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  #1  
Old 03-01-2019, 03:43 AM
Karel Karel is offline
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Default Suggestions for portable recorder

To get away from my small attic studio and record my guitar in a more spacious and acoustically better surrounding I am thinking of buying a portable recorder. In my studio I have a pair of excellent Gefell M 300 mics and a good Lake People preamp. I would love to use my Gefells but will certainly have to give up my preamp in order to be flexible (and portable). Could anyone suggest a decent recorder which I can use outside my studio and still gives me an acceptible result which I can afterwords edit in my studio DAW? I know there have been threads before on this issue but I would love to have some fresh input.
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Old 03-01-2019, 03:54 AM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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I'd look at Zoom products

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Old 03-01-2019, 04:52 AM
Edp251 Edp251 is offline
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Hey. Recently went through the same process for similar reasons. Even with a great and newer equipment the constant messing around between my Audient, my Mac and Pro tools was wasting too much time. I went with the Zoom H5. Close call between the other close Zoom models. Been laid up in bed for a month with a badly broken leg so lots of time to research.

Arrived this week. Quick to learn and so liberating. The ability to change input configurations between the onboard mics and my external mics, the one touch recording etc are all refreshing and fun. The one beginner’s error I made was listening to playback on the unit does not do the recordings justice. Now I do several takes and listen via my computer and monitors before making adjustments as the sound is much more clear. Very happy so far.

Hope this helps. Good luck!
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Old 03-01-2019, 05:09 AM
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Another vote for the Zoom H5. I like being able to record away from the noise and reflections in my computer room.
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Old 03-01-2019, 06:45 AM
RodB RodB is offline
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I too use a Zoom H5 and get good results with external mics.

However, having recently upgraded my mics, I am considering perhaps going to a Zoom F4 or Sound Devices MixPre3 for a better preamp while retaining portability.

Given the quality of your existing equipment I would not recommend any H series Zoom, unless budget is limited. (BTW the H4n pro, H5 and H6 have the same preamps).
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Old 03-01-2019, 08:00 AM
Karel Karel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silly Moustache View Post
I'd look at Zoom products

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edp251 View Post
Hey. Recently went through the same process for similar reasons. Even with a great and newer equipment the constant messing around between my Audient, my Mac and Pro tools was wasting too much time. I went with the Zoom H5. Close call between the other close Zoom models. Been laid up in bed for a month with a badly broken leg so lots of time to research.

Arrived this week. Quick to learn and so liberating. The ability to change input configurations between the onboard mics and my external mics, the one touch recording etc are all refreshing and fun. The one beginner’s error I made was listening to playback on the unit does not do the recordings justice. Now I do several takes and listen via my computer and monitors before making adjustments as the sound is much more clear. Very happy so far.

Hope this helps. Good luck!
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBman View Post
Another vote for the Zoom H5. I like being able to record away from the noise and reflections in my computer room.
Quote:
Originally Posted by RodB View Post
I too use a Zoom H5 and get good results with external mics.

However, having recently upgraded my mics, I am considering perhaps going to a Zoom F4 or Sound Devices MixPre3 for a better preamp while retaining portability.

Given the quality of your existing equipment I would not recommend any H series Zoom, unless budget is limited. (BTW the H4n pro, H5 and H6 have the same preamps).
Thank you all for your helpful comments. You all point in the direction of Zoom. In the preparatory search I did on the internet Zoom often came up, but since they are mainly created for supporting camara work I was doubtful. It is good to know that you use them for acoustic guitar and like them. Rod, I also came across the F4 and I am greatful for your remarks. More expensive but probably worthwhile saving for. The doubts I mainly have with these con- and prosumer things are the preamps.
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Old 03-01-2019, 08:38 AM
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Hi Charlie

I own several small Zoom recorders (H1n, H2n, H4n), but if I had Geffels and wanted to use them in the field, I'd either have a Zoom F4 or F8 which are legitimate field recorders, battery powered, and pro level quality. Note the designation of F not H.

They are not inexpensive, but neither are your mics. The F series zooms are compact and very well laid out. They are $550 USD and $999 USD (2018 version). These are full featured, well implemented, and I've been tempted a couple times to pick up an F4 for the audio with my video shoots (paired with either my Peluso CEMC6 mics or AKG 414 etc).

The F4 has 6 channels input capability (8 track mixing), dual SD/SDHC/SDXC card slots, up to 512 GB each, external battery power etc (it's designed with the pro video industry in mind). The point is the quality is higher than any handheld field recorders I've seen. And it's only 7" X 5.5" by 2" (the F8 is similar size).

CliCk for the link

The F8 uses newer technology (2018 versus 2016), and can be mixed using an iOS device as well as physically using the built in controls.

I know this is not the usual recommendation for mobile recording devices, but in a discussion group/thread where some own very serious microphones, this probably should be a consideration.

