Olympus DS-320

Digital Voice RecorderAre you overflowing with ideas and action plans - but don't have time to jot them down? The Olympus DS-320 Digital Voice Recorder can capture your spoken thoughts as digital files. Then, back at your computer, you can use the optional extra IBM ViaVoice Version 8 software to convert your recorded words into text on the screen.

The silver DS-320 we tested weighed a mere 71g, including two AAA batteries. Its 16MB of memory holds a full 150 minutes of recordings in .dss file format (up to 99 individual files in each of two folders).

It isn't the most intuitive device around. Some of its buttons are tiny and difficult to press, and you need to rely too much on the handbook to figure out how to use it.

To get the recorder to work effectively, you need to spend a long time training the software to recognise your pronunciation and intonation. Before you begin transcribing your recorded mumblings, you must plug the DS-320 into your system's sound card and read a series of paragraphs aloud for about 15 minutes. You then use the package's serial cable to hook up the recorder to your PC. Select the files you want transcribed, and ViaVoice steps in to let loose your words on the screen. In our early tests, the software's accuracy was not very impressive. For example, "Please call me" became "Keith Coleman", and "Thank you" was picked up as "Haiti". Like all voice recognition programs, however, Via Voice does improve its accuracy with additional training.

At $595, the DS-320 is a pricey alternative to pen and paper - even with IBM's software factored in. If you're on the road regularly and need a tool to convert your recorded notes into editable text, it might come in handy. However, be prepared to do a lot of editing - and training - to make using this voice recorder worthwhile.

Olympus DS-320

Price: DS-320 $595; ViaVoice $125; Distributor: Nationwide Dictating; Phone: (03) 9888 7399; URL: www.olympusvoice.com.au

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Aoife McEvoy

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?