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Sony ICD-TX50

4GB digital voice recorder with expandable memory

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Item # 158ICDTX50

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Our take on the Sony ICD-TX50

The ultra-thin Sony ICD-TX50 digital voice recorder takes up less space in a pocket or purse than a standard recorder, so it's more convenient to bring along. And its integrated belt clip turns outward to become a kickstand, holding the ICD-TX50 upright for optimal recording. The recorder's large LED display makes menu navigation and control easy.

Sony ICD-TX50 digital voice recorder

The ultra-thin design makes it easy to slip into a purse or pocket.

A slim form factor that won't get in the way

The ultra-thin Sony ICD-TX50 digital voice recorder takes up less space in a pocket or purse than a standard recorder, so it's more convenient to bring along. And its integrated belt clip turns outward to become a kickstand, holding the ICD-TX50 upright for optimal recording. The recorder's large LED display makes menu navigation and control easy.

Expandable memory

With the ICD-TX50, you don't have to worry about running out of recording space. The recorder has 4GB of built-in memory. That's enough for 178 hours of basic-quality recordings, or 6 hours of CD-quality audio. But if you need more, just insert a microSD card into the player and keep recording.

Easy on-the-go recording

The ICD-TX50 features Scene Select to take the guesswork out of recording. Simply select what you want to record, such as lectures, music, or personal memos, and Scene Select automatically adjusts the recording levels for you. And the intelligent noise cut feature further improves recordings made under less-than-ideal circumstances. The voice-activated mode lets you make convenient, hands-free recordings.

Playback and charging

Use the built-in speaker for playback, or plug your headphones into the minijack for more discreet listening. The recorder's built-in rechargeable battery can deliver up to 24 hours of operation, and recharging is simple. Just plug the ICD-TX50's USB recharging cable into your computer or laptop.

Product Highlights:

  • battery-powered digital voice recorder with expandable memory
  • built-in stereo microphone
  • 4GB embedded memory holds up to
    • 178 hours of basic-quality mono voice recordings
    • 6 hours of highest-quality voice recordings
  • records to MP3 audio files
  • built-in editing functions:
    • digital pitch control
    • bookmark sections of a track during recording or playback
  • expandable microSD card slot (memory card not included)
  • LED display
  • built-in speaker
  • selectable voice-activated recording
  • Scene Select automatically sets levels based on activity (notes, music, lecture, etc.)
  • high-speed USB interface (compatible with both PC and Mac®)
  • headphone minijack output
  • Sound Organizer audio editing software included
  • integrated pocket clip doubles as kickstand
  • built-in rechargeable battery provides up to 24 hours of operation
  • 1-11/16"W x 4-1/8"H x 3/8"D
  • weight: 1.75 oz.
  • warranty: 1 year parts, 90 days labor
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
Computer Requirements:
  • Windows® 7, Windows Vista® or Windows® XP Home or Professional with Service Pack 3 or later
  • Mac OS X v.10.3.9-v.10.7 (Sony software has limited Mac compatibility)

What's in the Box:

  • Digital voice recorder
  • Carrying pouch
  • 32" USB cable (Type A on one end and Micro USB on the other)
  • Stereo earbud headphones with 38" cable (3.5mm miniplug)
  • Noise damper
  • Sony Sound Organizer Ver.1.2.0 CD-ROM disc
  • Quick Start Guide
  • Warranty information
  • Customer support home page information
  • Note about copying files to a computer
  • Headphone listening warning sheet
  • Online product registration information

Hands-on research

Product Research

Overview: The Sony ICD-TX50 Digital Voice Recorder provides high-quality stereo recording for meetings or lectures through its built-in microphone and integrated 4 GB flash memory. The ICD-TX50 offers multiple recording quality settings, from linear PCM (WAV) to 48 kbps mono MP3, with 178 hours maximum recording time using built-in memory. A convenient carrying pouch is included to store, transport, and protect the digital voice recorder.

Display Features
Recording Functions
Edit Functions
Playback Functions
Computer Requirements
Power Requirements

Display Features

LCD Display: The ICD-TX50 features an LED backlit, monochrome LCD display which shows recording and playback information. The recorder will display the remaining recording time in hours, minutes, and seconds.

Multiple Language Display: You can select the language used in the display for messages, menus, folder names, file names, etc.: English, French, and Spanish.

Date and Time: With the time and date set, that information is written to the file automatically as it's recorded. Additionally, you can set an alarm and start playback of a selected file on a specified date, once every week, or at the same time every day.

Recording Functions

Stereo Microphone: The ICD-TX50 features two built-in microphones on the top of the recorder.

Built-In 4 GB Flash Memory: The built-in 4 GB flash memory holds hours of audio or voice memos. The unit can recognize up to 400 folders, and up to 199 files per folder (or a total of 4,095 folders and files for one memory media). Because a portion of the memory is used for system management and/or application files, available capacity is approximately 3.6 GB.

External Media: In addition to the built-in memory, the TX50 has a slot for a microSD or microSDHC card (up to 32 GB).

