Belkin’s New iPod Microphone Adapter

In an earlier column I mentioned the excellent Belklin Voice Recorder microphone that plugs into an iPod. Now they’ve gone one step better: The Universal Microphone Adapter, that connects to your iPod and to any audio microphone with a 3.5mm plug.

You can use the iPod player’s abundant storage capacity to store hundreds of hours of audio, and easily review your audio notes using the built-in 3.5mm jack with headphones or your computer. Copy recordings to your computer for easy storage, editing, or to send in e-mail.

The Universal Microphone Adapter, iPoding reports, costs $40 and is expected to begin shipping on March 17th in North America. It

•  Attaches securely to your iPod with remote/headphone connector
•  Records 16-bit audio at 8kHz
•  Includes real-time recording-level LED indicator
•  Adjusts microphone sensitivity easily with 3-level gain switch
•  Works with iPod software version 2.1 or later

(Thanks to Buzz Bruggeman of ActiveWords for pointing this out)

02. March 2004 by jeremy
Categories: Devices | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 comments

Comments (11)

  1. I have recently bought the Mic attatchment (not the new one it mentioned here) The ipod says it doesnt work on this ipod???? please could you help me?
    a1051 is the model number on the back of ipod
    Thank you bill fleming

  2. Hi. I have a consern about these iPod microphones. Do they record in one direction or are they multidirectional? Thx.

  3. Experiencing replay problems with the adaptor. Had anyone had same?

  4. The microphones are unidirectional (all directions) but this product (microphone adapter) allows you to hook up your own microphone so you could hook up a unidirectional or whatever you like. The sound recording is only 16bit 8khZ though.

  5. The above user mentioned that the sound recordings from this adapter are only 16bit 8khZ. How does this affect sound quality in real terms? Has anyone made a lot of recordings with it, and what have they noticed in terms of sound quality?

  6. Is this product an alternative to mini-disc recordings? can i record my gig’s or practice?

  7. The audio quality recording settings are inexplicably poor in the sound recording software that’s built-in to the compatible iPods. It’s not something that comes with the microphone attachment; it’s always there. It’s just you can’t access it unless you plug in an iPod-compatible microphone/adapter like this one. Anyways, the sound quality is, at best, “dictation-quality” or quite poor. CD quality would be 44.1kHz sampling rate at 16bits, and the iPod is only 8kHz at 16 bits.

    According to the iPodLinux guys (do a Google search, you’ll find them) when you install Linux you can change settings that the normal Apple iPod OS doesn’t let you change, and the changes will stick even when you boot back into the Apple iPod OS. These settings include pushing the record quality up to 96kHz at 16bits – technically better than CD but the mic preamp built into the iPod is so poor you won’t hear the quality at THAT high a level.

    Still, I’m told you can record at 44.1kHz @ 16bit and get roughly CD quality sound easily enough…which is a nice extra for an iPod. I would recommend that if you plan to do any serious recording, purchase a good external mic preamp and quality microphones. Ask your local public radio station’s engineer for suggestions; they’re all over this stuff. Or scan through http://www.bswusa.com

  8. Will the Universal Microphone Adapter work with the new video ipod(80G)? Please somebody help.

  9. I own the Belkin Mic Recorder Adapter (got it for around 60$) and personally I don’t like it. The machine noise isn’t what bugs me (with such a compact device that problem is inevitable) – it’s the fact that after it records for roughly 20 secs the recorder will give out for about 4 secs and then start recording again, instead of there being dead air, the file just plays with the silence jammed out of the file. I don’t recommend or just pray that you don’t have the same problem that I had.

  10. Yes, I have also found that the “Belkin TuneTalk Stereo for iPod” cuts out sections of the audio. This results in a 30 min long file being only about 25 mins long, with 5 mins of silence at the end, which I assume indicates that the audio did originally record for 30 mins, but somehow, somewhere, short sections of audio have got clipped, adding up to 5 mins worth.
    The Instruction Manual suggests that clipping can occur if you have the “autogain” switch switched to an unsuitable setting. I had it switched “off”, which the manual suggests is best for loud situations, which mine weren’t. So will try it set to “ON” and see if this works….I sure hope so, as it’s very frustrating having gaps in the audio! Will keep you posted.

    Tim P

  11. Yes, I have also found that the “Belkin TuneTalk Stereo for iPod” cuts out sections of the audio. This results in a 30 min long file being only about 25 mins long, with 5 mins of silence at the end, which I assume indicates that the audio did originally record for 30 mins, but somehow, somewhere, short sections of audio have got clipped, adding up to 5 mins worth.
    The Instruction Manual suggests that clipping can occur if you have the “autogain” switch switched to an unsuitable setting. I had it switched “off”, which the manual suggests is best for loud situations, which mine weren’t. So will try it set to “ON” and see if this works….I sure hope so, as it’s very frustrating having gaps in the audio! Will keep you posted.

    Tim P