Well they have done it again, Olympus Australia announced on Friday (10th July 2009) that the Olympus WS-311M (512Mb) and WS-321M (1Gb) digital notetakers were now discontinued in Australia. This came as a bit of a surprise to me, not so much the WS-321M as being a middle model (sandwiched beween the WS-311M and WS-331M) they very rarely get sold, but the WS-311M was a very popular choice at Dictate Australia.
When you compare them, there were only a few minor differences between the Olympus WS-311M and the Olympus WS-210S. Apart from being different colours, the WS-311M had it’s record button on the side, mimicking the digital dictaphones, as well as an additional stop and play button on the side, the WS-210S only has buttons on the front panel.
The WS-331M and WS-321M also had noise cancellation which was available via the DSS Player software, the WS-210S does not.
There was also a very slight difference in max. record times, this was due to a slightly higher frequency response used by the WS-311M/WS-321M recorders, not enough to be noticeable.
The WS-311M/WS-321M could also direct record to a Windows PC hard drive instead of the onboard memory using the supplied software.
The WS-311M was one of my personal favourite recorders and will be sadly missed, if you can sadly miss a digital voice recorder!
Usually we have an inkling that something is likely to change. We keep a very close eye on the Olympus America and Olympus Europe websites and quite often we can see up-and-coming new models. There appears to be no replacement coming for the WS-311M and the WS-321M so I think it is safe to say we are just going to be left with the WS 210S and a very classy looking piano black Olympus WS-331M in the small digital notetaker class.
This blog post was written using MacSpeech Dictate – Voice Recognition of Intel Mac