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Olympus America Inc. > 
Item#: N82E16873100016

OLYMPUS WS-321M USB PC Interface Digital Voice Recorder with Music Player

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  • 1GB Recording Media
  • USB PC Interface
  • 3.7" x 1.5" x 0.4" (excluding protrusions)

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  • Specifications
  • Warranty & Returns
  • Reviews

Learn more about the Olympus America Inc. WS-321M




Recording Format
Recording Media
Recording Time
Stereo XQ Mode: 17 hours, 40 minutes

Stereo HQ Mode: 35 hours, 25 minutes

Stereo SP Mode: 70 hours, 55 minutes

HQ Mode: 70 hours, 55 minutes

SP Mode: 139 hours, 30 minutes

LP Mode: 277 hours, 35 minutes
PC Interface
Built-in 18mm round dynamic speaker
1x AAA-size battery
Battery Life
Approx. 21 hours (using alkaline dry cell battery)


Built-in stereo microphone

Variable Control Voice Actuator (VCVA) records only when sound is sensed

The Low Cut Filter minimizes air conditioner noise and other similar noises

Up to 16 index marks can be set in a file

Lock files to avoid accidentally erasing important information

WMA & MP3 Music Player

Noise Cancel feature cuts out unwanted background noise

Voice Filter enhances the human voice by cutting low and high frequency noises during playback

Slow and fast playback speed variations

Repeat and Random playback

WOW XT technology provides rich bass and three-dimensional stereo sound

Customize the sound with a built-in equalizer


Input Level: -70 dBv



Folders Messages: 5/200 per folder

LP Mode

Voice Activation: Available via menu setting

Practical Maximum Output: 70 mW

Microphone Jack

Earphone Jack

Sampling Frequency
Stereo XQ Mode: 44.1kHz
Stereo HQ Mode: 44.1kHz
Stereo SP Mode: 44.1kHz
HQ Mode:44.1kHz
SP Mode: 22.0kHz
LP Mode: 8.0kHz

Overall Frequency Response
Stereo XQ Mode: 50-19,000Hz
Stereo HQ Mode: 50-15,000 Hz
Stereo SP Mode: 50-9,000Hz
HQ Mode:50-13,000Hz
SP Mode: 100-7,000Hz
LP Mode: 100-3,000Hz

Dimensions & Weight

3.7" x 1.5" x 0.4" (excluding protrusions)
1.7 oz. (including battery)
Warranty, Returns, And Additional Information
  • Warranty
  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year
  • Read full details

Customer Reviews of the Olympus America Inc. WS-321M

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  • Jack S.
  • 9/10/2009 8:09:33 PM
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsUsed for class

Pros: The device is portable, useful, powerful, and sleek. I use it to practice my speeches for class and my wife uses it to record lectures.

Cons: None as of yet

Other Thoughts: It easily hooks up to the computer to transfer and save your recorded data. A must have for students!

Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

  • Donald B.
  • 8/4/2009 9:45:51 AM
  • Ownership: more than 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsPERFECT

Pros: Excellent quality, fidelity, range, storage and file transfer.

Cons: None so far

Other Thoughts: We are an auction company and we use these at 5 locations to record the auctions. We set it near the auctioneer turn it on and forget it. Never had an issue. Battery life has not been an issue, but it does get a fresh battery each auction. Auctions last about 6 hours. We transfer the audio to the auction server in a shared directory. Allows for easy review if the event if any questions come up. Perfect.

Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

  • DeAnna H.
  • 11/10/2008 5:35:59 PM
  • Ownership: more than 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsExcellent Product

Pros: I record lectures for my classes and then share them via a web page with the rest of the class. This recorder works great and does a great job of picking up the sound. I love the fact that you just slide off the battery compartment part of the body and it plugs right in to a USB port. No wires to drag around and no software to install.

Cons: The only drawback I have found is it is very hungry. It eats a lot of batteries if you record often, so make sure you bring spares.

Other Thoughts: I have been using this since last fall, and have recorded many lectures with it. The sound quality is better than I expected it to be from such a tiny built in microphone. I love this thing and would recommend it to anyone.

7 out of 7 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Anonymous
  • 9/6/2008 3:27:03 PM
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsWorks Great in Class!

Pros: Picks up all my instructers great and works ok as an mp3 player.

Cons: Does not read some mp3's. I have no idea why and have not been able to determine a pattern. (bitrate, length, etc.)

Other Thoughts: Other than the mp3 issue which is not really big issue to me since I purchased it for it's recorder. Works great and I highly reccomend. The USB is really cool! I'm able to transfer the files via-usb to my Jeep's stereo and listen to the while driving down the road. GREAT DEVICE!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Jim C.
  • 10/5/2007 8:56:38 PM
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week

5 out of 5 eggsMax Recording Time per File

Pros: All of the previous reviewer's points. Has the ability to record on voice detection. Selectable low cut mic filter. 6 Quality choices. Switchable playback noise filter. Record LED Inhibit. Great voice fidelity (STXQ is 50 to 19,000 Hz)

Cons: The record on voice detection feature saves memory space big time but not battery life.

Other Thoughts: I have the WS-311M which is just like the WS-331M but has less memory. The 331 can record a top quality file 35 hrs 30 min long if it had the battery capcity. As it is in the STXQ mode the battery runs out in 9.5 hrs. So the longest file possible is just 9.5 hrs in STXQ mode not 35 hrs. It would be great if in the voice detect mode where it just records when somebody talks that battery drain dropped low when in Standby but unfortunately it draws full current (~ 65 ma) while waiting. So you need to be there to change the battery in order to fill up the memory with multiple files equaling the 35.5 hours (you have a new file anytime you stop).

Just to measure current consumption I rigged up a USB extension cable with a milliameter in series. You have to cheat the interlock to run this way. Using this approach I suppose you could run from a separate larger battery for long unattended operation. For example a D-cell would get you up to 200 hours of continuous operation.

7 out of 7 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Akiva F.
  • 9/25/2007 12:31:51 PM
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsAwesome mp3 Player!

Pros: Very cool features: Of course, the USB immediate connectivity with no cables and the cool factor of popping the piece off and sliding it right into your computer cannot be understated and goes without saying.
But the index marks feature is quite useful as well - you can actually set markers down wither while you're recording or when you're listening to the playback (even during a song) and quick skip back and forth to them as you desire.

Cons: The one problem, which is really minor, is that I haven;t been able to find a way to search through the library while I'm listening to a song, because the button you press to go through folders normally serves a different function when the music is playing. So, you have to stop the song and then go to the folder/song from there. But it's not such a big deal.

Other Thoughts: So.....this thing is awesome! It's very easy to learn how to use and use, and it's really small and lightweight. The music is surprisingly rich in sound when you play it through earphones. It even sounds good when you play it off the speaker, though understandably not as rich. It has bass and equalizers, etc. Oh, and recording quality is great and awesome.
All in all, an extremely nifty little recorder and I'm EXTREMELY happy with my purchase.
PLUS, I'm really happy with (though I've only purchased once). I order on Sun. 9/23 with cheapest shipping and received it on 9/25, in the morning. (Granted, it shipped from PA to NJ, but still - they really handled my order quickly and effeciently.)

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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