Livescribe Echo 4GB Smartpen APA00006 Review

Handwritten formula

Using a Livescribe Smartpen

Livescribe Echo 4 GB Smartpen APA00006:  A Review

My writing  a Livescribe Echo 4 GB Smartpen APX00005 Review is the result of my excitement about my experiences with Livescribe digital pen technology and what it can do to help students achieve their goals and reach their potential.  Students, their parents, teachers, business professionals and special groups can benefit all from this wonderful technology.

You might well say that a pen is after all a pen. Why create such a racket about a pen? But there are some things which are life-changing. There are technological advances which can make a difference. What if a pen could transform the life of a learning disabled child? What if a pen brought a smile on the face of a physically challenged boy? How about a pen that might bring up the grades of a college student who finds it difficult to take notes fast enough to record the main points covered by lecturers.  In my Livescribe Echo 4 GB Voice Recorder Smartpen Review I am going to talk about such a pen – a pen product that can make a difference –  a Livescribe Echo4GB.

I started using a Livescribe Smartpen a couple years ago and fell in love with its abilities to record absolutely every word of a lecture and the notes I took during the audio recording as well.

Using my Livescribe Echo Digital Voice Recorder Smartpen, recording audio and integrating the voice recording with digital text and drawings are a breeze.

So is saving to the pen, transferring to the computer and searching on the pen or personal Livescribe webspace.

I can upload my recordings to my computer for updating, organization and management and  sharing with friends.

Livescribe Echo 4GB Smartpen Versus Other Livescribe Smartpens

All the Livescribe digital smartpens are functionally the same; performance for all is great.   The most important difference between the Echo and the Pulse is the amount of memory storage: 4GB for the Livescribe 4 GB Echo  Smartpen, and 8GB for the Livescribe Echo 8GB Smartpen .

A second difference is that while the Livescribe 2 GB Pulse Smartpen (APA00003) is designed for use in a classroom or meeting room; the Livescribe Echo 4GB Smartpen APA00006 and the Livescribe Echo 8 GB Smartpen are designed so they can be used with binaural speakers in convention halls or large conference rooms.

My extensive research research has shown that the digital pen that I think offers great storage and the best value for the money is the Echo 4GB; my reasons are in my Livescribe Echo 4 GB Smartpen APA00006 Review below.  But first let me tell you a little about Livescribe.

About Livescribe

Livescribe is located in Oakland, California and has been manufacturing digital pens which have radically changed the way we write and take notes. The digital pens, the Livescribe Echo and Pulse smartpens have been developed to capture a voice recording and link audio with handwriting which can be played back and updated later if you like at your convenience.

The design encourages users to listen and learn during lectures and not simply concentrate on taking notes because the pens will record every word.

My Livescribe 4 GB Echo Smartpen APA00006 Review

What you get

Out of the box, you get:

Livescribge 4 GB Echo smartpen

• 4GB memory

• 500MB of personal online storage

• Dot paper starter notebook – Special paper with DPS ( Dot positioning system)

• Standard 3.5mm audio jack

• Micro USB Cable

• Interactive Getting Started Guide

• Smartpen Tips and Tricks Guide

• 2 smartpen caps

• 2 ink cartridges

The writing on the wall – Echo 4 GB Smartpen

Smart design

By smart design I mean, this sleek silver smartpen is easy to hold and write with. It has an antiroll ergonomic shape which is made to feel like your ink pen. It has a rubber-like grip which is nice and fits snugly. I would not say that it is perfect for people who are challenged. I would have liked an adjustable grip which could be fine tuned. For normal teenagers however it is just about perfect.

Capture a Complete Voice Recording of a Lecture, Speech, Interview

This capability gives Livescribe the edge against all competitos who produce and market digital smartpens.  You can listen to the speaker and understand while taking notes if you wish.  Replay the lecture and add audio content and extra notes and drawings.  As a college student, I would have loved this feature especially when it is time to cram for mid-terms or finals!

Write keywords for searching

Most of us get tired while taking notes, especially teenagers. Our attention may wander. Taking notes in lectures may mean we miss the critical parts of a speech. With the Livescribe Smartpen, I can attend conferences without fear of losing important details. While taking notes, I just have to jot down the keywords or headings and hit the audio button. The smartpen does the rest.

When I am back home, I click on the relevant keyword or text heading to search the recording (called a pencast) and out comes the audio. With speech to text I can convert everything into text – there I have saved a thousand headaches and lots of time rewriting.

This is the beauty of the technology I am talking about. It is this ability to transform your ordinary manual life into a high power, creative and result oriented being.  That is what the Livescribe Echo 4GB Smartpen product is all about.

Search, update and share – Livescribe Desktop

A Livescribe Echo 4GB is a power house when it is connected to the computer with a Livescribe desktop interface. I could not believe it at first when I saw the collaboration and sharing which was possible with this awesome technology. I could connect with a whole lot of people, friends, students and fellow travellers in life.

