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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on September 13, 2010
I had one of the previous Olympus models. It came with its own (bad) software but I loved it; had a nice heft and was indestructible. The VN-6200 is lighter and smaller with more memory, but believe all reviewers who write that it is of the cheapest construction. The tragedy here is everything else about this recorder is perfect: instead of 3 main folders you get 5, battery life is longer, the screen displays more useful information and best of all it works with Windows Media Player, plug and play on any computer with no lousy software to load. So why is the 6200 junk? All the aforementioned improvements don't mean squat if you encase them in what amounts to a brittle eggshell. Replacing the quality "rocker disc" of previous models is the dreaded new rectangular button. As time wore on mine worked less and less, now it barely works at all (down to one file folder and limited ability to move among files in that one folder, since the rectangular button only works when IT wants to). In case you're wondering what "abuse" my recorder took to make it fall apart, the answer is: none. It stayed in a front shorts pocket and was never dropped. This recorder is junk. I see there are now newer models of the same design...let's hope Olympus did something about the rocker button and overall cheapness. If any reps of the company read these reviews, take note: we're willing to pay more for quality construction. These recorders should last a *minimum* of 3 years with normal use!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 9, 2009
My Wife is a freelance writer and conducts interviews on a regular basis. I wanted to get her a recorder to simplify her note taking habits but didn't want to invest hundreds of dollars in something that she wouldn't really use. This recorder sounds excellent and has easy to use features that does exactly what I'd hoped - makes her job easier!

I am very pleased with the quality of the look/feel and function of this device. I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a good, basic recorder.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on September 12, 2010
I originally purchased the VN-6200PC because I have trouble sleeping, and I read that "recording" your dreams might help understand the reason. I was never able to write down my dreams after waking, so I thought maybe a voice recorder would be better. It has worked well for me so far, and I am impressed by the sound quality (in the HQ setting) of the VN-6200PC. I don't need more than the 71 hours you get in HQ mode, so I really don't see a need for the lower quality settings, but after experimentation, I found that the SP setting will give you a very good sound quality as well, and provides a longer record time. The LP setting is useless to me. The quality is too low to understand a whisper, or any voice at a distance. I think the only reason the LP setting is included is so that it can be advertised with a longer recording time.

I have not yet tried the VN-6200PC with an external microphone, but I have a pair of high quality ones that may work (or may need an outboard amplifier). But I really don't have any requirement for an external mic right now. It would be only to satisfy my curiosity to try one.

I have used the USB interface, and found no problem that the file format is WMA. I just import to iTunes, and it automatically converts to MP3. Sound quality in iTunes is the same as it is listening to the headphones. Also, when listening to a file in iTunes, you get both ears (binaural, but not stereo, since there is only one mic) whereas from the recorder you get only the left.
On that subject, I do agree with other reviews in that Olympus should have used a stereo jack wired for binaural instead of the mono jack that only produces sound in one ear.

As for the USB cable: Other reviews suggested that the 6 inch cable was too short. Yes; I found that to be the case, but since my Nikon D200 camera uses the same type cable, I just plug the VN-6200PC into that cable to transfer files. It works fine.

I like the way the VN-6200PC feels in my hand, and the buttons have a good positive feel to them. The audio feedback for each button press is good; giving you a different beep when you reach the end of a file, or the last/first file in a folder. The record LED is useful to make sure you are (or are not) recording at a glance.

There was at least one negative comment about the Hold switch, saying that it is mis-labeled. In reality, it is not. The VN-6200PC will shut itself off automatically if it is not being used for a couple of minutes. The HOLD switch will lock the buttons, so that the current function cannot be changed accidentally. It is not necessary to use the hold switch to shut the unit off, and I would recommend against it being used that way.
Note that if the unit has shut off (gone to sleep), you must press a button to wake it up again, so if you want to record after it has been off, you need to press a button, wait a second for the screen to come up, then press the record button. It's simple enough. I just press the record button, wait a second, then press record again. The beep will confirm that you have started recording.

On the down side: Well, if there are any cons, it would be that there is no LCD backlight. If you need to use the device in the dark, you'd better get used to the feel and position of the buttons. This is very easy to do, with the universal icons for the functions being embossed or engraved into the buttons. I think even a blind person could use this recorder without any trouble.
As for the file format being WMA, I don't care. Converting it is automatic when I import to iTunes, and I believe WMA is a smaller file size than MP3.

Someone said that the unit is not Mac friendly. But wouldn't iTunes work the same way on the Mac as it does on the PC, converting the WMA to MP3 or whatever file format you have chosen for default in iTunes. And who doesn't have iTunes installed on their Mac?

While the VN-6200PC may not be built as strongly as a good cell phone, I think it could withstand a few drops from a few feet (like from your hand while you're walking with it). It really depends on the surface it falls to, the angle it hits at, and the height from which it falls * In other words, the Laws of Physics!
I would treat this device with care, just as you would your iPod or iPhone. If you treat it with respect, I think the VN-6200PC will last you for a long time. Probably past the time when you will want another recorder anyway.

