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Whats yur favorite portable recorder?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by Youngspanion, Sep 4, 2008.

  1. Youngspanion

    Youngspanion Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2003
    Staten Island, NY
  2. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2008
    San Diego, California
    m-audio microtrack II
  3. Youngspanion

    Youngspanion Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2003
    Staten Island, NY
    real easy to use?

    Is it mac friendly?
  4. jamfree


    Nov 10, 2005
    I bought the tascam dr-1 a couple of days ago and have done several recordings with it. Couldn't be easier I don't think..mac friendly. Sounds great. I did a bunch of research, they all get pretty good reviews and all look pretty user friendly though.
  5. I use the original MAudio Microtrack and it has been a great field recorder for me. I find it very easy to use and the recordings are good "raw material". Even with my DAW and preamps I still do post production, so that isn't a problem for me.

    A few potential downsides: slow startup (might be better in the MT II), not amazing battery life (but very usable if you aren't running phantom over the TRS inputs), and the 1/8" input is tricky for loud sources (you need an attenuator, or better mini mics and a pre).

    The upsides are that you can use real mics on the TRS inputs, the data is in a standard format(s), use a card reader and data transfer is very fast, and the controls are easy to use in the dark.

    I typically use a pair of small diaphragm condenser mics with mine and they do a great job for recording rehearsals and shows. I use external power when doing anything longer than short field recordings. Also, the battery stays charged a lot longer if you don't leave the CF card installed.

    If you want to use something with good built in mics, one of the ZOOM H-series is a better choice. And the H4 has good reports of the audio using the external mic inputs. But I've had my MT for a few years now and it is still doing a great job for me. Solid purchase.
  6. doktorfeelgood

    doktorfeelgood layin' it down like pavement Supporting Member

  7. Zoom H-2 or H-4 are fine units.The H-4 has 1/4" and XLR jacks for straight plug-in,but the learning curve and controls are a little hard to master.
  8. stylonpilson


    Jun 30, 2008
    Reading, UK
    If you're looking for suggestions, then I'm very pleased with the results that I get from my Zoom H2.

  9. hitnmhard


    May 19, 2008
    North East USA
    Zoom H4 - Lots of options, easy to learn, small and portable. Battery life isnt what they say it is though, but thats no big deal...
  10. The Owl

    The Owl

    Aug 14, 2005
    Atlanta GA
    A buddy of mine is bequeathing his Micro Track I to me very shortly. I have at least a couple questions:

    1) What is the max size memory card it'll accept? Any recommendations for cards?

    2) Would a stereo condenser mic (like an Audio Technica) get at least decent results?
  11. With the H4- how useful is the 4 track option? I'll give an exaple of the application I want to use it for.

    If I want to record my wife's choir on 2 tracks, can the other two tracks playback the accompaniment (keys,drums,bass etc) while recording ?
  12. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    Zoom H2
  13. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    I just bought a Boss Micro BR. Tiny. The manual is 4x the size, and at least double the weight. And this was because my Korg D1200MkII was too complicated for my small brain. Can I just say, I hate digital recorders. Looking for an old fashioned Fostex or Tascam 4 track cassette recorder, I just want to record some ideas, and scratch tracks, I don't need a fully mastered CD quality recording. Sorry, rant over.
  14. ForestThump


    Jun 15, 2005
    I've gotten good results with a Zoom H2.
  15. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    H2 will cure what ails you!
  16. I don't know what the max card size is. Check with MAudio... it is probably in the specs or the notes for the latest firmware upgrade. I use the same CF cards that I use in my Nikon, so I never gave it much thought. I got a nice 4GB CF from Crucial and it has been rock solid.

    As for mics... you can use the 1/8" input and go with something from (or patterned after) one of the "taper" suppliers like Core Sound or the like. Better mics will handle higher SPL and yield better fidelity. You don't mention an AT model #, but I'm assuming that you mean the AT micro condensers. You can get them in omni pairs, or cardioid pattern pairs...

    Unless you need the super compact size then I prefer using full sized mics on the TRS inputs. A set of shorty XLR-TRS cables let you use normal mic cables for the rest of the run to the mics. I have been using a set of Studio Projects C-series mics for the past few years. They come with interchangeable capsules (omni and cardioid), and they work well on everything from audience/gig recording, drum overheads, guitars, percussion, and amps. Not great for vocals, but they can be pressed into service. They are similar to many of the other affordable SDC's.

    I use my MT for specific applications, mainly recording performances and rehearsals, and occasional field recordings. My mics are pretty good for that. If I was doing something else like wildlife, or guitar and vocal live takes, or clandestine recording... then my mic selection would be different.
  17. Zoom H2 or H4 if recording band live by Mic, For Line Level I have the Boss Micro BR to plug my bass into. Has a Tuner, MP3 Player, Multi Track Recording and effects to jam to etc...
  18. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    I like my Zoom H2 okay. I would like to get something with a little higher quality at some point. However, for $200, it is unbeatable.

    You can download (free) 2 mp3s of my band playing live, recorded with my H2. Just click the link in my signature and scroll down to the bottom of the page.

    I should mention that I was not using the internal mic, but a ~$65 Audio Technica Pro24 stereo mic plugged into the mic input. The Pro24 is not really any better than the built-in mics, in my opinion, but this saves me from having to climb up the 9-foot boom stand everytime I want to start & stop the recording.
  19. Guest043

    Guest043 Guest

    Apr 8, 2008
    no love for the yamaha ones??

    ordered one a few days ago..should be getting it tomarrow probobly.
  20. I saw the thread on them here (??), and it looks nice, but I don't know if I like the lack of external inputs and IIRC it has fixed 2GB internal memory. I would use it if I had it, but my needs = external mics an lots of RAM. Side by side with the Zoom H2? Unless I needed the shirt-pocket size I would probably get the Zoom. Be sure to let us know what you think... and maybe a sound sample.

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