Despite the fact that many modern devices such as mobile phones, tablets and even mp3 players are equipped with the function of audio recording of what is happening around, classic voice recorders continue to be popular. They are used in various fields — students for recording lectures, journalists during interviews. Devices designed for covert recording stand out in particular.
In digital technology stores, you can find quite a lot of similar devices that differ from each other in a number of parameters, so choosing the most suitable device will not be too easy, especially if a person is doing it for the first time. If you belong to this user group, then this article will be very helpful. Before proceeding to the consideration of the main qualities of such products, we want to first analyze the qualities of voice recorders that you need to pay attention to when buying them.
What characteristics are fundamental when choosing a hidden voice recorder?
Be sure to take into account the following operational properties of products: the format in which the recording process is carried out; the ability to connect to a laptop or personal computer; the maximum duration of the recording and its final quality; the presence of a slot for a memory card and directly the amount of built-in memory. Let’s take a closer look at each of the points.
It is desirable that the recorder be able to record in several formats at once. Some of the most popular today are .mp3, .wma, .dss. The first type does not need a lot of free space, is of acceptable quality, besides, the recording can be played on any device — mobile phone, tablet, laptop and even .mp3 player. The second format is of higher quality and also needs more free space. The latest extension is characterized by a high level of quality and at the same time has a high compression ratio, so it takes up very little free space in the device’s memory. Unfortunately, not all devices and players of operating systems can work with it — you will have to download a special application to play it.
It is desirable that the recorder has a USB connector or socket with the ability to connect the appropriate cable. This allows you to quickly free up the gadget’s memory and save data to a USB flash drive, external hard drive or computer memory. Considering that it is undesirable to compress files in order to preserve the quality of the recording, it is advisable to provide that the recorder has a special slot for working with memory cards. The most compact modern devices are compatible with products in the microSD format.
If the owner plans to use the recorder quite often, then it is best for him to purchase a model with a sufficiently large amount of built-in memory, especially if the device does not have a slot for memory cards. Today on sale you can find products in which this parameter is about 16-20 GB. This capacity will be quite enough to record several tens of hours of audio. However, these devices are quite expensive. In this regard, you can give preference to voice recorders, the memory capacity of which does not exceed 4-8 GB.
When we chose models to include in our ranking of the best hidden voice recorders of the year, we focused mainly on the above parameters. However, some other points were also taken into account — user reviews and value for money. We tried to select models that are not too expensive, so that each of our readers can choose the best products for themselves.
Top 10 models of voice recorders for hidden recording
This product will prove to be very suitable for users who want to get a fairly high quality recording. With small overall dimensions, this device has decent functionality. Outwardly, the recorder is very similar to the most ordinary pen that can be put in your pocket. The main control elements of the device are located on the front panel of the product. There is also an LED indicator that lights up after the recording function has been turned on. Exactly the same element is duplicated on the back side. The recording process is activated by a special lever located at the top of the product. On the side there is another lever that turns the device on and off. It is quite tight, so it will not be possible to accidentally displace it. The kit comes with a nickel-magnesium battery, which, if necessary, can be recharged — the charger is also available.
The top of the product has a standard 3.5mm headphone jack. Here you can also find two very sensitive microphones that record sound in stereo. The case is made of high-quality plastic with a matte finish, so the recorder will always look like new. There is a clip on the back to secure it in your pocket. The device connects to a computer using a standard USB connector. There is a small matrix display with a resolution of 108×84 pixels, the interface is Russified.
- Pretty simple settings;
- Can be used for a variety of household purposes;
- Provides a very clean recording;
- If necessary, you can connect to a personal computer;
- Small overall dimensions and weight.
- Too many functions are controlled by just one button.
9. Ritmix RR-145 8GB
It has compact overall dimensions, the case is made of high-quality Hi-Tech metal coated with powder paint. The front coating is matte, reliably protected from the accumulation of various contaminants. On the front side there is a fairly informative matrix display. It shows the battery level, recording duration, remaining free memory and so on. This model, just like the previous one, has two built-in microphones, characterized by a high level of sensitivity, but the recording is made in stereo format. The model has a huge set of fine quality settings and recording modes.
If necessary, the voice recorder can be used as a music player. Management is carefully thought out and very understandable — even a user who has not dealt with such products before will instantly understand it. The recording process starts after clicking on the corresponding button. The formats are standard, do not need additional conversion. If the battery is completely discharged during the recording process, the file will still be automatically saved. The battery is fully charged within 2-3 hours. The maximum recording time is 582 hours when saving the file in .mp3 format, or 36-38 hours when using .wav.
- Compact overall dimensions;
- Acceptable cost;
- The control buttons are optimally positioned;
- Decent amount of built-in memory;
- Good battery capacity.
- With prolonged continuous use, it may freeze slightly.
Ritmix RR-145 8GB
The recorder is perfect for both ordinary notes and fixing lectures, negotiations, all kinds of interviews. It has several modes of operation, each of which has its own sensitivity and range. It should be noted that the recorder comes with a stereo microphone ME51, which is able to capture all the details of the conversation at a considerable distance. This device has an interesting music recording function. When used, the level of detail in sounds is greatly increased by turning off the filtering of the bass line. Another feature called LP helps to optimally use the amount of internal memory in case the device works continuously for a long time.
