Is the Clip+ mic affected by the clip itself?

I need to do voice recordings. The microphone port (tiny hole) is on the back and when the clip is clipped to something, it just about covers the mic port.

Has anyone experienced problems with this?

Would it serve me to carve away a bit of the top of the clip in order to make the aperture more open to the world?

The Clip+ is a good mp3 player but a horrible recorder. Get a decent digital recorder if you want to make decent recordings. Take a look at the $66 Olympus WS-802. Besides much better recording quality, the WS-802 has several choices for bitrate recording in mp3, WMA, or in WAV. It has numerous features for managing recordings that the Clip+ lacks. It runs on a AAA battery(it comes with a rechargeable AAA that the recorder can charge via USB). It can record to card memory.

Thanks for the quick reply.

The Clip+ is what I have. No time to acquire another device.

The quality of the Clip+ voice recordings so far seem quite fine. 

Back to the original question: any value in making the mic more accessible to sound pressure/waves?

The best think you can do to improve sound quality of recordings on the Clip+ is to get the player closer to the speaker’s mouth. Clipping the player to the front of the speaker’s shirt(perhaps to the top of the shirt pocket?)

may help. if you try carving out the hole around where the mic is you may damage the mic. i doubt it would help anyway. The mic on the Clip+ is not very sensitive. The recording feature seems to be designed for the player to be held right in front of someone’s mouth so they can record memos for themself. It doesn’t seem to work well once the distance from the speaker’s mouth gets more than 2 or 3 feet. With greater distance there is lower recording volume and more noise.

I certainly wouldn’t go carving out holes. Your question can best be answered by a few test recordings. When I used as a recorder I sat the thing on a table. If you wear the thing you might pick up extraneous noise due to movement, try it. Recording quality otherwise is quite adequate for lecture notes, meetings etc.

The dedicated recorder is of course more versatile with rediculously long continuous recording times (which I think you will find exceeds the battery life) and voice actuation etc., but for most purposes this little thing is adequate.

Thanks.

I did 3 test recordings… handheld, spoken into the front (buttons/screen) side… handheld, spoken into the back (clip) side… table placed, spoken into the front side. Handheld were 12-15 in. from my mouth, table-placed, about 20 inches.

Interesting results. 

  1. Front side: noticeable but not intrusive condenser mic bass boost (proximity effect). Adequate overall voice frequency response, but with slightly muffled treble response.

  2. Back side: more pronouned bass boost. Way more pronounced muffled-ness (less treble response).

  3. Table-placed: ok bass, pronounced treble response. For my (amateur) voice, would need a de-esser to cut sibilants.

The same results (with far higher volume) with Cool Edit noise reduction + voice compressor (amplitude transform) + normalization to 95%.

I’m thinking that when it’s placed face-up on a table surface, the little thing becomes a type of pressure-zone microphone http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PZM_(microphone)