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mp3 player/recorder w/mic input?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by basss, Mar 20, 2005.

  1. basss

    basss Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2001
    Is there any such thing? It would be very convinient to take such a thing to a rehearsal and then just dump files onto the computer. I'm thinking of a small unit the size of a minidisc recorder - not like a bigger 4 track type of thing - something that would fit in your pocket. Do they exist?
  2. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    Get a minidisc recorder/player.
  3. basss

    basss Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2001
    I have one. I would like to avoid having to play recodings into the computer. If I could drag and drop mp3 files it would make things a lot quicker.
  4. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    With a minidisc, you are getting a near lossless file, depending on how you record. Then compressing to an mp3 will make the difference in sound quality. Re-recording into the computer would not be such a bad thing. But, if you must have such a beast, get this: http://www.gearpreview.com/music/reco/br532.html
  5. msquared


    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    The Creative Labs Nomad Jukebox 3 is what I have been using for field recording for a year or two. I generally take it with a mic preamp and a pair of mics to record shows I play at, and with the associated power adapters and cables it all fits into a small laptop bag.

    The pros: It will record as WAV (either DAT or CD quality) or you can record in a couple different levels of mp3. Mine has a 20G hard drive but you can get ones with more space. It's got both an analog and an optical digital line in, which is really really nice if you happen to do any studio work and want a digital copy of what went on. You can hook it to your computer via firewire or USB and drag and drop recordings, just like you're talking about. It just names the recording based on the time and date. It's the exact size and shape of a Discman, so there are a lot of options for carrying cases. The best part: It's been around for a while. This means you can get them used at a great price.

    The cons: You need software to transfer files to your computer. It's not smart enough to just act as a firewire drive. Creative has it for free download or there is third party software available.
  6. bassjamn

    bassjamn Supporting Member

    Jan 4, 2002
    San Francisco
    try a hard drive recorder, from iriver.

    I use a ihp-120 and it records direct into wav or mp3's, good for quick rehearsal recording. I've been using it for over a year and have many jam sessions recorded.

    It shows up as a hard drive in windows too so all the more ease. I used to use mini-disks while good recording quality, its a royal pain to transfer the files especially if you record multiple times a week.
  7. 5stringDNA


    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    There is a very under-rated and little known company called Archos that makes awesome portable digital players and recorders. Their current crop of models has the highest fidelity decoders for playback on the market (yes, better than the ipod or nomad), and their stuff is smaller than just about anything out there of similar performance. www.archos.com
  8. bassjamn

    bassjamn Supporting Member

    Jan 4, 2002
    San Francisco
    Also a good microphone would help, the internal mic sucks on my I-river. The sony omni directional mics they sell with Minidisks work really well.
  9. FR5


    Feb 12, 2004
    +1 on the iRiver option.

    I use the iRiver iFP590T with a really cheap and ridiculously small stereo microphone for recording band rehearsals. It can record up to 320 Kbps but I use 126 Kbps to keep the size of the files down (for uploading to the internet). I have written in more detail about my findings on this forum, just type 590t in the search machine.

    Greetings, steven
  10. frankosaurus


    Feb 27, 2002
    San Jose
    Original poster asked for an mp3 player suggestion.

    Anyhow, I definitely recommend an mp3 device instead of minidisc. I bought a minidisc for recording rehearsals a few years back... if I could go back in time and get a quality mp3 recorder instead, I definitely would.

    The sound quality of mindisc was great (especially because I bought a quality mic), but being locked in to the minidisc format severely limited its facility.
  11. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
  12. Lowtonejoe

    Lowtonejoe Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2004
    Richland, WA
    I know of a guy who uses one also. He has a relatively complete webpage on it here.

    Or if you insist, click here.


  13. msquared


    Sep 19, 2004
    Kansas City
    I've seen that before too. Good stuff.

    I've had really good luck recording with mine. Being able to monitor the recording is pretty handy, and being able to run a digital signal directly into it has been useful in way more situations than I'd thought it would have been.

    I've been thinking of either picking up a couple more or just biting the bullet and getting the new hard disk ADAT, because lately I've done a couple shows where a soundboard recording was done as well and blending the two gives results that are far better than either of the originals.
  14. protoz


    Nov 30, 2000
    Neuros II player has a built in mic as well but from my experience in trying to record with the built in mic is that it would be best if you got an external mic and preamp to plug into the device so you don't pick up on the hard drive noises.

    You can just drag and drop with this product. I use it all the time for computer repair so I don't waste cds burining 1 5mb file all the time.


    They have the preamp for sale on the site and maybe some mics as well.
  15. jadesmar


    Feb 17, 2003
    Ottawa, ON
    The limitations on the old minidisc, like having to upload in realtime has been removed and I think the newest generation (April 2005) of Sony Minidisc players supports the mp3 format for playback. It can also record upto 94 minutes PCM on a 1 gig HiMD disc. And well over 7 hours at 256 bit HiSP compression. You can transfer these files to the computer much faster than realtime using a USB link but Sony's software is required to upload and you can only upload your recordings once.
  16. Vic

    Vic There's more music in the nuance than the notes. Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Central Illinois
    Staff, Bass Gear Magazine
    This sux. First, I hate proprietary software when it shouldn't be necessary, but I can put up with that.

    What I refuse to tolerate is when manufacturers try to enforce copyright law through their products like this, because they have to base policy on best-guess/assumptions that are always flawed.

    Basically, because of the pirates out there, Sony is going to implement some crappy stupid rule that says it doesn't matter what it is, I can only transfer the work once... apparently what they consider to be acceptible risk. Indefensible, IMHO. I paid the full price for the product, I shouldn't get "limited" functionality based on the assumption I'll do something illegal... or even worse, that someone else will, so I have to suffer limitations based on what someone ELSE might do!

    This may sound like a troll post, but it's really not. I just really hate havin' to pay the tab for the crooks out there.
  17. jadesmar


    Feb 17, 2003
    Ottawa, ON
    It is slightly sucky. I personally don't find the one upload restriction to be a problem. At $10/Gig I am not about to use minidiscs for long term storage.

    My method is to record a session, add track marks and titles to it while walking to work and remove unessential things like talking and some random jamming. Then upload it to the computer, and either convert the songs to wav and burn a CD or convert songs to mp3 and mail them to the band gmail account.

    The sonicstage software also supports mp3s and will allow me to transfer my music collection to minidisc (it converts them to a playable format on the fly). And, yes, the software is not great but, its usable.