The model is able to work without recharging up to 60 hours, and built-in 4 GB of memory will be enough to record about 1560 hours of audio. The case is ergonomic, slightly curved, so the recorder is very comfortable to hold in your hand. The record button is made of rubber and has a embossed coating, so it is very easy to find it by touch. You can play the recording using the voice recorder itself — for this, the design has a small but rather loud speaker, as well as a jack for connecting standard headphones.
- Very easy to use;
- A large number of different modes of operation, which are strikingly different from each other;
- Decent built-in battery capacity.
- The recording process is carried out in mono format, which is not always convenient when decoding it.
7 Philips DVT1200
It has an informative LCD display, the diagonal of which is one and a half inches. In addition to the built-in memory of 4 GB, the device is equipped with a slot for connecting a microSDHC memory card, it supports up to 32 GB. By default, recording is done with the .wav extension, but you can switch to the more economical .mp3 if necessary. Battery life can reach 42 hours. The overall dimensions of this product are 108x37x19 mm with a weight of 49 grams. You can connect to a personal computer without installing additional software or drivers. Recording is activated using the original one-touch function.
The built-in memory is sufficient for 23 hours of .wav recording. It is very easy to find all the materials — for this, the manufacturer has provided a special search function for voice tags. This voice recorder is perfect for interviews, lectures, and ordinary notes. Compact overall dimensions allow you to carry it discreetly in your pockets. The sound is recorded in mono. The kit comes with two batteries, which, if necessary, can be replaced with accumulators. They will be recharged when the voice recorder is connected to a personal computer.
- Acceptable cost;
- Compact overall dimensions;
- Pretty broad functionality;
- Very high quality workmanship and assembly;
- Recording starts instantly — immediately after pressing the corresponding button, there are no delays;
- The presence of a sufficiently large liquid crystal display.
- The built-in microphone sometimes creates unnecessary interference.
Despite its small overall dimensions, this product is characterized by a fairly wide functionality, so it is perfect for audio recording both in open mode and unnoticed by people around. It has an mp3 player function. The product is connected to a computer via a USB connector, this product does not need to install specialized software and drivers, so the recorder can be used even as an ordinary USB flash drive. The operating system is designed in such a way that it practically does not consume battery power, which allows continuous recording for about 35 hours. The recorder is equipped with a built-in battery with a capacity of 1200 mAh, it can be fully charged within 2-2.5 hours. The dimensions are really very small — 50x20x7 mm with a weight of only 10 grams.
On the surface of the case there is a universal clip that allows you to fix the product on clothing. There is a built-in sound sensor — it automatically starts recording if a sound is heard, the volume of which exceeds 30 dB. You can activate it in the voice recorder settings. The microphone is equipped with a noise suppression function, so no interference will be heard when listening. The built-in memory is as much as 8 GB, so about 100 hours of recording in .wav format can fit here. Through the menu, you can delete unnecessary entries without connecting the device to a personal computer.
- Minimum overall dimensions;
- Decent memory capacity;
- High build quality;
- You can easily use it completely unnoticed by the interlocutor.
- The function of the mp3 player is worked out rather poorly.
5. Edic-mini Tiny 16 U49-300h
Digital model designed for professional single-directional voice recording, the maximum duration is 300 hours, the maximum recording distance is up to 15 meters. This effect can be achieved thanks to five built-in microphones at once, which also have good sensitivity and an active noise reduction system. The amount of internal memory is not too large — only 2 GB, but thanks to modern compression capabilities, even this parameter is enough to record about 300 hours if using a sampling rate of 8 kHz. Even in the on mode, the device will start recording only when voices start to sound.
There are two recording modes — linear and circular. In the first case, the gadget continues to record the conversation until the free memory space runs out. Ring recording is performed as follows: after the available volume is exhausted, the recorder automatically deletes the oldest files and replaces them with new ones. Each recorded file has the appropriate labels indicating the date, start time, and it also has a digital signature. With the help of the latter, it is possible to determine on which voice recorder the recording was made, and also whether any changes were made to it. In addition, there is an information security system — for this, the user can set a password on the recorder, which will not give access to the documents stored on it. The kit comes with an appropriate adapter through which the device connects to the computer.
- A large number of different settings;
- Five multidirectional microphones at once;
- Voice activation;
- Possibility to set a password;
- Ergonomic shape and compact overall dimensions.
- There is no standard USB port, although there is an adapter.
Edic-mini Tiny 16 U49-300h
4. Ritmix RR-610 8Gb
Quite an original and functional model, which, in addition to the function of recording voice and other sounds, has the capabilities of an mp3 player, besides, there is a radio receiver operating with the FM frequency. Using the products is quite convenient, the recording is in the .wav format, and this is the only format, switching to .mp3 is not provided here. Like most of the models included in our rating, it has the ability to activate by voice. It is quite sensitive — this parameter can be adjusted if necessary. There is a special connector for connecting a microphone. The recorder is connected to a personal computer using a retractable USB port. There is a slot for installing a memory card, the maximum amount of which can reach 32 GB.
