Elegant simplicity in gadgets is often better than a cutting-edge piece of kit packed with functions that are never used and the latest mini voice recorder from Evergreen Japan is a perfect example.

The ¥9,980 (£44) EG-CVR1000 doesn't have a particularly attractive name, but its business card-sized body is enough of a draw. It measures 86 x 55 x 6mm and weighs just 36g, including the built-in USB cable that stows away in a moulded slot on the face of the device.

Pleasing the masses

Onboard memory is just 1GB - enough for 69 hours of recording - which can be filled with MP3 or WAV files. Once connected to a PC or Mac, the recorder appears as a USB mass-storage device, so drag and drop are the order of the day. The rechargeable battery lasts five hours after a hit of the USB juice.

The only downsides to the CVR1000 are the absence of any kind of display and the non-standard 2.5mm headphone jack needed because of the small body - at least Evergreen supplies a 3.5mm adapter.