At 09:09 PM 2008-07-30, Tom Fine wrote: >Boy do I not miss cassettes for music content, but I think we'll end >up missing them for spoken-word content. There is little attention >paid to quality with cheapo digi-recorders of spoken content and the >digital artifacts of low-grade lossy formats are far more annoying, >at least to my ears, than a little bit of hiss and/or wow from a cassette. Being stuck in cassette purgatory (I had a city archive throw 100 oral history cassettes my way a few weeks ago, and I'm doing final cleanup on them), I must say that I sort-of agree with you. But ANYONE considering doing oral history with digi boxes needs to look at these two sites: http://www.vermontfolklifecenter.org/res_audioequip.htm http://familyoralhistory.us/ In my experience, every time you improve the quality of an oral history recording, it adds something. I have used over the years several rigs that I liked (and you can mix and match). 2 AKG C451 mics with a ReVox A77 tape recorder 2 Sennheiser MKH-416T mics with a portable DAT recorder Audio Technica AT822 with a portable MD recorder 2 DPA 4006-TL with Sound Devices 722 recorder Of these, the AT822 and MD is the worst combination, but it is so much better than anything I hear coming in on cassette to transfer, that I heartily recommend it. It is also the smallest and least intimidating. The mic goes on a flat surface and there's a tiny wire plugged into the MD about 0.5 m away. Andy Kolovos's page has some thoughts on some of the compact-flash recorders and though I don't think Andy likes the Zoom, I think Susan Kitchens (no relation to the Kitchen Sisters on NPR) in the second link above likes it. Story Corps is using a Neumann KMS-105 and now that I own one, I can see why. Great mic. I really, really like the Sennheiser short shotguns. The best oral history recording I got with my Dad was when we spent a whole afternoon and I had one on him and one on me. Even though the DPAs I used a few weeks ago sound a bit better and more natural for a room full of people, sadly Dad isn't as alert as he was when I did the previous rig. So, even more important, go out and do it. (I brought the SD recorder and the DPAs as I had been telling Dad about it and he was full of "you don't say" comments so I thought we'd have fun playing with toys. He's 92.5 years old now. So, just go and do it before it's too late. Cheers, Richard Richard L. Hess email: [log in to unmask] Aurora, Ontario, Canada (905) 713 6733 1-877-TAPE-FIX Detailed contact information: http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.