The body of the recorder is made of high quality plastic. Its surface is matte, on the front panel there is an informative and functional liquid crystal display that will inform the user about the time elapsed since the start of recording, there is a battery charge indicator, a clock, and a display of the selected mode. The capacity of the built-in battery will be enough for continuous operation for 20 hours, the built-in memory will last for about 98 hours. The recorder itself is narrow, it is very convenient to carry it discreetly in your pocket.
- The original location of the USB connector;
- Battery life;
- Good workmanship and assembly;
- Absolutely invisible;
- Acceptable recording quality.
- Not a very user friendly menu.
Ritmix RR-610 8Gb
3. Edic-mini PRO B42-300h
It has functionality that is fully accessible through the menu of the voice recorder itself; to access all the features, you do not have to connect this product to a personal computer. The products are equipped with an OLED display with a high contrast ratio, making it very easy to set up and navigate through the menu. Despite the fact that the design is equipped with a USB 2.0 connection interface, the data transfer rate is still quite high. Overall dimensions are 94x12x12 mm, the weight of the device is 16 grams, excluding batteries or batteries. The built-in memory is enough for recording from 300 to 1200 hours, depending on the selected format and quality, the device can work for about 100 hours on a single battery charge.
For more comfortable work with this unit, there is a special software that provides full access to the voice recorder settings. It also has the ability to set a password to prevent unauthorized access to stored data. A timer function is provided. Thanks to it, the recorder can be set to record daily at a certain time, switching on at the right time. The use of this feature can significantly save memory and battery power. There is also a set that includes eight profiles with the ability to customize them. The body is made of durable metal, which helps to greatly extend the life of the product. Not surprisingly, the possibility of linear or ring recording is provided.
- A huge number of functions and features;
- Durable metal case;
- Informative display;
- Excellent build quality;
- Lots of settings.
- For comfortable work, you will have to install a special application on your computer;
- High price.
Edic-mini PRO B42-300h
Literally a step away from the leader, a rather interesting and functional model has stopped, which is perfect for recording personal thoughts and ideas, for journalistic work, for students, and so on. The products are equipped with a pair of stereo microphones, so the recording quality is quite high. Another distinctive quality is the presence of a rather large full-color display, with which you can provide very convenient access to all the settings of the equipment. This allows you to start recording almost instantly and make it as clear and high-quality as possible. The files are saved in different formats. If necessary, you can use the hands-free function, which provides voice control of the device. The interface is quite simple and clear. Recording is activated by simply pressing a button.
The device automatically configures its system software to work with various platforms — Windows, MacOS, Linux. In total, there is 8 GB of internal memory. This amount will be enough for a very long recording. In addition, there is a slot for a memory card. The recorder has a search function by the date and time of the recording, so you can find the desired file within a few seconds. The microphones have been developed with the latest technology, which allows for very clear voice recording and completely suppresses noise interference.
- Two-channel high quality recording;
- Decent amount of built-in memory;
- If desired, you can use it as an .mp3 player;
- The sensitivity of the microphones can be adjusted;
- Large full color display;
- Minor weight.
- Expensive for a voice recorder.
1. Ritmix RR-120 4Gb
We hasten to present you an original and very respectable model, which was honored to take first place in our ranking of the best hidden voice recorders. The appearance is very attractive: the case is made of high-quality metal, pleasant not only in appearance, but also to the touch. It has a nice matte finish. All buttons are located as convenient as possible for the user. They are made of metal, pictograms and corrugation are applied to them. The display is matrix monochrome, but its information content is quite enough to comfortably use the equipment. In addition, it fits quite organically into the exterior of the recorder itself.
The model is characterized by decent recording quality, which was achieved thanks to the installation of two very sensitive microphones, equipped with a stereo recording function and an active digital noise reduction system. The last possibility allows you to make the recording quality truly perfect. In addition, the recorder has its own speaker, through which you can listen to the recordings made or the music downloaded to the product’s memory. At the same time, the quality of the speaker is also very good, no noise or wheezing was detected even at maximum volume. There is also a radio here, and the broadcast can be recorded, but it should be borne in mind that the radio only works with headphones or a headset, which additionally act as an antenna. There is a slot for a microSD memory card. You can turn on the recorder by timer or activate it by voice. The capacity of the built-in battery is 320 mAh — enough for a fairly long work.
- Convenient and quite easy to use;
- A huge number of possibilities;
- Excellent recording and playback quality;
- There is a built-in radio.
- The radio cannot be heard through the speaker.
Ritmix RR-120 4Gb
In conclusion, a useful video
Our review is coming to an end. Before we say goodbye, we would like to express the hope that the article was able to help you find the best products. If you still have any questions, then ask us in the comments below the publication. We will promptly answer them: we will collect the information of interest, dispel the doubts that have arisen, or give useful advice.