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Olympus Upgrades Voice Recorders

Center Valley, Pa.


is adding new features
to two series of digital voice recorders shipping in September at expected
street prices ranging from $39.99 to $149.

To select models
in the three-SKU WS series, the company is adding such features as MicroSD
slots, multiformat recording, scene select modes, FM radio, larger LCD screen
and noise cancellation. The WS models are the $79.99 2GB WS-600ES, $99.99 4GB
WS-700M and $149 8GB WS-710M.

All three feature
a 3- percent larger LCD screen, larger fonts and scene select modes, or presets
that users choose based on environmental conditions. The WS-700M and WS-710M
combine scene modes with noise cancellation to optimize recordings.

All three record
in MP3 and WMA format, and the WS-700M and WS-710M adds PCM recording.

The WS-700M and
WS-710M add MicroSD slots that support 16GB cards, and the WS-710M adds an FM
tuner and recording of FM programming. The 710M also adds Olympus Sonority
software to manage audio files, provide advanced editing functions, and host
such web services as RSS feeds and podcast channels.

The WS-700M and
WS-710M also serve as headphone MP3 players with a designated music folder.

All WS models feature dial thumb pad
to play or stop recordings, adjust volume, fast-forward and rewind at the touch
of one button. Erase/index and menu buttons are positioned below the thumb dial
for quick access.

Like their predecessors,
the new WS models feature a retractable USB port that slides out to transfers
files to a computer.

All three operate
on a single rechargeable AAA alkaline battery that recharges when the recorders
are plugged into a computer’s USB port.

The WS-700M and
WS-710M also come with a USB extension cable and headphones.

In the new VN
series of two 2GB recorders, the company is doubling the internal memory of the
$39.99 VN-7000, which records in WMA format, and adding an MP3 recording option
to WMA recording in the $59.99 VN-8100PC. The latter also adds scene select

The VN-7000 offers
39-hour battery life, while the step up features a 51-hour battery, larger
screen with selectable font sizes, larger speakers, and included USB cable to
connect to a PC or Mac. Both ship with carrying case and two rechargeable AAA
alkaline batteries.