For the past few years, I have been using the Tascam DR-2D. It cost around $200 four years ago and does everything John says it does. Voice quality is excellent, even in a noisy room. The only caveat is that it is hell on batteries. The unit uses 2 AA batteries and each set wears down after only an hour or two of use, so you need to make sure fresh batteries are installed before every usage. Amazon has them on sale now for what looks like a superb deal - only $169.95. http://www.amazon.com/Tascam-DR2D-Portable-Digital-Recorder/dp/B003838PHQ
I do a lot of phone interviews in my work, but my home telephones are wireless, so there is no way to have a direct patch into the Tascam unit. This hasn't caused a problem since I merely put my phone on speaker mode and set it next to the Tascam and it records not only me but the person on the phone perfectly. It's even broadcast quality - results are crisp and clear. The Tascam is also very easy to transcribe from; its capacity is such that 32MB is more than enough to do interviews with, so long as you use MP3 mode and not .WAV files.
On Apr 14, 2013, at 12:37 PM, John Schroth <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Tascam makes excellent small portable digital audio recorders. We have two of them we use for field recordings at the TV station I volunteer for. We use them for quick easy fill-in sound coverage when we need to mic shows and events with something portable and easy to use. We've recorded events up to four hours long on one charge. The batteries are rechargeable through any USB device. There are some great setting options. The quality of the mics/sound is very good for the size of the unit and price. You can select uncompressed WAV format or MPG3. They can take a TRS input, have earphone jacks and are very rugged. The accessory kit comes with case, windsock and small flexible tripod (which is extremely useful). They are easy to operate. I highly recommend them.
> John Schroth
> Media Transfer Service, LLC
> On 4/14/2013 1:59 PM, Peter Hirsch wrote:
>> I seem to recall the discussion of decent quality portable digital
>> (audio) recorders on this list a year or three back.
>> Can I get suggestions from out there for something pocket sized that
>> costs up to $250 (or so) that I can use at those moments when I am
>> saying to myself "I wish I had something to record that (birdcalls,
>> subway musicians, environmental sounds, etc. - I'm not talking super
>> hi-fidelity concert recording) with".
>> "No smart phones need apply"
>> Peter Hirsch