A voice recorder is any device that can record a voice. In fact, the first device that was used for sound recording can be traced back all the way to the 1870s.
Luckily, much progress has been made in the field and nowadays there are even smartphone apps designed for recording tasks.
Not only has the sound quality improved drastically, but it has also become more convenient. Today there is a wide range of voice recorders to choose from — some are even so small that they can fit into your pocket.
What makes voice recorders such a popular tool is that it can be used for various purposes, both personal and professional.
For reporters, secretaries and transcribers, in particular, a high-quality digital voice recorder is a must, while authors and students often use an audio recorder to keep their notes as taking notes by hand can become rather time-consuming.
You can even use an mp3 voice recorder to keep your little one’s first words or grandma’s stories about her good old days.
All sounds begin with vibrations which are called sound waves. These sound waves do not move at the same speed and as a result, there is a wide range of tones that we can hear.
Lower tones move slower, while higher tones move faster. In short, voice recorders use microphones to pick up and convert the audio to create a digital representation of these sound waves.
As there are countless types of voice recording devices available, it can be a daunting task to identify the best voice recorder for your specific needs.
The following are five of 2019’s top picks, in no particular order. To see which one is the winner for delivering the best sound quality, be sure to continue reading to the end.
Portable recorders are ideal if you know that you will have to make a handheld recording on the go. With this type of external audio recorder, you can make high-quality recordings of interviews, conversations, and lectures.
This compact, easy-to-use model is ideal if you need to record interviews and meetings. Although you cannot adjust its microphone, it does boast handy playback options.
For example, when you need to playback the audio, the playback speed adjustments will not change the pitch (a feature that makes it ideal for transcription).
Another feature that makes it ideal for transcribing audio is that when you need to record multiple speakers, the level align feature will automatically adjust the sound volume for playback when the voices are not the same volume preventing uneven volume levels.
This is one of the smallest portable recorders! It might not boast as many features as other models, but that just means it is not too difficult to use (plus, its presets make it even easier).
Thanks to its ability to filter out ambient noise and remove dead air, it is a great tool for transcribers.
That being said, if the sound quality is at the top of your list, its recordings are not significantly better than the quality that a smartphone app can deliver.
The major perk of this model is the convenience that it offers. The recordings are marked by date and thanks to the in-build USB port you do not need a cable to transfer the files to your laptop.
If storage space is a priority for you, it boasts internal memory storage as well as a memory card slot.
Just like the previous model, the Sony ICDPX370 Mono also boasts a USB port, built-in storage as well as a memory card slot.
It is also an mp3 voice recorder which means that it is a perfect choice if you will be recording long interviews.
This pocket recorder is built to last! It boasts a tough casing made from stainless steel making it very durable (a useful feature considering that you will be carrying it around in your pocket most of the time).
Thanks to the two built-in microphones, you can expect first-class stereo audio files in MP3 as well as DSS format. Storage space should also not be a problem as it comes with a microSD card.
Ultimately you want to buy a voice recorder that can record your audio clearly. If you know that you will often have to record in a noisy environment, built-in noise reduction can be a very useful feature.
Secondly, you also want to buy one that has a lot of memory. Ideally, you want to get a model that boasts built-in memory and a slot for a memory card (without a memory card slot you will have to move your files to your laptop otherwise you will run out of space on your voice recorder).
Lastly, you also want to pay attention to the file formats that it supports. Not every device can playback all the different formats. Also, certain file formats, like WAV, require more space.
While you are shopping around for recording devices to help you with transcription, also consider investing in audio to text converter tool.
For example, with Audext you can convert audio into text automatically in just a couple of minutes. It also supports a wide range of file formats which means that you can also use it for Android audio to text conversion as well as iPhone audio to text conversion.
Using a software solution like this is definitely the best way to transcribe your audio content.
All things considered, our winner as the best voice recorder for its overall performance is the Tascam DR-05.
Thanks to its superior audio quality, it is ideal for professional voice recording. This model makes it is simple to get a high-quality recording without first having to play around with too many settings.
Katrin runs her own podcast show, and interested in best ways to transcribe audio recordings into text.