Olympus announces the early-November 2012 release of the LS-12 ($149.99) and LS-14 ($199.99) Linear PCM digital handheld audio recorders, which succeed the LS-7 and LS-10 PCM recorders. Both units have a 1.75-inch LCD menu screen. Files are recorded in PCM or MP3 modes and saved to the internal memory (2 GB for the LS-12 and 4 GB for the LS-14) or on SD/SDHC (up to 32GB) cards.
The LS-12 and LS-14 operate on two AA alkaline batteries or two AA Ni-MH rechargeable batteries. The LS-14 recorder offers up to 48 hours of continuous recording while the LS-12 offers 50 hours.
The LS-12 features two new internal 90-degree directional stereo condenser microphones with a stated frequency response of 60 to 20k Hz. The LS-14 adds a third omnidirectional center mic, with a stated frequency response of 20 to 20k Hz. Both recorders support sound pressure levels up to 130 dB.
The units both feature a new amplifier circuitry. Audio and system circuitry are separated on the Olympus LS-12 and LS-14 to minimize sound degradation and keep the signal true. A switchable low-cut filter enables users to eliminate low-frequency sound at two different settings, 100 Hz or 300 Hz to minimize unwanted background noise.
Users can set optimal recording levels using a Mode Select dial located on the bottom right-hand corner of both recorders, which can be set to Tuner, Manual, Quick and Smart modes. Tuner Mode sets the recorder as a Chromatic Tuner for musical instruments. Manual Mode allows for manually adjusting the recording level, while Smart Mode automatically adjusts to the optimum recording level with a single touch of the Record button. Quick Mode begins recording without adjusting levels.
The LS-12 and LS-14 also include overdub recording and a built-in metronome. They also include mic, line-in, and ear jacks and a tripod hole on the back for a clip stand. The LS-12 comes in gunmetal grey, while the LS-14 comes in black. The LS-12 and LS-14 are packaged with a USB cable and two AA alkaline batteries. In addition, the LS-14 comes with additional accessories, including a case and our new stand clip, which attaches to the tripod hole by allowing the device to be clipped directly to a microphone stand or displayed on a table reducing surface vibration.