Voice recorders/Transcription equipment

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    Tessa Mearns

    Does anyone have a particular recommendation for a good (and not too expensive) digital voice recorder for use in interviews and focus groups? I am also thinking about getting some transcription equipment but I’m not sure I can afford it.

    Danielle Rolfe

    Hi Tessa,

    I purchased an Olympus WS700M for qualitative interviews for my PhD dissertation. As a backup device, I used my iPhone’s Voice Memo application. Surprisingly, the iPhone produced much better sound quality, was easily uploaded to iTunes, and could then work with the audio file. If I had to do it again, the iPhone would be my first choice, keeping in mind that you should delete your files once uploaded and backed up, so that you’re not carrying around your interviews that could contain confidential information.

    Good luck,


    Tessa Mearns

    Hi Danielle,

    Thanks for the advice. I’ll start with getting a voice recorder and add your other point to my list of reasons why I should get an iPhone! Sounds like a great idea.



    I too got an Olympus digital recorder. As a back up I downloaded a free app from NCH Software to my Android Phone and my iPad. http://www.nch.com.au/express/index.html

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