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ARSCLIST  April 2013

ARSCLIST April 2013

Subject:

Re: Handheld digital recorder

From:

"[log in to unmask]" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sun, 14 Apr 2013 19:59:40 -0500

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text/plain

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My experience with Olympus has left me disappointed to the point that I 
will never buy another one. My LS-10 failed but was repaired under 
warranty. Then it failed again, this time with no warranty. I use it as 
a headphone amp now and nothing else. Couldn't rely on it to work.

joe salerno

On 4/14/2013 7:40 PM, Richard L. Hess wrote:
> Peter,
>
> If you don't want to have the iPhone for the sake of a
> phone/PDA/browser/whatever, I would not go the iPod Touch route.
>
> The Zoom H2 takes about a minute (or a bit less) to boot. The H1 is
> faster. I don't recall about the H2n. I would think the Tascams are
> faster, but we've heard issues with battery life on at least one of
> them. I agree about the handling noise on the H1, but it, too, has a
> tripod socket. I would make sure that any machine I bought had a tripod
> socket. I carry a now-discontinued Rowi "clamp pod" to clamp the Zoom to
> a variety of things from lecterns to others' mic stands (I also have a
> wad of folded over duct tape that I use to avoid scratching things).
>
> One unit that was well received a little while ago was the Olympus, but
> I do not know the current status of Olympus or the unit.
>
> Sony also makes units, but they tend to be more expensive than the
> Tascam or the Zoom.
>
> One thought about instant on is that with the 20-hour battery life of
> the Zoom H2n, you could turn it on when you entered the "possible
> recording zone" and then take it out and double punch the record button
> and you're in (the first punch puts it in record standby with the meters
> running...at least that is how the H2 works).
>
> Whatever you do, do not get a "voice recorder" or "dictation recorder".
> Make certain it will give you WAV and MP3 files. I normally record WAV
> though for long things I have used MP3 on occasion.
>
> Cheers,
>
> Richard
>
> On 2013-04-14 6:53 PM, Peter Hirsch wrote:
>> Thanks all for the excellent guidance.
>>
>> Thom, the Transom looks like a particularly good resource for me. I'm
>> not planning a career as a documentarian, but my personal interests
>> are totally in synch with what I saw in a brief glance at the site.
>>
>> Richard, the reason I made my intentionally somewhat provocative
>> remark about smartphones is that I don't have a cell phone and am not
>> planning on letting one intrude on my life anytime in the future. I do
>> wonder, on second thought, whether an iPod touch, which seems to be
>> essentially an I-phone without the phone might be an option. I know as
>> about iPods and I do about iPhones (nothing), so there are people
>> reading this who can advise based on their own experiences with
>> recording on one and the ease of transferring those recordings to a
>> suitable editing/listening environment.
>>
>> To further inquire of the collective experience of this list, let me
>> ask a more targeted question: Since I plan on using this recorder
>> mostly in unplanned situations, where a machine that turns on as close
>> to instantaneously as possible and doesn't require a number of steps
>> to getting the recording mode started would be what I have in mind.
>> These features are my main concerns, followed by size and audio
>> quality (I would think that anything capable of creating uncompressed
>> files would suffice for me), more of less in that order. Do you know
>> of any that are superior in this regard or ones that a clumsy to
>> operate in a hurry that I should avoid?
>>
>> Thanks once more,
>>
>> Peter Hirsch
>>
>> On Sun, Apr 14, 2013 at 4:10 PM, Richard L. Hess
>> <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>> Hi, Peter,
>>>
>>> Whey you say "no smart phones need apply" it is my understanding that
>>> there
>>> are good-quality audio interfaces for the iPhone, just say'n.
>>>
>>> To that end, I have a Zoom H2 which is amazingly good for the price. The
>>> slightly thicker, but otherwise improved Zoom H2n seems decent...not
>>> enough
>>> for me to buy it as the H2 meets my needs (I do have other more serious
>>> gear).
>>>
>>> In general, I think the Tascam units have also been well-received.
>>>
>>> I delayed a bit sending this after starting it and I see John Schroth
>>> has
>>> said good things about the Tascams and Don Cox about the Zoom H4n. Two
>>> things about the H4n--it is huge compared to many other options and I
>>> heard
>>> rumours (you should check this out) that the XLR inputs (a plus) are
>>> not all
>>> that quiet, but then again, I don't think you're looking for
>>> something that
>>> uses external mics.
>>>
>>> Also, if you wish to spend less, the Zoom H1 is not bad. My son has
>>> one and
>>> he's gotten some decent recordings with it.
>>>
>>> One of the neat things about the Zoom H2n is that it has an MS mic
>>> arrangement on the front and a broad XY arrangement on the back
>>> (total of
>>> five mic capsules) and the MS is much nicer than XY (as on the
>>> original Zoom
>>> H2) for recording speech as you have a mic dedicated to the direct
>>> sound.
>>> The H2 and H2n can record two stereo pairs (front and back) which is
>>> quite
>>> useful. A colleague borrowed my H2n and bought her own to record a major
>>> discussion session and she had eight different perspectives to
>>> transcribe
>>> from.
>>>
>>> I see Cary brought up the point about battery life--this is something to
>>> check. The Zoom H2 gets maybe six hours off a fully charged pair of
>>> Maha/Powerex Imedion NiMH cells. The H1 uses a single AA and gets
>>> about the
>>> same life. I think the H2n has even better battery life. I don't know
>>> about
>>> the newer Tascams.
>>>
>>> http://zoom.co.jp/products/h1        Zoom H1 now on version 2
>>> http://zoom.co.jp/products/h2n      Zoom H2n
>>> http://zoom.co.jp/products/h4n      Zoom H4n
>>>
>>> http://tascam.com/products/handheld_recorder/   The Tascam lineup
>>>
>>> I have been happy with 8 and 16 GB cards in the Zoom H2 (I bought one
>>> for my
>>> church and they record services every Sunday and then extract the
>>> sermon for
>>> the Web). At 44.1 ks/s 24 bit it is about 1 GB an hour for stereo. I
>>> bought
>>> a 16 GB card in 2010 when we were going to be away for seven or eight
>>> Sundays (only one service a Sunday in the summer).
>>>
>>> Cheers,
>>>
>>> Richard
>>>
>>> On 2013-04-14 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"
>>>>
>>>> Thanks,
>>>>
>>>> Peter Hirsch
>>>>
>>> --
>>> Richard L. Hess                   email: [log in to unmask]
>>> Aurora, Ontario, Canada                             647 479 2800
>>> http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm
>>> Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.
>

-- 
Joe Salerno

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