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iPod for voice notes
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JohnnyBoy
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, I've atoned for my previous consumer sins.... I've bought a 2nd gen iPod Nano from eBay. Cool When it arrives, I can go on the lookout for one of the XtremeMac mics that Barnz recommended.
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JohnnyBoy
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 10:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just an update.

I ordered an XtremeMac microphone for the Nano as recommended by Barnz from the site that was selling them for £2.99. The site claimed that it had 5 of them in stock, until 4 hours after buying when I got an e-mail to say that there was in fact 'zero' in stock. I mailed them back to see what the refund situation would be (I paid with Paypal) but haven't got a reply yet.

This 'out-of-stock' news sent me scavenging around eBay to see what I could see; I need not have worried, there are plenty of people selling these mics at pretty reasonable prices.

On my travels, I also found a web page with some voice-recording samples to demonstrate the sound quality of one of these mics. Even on the 'lower' quality setting, I think the sound quality is indistinguishable from a compact disc recording, which is very encouraging.

I'm just going to wait for confirmation that these 'out-of-stock' guys are going to refund my money - then I'll have the confidence to try again! Cool

[Edit: The Paypal website confirmed the refund, so I had another go and bought a boxed mic from an eBay seller]
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JohnnyBoy
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, the XtremeMac MicroMemo arrived in the post today. Seller described its condition as 'new' - maybe he thought that I just wouldn't notice that the plastic packing on the inside had already been cut open and its contents taken out and played with... Rolling Eyes

I haven't tested it fully, just briefly to check that it functions. I'll post a full review later. From what I've seen, it works well with the Nano, you just plug it in and off you go.

Mysteriously, when I unplugged the mic and tried to go back to playing an audiobook that I was listening to, the Nano wouldn't play it. It just showed the title of the chapter for a second or two, then showed the title of the next chapter, and so on until it had showed me the title of about a dozen chapters and returned to the top-level iPod menu. I don't know if that's something to do with the mic, the fact that I turned the Nano off before unplugging the mic or whether it's just another fault that I've found on this cursed iPod.

I'll have to experiment further to get to the bottom of this.
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JuanPointed
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 29, 2008 6:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Guys for the info on the plug spacing on the bottom of the Nano.
I nearly bought the Xtrememac mic which wouldn't have fitted mine. I'm also looking for a portable voice recorder.
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JohnnyBoy
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 29, 2008 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JuanPointed wrote:
I'm also looking for a portable voice recorder.

The latest models from Olympus are PC/Mac compatible; they start at about £60.

But for about the same money, you could find a refurb'd 2nd-gen iPod Nano and an XtremeMac mic on eBay.

JP, is your Nano 1st gen? (I don't remember the 3rd gen Nanos ever having a 2GB capacity...)
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JuanPointed
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 29, 2008 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JB, I have the 1st gen Nano with the rounded corners. Strangely it looks like the one shown by Barnz, sprouting the MicroMemo, or is that the 5th gen video? I'll take a look at the Olympus at Argos.
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JohnnyBoy
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 29, 2008 3:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JuanPointed wrote:
JB, I have the 1st gen Nano with the rounded corners. Strangely it looks like the one shown by Barnz, sprouting the MicroMemo, or is that the 5th gen video?

Yes, that's a full-size iPod Video that Barnz is showing there.

As for using the XtremeMac mic on a 1st gen Nano - well it looks to me as though the gap between the iPod connector and the headphone socket is smaller on the 1st gen Nano than the 2nd gen...

(3rd and 2nd gen)


(1st gen and Shuffle)


JuanPointed wrote:
I'll take a look at the Olympus at Argos.

Argos have just brought out a new catalogue and there's more details in that. Essentially, it looks as though these machines are compatible with everything because they save the audio file onto the lower 'half' of the dictaphone which unplugs to become a USB flash drive. Then you plug that into anything...
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 6:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JohnnyBoy wrote:
I've given up trying to find voice memo software for my MacBook and am now looking into the alternatives.

I've only just noticed that Quicktime Player (bundled with Snow Leopard) has a "New Audio Recording" option on its File menu. So finally, OS X has its own voice memo recorder.

Just an update on the iPod Nano/XtremeMac mic situation: The combination worked fine when recording, producing a good, clear reproduction of my voice. The problem came when playing back and typing up; when my recorded voice outran my typing speed, I wanted to pause the iPod until my typing had caught up and then rewind just a few seconds of audio to retrace my last steps. But this isn't possible with a clickwheel iPod -- it has "last track" and "next track" but no "rewind". Evil or Very Mad So I sold both to a friend.

I think that the iPod Touch shows how far you are thru a track by using a progress marker sliding along a bar. So, if you use that as a dictaphone, "rewinding" for a few seconds is possible by sliding the marker back a short way. I think. Confused
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JuanPointed
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2009 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since my July post I've been using my iPod touch with the Voice Memo app with great success. You can export the files by email or sync with iTunes. I made a half hour recording of my 86yo Mother and put it on a CD.
My next trick will be to pipe recordings into Dragon NaturallySpeaking (when I can afford it)
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Cypher
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2009 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JuanPointed wrote:
Since my July post I've been using my iPod touch with the Voice Memo app with great success.


What microphone are you using with the Touch ?
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JuanPointed
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2009 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
What microphone are you using with the Touch ?

I use the Apple Earphones with Remote and Mic. This can be quite discreet with the iPod in my pocket.
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JohnnyBoy
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 24, 2009 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've now bought an iPod Touch, but I can't play with it until tomorrow (Xmas day). When I've had a chance to experiment with its dictation capabilities, I'll report back to this thread.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 5:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

1. With my retro-style Sony micro-cassette recorder, QuickTime 10's ability to record from the mic connected to my Mini, and my iPod Touch's "Voice Memos" app, I was all ready to record notes whenever and wherever they occurred to me at 7 times the speed it takes to write them down.

2. I've already taught myself to touch-type using the Dvorak keyboard layout. I won't break any speed records, but I'm not bad.

With these two steps in place, I had a workflow that enabled me to get ideas from my head into my computer with the maximum speed and efficiency that I thought were possible.

And then Nuance (who make Dragon Naturally Speaking) dropped the iBomb... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eD_HDWSDPM Shocked

Holy crap, I wish that this were available on the UK iTunes store.... Crying or Very sad
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The Pontificator
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 8:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bit the bullet today and purchased a SONY ICD-PX820 voice recorder which is both PC and Mac compatible.

Supplied software is for Windoze.

Mac (or Linux) is simply plug 'n' play/drag and drop so I can save lectures to iTunes or iPod.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 02, 2010 2:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's funny you should mention this, Pontificator.

Olympus have just started running an ad on British TV where a college student is locked in a closet (?), he dictates his next assignment into an Olympus digital voice recorder (if only it was that easy, eh?) and when he's let out, he connects the machine to his laptop where Dragon Naturally Speaking turns it into text.

The final slide reveals that Olympus' marketing department have given this recorder/software bundle the catchy and easily memorable name of VN-5500PC-DNS. Rolling Eyes Smile

JohnnyBoy wrote:
And then Nuance (who make Dragon Naturally Speaking) dropped the iBomb... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eD_HDWSDPM Shocked

Holy crap, I wish that this were available on the UK iTunes store.... Crying or Very sad

As of late August, this is available on the UK iTunes store and understands British accents. I'd love to try it, but the earphones with the built-in mic are still unused in my iPod's original box, and I can't find the box.... Embarassed Rolling Eyes
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