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Whether you're looking for a professional grade digital recorder/player or just something to record meetings and ideas, the Sangean DAR-101 digital voice recorder is the ideal solution for busy people who want to record notes, favorite radio shows, meetings and ideas without the fuss and bother of tapes.
Sangean's DAR-101 offers strong player digital recorder/player because of its combination of features, sound quality, and price. It has multiple recording modes such as the internal/external microphone, telephone line-in, and external stereo microphone capable of capturing stereo audio sound. It's also packed with features such as a built-in high-sensitivity stereo internal microphone with dual AGC (Automatic Gain Control), 3 adjustable recording sample rates (64k/128k/192kbps), SD Card compatibility recording to MP3 (up to 32GB SDHC card compatible), and compatibility with USB 2.0.
Not too shabby!
Pros: The DAR-101 was exactly what I was looking for: a full-sized recorder with a healthy-sized speaker, easy-interface, nice display screen, and plenty of record capacity (it appears I'll get 68 hours of record off a 2GB SD Card when set to the 65bps setting). Despite the recorder having so many features, it is relatively easy to use. The manual is not too overwhelming (32 well-spaced pages). After I spent an hour with the manul and the recorder I felt proficient in the use of the DAR-101. This thing records phone calls beautifully! It comes with the necessary patch cord to plug into your phone service. Simply adjust a few settings, plug it in, and your in business. Each phone call has it's own file name and is time stamped. Audio quality is great. Transferring files to the computer is easy - simply pop the SD card out of the DAR-101 and put in your computer's card reader, at which point the files are very easy to organize and re-name. Overall, this recorder is a pleasure to use!
Cons: The build-quality has a bit to be desired. The Record Balance control (the ring around the large center knob on the front of the unit) has a detent at center. Unfortunately, the "center" is not centered and sits ats around 12:30 on my unit - just looks shoddy. Additionally, the scroll wheel is a bear to use. If you press on it too hard on one side or the other it will sit cockeyed on the face of the unit, won't work, and will interfere with the "enter" button's operation. Besides build quality the only other thing I was disappointed in was the operation of the recorder using the "REMOTE" jack. Unfortunately the remote jack was not as quick as I had hoped for (I hoped to use it to capture radio transmissions using a relay circuit that was tripped by my radios squelch control circuit). It takes about 3 seconds from the time the "REMOTE" jack is closed and the time the recording goes active. Once the "REMOTE" jack become inactive the DAR-101 assigns a file name to that segment.
Other Thoughts: There's some talk on the internet about not being able to record and/or playback to the USB port. Additionally, somebody mentioned that SD cards have to be formatted in FAT16, whereas SDHC cards need to be formatted in FAT32, otherwise things wont work well. If you run into any problems in these areas, I'm sure an internet search will turn up the information you're looking for. I was thinking of returning or exchanging my DAR-101 for the build-quality issues with the record "balance" control and the scroll wheel on top, but feel it was a heckuva deal given the price, even with these glitches. The manual left some important information out, like you can't have anything plugged into the "line in" jack when doing telephone recording, and "rec standby" must be turned on when doing voice-activated recording (there is a 10 second delay for the recorder to stop after the voice stops in VAR). Amazing price and even better service from Newegg on this order - Thanks, I'll shop here again!
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“The DAR-101 was exactly what I was looking for: a full-sized recorder with a healthy-sized speaker, easy-interface, nice ...”— Dan / ab0re 1/28/2011