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Hardware Recorders Vs. Computer DAW

Discussion in 'Recording' started by MrPhaSe, Dec 15, 2011.

  1. MrPhaSe

    MrPhaSe Active Member

    I've been looking around for alternatives to audio interfaces recently... and with the help of a few mentionable cats here i ran into a few of the tascam hardware recorders...
    such as...
    Product: HS-8 | TASCAM

    How do you all feel about this route? Maybe a different sound? Any with experience? anyone with information on the differences?

    Also how easy is it to dump a track from a machine like this to pro tools?
    thanks in advance to anyone wit some wisdom or opinions
  2. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    You and me both. I would love this for a mobile rig. Correct me if I'm wrong but I'm pretty sure it would transfer to PT or any DAW no problem. Its all there.
  3. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    I would not be without a hard disk recorder even if it was only redundant. I use an Alesis HD24XR but am lustful for an HS-P82 for my classical work. When I recorded pop and jazz years ago I used two HD24XR's but foolishly sold one in 2005.
  4. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Yes, the files would transfer flawlessly provided the DAW supported the file type that was chosen-ie .wav .
  5. MrPhaSe

    MrPhaSe Active Member

    the hd24xr does look good.. how would you describe the sound of it compared to anything else? do you maybe have a audio sample of something you've recorded?
  6. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    The ADC in the HD24XR is very good. The plain HD24 is not as good and it is audible. The HD24XR is not made anymore so that should be a consideration. They are still available used but lifespan will depend significantly on it's treatment. Mine is racked up and has a very large dessiccant package in the case at all times. Twice a year I microwave the dessiccant to make sure it is effective. The ADC is not equal to the latest greatest RME converters but stands close enough to the Fireface generation/Apogee Ensemble generation to be very respectable.
  7. MrPhaSe

    MrPhaSe Active Member

    sounds interesting.. thanks for sharing that.. Im feelin very inspired to keep searching..

    i'm also considering the tascam X-48

    -Feeling at peace suddenly.
  8. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    The X48 was a great piece of gear. Apparently there is a mark II available now. Half of me would still screech at purchasing Tascam anything after all of their recording boards I've dealt with in the past. If you search the archives you will find the story of how I set the last one on fire.
  9. MrPhaSe

    MrPhaSe Active Member

    Is the Alesis hd24xr geared more towards live stage recordings? or studio recordings? Does it matter?
  10. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    It doesn't matter a bit whether live or studio. Classical live recordings is still like recording ants at 50 paces. It has to be quality ADC and significant signal to noise ratio. The HD24XR has been a classical mainstay for a long time.
  11. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    The HD24XR is what I use for 90% of my work. I often couple two together if I need more than 24 channels at 44.1/48KHz or more than 12 channels at 96KHz.
  12. MrPhaSe

    MrPhaSe Active Member

    Very interesting to hear about the alesis...

    So where do u guys stand on a alesis hd24xr vs. tascam Hs-8 comparison?
  13. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    The Tascam is brand new as of last Feb. The Alesis is no longer made and can occaisonally be found in ebait. The cost of the Tascam is about twice the Alesis.
  14. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    Having come from a broad background of broadcast, studio & live recordings I personally prefer purpose built dedicated devices. Computer interfaces, (depending on manufacturers) can be cool. Unfortunately, we all know that computers, like squirrels, have a mind of their own (or a lack thereof). This frequently can mean that when in the process of recording, it may decide to start digging for nuts. And with that kind of ADD (such as my own) your computer can suddenly shift gears to go off and do something else. Look a chicken! See what I mean? So with a purpose built recorder, it generally can't get confused, distracted or be stopped suddenly in its tracks.

    When it comes to the sound of any recorder, most have a certain character of their own. This doesn't necessarily always equate to what's newer is always better but merely different. For example, in the analog days, there were many different brands of recorders. All had their pros and cons. And to add to all of that confusion, you have to also decide what tape you liked the sound (or smell) of. Each tape brand also imparted its own sonic signature. Nothing was better only different. You had to decide which best suit your purposes and your clients. Digital recorders aren't any different. For instance, I too currently utilize ALESIS HD 24 XR's. I also had an original HD 24. They both sound different. I've made perfectly lovely recordings with the original and have no problem utilizing those to this day. So this is sort of like the difference between Ampex & Scotch recording tape to me. I utilized both but personally prefer the sound of Scotch. But for the most part, I really didn't give a damn. That's because, it's more your choice of microphones & the front end preamp that has the greatest influence on what your sonic signature will be. Not so much the converters. You see, back in the early 1980s of digital recording, you simply used with the recorder had. It simply wasn't a concern because you had no choices. So your only real concern was proper recording & mixing technique along with the microphones & console you had before you. They're also weren't any boutique microphone preamps to worry about either because you were just going to use the console. Given those lack of choices that never stopped anybody from churning out hits or even total and complete garbage from a lack of knowledge, experience and/or talent. So your real choice here is boxers or jockeys and will that have any real impact on how people view your performance. So a lot of this decision-making is simply based upon your budgetary constraints and not what's better than something else. I simply don't have any qualms if I'm feeding a Sony PCM F1, Panasonic dat, Ta-Scam DA 88, MOTU 2408, ALESIS HD 24, etc. since I still feed all of those from antiquated (yet still state of the art) API & Neve front ends. And the recordings always remaining glorious sounding. Nevertheless, I still am forced to make recordings sometimes from console/preamps I don't consider to be empirical. Technique and experience makes the definitive difference not the junk you have to work with. It only matters to others based up on their personal preferences and what the marketing hype/specification data indicates to them. I listen to something first before I look at its specifications. Sometimes I'll look at the specification first and wonder what it sounds like realizing the specifications really mean nothing.

    Dumping into Pro Fools or any other popular software package is a absolute necessity. If some manufacturer comes up with a " better file format " that's too new and proprietary, I say screw that. Standards must be adhered to or you end up with audio anarchy. Sample rate & bit depth also doesn't mean much to me. That is, unless, someone wants to hand me a $50,000 contract that includes certain specifications. And how often is that happening these days? Just because some sales droid and/or other " expert " recording dweebs tell you you need this that or the other isn't necessarily a justifiable reason to follow dirty advice. So, how much money you got? And for what specific purpose are your requirements? Oh? I see. You want clean, neutral, transparent. So you want a plain white dog, not stinky that has been neutered, right? And that's supposed to ensure you are going to get laid tonight, right? Those that are in the know, know that doesn't guarantee anything.

    Pick a card, any card.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
  15. MrPhaSe

    MrPhaSe Active Member

    (y) very insightful. I applaud your entire response, even though i should have quoted the whole thing....
    To answer the question.. I got enough money to spend maybe 5k on a recorder.

    I'm tying to set up a professional recording environment. A budget of about 15k
  16. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Any Alesis you bought would be as is. I would go with the Tascam as it is in current production (beginning of its production life) and could be warranty serviced.
  17. MrPhaSe

    MrPhaSe Active Member

    Im thinking of buying both.
    Using the alesis for recording bands since it has so many inputs.
    Then using the tascam for my personal instrumentals and other things that i can take my sweet time on
  18. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    I don't think you can go wrong that way especially if you have both a studio and a location recording rig. I really do like the HD24XR. If I had the HS-P82/HS-8 I'd probably use it more often for my work due to it's smaller size and weight but I think the quality is there definitely.

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