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Portable Audio Recorders - What to look for in portable audio recorders

capture live digital recorded

Portable audio recorders are technological devices that allow you to record audio from a variety of sources without being tethered to an AC outlet. Various forms of portable audio recorders have been around for decades, but the technology has continued to improve since the inception of such devices, and today people interested in portable audio recording solutions have more options available than at any point in the history of the technology. However, there are a number of things to consider when you are looking for a portable audio recorder, from the media the audio will be recorded on to the different ways the recorder can capture audio information. Depending on what you are looking for and what you can live without, you can spend anywhere from a few dozen dollars to a few thousand dollars on a portable audio recorder. This guide will provide you with information on things to look for and things to avoid when next you find yourself in the market for portable audio recorders.

Perhaps the most important thing you will need to consider when you decide you are interested in purchasing portable audio recorders is how you would prefer to capture recorded audio information. The two basic ways to capture audio are through microphones and through cables. Capturing audio through microphones is most commonly used for recording information in live situations, such as when taping interviews, lectures, or live music. To effectively capture live audio, it is best to use a separate and dedicated microphone for the task. However, if you are on a tight budget, it is possible to record live audio through portable audio recorders that contain built in microphones. Portable audio recorders with internal microphones can be purchased for as little as $10 to $20, and these are often sufficient for basic tasks such as documenting interviews or conversations between people.

The other way of capturing audio is through cables, which may involve a number of different scenarios and additional technological equipment. For example, you can connect many portable tape recorders to CD players, DVD players, and televisions to capture audio from these devices. It is also relatively simple to connect portable audio recorders to computers to capture audio samples stored on the computer. Before purchasing such a recorder, think about whether you will primarily use it to record live audio or whether you will primarily use it to capture pre recorded audio, such as when dubbing audio from CDs. Keep in mind that if you purchase a portable audio recorder with a built in microphone, you can still attach an external microphone via cables.

The second most important thing you will need to consider when you decide you are in the market for portable audio recorders is how you want the audio information to be recorded on the device. You can choose from a number of different options, but they can essentially be divided into analog and digital storage methods. The most common examples of analog storage methods are cassette tapes. In fact, tape recorders that record sounds onto full sized or micro sized cassette tapes are perhaps the most common portable audio recorders available on the market. These are likely to be among the cheapest recorders you find, as they have been a popular choice for consumers for decades. However, there are also more modern alternatives available, as digital storing methods have increased in popularity in recent years. A common example of cheap digital portable audio recorders are those that contain a small internal flash memory chip that can be used to store several hours of audio. Like cheap analog portable audio recorders, these recorders can often be found for well under $100 and are popular choices for recording data gathered from interviews or lectures.

Finally, if you are willing to spend more money, you can purchase digital audio recorders that contain removable media, which is convenient because it allows you to take your digital copy of a recording from one machine to another. Another advantage of digital portable audio recorders is that they typically come with ports and plugs to enable you to transfer the recorded audio directly to your computer, where you can store it for later use.

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