Voice recorders are portable devices that can be used to record audio files. Although this is easily achieved with a smartphone or computer, these devices are limited in so many ways which will become obvious as we progress. Voice recorders like every other technology in the past decade have undergone several transformations. In earlier models, the audio files were saved on tapes which made the device bulky and limited the number of recording hours.
However, the modern voice recorders or digital recorders store audio files in digital formats within the unit or on a removable media. This change in the storage process transformed the voice recorder into a portable recording machine with many advantages over smartphones and computers. Some of the advantages of using a voice recorder over smartphone and computer are
- Voice recorders offer greater flexibility than computers since they can be carried around easily.
- They also have a better battery life. This makes it possible to record for long hours without running out of power unlike when using a smartphone.
- They produce audio with higher sound quality than most smartphones
- Most voice recorders now offer superb functionalities such as audio tracking, audio playback, etc.
Note, one downside of recording at very high quality is that the audio files produced are usually very large and consume more storage space, thereby reducing the number of recording hours.
4 Best Audio Recording Devices For College Students
As a college student, a voice recorder could be an indispensable tool. Some of the areas were a voice recorder could come in handy are:
- During lectures – you can easily record your lectures and listen to it later
- During an Expedition – superb battery life and portability of the voice recorder makes it a reliable device for recording observations.
- During projects or discussions – it is sometimes difficult to keep track of different contributions made while trying to pen it down at the same time. This daunting task is much easier with the help of a voice recorder.
If you are out shopping for a good audio recorder for any of the above reasons or another, then I encourage you to go through our list of 4 best audio recording devices. This is intended to guide you in making the right decision. We will bring into consideration factors such as price, size, memory capacity and additional features, that plays a crucial role when buying a voice recorder.
So, the 4 best audio recorders by our opinion are:
EVISTR Digital Voice Recorder, Voice Activated Recorder with Playback
This is a mini recording device that supports audio playback, USB for charging and downloading files, voice activation, and an excellent file management system. It also features a built-in speaker and an MP3 player capable of playing 6 different mp3 formats.
The mp3 files are saved in a different folder outside the record folder for convenience. Audio files are recorded at 1536kbs producing HD quality in both MP3 and Wav formats, and this makes it useable in either a MAC, Windows PC, or a phone.
The EVISTR has an intuitive menu that is easy to navigate, well laid out buttons for easy operation and its internal memory is capped at 16gb and can save up to 1160 hrs. of recording. The device weighs about 62.8 grams.
Reviews and Rating
The EVISTR Digital Voice Recorder has an overall rating of 4.1 out of 5 stars on Amazon. it also scores a rating above 4.0 for durability, battery life, quality of material, sound quality, value for money and ease of use. Most customers expressed satisfaction with very few complaints.
Sony ICDUX560BLK Digital Voice Recording Device for Students
When it comes to a recording device one feature you must look out for is the size of its internal memory. Although this device spots a 4gb internal memory which is smaller than that of the EVISTR Digital Voice Recorder, however, you can expand the storage using a Micro SD card (SDHC and SDXC types).
The device is also capable of recording in three different modes; wide/stereo, narrow/focus and normal modes, with each mode tailored to suit your needs. The USB is can be used not just to transfer files but also for quick charging.
The manufacturers claim that with a quick charge you can have 1 hr. recording time with just 3 minutes’ charge which is incredible. Apart from the built-in microphone which can record high-quality audio files in MP3/LPCM formats, it also has a headphone jack, a MIC input for attaching an external microphone, an FM radio to listen to as well as a record radio broadcast, and an LCD screen with the vivid display quality.
Reviews and Ratings
The SONY ICDUX560BLK Digital Voice Recorder has a 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon. with excellent sound quality, intuitive user interface, excellent battery life all while still small and compact. The device is said to be a charm, no wonder it scored above 4.4 in individual feature ratings such as battery life, sound quality and ease of use.
Homder Voice Activated Recorder for Lectures, With Dual Microphone & Card Expansion
The homder voice recorder is a sleek device that would instantly capture your attention. It features a dual microphone that is voice activated. The device is equipped with an 8GB storage capacity which can easily be expanded using Micro SD cards up to 72GB.
The Homder voice recorder records audio in HD and offers WAV/MP3 playback formats. The 2.0 high-speed USB supports both charging and file transfer between the device and a computer. A distinctive feature of this device that isn’t available in the other two is the ability to protect your files with a password. This makes it safe and secure.
Other features include: timestamp, mp3 player, and a backlit LCD. Despite being feature-rich, the Homder voice recorder has, in my opinion, a modest price tag making it the most cost-effective audio recorder so far.
Reviews and Rating
The homder voice recorder scored a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon. Most users complimented its sleek and compact design, great battery life, sound quality, and most of all the price. In my opinion, the Homder device does really well as it scores a few points over our first two in terms of storage and price. The device is also compatible with the Windows PC, Mac and Linux operating system.
Sony ICD-PX370 Digital Audio Recording Device Lor Lectures, with Built-in USB Connector
This device is similar in many ways to the 3 voice recorders already reviewed above. However, the catch here is that it has a built-in USB connector. This feature eliminates the need for a USB cable as you can plug the device directly to any available USB port on your computer.
The device records audio files in MP3 format at 128kbps making it possible to save up to 59hrs 35 minutes of audio recording. In addition to this, it also supports the use of expandable storage of up to 32GB.
The battery is claimed to support up to 57 hrs. of recording time. Other features include: voice activation, scene select which are pre-set to suit 4 different recording environment (music, meeting, interview, and dictation).
Reviews and Rating
With a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars, the Sony ICD-PX370 digital audio recording device is a top contender. Rating individual features, the device scored above 4.6 in four key areas, ease of use, sound quality, and battery life, material quality.
Finally, rounding up our list of top four audio recorders for college students, the choice of which device to go for would depend on what you intend to do. You should note that all four can perform quite well. Some factors to consider while shopping for any of these items are:
The price – obviously, your device choice depends to a large extent on your budget. Luckily, even our most budget-friendly device performs absolutely well as reviewed by users. It also has great features that will satisfy most needs.
Storage – another area to look out for is the storage capacity of the audio recorder you want. This will depend on what you will be recording, the amount of time you intend to spend recording and also the recording quality you will choose. Note that higher audio quality will require more storage space and may result in lower recording time. This is absolutely normal. Also, you may consider the option of having expandable storage just in case.
Recording Environment – Your recording plays a crucial role because ambient noise could result in poor sound quality. However, all four devices have performed really well according to users but some offer features that can help to produce even better sound quality. Such features are: pre-set recording modes, dual microphone features, options to select far or near recording, etc.