all our interesting sister conversations to my computer and then give each of my sisters a nostalgic CD remembrance of the trip. Can you imagine, 10 or 15 years from now, how wonderful it will be for us to relive this once-in-a-lifetime-week together?

Sometimes I hate technology and the stress it can cause when it's difficult to learn or when it just goes wrong, but other times I thank God for all the blessings in my life that technology has made possible, such as being able to easily publish my own books again.


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