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Ultralight voice recorder
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Bob Gabbart
(bobg) - F
Ultralight voice recorder on 10/26/2005 07:15:53 MDT Print View

Anyone know of a digital voice recorder for under one ounce? The only ones I have found weight in around 4-6 ounces. The iPod Shuffles weights in at .75 ounce so I figure there should be a voice recorder out there that weights about the same.

I figure if I bring a voice record, I would be more likely to take notes on my journeys.

Courtney Waal
(d0rqums) - F
Re: Ultralight voice recorder on 10/26/2005 08:33:28 MDT Print View

I don't think the quality of the recording will be superb, but the Creative Zen Nano has a built-in mic and line in for recording. It weighs somewhere around 2 ounces (uses one AAA battery).

John Chan
voice recorder + camera on 10/26/2005 08:50:20 MDT Print View

Some digital cameras also have WAV functions as well and can double as voice recorders. My digital has a 10 sec WAV function/ photo so you can record 10 seconds of notes for each photo if you so choose. It may also have a WAV only function but I haven't used it.

Whit Kincaid
(razor) - F
voice recorders on 10/26/2005 09:41:15 MDT Print View

I recently purchased the Olympus digital voice recorder WS-100. It's not cheap but it does a nice job and has a capacity of more than 24 hours. I just weighed it, and with batterys it weighs 1.8 ozs. I purchased it for work purposes but with an eye on aiding my journaling efforts on future long hikes.

Craig Shelley
(craig_shelley) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Pentax Cameras and MP3 Player/Recorders on 10/26/2005 11:49:27 MDT Print View

I have a S5i Pentax. It has a sound only recording mode. The waterproof pentax probably has sound only recording - I didn't check. I like recording nature sounds along with taking pictures. The weight with card and battery is 125grams.

If you like music, iRiver has a number of MP3 players that are voice recorders. They weigh about 1 to 2 oz without the AA battery.

And finally the lightest I know of, is the MobiBLU DAH-1500i. It is available only from It weighs 0.63 oz. It has sound recording.

I didn't check the shuffle, but I don't recall that it records.


Edited by craig_shelley on 10/26/2005 11:56:51 MDT.

Bob Gabbart
(bobg) - F
Olympus WS-100 on 10/26/2005 14:23:48 MDT Print View

That looks like the one! Thanks! Bob

Bob Gabbart
(bobg) - F
Olympus WS-100 on 10/26/2005 15:30:34 MDT Print View

That looks like the one! Thanks! Bob

Bob Gabbart
(bobg) - F
perfect voice recorder WS-320M on 11/05/2005 18:58:04 MST Print View

So I wanted to get a voice recorder to take notes on hikes. I wanted to get something that did a better job than the memo functions on most MP3 playes. I wanted something that ran on batteries (not built-in rechargeable), didn't require an extra cable to connect to computer, played MP3's as well, and wasn't over 1.5 oz.

Well, Olympus must have read my mind because last week when I checked their site this wasn't there. And now it is.

But mucho $$$

Edited by bobg on 11/05/2005 19:00:39 MST.

Tim Drescher
(timdcy) - M

Locale: Gore Range
Voice Recorder on 04/16/2012 19:46:01 MDT Print View

Does anyone have a "state of the market" update on this?

john hansford
(jhansford) - MLife
Voice Recorder on 04/17/2012 02:55:09 MDT Print View

I've got an Olympus VN4100. Got it second hand so don't know how old it is. 1.5ozs plus 2xAAA. Good quality, different settings. I use it particularly to keep track of timings for future reference, just use it walking along to save all that journal writing.

Brian Lewis
(brianle) - F

Locale: Pacific NW
smartphone app on 04/17/2012 10:04:18 MDT Print View

Just on the off chance that you're also carrying a smartphone, the weight delta for my voice recorder is zero; there are free apps for this (at least Android, I would assume other too).

Tim Drescher
(timdcy) - M

Locale: Gore Range
Voice Recorder on 04/17/2012 10:54:45 MDT Print View

No smart phone and even if and when I go back to one I probably still won't bring it on trips… Although it may be smart to look into some kind of mp3 player with the capability to record voice as well.