Recording Scene: Four Scenes are available to best suit the recording setting:

  • Shirt Pocket: recorder in a pocket with the clip facing outward
  • Meeting: recording in a spacious room, typically with the recorder in a table
  • Voice Notes: dictating with the microphone very close to your mouth
  • Interview: recording from a distance of approximately three to six feet

Multiple Recording Formats: The digital voice recorder offers multiple recording formats and quality modes:

Recording Mode Frequency Response Maximum Recording Time
Built-in 4 GB Memory
44.1kHz, 16-bit
95 Hz - 20 kHz 6 hours
MP3 192 kbps 95 Hz - 18 kHz 44 hours 40 minutes
MP3 128 kbps 95 Hz - 16 kHz 67 hours 5 minutes
MP3 48 kbps (Mono) 95 Hz - 14 kHz 178 hours

Microphone Sensitivity: The microphones have three sensitivity settings, High, Medium, and Low.

VOR Function: When using the VOR (Voice Operated Recording) function, the ICD-TX50 starts recording automatically when it detects sound exceeding a specified level, and pauses when no sound is heard, eliminating recording silence.

Low-Cut Filter: When you set the LCF (Low-Cut Filter) function to On, the recorder cuts out low frequencies to reduce the background noise from wind, projector fan, etc.

Shirt Clip/Stand: Although it doesn't stand the recorder on end, the shirt clip doubles as a stand to raise the microphones slightly above the surface when sitting on a table or desktop. The included noise damper fits in the shirt clip opening to remove vibrations transmitted through the table.

Edit Functions

Divide: In the stop mode, you can divide a file into two parts, with the new file number being added to the newer part of the divided file.

Track Mark: You can add a track mark at a point in a file and use it during playback. You can add up to 98 bookmarks to each file. You can also divide a file at all the track marks if you like.

Move Files: You can move a file from one folder to another folder, or copy files between the built-in memory and the memory card in either direction.

Erase: You can erase your files one at a time, or all the files in a folder at once.

Protect Files: To prevent a file from being accidentally erased or edited it can be marked as protected.

Playback Functions

Built-In Speaker and Headphones: The ICD-TX50 features a built-in speaker so you can listen to your recordings. It also features a 3.5mm headphone output and comes with a pair of earbud-style headphones for private listening.

Playback: The recorder offers Play, Stop, Previous, Next, and Repeat playback functions.

Easy Search: You can skip forward or backward a preset amount of time to help locate a desired point in a long recording. The forward skip settings are 5 sec, 10sec, 30 sec, 1 min, 5 min, and 10 min. The backward skip settings are 1 sec, 3 sec, 5 sec, 10sec, 30 sec, 1 min, 5 min, and 10 min.

Digital Pitch Control: The Digital Pitch Control allows you to adjust the playback speed of your recording. The playback speed can be adjusted from half normal speed to twice normal speed (playback speed cannot be increase for LPCM files). The recording is still played back in a natural tone using digital processing.

Sound Effect: You can choose from the following Sound Effects:

  • Clear Voice 1: reduces the volume level outside the human vocal range, and adjusts low and loud voices to the optimum volume automatically, making voices easy to understand; not suitable for listening to music
  • Clear Voice 2: similar to Clear Voice 1, but with greater adjustment
  • Pop: stresses the middle ranges, ideal for vocal centered music
  • Rock: emphasizes high and low ranges for a powerful sound
  • Jazz: emphasizes high ranges for lively sound
  • Bass 1: emphasizes the bass sound
  • Bass 2: emphasizes the bass sound more than Bass 1

Computer Requirements

USB Port: The Sony ICD-TX50 features a micro-USB B port and includes a USB cable to connect the digital voice recorder to your computer. You can do the following when you connect the digital voice recorder to your computer.

  • Copy Files: You can copy the files and folders recorded on the ICD-TX50 to your computer to save them. You can also copy music or other audio files from your computer to the recorder, including WAV, MP3, WMA, and AAC-LC by a simple drag and drop operation.
  • Mass Storage Device: You can store image data or text data saved on your computer temporarily on the ICD-TX50

Sony Sound Organizer ver.1.2.0: The included Sound Organizer software allows you to import files from the recorder to your computer. You can also import songs from music CDs, MP3 and other audio files, and podcasts for transferring to the recorder. The software lets you edit, view track marks, and burn CDs/DVDs.

  • Operating System: To be compatible with the Sound Organizer software, your computer will need to have one of the following operating systems installed:
    • Windows 7: Ultimate, Professional, Home Premium, Home Basic, Starter
    • Windows Vista: Ultimate (SP2 or higher), Business (SP2 or higher), Home Premium (SP2 or higher), Home Basic (SP2 or higher)
    • Windows XP: Media Center Edition 2005 (SP3 or higher), Media Center Edition 2004 (SP3 or higher), Professional (SP3 or higher), Home Edition (SP3 or higher)

Note: The TX50 only has Drag and Drop Mass Storage Device functionality with Mac OS X (v10.3.9-v10.7).

Optional Software: The ICD-TX50 is compatible with Dragon NaturallySpeaking voice recognition software (not included).

Power Requirements

Battery Life: The built-in rechargeable Lithium-ion battery takes about an hour and a half to charge and offers varying battery life based on use (all times are in hours and approximate):

Mode Recording Playback (speaker) Playback (headphones)
LPCM 18 10 19
MP3 192 kbps 24 11 23
MP3 128 kbps 24 11 25
MP3 48 kbps 24 11 26
Music File - 11 26

Our Product Research Team

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Q & A

Customer Q&A

1 question already asked

We have not received any answers from other customers on your question. I would recommend reaching out to an Advisor by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. They should be able to help answer your question. [ Jeff  Sep 08, 2014 ]  Staff