Portable Olympus Recorder Goes Up-Market, Targets Musicians


Center Valley, Pa. - Olympus America continues to take its portable voice recorder selection up-market with the launch this month of the company's first portable stereo recorder with multi-tracking capabilities.

At an estimated street price of $399, the new LS-100 will expand the company's LS series, which is the first series of 96kHz 24-bit Linear PCM recorders in the Olympus lineup.

"The LS series is targeted to musicians and music lovers, but the LS-100 is targeted specifically to working musicians," said Amy Leslie, senior marketing and business development manager. The device can be used for recording songwriting sessions, band rehearsals, and live performances or for broadcasting applications that require high-quality stereo audio recording, she said.

In the LS series, the LS-100 joins the $199 LS-7 and $299 LS-20M, both of which began shipping in 2011. The latter features 30fps 1080p video capture.

The LS models store audio as uncompressed WAV files or compressed MP3 files, and the LS-7 and LS-20M adds storage in the compressed WMA format.

Olympus plans to expand its portable stereo PCM recorder selection downward in price with the March shipment of the $99 WS-802 and $149 WS-803. They're positioned as "giving consumers professional stereo sound quality at a price that appeals to the masses," a spokesman said. Though they would appeal to musicians and fans of live music, he said, their price tags nonetheless make them attractive for students, teachers, reporters, lawyers, nurses, policemen, and the like.

For musicians, the LS-100 offers two-track recording and eight-track playback. Two combination quarter-inch microphone jacks/balanced XLR inputs let users connect line-input sources such as keyboards and guitars. Two 3.5mm input jacks support external microphones. All inputs feature independent recording levels.

Users can run two inputs into one track, edit and mix multiple tracks on the devices themselves, then plug the recorder directly into a CD burner to burn a disc.

Two internal 90-degree directional stereo condenser microphones feature a frequency response of 20Hz-20kHz to capture all audible low-bass frequencies, the company said. The mics also capture a wide range of decibel levels, supporting sound pressure levels up to 140 decibels to capture extremely loud sounds without clipping, the company said.

Other features include a switchable low-cut filter to eliminate low-frequency sounds below 100Hz or 300Hz to eliminate unwanted background noises such as talking or the sound of a distant car.

Other features include 4GB embedded memory, SDXC card slot for an additional 64GM of memory, and lithium-ion battery good for 12.5 hours of 44.1kHz/16-bit recording.


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