If budget won't permit spending that much, I've been thinking about the Zoom H6 which would have similar quality, but not as good quality. It's the upper limit of the handheld zoom technology, though I'm wondering if the internal components and quality of Zoom H5 would be similar (both the H5 & H6 are improvements over my H4n).

Hope this adds to the discussion.



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Last edited by ljguitar; 03-01-2019 at 09:06 AM. Reason: added a sentence
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Old 03-01-2019, 08:43 AM
MikeMcKee MikeMcKee is offline
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Another vote for the H5...great recorder
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Old 03-01-2019, 08:58 AM
Hoyt Hoyt is offline
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I'd check out the new Sound Devices recorders. I don't own one, but their more expensive models have been highly touted in the past.

They recently came out with some new models that are more affordable.

I've had Zoom and Tascam small recorders that sound very good, but the mics you have deserve an excellent preamp and supposedly Sound Devices products offer that.
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Old 03-01-2019, 09:08 AM
Karel Karel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ljguitar View Post
Hi Charlie

I own several small Zoom recorders (H1n, H2n, H4n), but if I had Geffels and wanted to use them in the field, I'd either have a Zoom F4 or F8 which are legitimate field recorders, battery powered, and pro level quality.

They are not inexpensive, but neither are your mics. The F series zooms are compact and very well laid out. They are $550 USD and $999 USD (2018 version). These are full featured, well implemented, and I've been tempted a couple times to pick up an F4 for the audio with my video shoots (paired with either my Peluso CEMC6 mics or AKG 414 etc).

The F4 has 6 channels input capability (8 track mixing), dual SD/SDHC/SDXC card slots, up to 512 GB each, external battery power etc (it's designed with the pro video industry in mind). The point is the quality is higher than any handheld field recorders I've seen. And it's only 7" X 5.5" by 2" (the F8 is similar size).

CliCk for the link

The F8 uses newer technology (2018 versus 2016), and can be mixed using an iOS device as well as physically using the built in controls.

I know this is not the usual recommendation for mobile recording devices, but in a discussion group/thread where some own very serious microphones, this probably should be a consideration.

If budget won't permit spending that much, I've been thinking about the Zoom H6 which would have similar quality, but not as good quality. It's the upper limit of the handheld zoom technology, though I'm wondering if the internal components and quality of Zoom H5 would be similar (both the H5 & H6 are improvements over my H4n).

Hope this adds to the discussion.

Thanks, Larry, you gave me some further very serious advice to take into consideration. Your comment falls on furtile soil.
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Old 03-01-2019, 09:14 AM
Karel Karel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoyt View Post
I'd check out the new Sound Devices recorders. I don't own one, but their more expensive models have been highly touted in the past.

They recently came out with some new models that are more affordable.

I've had Zoom and Tascam small recorders that sound very good, but the mics you have deserve an excellent preamp and supposedly Sound Devices products offer that.
I came across Sound Devices (Curtis Judd speaks highly about them) but it is obviously apart from a further step up on the scale also a step down in my wallet...
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Old 03-01-2019, 09:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karel View Post
I came across Sound Devices (Curtis Judd speaks highly about them) but it is obviously apart from a further step up on the scale also a step down in my wallet...
Hi Charlie

Curtis Judd has great videos on the Zoom F4 and F8 (both versions) as well. I like his reviews…



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  #13  
Old 05-05-2019, 02:27 PM
lkingston lkingston is offline
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I’ve got several portable audio recorders by Zoom, Tascam and others, but my favorite portable recording solution right now is my phone with the new Shure MV88+ kit. It sounds about the same as the best of the portable recorders, but it is just so darned convenient having good sound with the phone. You can touch screen edit and share immediately, including to cloud services if you want to get the sound to your editing software.

It has a number of switchable patterns including a stereo mode with an adjustable spread, cardioid, and figure 8.

I am using it with a OnePlus 6 Android phone and it works as well with it as it would with an iPhone.

It comes with two apps: one for shooting video and another for just recording audio. These apps give you access to all the adjustable parameters of the mic: compression, limiting, level, EQ, mic pattern, stereo mic spread, headphone monitoring level, etc.

You can also use other video or audio apps, but they don’t give you access to all these parameters, so you would have to set the mic up in the Sony app, then switch to your other recording app.

There is a bit of a video overview here:

https://youtu.be/thacMX9H_CU
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Old 05-05-2019, 02:36 PM
gfirob gfirob is offline
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I have a Sound Devices recorder and mixer but I mostly use a Tascam DR-60DmkII, when shooting music video. It has two xlr inputs, good preamps and is fairly rugged with its plastic body. It is not in the league of the Sound Devices recorder, but those guys are really expensive.
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Old 05-05-2019, 04:13 PM
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I didn’t read to the other posts yet, so apologies if this was already suggested. But if you want to use your mics, but just want to get away from the computer, a friend of mine has the Sound Devices MixPre3. We’ve around with it quite a bit, I think it’s pretty fantastic. I may get one myself at some point.
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