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Olympus Mixes Business and Entertainment With New WS-Series Combination Digital Voice Recorders & Music Players

New WS-Series Offers Enriched Audio Recording at Exceptional Lengths, Music Playback, and Plugs Directly into PC via USB to Store Essential Files

Melville, New York, September 12, 2005 - Olympus, the leading manufacturer of digital voice recorders in the United States, today adds three new models to its reliable and easy-to-use WS-Series that offer top-quality audio, ease of use and extensive recording times for anyone looking for great convenience and reliability from a voice recorder. Each voice recorder features a compact and stylish design and delivers high quality stereo recording over extremely long recording times that range from 68 to 277 hours.

Additionally, the music playing function allows users to download WMA and MP3 music file formats with WOW/SRS effects for high fidelity. Moreover, like the earlier WS recorders, each of the three new WS-Series is also a portable mass storage class device, ideal for uploading large files from one PC to another fast and effectively.

"Olympus voice recorders continue to provide excellent recording and playback sound quality to users that demand a superior device," said Andy Flagg, senior national sales manager for Olympus Imaging America Inc. "The WS-300M, WS-310M and WS-320M are our second generation of voice recorders that are plug-and-play mass storage class devices, and they now offer WMA and MP3 music file playing to bring entertainment to you both in the office or on the road."

Designed To Work Hard
Ideal for physicians, attorneys, journalists and students who don't want to bother with learning a complicated device, the new WS-Series voice recorders are easy-to-use, have reliable functionality and enhance productivity. The WS-Series models deliver a higher sampling rate in the Long Play (LP) mode for maximum recording length of audio. Designed with four recording modes, users can retrieve superior sound through the HQ mode; use the LP and SP modes for extended recording; or ST HQ for stereo recording.

Designed to Play Hard
The music function of the WS-Series records in high quality Windows Media Audio (WMA) and MP3 music file playing with WOW/SRS effects for great quality music. WOW is a remarkable audio playback enhancement technology that dramatically enriches the audio providing rich bass and 3D stereo sound for a dynamic listening experience. Based on the elements of SRS 3D technology, WOW retrieves the spatial information that is lost during the recording and playback process and restores the original three-dimensional sound field. As a result, the reproduced sound is much closer to what the artist originally intended and delivers the same immersive and powerful 3D audio experience over headphones. This means that users can upload their favorite songs or albums to one device for their listening pleasure.

The WS-300M records up to 68 hours of audio in LP mode or 66 songs (approx. four minutes with 128kbps per a song); the WS-310M records up to 138 hours of audio in LP mode or 132 songs (approx. four minutes with 128kbps per a song); and the WS-320M records up to 277 hours of audio in LP mode or 266 songs (approx. four minutes with 128kbps per song).

Designed for Excitement
Users of the WS-300M (256MB of flash memory), WS-310M (512MB) and WS-320M (1GB) will benefit from the different playback settings. After capture, the slow playback option allows recordings to be listened to efficiently with playback that is 25% slower than real time. The fast playback option allows recordings to be played 50% faster than real time. Traditionally, users will keep rewinding to hear what was said, but with slow playback they will be less likely to do so, and they can skip ahead to the sections that are important with fast playback. Also, a repeat playback option enables repeated playback of just the selected part of the file being played.

Delivering Style
Each WS-Series voice recorder incorporates PC Link via "USB Direct," a unique design that incorporates the USB output into the recorders' bodies. The voice recorder actually separates from the battery unit and plugs into the USB port on most PCs for a direct connection to a computer. And, because the WS-Series is a portable mass storage class device, it is also ideal for anyone downloading large files including documents and images in addition to audio files, with no software required.

Whether tucked away in a drawer, shirt pocket or while in hand, the ultra-compact design of the WS-Series voice recorders (3.73" x 1.50" x 0.43") and lightweight (1.62 ounces, including alkaline battery) make them ideal for travel. The WS-300M features a shiny silver exterior while the WS-310M model features champagne gold and the WS-320M looks sharp sporting a sleek piano black. All models come standard with easy-to-read backlit full-dot LCD screens that reveal file information, recording time and events. The speaker for audio playback is located on the front of the recorders, adding to their professional look.

Intelligent Design
Each model is outfitted with an ergonomic dial thumb pad allowing the user to adjust the volume level, fast-forward and rewind with the touch of one button. The Erase and Folder/Index buttons are positioned individually below the thumb dial for easy access during use. Record, Stop, and Play button are located on the side of the recorder.

The WS-Series also features voice activation to record sound as soon as it's picked up by the built-in microphone for hands-free recording. This feature also extends recording time by recording only when the microphone senses sound.

Designed for You
The new WS-Series voice recorders deliver an easy-to-use interface that allows users to organize digital voice recordings and music. All three models have five separate file folders that allow up to 199 files per folder for unmatched organization. For added convenience, users can lock a file to keep important data from being accidentally erased, or single or entire files can be erased if necessary.

The WS-300M, WS-310M and WS-320M voice recorders have up to 15 hours of continuous operation made possible by a single AAA battery for low power consumption.

Availability
The WS-Series will be available in October 2005. It comes with Stereo Earphone, One AAA battery, USB Cable (if needed for connection to PC's difficult-to-reach USB port), and Instruction Manual.

U.S. Pricing
WS-300M Digital Voice Recorder Estimated Street Price: $149.99 (U.S.)
WS-310M Digital Voice Recorder Estimated Street Price: $179.99 (U.S.)
WS-320M Digital Voice Recorder Estimated Street Price: $229.99 (U.S.)

Review units and high-resolution images of the WS-Series Digital Voice Recorder are available from Mullen Public Relations. Contact Ryan Murphy, 978-468-8978 or Ryan.Murphy@mullen.com. For more information contact Chris Sluka, senior public relations manager, Olympus Imaging America Inc, Consumer Products Group, Two Corporate Center Dr., P.O Box 9058 Melville, NY 11747-9058, ph: (631) 844-5000 (800) 622-6372, Fax: (631) 844-5262.

ABOUT OLYMPUS IMAGING AMERICA INC.
Olympus Imaging America Inc is a precision technology leader, designing and delivering award-winning products for consumer and professional markets.

Olympus Imaging America works collaboratively with its customers and its parent company, Olympus Corporation, to develop breakthrough technologies with revolutionary product design and functionality that enhances peoples lives every day. These include:

  • Digital and film cameras
  • Professional SLR Imaging Systems
  • Digital and Microcassette recorders
  • Digital Music Players
  • Personal Photo Printers
  • Digital Print Kiosks
  • Digital Video Projectors
  • Digital Media
  • Binoculars
Olympus Imaging America Inc is responsible for sales in United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.

Contacts:
Chris Sluka, Senior Public Relations Manager
Olympus Imaging America Inc.
(631) 844-5321
chris.sluka@olympus.com

Ryan Murphy
Mullen Public Relations
(978) 468-8978
ryan.murphy@mullen.com