Olympus LS-P2  

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Three years ago Olympus launched their LM-12 and LM-14 high quality voice and music recorders, the LM-14 was unique in having three microphones. Now they have launched the LS-P1 (4GB internal memory) and LS-P2 (8GB internal memory) the latter also has three microphones but is a lot smaller.

Olympus LS P2 8 GB Hi Resolution Audio Recorder
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The Olympus LS-P2 audio recorder weighs only 75grams and is 11x4x1.5cm so will fit easily in the palm of your hand.

Having used the LM-14 for a lot of music recording I know how helpful the ‘third microphone’ is for capturing base notes. So the LS-P2 with the third mic was the obvious choice for me.

Going around the outside has a 3.5mm headphone/earbud socket and then an external microphone 3.5mm socket and if you are testing in a low light setting this could lead to problems.

The base has a lanyard bar to feed through and is also where the USB socket emerges from.

On the left is a USB slider and higher up another slider, up for hold and down for power on/off.

The top has the three microphones two pointed at 90 degrees to each other with the bass microphone set flat in between the other two.

The back has a tripod screw and I hope to test this feature later with one of Olympus suitable cameras where the LS-P2 can be mounted. Also on the back is a push button that allows access to the bay where a single ‘AA’ rechargeable battery lives.

This leaves the very busy face, it contains everything that the early LM-12 and LM-14 had but of course as the whole unit is smaller so must be all the buttons and the ubiquitous five position joystick control, here however its nine position.

Towards the top is the 2.7x2.4cm screen this is backlit for 6 seconds so clear and easy to read black on white after that less easy to read grey on white unless a button is touched when you get another six seconds of backlight. There are up to six lines of information shown on the screen so make you initial practices in good light until you can hit the required keys as a touch typist would.

Just below the screen three bar buttons F1, Menu and F2. Below this Stop, Peak and Record, lower still the ubiquitous nine position joystick that takes you through the cavernous menu system.

Lastly just above the base two more buttons for Erase and List.

I hope I have managed how crowded the controls are and if you try it out for the first time in a crowded basement club the results you get will probably be naff.

However once you have the unit set up for level which in most cases Auto will do quite nicely but there are three manual options of low, mid and high for the meeting room environment. While I did test this in that situation my main tests were with music and these involved several live gigs that I recorded with permission from the musicians.

These ranged from trios up to a nine piece band.

After the initial setting of time and date and choice of folder to store the output in you really just press the red dot record button twice to start a recording and then the record button again to pause or the stop button to end the recording.

I was happy with all my recordings and for anyone who needs a small quality recorder this ticks all the boxes, once you know where all the buttons are.

The Olympus LS-P2 is available from Amazon priced, at the time of publication, at £165.35 with free delivery.

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