I too would like to bring a voice recorder along, instead of bringing pen and paper for documenting my trips. I find that I can come up with much clever ways to describe the scenery while hiking, rather than in sitting in my tent at the end of the day.

Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Ultralight voice recorder on 04/17/2012 13:03:26 MDT Print View

+1 on using your camera for your journal, if you carry one.

I use mine to take video clips of myself, but if you are looking at 24 hrs of recording time, that won't be cheap because you would need to buy a few 16 gig or larger sd cards.

Weight wise, it would be lighter.


Brent Mahan

Locale: Southern New Hampshire
Sony ICD-PX312 on 04/17/2012 14:33:52 MDT Print View

I've been considering picking up the Sony ICD-PX312. It weighs 2.6oz including a battery and connects to your PC so you can download the recordings after the trip to listen to later and relive the excitement. $51 with free Amazon shipping. It has tons of reviews on Amazon and most look promising.

Anyone used this one before for hiking? Comments?

I'll be carrying a smartphone on my 2 week Sierra High Route trip, but it will be off and stowed in my pack conserving battery life. I'd rather have something at hand to use while hiking that I don't have to boot up each time I want to record.

Interesting idea with using the camera. I'll have to check to see if my camera does that...

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Sony ICD-PX312 on 04/17/2012 14:55:46 MDT Print View

+1 on the camera. You can set it on top of your pack and do Les Stroud style monologues. That might be interesting when you are an old man with kids :)

I have a Lexar MDA256-100 MP3 player than runs on one AAA battery and uses SD cards. I don't know the card size limit, but it plays well with 1GB cards. 1.8oz with battery and card and does voice and plays MP3's and is the size of a Zippo. I read on line that it is a battery eater, but if voice recording, you wouldn't have it on that long.

Another good one is the Creative MuVo TX FM. The one I have is only 256mb, but it has voice recording, FM radio, and FM recording too, as well as playing MP3's. It also runs on one AAA and is lighter sized and 1.6oz. If you can find one, they made 1GB versions too. The main module pulls out of the battery holder and has a USB connection, like a flash drive with an LCD.

There are lots of current versions, but they all use an internal rechargeable battery. I have a Sansa Clip 2GB that is tiny and light (0.9oz), does the FM/MP3 and voice trick, but runs about 5 hours max and needs a few hours for a refill. There are more modern versions that are bigger and more capacity.

Watch some brands-- they use proprietary audio formats, making editing and file management/playback a pain.

Sansa Clip 2GB

Creative MuVo TX FM 256mb

Lexar MDA256-100

Edited by dwambaugh on 04/17/2012 15:36:18 MDT.

Tim Drescher
(timdcy) - M

Locale: Gore Range
On using a camera as a recorder... on 04/17/2012 14:57:37 MDT Print View

Besides the fact that you'd need a bigger SD card, this would also drain the battery much quicker... right?

Edited by timdcy on 04/17/2012 15:07:06 MDT.

Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: On using a camera as a recorder... on 04/17/2012 15:34:17 MDT Print View


Yes, taking video does burn battery time faster than just shooting videos.

I think that using the camera as a voice recording only works depending on the number of minutes of journal time you are expecting to do.

If you are looking at hours and hours of talk time, you might be better off with a voice recording just because of the weight of extra batteries that you might need to carry for a camera.

That said, I do find it neat to look back at the vids of myself talking about what has happened.

Though, I think that pen on paper has its own unique charm and insights that can not easily be captured on video.

Talking into a camera and writing your inner thoughts tends to be a different mind set and both yields different results.

Beyond weight, you might consider what sort of memories are you trying to capture and decide which medium is best served to reach that goal....then worry about weight.


Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: On using a camera as a recorder... on 04/17/2012 15:38:16 MDT Print View

"Yes, taking video does burn battery time faster than just shooting videos."

I disagree. It's about the same.


Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Pentax Cameras and MP3 Player/Recorders on 04/17/2012 16:01:22 MDT Print View

Craig wrote: : I have a S5i Pentax. It has a sound only recording mode. The waterproof pentax probably has sound only recording - I didn't check. "

I have a W90 and there is a programmable green button that can be set for direct access voice recording.