Olympus DS-50: Handheld Recorder Built for Podcasting

There’s a new podcaster born every minute, it seems. The listings at iTunes and PodcastAlley are overflowing these days, as the number of podcasts threatens to rival the number of blogs.

Some of these podcasts are just plain unlistenable, not because the hosts have voices made for email, but because they haven’t spent any money on their equipment. A new release from Olympus would be perfect for these folks—and for you or some brave podcaster that you know.

The DS-50 is a voice-activated super-senstive handheld recorder so you can naturally eliminate background noise as much as you possibly can. The microphone is detachable, so you can really get up close and personal with your subject.

You record directly onto the built-in hard drive, which is 1GB. That might not sound like a lot, but unless you’re recording full-length commentary on all three of the Lord of the Rings trilogy at one sitting, it’s probably enough. You can plug the DS-50 into your computer’s USB port and transfer your recordings and wipe the memory.

The one drawback of that onboard memory being just 1GB is in using the recorder as a player. Yes, you can play MP3s and WMAs, but you might run into trouble if you try to store too many podcasts

All you need to run the DS-50 is an AAA battery. In return, you’ll get up to 275 hours of recording time, depending on settings.

Olympus has set the price bar a bit high, at US$250. But you never know when you’ll be discovered for the next great reality show, Podcasting Idol.


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