From minidisc to...

Discussion in 'Live Sound' started by zooplibob, May 8, 2008.

  1. zooplibob

    zooplibob Guest

    Hi I've had great results recording piano and classical chamber music with a Sony Hi-MD Minidisc recorder and some Core Sound binaural unpowered mics. However, the transfer rates are so slow from the MD to the computer and the whole technology just seems outdated in light of cheap flash based devices.

    Having said that, what are some portable rechargeable-battery powered flash (or even hard drive) based recording devices good for recording classical music, like piano trios (piano, violin, cello)? I see a lot of voice recorders, but are those going to have the same recording quality and noise isolation as the MD recorders did? Im just worried about noisy mic inputs, which for voice recording might not matter.

    Im talking in the $200-$300 ballpark, just for reference. Where do I go after the going-extinct MD?
  2. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Well-Known Member

    Dec 12, 2001
    Oberlin, OH
    Home Page:
    It is a little bit above your budgeted amount but we just got the Fostex FR2LE and it works GREAT! with good phantom powered microphone preamps and uses XLR connectors for the microphones, It is capable of 96/24 and is very easy to use.
    TPS311016DVBR datasheet
  3. zooplibob

    zooplibob Guest

    Thanks for the suggestion. That looks a little too much for me. The mikes I have are stereo jack binaurals, so it doesnt look like they would fit that.

    I guess my question should be, what is something of comparable recording quality and price to a HiMD recorder?
  4. ptr

    ptr Active Member

    Nov 3, 2004
    Göteborg, Sweden
    Home Page:
    I'm guessing that You want pocket size!? What you're looking for is the likes of a Zoom H2/H4, TASCAM DR-1 or a M-Audio MicroTrack II (all around $300), all fine recorders in the price range, with the "disadvantage" in your situation that they all (exept the MicroTrack) have built in mikes (Edirol and Yamaha, have comparable devices, but neither have passed my way!). Their sound quality is on par with an MD or better, but as always, havent' tested them with any Core Sound mikes, så I can't vouch for compatability! You'll have to test!

    If you're willing to save up, my full recomendation goes to Korg's MR-1 device ($700), it's trice as much as you suggest, but five times as versatile. I've been evaluating it's bigger sister the MR-1000 ($1200), as a master/stereo recorder for some months and I'm quite impressed! :wink: :D :D

    You'll have to dig for more information at each manufacturers site yourself, prices fished from one big US retailer (Sweetwater), so there may be better prices to be found elsewhere or not.. :wink:

  5. zooplibob

    zooplibob Guest

    Thanks for the advice. I didnt get any info on the voice recorders, so I went out and bought one to see how it compared. I quickly realized that even the best one they offered doesn't offer variable input gain control... it has some auto record volume which mutes loud sounds and increases soft things... good or recording a lecture, HORRIBLE for recording any kind of live music. So I now know those voice records are out of the picture.

    Ill check out the devices you listed. Anyone else have suggestions? I dont really care if its pocket sized, but that would be convenient.
  6. JoeH

    JoeH Distinguished Member

    Jun 22, 2004
    Philadelphia, PA/ Greenville, DE
    Home Page:
    IMHO, MicroTrack II is the way to go, from what you described. For $299, (plus the cost of a CF data card), it's really the best bang for the buck out there, compared to all of the others. It's got a stereo 1/8" mic jack, two TRS 1/4" line inputs (which can also be used as mic jacks (with adapters of course) with Phantom power. Lots of other great features, and the mic they give you is really quite usable for a lot of things, mostly (IMHO) voice interviews. It's truly a point and shoot box, with removable chip.

    You can off load the material via a USB cable (that doubles as its powersuppply/charger cable) or you can remove the chip and put it into a slot card (CF) reader. I haven't done a/b testing, but I Think that's alittle faster.

    good luck however you go.

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