One of the best selling dictation recorder is the Sony digital dictation equipment. Buy a set a few months ago and have found the performance to be excellent. If you want to see how this piece of dictation equipment performs, read on to find out more!

Sony has a wide range of models, from the types that use micro casstess tape to the more up to dated digital dictation devices. Here is what I look out for when buying dictation equipment:

- Battery power: I look for good solid recording hours. I want something that I can pick up and use.
- Recording quality: I want something that can record sounds clearly and pick up the sound at a fair distance
- Design: I look for an interface that is comfortable to hold, easy to navigate and preferably has a bigger screen to see more information
- Price: My budget is around less than $100 dollars. If the quality is really good, I don't mind paying a bit more and I wouldn't buy anything above $150 dollars.
-Portable: I want a portable dictation equipment. I certainity don't want something that is bulky and difficult to carry around
-Digital: It is digital for all the way for me. I can't imagine not being able to transferred the sound recording to my computer and working on them.

Here are the digital models that I have researched upon before making my purchase. Consider them my digital dictation equipment reviews:

Sony icd MX20

This is one for the pros and the high price reflects that quality. If you are looking for crystal clear recording, this is the model for you. Its standout feature is the large memory. It uses both 32M flash memory as well as a slot for sticking your usb memory stick. That will give you more than sufficient space for any length of recording. This is the model that I bought and I must say the software is superb with nearly 100% accurate voice recognition. My dream has been to be able transcribe dictation from a recorder to a finished document and this allows me to do it a fraction of the time.

Design wise, the controls are very well laid out. All of the switches on the sides can be manipulated with one hand and a flip of the unit is required to maneuver the Hold switch on the back

In terms of drawbacks, it suffers the same problem as the rest of the Sony machines which is a lack of support for Mac machines. The dictation equipment is also a bit smooth and slippery and there is the danger of dropping it if you are not careful.


Sony ICD P720
This is the latest model that is on the market since January 2009 and is also their best selling item on Amazon. It has a native SHQ format, which I believe stands for Super High Quality and is worth about 260 hours of playback time which should last you quite a while. It is PC compatible but Mac users are out of luck as far as transferring digitally to their computers. For Vista users, there is a software called Digital Voice Editor, which has a lot useful features such as being able to play back the files at variable speeds, as well as automatic file deletion on the dictation equipment once they have been transferred to the machine. Memory wise, it has about 1 GB of flash memory. It also comes with a stereo recorder as well as microphone.


Sony ICD P620 and P520

These 2 models are the predecessors to the p720. A lot of features are similar to what was describled above except with the following drawback. Battery life wise, they are shorter and I would recommend you to purchase a rechargable battery. The screens on these two models are also smaller, which make adjustiing the setting a bit troublesome. However, they can still great at picking out sounds. If you have a lower budget, this 2 models are worth considering if you don't some minor drawbacks as described above.


Sony ICD ux70
This is a great value for money model that I would recommend for people on a budget. The ICDUX70 records directly to the internal memory which can be easily read and written to by any computer that has USB just like a flash card. This is one of the exception model that can work well with Mac. The recording is great and can be used for recording lectures, or meeting with ease.

Its greatest drawback is the short battery life. It tends to drain battery power even when put on HOLD model, which means the battery will be flat after a couple of days, regardless of whether you use it. Control wise, the interface can be better improved as I feel the current buttons are too small for my fingers. Unfortuantely, it doesn' include, Dragon Naturally Speaking, which is a great software for text translation.


Where to buy cheap sony dictation equipment
Prices of these machines have been coming down for a while down. That is due to cheaper production costs as well as better technology. Compared to 5 years ago, it is entirely possible to buy one at a price of less than $50 (not the Sony brand of course).

To get the best price, it is good to go to places like Amazon and use their price comparison to check out what is the best price you can get. Sometimes, during sales, there are very good discounted prices that will help you save some money.

I recommend you to go online and make your purchase rather than your local retailer like Walmart, Sears or Target. This is because you can scan prices more effectively and there are second hand or used dictation equipment or machine for sale as well. Sometimes, these machines are fairly new as people might want to get rid of them after 1-2 uses or they might be gifts that the person doesn't find too useful. Anyway, for whatever reasons, you can consider these used dictation equipment if you are really on a budget.

I hope you don't find this review to be too long and is now equipped to know how to buy Sony digital dictation equipment.