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717richboy's avatar

I need to buy a recorder, something cheap, so that I can record a conversation.

Asked by 717richboy (234points) April 22nd, 2012

I received a bad grade on an assignment I did for a professor who absolutely hates me. I plan on meeting with her to discuss the failing grade she gave me and to discuss the unprofessional remarks she made. I need this recorder in case I need to take this situation to the college dean. Can anyone recommend a purse-sized voice recorder so that I can successful record the conversation we’ll have when I meet with her? I am close to a radio shack and walmart. I’d prefer something cheap (maximum of $30) and subtle. Oh, and if it has a USB, so that I can upload the conversation to my laptop, I’d really like that, too! Please help. Thanks.

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14 Answers

Aethelflaed's avatar

Do you have a smartphone? Because if so, check to see if the phone already has that capability.

717richboy's avatar

I don’t have a smartphone. I have a recorder on my phone, but the touch screen doesn’t work and I need a whole new phone. Thank you for the recommendation.

wundayatta's avatar

Go to Walmart. You should be able to get something for less than $30.

You do have to tell the professor you are recording the conversation if you want to use it in court, I think. I’m not sure about other situations, though.

Charles's avatar

Buy a digital voice recorder. I have an Olympus. We’re talking $20 -$30. Now, besides using it for the job you described, you might find as I do what a fantastic tool this is. I use mine all the time. For example, when driving there is so much dead time and things, random things come to mind. Things to look up, people of the past and what happened to them, things I need to get done, things I see on the side of the road that need attention (burned out street lights). Also, as I walk around my house during the week, I note things that need to be done like burned out lights, broken appliances, unshined shoes…such little things that if I didn’t write or recite them down, they’d never get done. Then on Saturdays, I replay my “list” of “to do“s and get all these little things done. A digital voice recorder is absolutely fantastic. These are things in the past a person would have jotted down on a piece of paper but a recorder is much faster and very easy to use in the car. You don’t need a ton of memory either. When you record, all you need is a key word to remind you later.

Here is the one I have,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=shop&cid=10704691692874320812&sa=X&ei=uWaUT_vYG8PQ2AWp1rX2BA&ved=0CKwBEPMCMAI

and here are a bunch more,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=e040e1c25aedeb6f

Aethelflaed's avatar

@wundayatta It depends on the exact state laws.

rebbel's avatar

Is it not so that you have to alert your conversation partner when you plan on recording the talk you are going to have?

717richboy's avatar

@Charles – Funny that you mention the Olympus! I was actually on the Radio Shack website and I was weighing my options with it. It didn’t specify whether it had a USB, so you’re the perfect person to ask. Does it have an input that I can connect my USB cord to and upload it?

@wundayatta – I don’t think court is necessary. I think the furthest it’ll go is to the dean.

717richboy's avatar

@rebbel – Yes, I would like for the recorder to not alert her when we’re having the conversation. When I leave the office, I’ll then turn it off.

CWOTUS's avatar

Check your state laws anyway. Regardless of whether you intend to use the recording as evidence at a trial, it may be a violation of the law to simply make the recording without her knowledge.

zigmund's avatar

If I were the Dean and you brought me a recording made without the professor knowing about it, I would refuse to listen to it to protect the professor’s privacy, and I’d throw you out of my office, if not the college. Just saying.

marinelife's avatar

In some states, it is illegal to record someone without their permission.

Bellatrix's avatar

@717richboy where I live it is illegal to record a conversation without alerting the other party that you are doing so. You do need to check on the situation where you are.

I also think it may reflect poorly on you if you don’t alert the professor to the fact you are recording the conversation. You may believe they have been unfair when marking your paper but you could be wrong. You may deserve the fail grade you were awarded. If you then surreptitiously record this conversation, you may make the situation worse.

Charles's avatar

“I was actually on the Radio Shack website and I was weighing my options with it. It didn’t specify whether it had a USB, so you’re the perfect person to ask. Does it have an input that I can connect my USB cord to and upload it?”

Mine does not but I even if it did, I wouldn’t see the use of it unless it had voice to text or text to voice capabilities and even then, I don’t think I would use those capabilities. It’s mostly a record-at-the-spu-of-the-moment device and play back at a convenient time to address “to do“s.

Nullo's avatar

You can still buy microcassette recorder, good and cheap. They may have one in the university bookstore.

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