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Any experience with the Deva-s ?

Lately I've felt more and more grumpy about all the stuff I carry along on a recording session. Mostly all the mic stands and cables. But also a meter high rack on wheels with preamps and AD-s and stuff, with a laptop in yet another box. Add to that a box with mics (the easy part to carry) and assorted bits and pieces.

Looking at what I usually record, just maybe I could live with 8 channels for almost all sessions. And the Deva IV or V might be just what the doctor ordered. Max 8 channels would mean max 7 mic stands max, less cables and so on.

Does anyone have experience in using the Deva for classical music on location? What quality are the mic pres and AD-s? Mind you, I come from Millenium/Dav as preamps and Lavry Blue as main AD.



Simmosonic Sat, 03/31/2007 - 03:27
ghellquist wrote: Lately I´ve felt more and more grumpy about all the stuff I carry along on a recording session.

Put your rate up! Then it might feel worthwhile again to carry all of that stuff along. You won't feel grumpy, and putting your rate up costs nothing to do - it's certainly cheaper than buying more equipment to solve the problem. :lol:

[entering serious mode now]

ghellquist wrote: Mind you, I come from Millenium/Dav as preamps and Lavry Blue as main AD.

No experience here with Deva, but I can relate to your situation...

A self-contained recorder like the Deva may not match the absolute sound quality you get from the Millennia/DAV/Lavry stuff, but the time and energy saved in loading in and setting up will give you more time to fine-tune microphone choice and positioning, which will probably result in relatively better sounding recordings with less fuss and stress.

That's what happened when I abandoned my rig of PurePath and custom preamps, Prism AD converter and so on in favour of the Nagra V for my direct-to-stereo recordings. The signal path of my old rig may be superior, but the recordings made with the Nagra V are better in every other respect. Only the fussiest of audiophiles would pick the tonal difference, and, even then, it would probably remain as an observation rather than a preference.

DavidSpearritt Sat, 03/31/2007 - 05:46

This is something I have wrestled with and continue to do so. The DEVA is an expensive box, and as most of its users are recording dialog, I have not heard a worthwhile appraisal of this machine for serious classical music recording.

I get grumpy taking a Genex or PC/Lynx Aurora to a gig to record 8 channels, for the same reasons as you, and so mixing live to stereo is still really attractive with my Nagra V.

I am waiting to see what the Nagra VI is like, but I must say I remain unconvinced by digital mixing. I find an analog mix of 8 channels still sweeter than when done in the digital domain and the space saved on hard drives and time saved in post is so compelling.

mdemeyer Sat, 03/31/2007 - 20:17
I've tried to configure a rig that scales easily, allowing light packing for simpler recordings. In order of increasing complexity...

2-channels, light weight, battery powered, quick setup as priority

Sound Devices 744T
Mics, stereo cables, and a stand

Up to 4 channels, higher quality than above, add:

3U rack with...

John Hardy M1 (4-channels)
Benchmark AD2404-96 A/D (feeds the 744T with dual AES/EBU feeds)
AEA TRP (for ribbons or tubes)

... more cables and stands (including 4-channel snakes)

Up to 12 channels, add:

Another 3U rack with:

Benchmark MPS420 preamp (4-channels)
Echo Audio AudioFire8 interface (8-channels A/D, 2 mic pres, synch off the Benchmark A/D)
4-channel mic splitter and headphone-level MS decoder (home made)

... and a notebook PC
... and more cables and stands

80% of my recordings don't get to the 'greater than 4 channels' kit. :D