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Sony ICD-SX57 and ICD-SX57DR9 Digital Voice Recorders Announced

Top Models Designed for Transcribing and Creating Digital Files for Podcasting

Sony is aiming to make it easier to remember all of those little details with a new line of digital voice recorders designed for, consumers, professionals and academics.

Of course, all six of the new recorders are perfect for taking dictation, but each offers features for specific purposes. These include capturing high-quality sound and converting voice to text, creating MP3 files for radio or Internet broadcasting, or simply recording notes and playing them back without connecting to a PC.

“Our 2007 lineup offers long recording times and the easiest way to capture dictation, notes or lengthy lectures,” said Stephen Teplansky, product manager for digital voice recorders at Sony Electronics.

Small Design, Large Memory

Thin and durable, the ICD-SX57 and ICD-SX57DR9 models have up to 256 MB of flash memory and offer more than 90 hours of recording time in the Long Play (LP) mode. With a slim, light aluminum body, these recorders are easy to take with you. Both models come with a USB port for high-speed file transfer to a PC.

Five recording modes, including Stereo High Quality (STHQ), Stereo (ST), Stereo LP (STLP), Standard Play (SP) and Long Play (LP), let users achieve the preferred sound quality and recording time. The recorder features a new STHQ mode (with a frequency response of 80Hz to 20KHz) and a highly sensitive triple microphone array to meet the needs of not only business users, but also musicians and podcasters.

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Digital voice operated recording stops the recording during silent pauses, and then without missing a syllable, reactivates it when speaking resumes conserving recording time and eliminating soundless gaps in the recording.

The new backlit dot-matrix LCD shows the record level as well as the MP3 ID3-tag if the user uploads music content to the device. The recording level can be set to either Automatic Gain Control for traditional dictation uses, but can also be set for Manual Adjustment for special applications.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking

The ICD-SX57 recorder is compatible with Dragon NaturallySpeaking speech recognition software from Nuance Communications, Inc. Sony will also offer the ICD-SX57DR9 bundle with this voice recognition software included to turn fleeting thoughts into text in no time.

Because of the high quality of the digital voice recorders, Sony has received five-star certification from Nuance and combined the ICD-SX57 and other selected models with Nuance’s new Recorder Edition of Dragon NaturallySpeaking 9.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking 9 Recorder Edition supports dictation using Sony PC compatible digital voice recorders. It links directly with Sony’s Digital Voice Editor version 3.0 software, which comes with new PC-compatible digital voice recorders.

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Both pieces of software work together to provide an easy way to convert voice to text. In Dragon NaturallySpeaking, the Natural Punctuation feature automatically inserts commas and periods where needed and eliminates those awkward “ums” and “ahs.”

The Dictation Playback feature plays the original recorded voice when reviewing the document, and the Performance Optimizer improves voice recognition.

For an additional fee, the recorders are compatible with Dragon NaturallySpeaking 9 Professional, Medical or Legal, which include functionality specifically tailored for business, medical or legal environments respectively.

A new feature using the new Digital Voice Editor version 3.0, recorded sound can be easily converted into the universal WAV or MP3 formats for podcasting.

The ICD-SX57DR9 recorder comes equipped with rechargeable batteries and a USB docking station. It automatically recharges the batteries when connected to the PC and simplifies the process of transferring recordings.

The ICD-SX57 and ICD-SX57DR9 digital voice recorders will be available in the spring for about $200 and about $250, respectively.

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Internet or Radio Broadcasters’ Best Friend

The ICD-P520 and ICD-P530F digital voice recorders are compact and easily connect to a PC. Up to 256 MB of flash memory offer up to 130 hours of recording time in the LP mode. For easy file transfer to a PC, both models include Sony’s new Digital Voice Editor version 3.0 software, which adds podcast-creation capability. The ICD-P530F recorder incorporates a built-in FM tuner with 25 presets.

The ICD-P520 and ICD-P530F digital voice recorders will also be available this spring for about $70 and $80, respectively.

PC-Free Options

The ICD-B500 and ICD-B510F voice recorders are portable note takers with 256 MB of flash memory — double the capacity of its predecessor in last year’s line. These new models provide up to 150 hours of recording time in LP mode. They offer comprehensive recording capabilities in any situation, and a large LCD and single-function buttons on the front and 250-milliwatt speaker output make them easy to use. The ICD-B510F recorder also includes a built-in FM tuner with 25 presets.

The ICD-B500 and ICD-B510F voice recorders come packaged with two “AAA” batteries and will be available this spring for about $50 and $60, respectively.

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