Livescribe 4 GB Echo Smartpen brings an entire ecosystem into play. You can share your notes as CDs and PDFs and even love songs if you are up to it.

Talking of songs, the smartpen has a range of audio controls at your fingertips. For high school and college students and even foreign businessmen, one of the best features is the superior audio controls of the pen and Livescribe Desktop. At the bottom of the paper are controls that allow skipping to a keyword, back to another keyword, moving back and forth.

The audio recording can also be paused and replayed more slowly (8 levels of playback speed). I have known foreigners who cannot follow the spoken word well. There are teenagers with hearing problems from listening to loud music. The lectures and meeting notes can be replayed slowly with volume adjusted as many times as needed.

The pen is particularly good at recording oral reports, or recording presentation in draft stages. The pencast can be uploaded to the Desktop where images can be added and the oral report modified. Recording oral reports or oral readings is especially helpful when studying a foreign language;  the student gets to hear his pronunciation and check the definition with the language translator.

Livescribe Echo Smartpens Come With 500 MB of Free Livescribe Personal online space

Creating virtual notebooks is a breeze with the Livescribe Desktop. With every purchase you get 500 MB of personal online space which you use to store your data and share with others. With Facebook and now email integration, I think the pen has reached its zenith.

Have you heard that Livescribe Connect Premium comes with the Livescribe 4 GB Echo Smartpen?  This gives you email capability from smartpen or Livescribe Desktop. Neat, eh?

Store 400 hours of Audio Before Transfer

Just for comparison, your iPod which you use for listening to songs has almost the same storage. With Livescribe 4GB Echo SmartpenAPA00006 you can record 400 hours of audio, which means a semester worth of lectures. Considering that you will be transferring data to your computer every few days, 4 GB is an enormous amount.

Battery and accessories

I found the battery to be king-size. It lasts for five hours recording before recharging. Since I am a safety freak I like to transfer all my files to the computer as often as possible, though I have not yet faced any loss of data. The Micro – USB cable is easy to connect to the computer USB port and the transfer of data is seamless.

You may have to buy Paper Pack 4 Notebooks for $18 and Ink Cartridges 4 black, one red about $6. These are available on Amazon as is the smartpen itself.

The not so good things about Livescribe 4GB Echo Smartpen

There are a few niggles here and there.

I don’t know why they have been charging separately for Handwriting Conversion Package, MyScript for Livescribe. 


The pen cover has the nasty habit of falling off and disappearing – needs some design change since the ink dries without the pen cover

Though everything works smoothly, there are some hiccups in the email capability. I suppose such glitches would be eased out in due course of time.

Livescribe Echo 4GB Smartpen APA00006 Review: Bottom Line

The Livescribe Echo 4 GB  is great for everyone – especially for teenagers focused on academics and music, teachers, college students and students who speak English as a second language.  Foreign language learners who have trouble following lectures because of attention problems, distractions, accents of teachers and lecturers and language issues may gain many benefits from these amazing electronic pens.

At present an Echo Smartpen  is a great productivity tool which has the ability to transform normal lives. Used intelligently it can help students to focus on understanding their teachers and save hundreds of hours transferring written notes into legible reading material.

The organization and management features of the Livescribe Desktop will allow you to organize your notes for best retrieval. The pen doesn’t cost much, less than a college textbook if you use the digital smartpen regularly for capture, access and sharing.  A $130 Livescribe smartpen costs used almost daily costs little more than fifty cents a day to use for a year.  Most Pulse Smartpen owners are still using the Pulse pens purchased years ago. Over time Smartpen users can derive benefits which go beyond the value of the initial cost of pen purchase.

I believe the ultimate benefit to you is that with this pen you can attend meetings and lectures and record absolutely every word, every drawing or formula without missing a word—do it effortlessly and never miss an important thought.

Hope the ideas expressed in this Livescribe 4 GB Echo Smartpen APA00006 Review are helpful!

Later you can replay the whole recording or parts of the recording, searching by keyword and replay at a speed you feel comfortable with. Upload to the Livescribe Desktop for  organization, management, archiving and searching.  If there is an observation you want added or a drawing you can update the pencast.

I have not been able to cover all the benefits of this smartpen in this short Livescribe 4GB Echo Smartpen APA00006  Review. I hope you will find many more pleasant surprises once you start using this smartpen.

Purchasing a Livescribe Smartpen:

I’ve found that the best place to shop for Livescribe smartpens is Amazon, for four reasons:

  • On Amazon you can see other consumers’ reviews of products and vendors.
  • You can get discounted prices
  • You  get free shipping.
  • Amazon is a reliable vendor with fast shipment and good service.


For a great deal on the 4GB, click here: Livescribe 4 GB Echo Smartpen 

If you buy through my link, I would benefit financially since I am an Amazon affiliate.

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