Best handheld for recording interviews?

Discussion in 'Location Recording' started by goldivox, Oct 3, 2012.

  1. goldivox

    goldivox Active Member

    Hi, I'm looking for a decent quality, affordable (~ $100??) handheld digital recorder that I can use with 2 lapel mics to record face-to-face interviews.

    Ideally the device will have USB for easy transfer to a Mac.

    Any advice on the best setup (including lapel mics, or not, if there are decent mic-less options) is truly appreciated.

    Reading Amazon reviews is proving more confusing than helpful. Thanks very much!
  2. timshel

    timshel Active Member

    Take a look at the Zoom HD4. It sounds good, has fair two microphones on the outside, and is handheld. Might be able to pick one up for less than $200. Even the older models work well!
  3. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    If you can stretch for it, get a Zoom H4N. Most of the cheaper hand-held recorders in the $100 bracket simply don't cut it for serious recording. Even if you can find a cheap one that has external mic inputs with plug-in power, getting good audio recordings without the pumping effect that auto gain control produces is not easy.

    Not immediately apparent from the H4N sales information is a 3.5mm stereo jack socket on the underside that you can plug external lav mics into as it has the plug-in power that they need. Assuming your lav mics come with mono 6.3mm plugs, you could get a splitter cable to go from a single stereo plug to two mono in-line sockets and use the two separate mics to record on to two tracks as though they were stereo. Take care with choosing a Y-cable as most sorts are meant for driving two sets of earbuds and just parallel up the stereo wires. This is the type you would need, if you can find the equivalent in the US.
  4. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    I also own an H4n and love it but the portable DSD MR2 by Korg is now available. I would expect this to be stellar compared to the H4n.

    I have no idea what it costs but since you said best, this is for certain going to be high end.
  5. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Full Compass is $200 less than Sweetwater.

    Korg MR2 Mobile Recorder, SDHC | Full Compass
  6. goldivox

    goldivox Active Member

    Thanks everyone for the quick and excellent advice. I really appreciate it.

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