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RecAll-PRO, the Ultimate
Virtual Recording Device for DXing

by Guido Schotmans

A few weeks ago, a very interesting article about "Emerging Techniques of High-Tech DXpeditioning" was published on DXing.info. Although a lot of information was new to me, and very useful in my DX-activities, I was surprised to hear that the authors were not aware of a virtual recorder equipped with time-stamping.

RecAll-PRO is a tiny little recorder that continuously time and date stamps recordings. You can download it at http://www.sagebrush.com

When a recording is played back, the day, date and time will be added to the screen. So this is really the solution for those of us writing down the recording data on a small piece of paper that often is lost afterwards. But there is more! It is possible to add annotations that describe what's recorded at that moment. I do it this way: at the beginning of the recording, I add annotation mentioning the frequency and when already known, the station's name. But it is even possible to add extra annotation with some program details like "ID"; "News" etc. That makes is very easy to find a certain sequence back.

Furthermore RecAll-Pro has a feature called Vox (voice-activation). This adjusts the sound level intensity at which recording begins. That means that you don't have to struggle with setting the times of both the receiver and once again that of the recorder. RecAll-Pro records only when there is audio available at the line-in and stops when there is no audio. It is also possible to activate settings to start a new file every time when there is audio available again and file names can have a date prefix if you want.

You can choose between many WAV and MP3 audio formats. Ogg Vorbis format will be added in the near future. For DXing it isn't necessary to choose the large file-size formats. Depending on what you will do afterwards you have to consider your choice. Most of the time, I'm using MPEG Layer-3, 8kBits/s., 11025 Hz sample rate mono Wav's. (this option is using 0.057 MB of disk space/min), or MP3 files with MPEG Layer-3, 16kBits/s., 16000 Hz sample rate mono compression.

Worth mentioning is that the creator of this piece of software has an open mind for improvements. Guy Atkins suggested adding an option to activate a date and time shift from the PC's clock. That would make it possible to have the date/time stamping in UTC instead of your local PC time. And also his suggestion to add keyboard shortcuts or hotkeys for annotations and selection marks was also welcomed.

RecAll-PRO costs $29.95 US. There's also the non-pro version but I recommend the pro while this is more stable and it has more features.

Both versions can be tested during 15 real use days (not calendar days) and further also the next 15 calendar days after the 15th usage day.

Published on January 30, 2003

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MS Word version of this article

Emerging Techniques of High-Tech DXpeditioning

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