Voice recorders can be used to record interviews, memos, class lectures and more. Voice recorders can also be used by authors, secretaries when they need to record reports, ideas, and transcriptionists. When they are used for notes taking, you save more time than taking so much time to write with hand. You can also make audio podcast alongside musical arrangements recording.
Voice recorders can also help out in recording memorable moments with friends and family. For instance, the first time your kid starts talking, or when you are being told stories. You can also go on to burn those recordings on CDs so you can easily share them with others
It is important for you to know the merits of purchasing a good voice recorder even if you have a smartphone with the good recorder. Smartphones can be used for recordings occasionally, but for those that would be doing recordings regularly, it is advisable to get a voice recorder. May be you would be recording almost daily for personal use, school, work, then your smartphone has an insufficient memory capacity to save such recordings as a good voice recorder would do. They don’t only have more capacity than your phone, but voice recorders give better recording quality. The life span of the battery of a voice recorder is longer than phones.There are several options of voice recorders to choose from, so we are here to aid you through your choice process. We would discuss the different types of voice recorders and then give you a buyer’s guide that will make known to you the features of a good voice recorder. Finally, we would give you a list of ten best voice recorders which will make your search process easier.
How to Choose The Right Voice Recorder?
You need to consider the following things in purchasing your voice recorder:
- Budget: You can get most of the best voice recorders at a cheap price, so you don’t need so much money to purchase the best that you need. But for an additional cost, you can purchase one with more features that offer greater quality audio.
- Memory: Your choice should be to get a voice recorder which has enough memory. As some come with just internal memory which can only be freed by transferring the files to a computer, but you can go for those with inbuilt memory and a microSD card slot for unlimited memory space. It is important you ascertain the compatibility of the memory card with the recorder before you get it. The capacity of your memory card should be dependent on your recording plans.
- The Purpose: What you need it for is quite important, maybe for recording lectures, conversations, or interviews that need transcriptions afterward, then you should go for a voice recorder with very clear recording, not necessarily an expensive one. If what you need the most in your recorder is the quality of the audio output, maybe you are into music production, skits or vlogs, and then you should get a recorder of higher quality which will offer you some additional features. It might cost you more.
- Microphone Jack: With most recorders come inbuilt microphones, but those that give you the option of connecting your personal microphone is better. Inbuilt mics can pick sounds in the immediate surroundings, with the background noise which is not needed. So the inbuilt mics are best when recording indoor, but with an externally connected microphone, you can get good recordings done even in a very noisy environment.
- User-friendly: The recorder should have a simple, user-friendly design, with all the buttons easy to access.
- Durability: Based on the purpose of use, it is important the recorder is strong enough to withstand some abuse, so it must be of tough materials.
- Battery Life: The life span of the battery is dependent on the type of recorder. The one with a longer battery life is preferable.
- File Format: The kind of storage format of the recorder is important because not every format can play on all devices. So also, some formats take more space and thereby reducing the recording time.
Below is listed some regular file formats:
MPEG-1 Audio Layer 3 (MP3): These are compressed files with similar quality as that of WAV format but with the advantage of less storage.
Waveform (WAV): These are uncompressed files which takes much space. Its merit is that of their high quality.
Windows Media Audio (WMA): These are compressed files which can be played with windows media player Digital Speech Standard (DSS): These formats need additional software for it to play on your computer.
- Voice activated recorders: These recorders remain in hibernation mode till they are able to pick a voice before they automatically begin to record. These types of recorders are not best for recording dictations because they delay in starting recording. They can be used to eliminate silent periods in recordings and good for secret recordings, so can be used by law enforcement and surveillance people.
- Noise cancellation: This feature is essential in a recorder especially when used outdoor or in a noisy environment. The feature reduces background noise in recording to give clearer recording.
- Track marks: These are quite helpful especially when you need to mark any particular point of your recording for you to easily return back to it later.
It is possible to speed up or slow down the playback of some recorders. So you can skim over some parts of your recording while you carefully listen to the other parts. There are some miniature digital recorders you could get in case your choice is a small recorder. Their sizes are as small as twice a USB or pencil.
Different Types of Voice Recorders
Voice recorders are of two major types:
Digital Voice Recorders
These voice recorders are among the most common types available. They can change sound into the digital file but do not need cassette tapes. You can play your recorded sounds immediately on your smartphones, computer or tablets after recording. They give you the chance to keep several recordings on files. You can easily publish your recordings on any webpage if you are into podcasting.
They do not involve changing of cassette tapes and are more durable than the analog recorders. With the elimination of tapes, your recordings are saved on storage, and you won’t need to have loads of tapes somewhere. It becomes easy for you to just store your recordings on the computer and you have them save for a long time.
They come in small and compact sizes easy to move around. This type of recorders gives better recording quality than the analog recorders. With high quality digital voice recorders, you can even eradicate all undesirable background noise completely, so you get clearer recordings. But they are quite expensive than the analog recorders.
Analog Voice Recorders
This type of recorders is used to record straight onto cassettes, and you change the tape for another as soon as it is full. They are not as expensive as digital voice recorders. These are good options for you if you are not planning to keep a lot of recordings because you will have to keep storing many cassette tapes which will take up spaces and quite inconvenient. Different types of cassette tapes are available for you to get, all with varying lengths of recording time.
They are usually of big sizes so as to have enough space to accommodate cassette tapes, so they are much bigger than digital recorders. To playback a particular recording, you will have to rewind or fast forward to get the particular one you need. One major disadvantage is the risk of losing your files if the cassette is damaged or lost. But if you need a budget recorder, the analog recorder is a good option.
OUR TOP 10 VOICE RECORDER LIST
Voice recorders offer a better recording experience than that of a recording app on a smartphone and can be used for several purposes. With them taking notes becomes hassle-free, helps you to record your favorite music, it helps you refresh your memory on what happened in your business meetings, it brings back valuable moments with family and friends, and many more.
There are many reasons you might want to get a voice recorder, so going for a good one is key as you will be able to use it for whatever you need it for. The choice of many is digital recorder rather than analog recorders.
A major feature of the recorder that requires keen consideration is the storage memory capacity. If the purpose for getting it is to record regularly, then going for a recorder with a memory card slot is wise. You should also remember to check the format output of the recorder to be certain it has compatibility with your computer or equipment. Make up your mind on the additional features you want, like noise cancellation, voice activated mode, etc.
Our list of ten best voice recorders is based on the reviews of users and should make your search process easier.