To sum it all up, the VN-6200PC is a great voice recorder at a good price. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who needs a voice recorder but does not need to record music.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2010
I absolutely do not recommend purchasing this item. I bought mine last month, and also purchased the ear piece to record phone interviews for my research. On my 27th interview the mic stopped operating, and all that was being recorded was ambient noise. I asked a friend with the same device about whether she knew what was wrong, and she said she stopped using it because the same thing happened to her. I called olympus and they told me the mic was likely broken. Pretty sorry for a one-month old product.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
I purchased this recorder to use in my photojournalism class for adding audio testimony and ambient sounds to my photo slideshows. The small size of the recorder and the fairly high quality of the sound is well worth the money, however, the down side to using a recorder like this one is that the digital files are all recorded in wma format which was not compatable with the slideshow audio editing programs I used to edit and add the sounds into the slideshow programs. Most slideshow programs require the audio format to be in an mp3 format, which meant that I had to download an audio switch program to convert the wma files into mp3 before I could edit and add them to the slideshow program. This was cumbersome and costly, as I had to ultimately purchase the switch program to complete and convert all my files. When shopping for a good digital audio recorder, consider the file format that the audio is recorded, then consider going to a higher quality recorder that records initially in an mp3 format. It may cost a little more, but in my opinion will be well worth the investment in time and headache.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on July 5, 2010
I bought this digital voice recorder to help me with my college courses. The best thing that I ever purchased was this voice recorder. It works great for me and if it wasn't for this recorder I wouldn't have done as good in my anatomy class. The playback sound was great. I could whisper to my classmates and they could whisper to me and I picked it up perfectly on the recorder. There was no static when I would playback and the battery life is great. I only had to replace the batteries every 2 months or so and I used it everyday. This was overall a great product and I am glad that I made this purchase.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 15, 2010
It is great!
At first I was hesitant to by it because some people's reviews weren't the nicest, but out of all the other ones I was looking at, this was the least harsh and for a very good price.
The quality was great, I'm not sure if people are picky, but for recording lectures, it was crystal clear in HQ(highest quality), the SP (their medium)is okay... sounds like an old recorder I had that actually used microcasettes, LP (their lowest quality)is horrible, so don't use it. I didn't even have to look at the instructions to figure out all the settings, it might just be a generation thing though. If you're in the technology savvy generation, you can mess around with it, and figure it out in a few minutes, but if you're not, I would suggest reading the instructions. The recorder felt sort of like cheap plastic, but as long as it recorded, I really couldn't care less. It has 5 folders that the recordings can be recorded into, the recorder came with a carrying case, and the cord to connect it to the computer. Downloading the lectures to my computer was very simple. People thought it was bad that it came in the windows player format, instead of mp3, but if you add it to itunes, it automatically converts it to a ACC file. I really don't know what that means, but it can go on my ipod fine.
Also, if it's not loud enough and you have itunes, out can right click the file, and click "Get info" and go to "options" and increase the volume and save it as a louder file.
Oh yeah, and other things that I read that helped me out,
- There's plastic wrapped around each individual battery. Take it off. It works way better with them off.
- The "off" button is just the "hold" button. (Random)
- While recording, you can hit record again to pause (like when your professor is on a tangent)and then just hit record to continue on.
- Finally, the only down side to the recorder is that once you say you are done recording the file, you can't record over it in parts or edit it. (but i didn't care)
If you're a poor college student, it will do the trick. :)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on May 27, 2010
I purchased this for a friend who offers recorded guidance counseling and I was super impressed. This thing has incredible recording quality and super compact. There are two quirks worth noting, though.

The Good:

* Very easy to install (plug and play for Windows). Works similar to a file storage drive once plugged in.
* The compact size makes it ideal for travel.
* Auto stop and start feature is available to save battery life and file length.
* Recording quality is EXCELLENT, and they are saved as WMA, so file sizes are incredibly low (including the high quality "HQ" setting).

The Not-so-good:

* You have options to save files into folders such as A, B, C, etc. (in case you are visiting numerous lectures halls or events on a given day, etc.). When you want to transfer the file, the folders within the storage device are not labeled specifically as A, B, C, etc. Instead, the folders are listed as a code similar to "1234X" (with X being the folder destination of A, B, C, etc.). This was confusing to my friend who is not computer savvy.

* Also, the LCD screen is very small and not back lit. For those with poor vision, this may be annoying.

All in all, I thought the product was excellent, despite the price. You'd think this technology would be much less by now.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 25, 2010
I have my own website and do a podcast program, therefore, I needed a simple digital recorder for interviews I conduct. I highly recommend this product. It does exactly what I need / want it to do and that's all that matters to me.

Pros:
Built in Speaker and mic.
External plugs for a mic and earphones.
Simple use buttons for record, playback and erase.
Lots of memory 1Gb
USB compatible easily transfers / transfers to my PC
Voice activation feature
3 recording modes SP, LP or HQ. LP mode gives about 444 hours
Nice size screen for viewing
Fits easily into any pocket
Lock feature so doesn't turn on/off while not using
Known brand name
GREAT price!!

Cons:
I haven't found any yet

Bottom line....For $35.00 total including shipping, It was well worth every dollar!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 12, 2010
As a court reporter responsible for recording and transcribing legal depositions, I'd been having tech issues with my computer recording software and needed something absolutely stone-dead reliable to use as a back-up recording. A friend recommended this little guy. Since I've been using this, it has saved my butt (and my sanity) more than once already. The sound quality is great...I love how easily I can download files to my computer for transcribing...it's awesome! I'm still learning all the fancy tricks it can do, but it was easy enough to pick it up and get my basic recording within 5 minutes of opening the package.
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