The Acoustic Guitar Forum

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > RECORD

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 05-24-2020, 06:19 AM
EWman EWman is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 8
Default Portable recorder recommendation

I'm looking for a portable recorder that I can use for a few different things. One would be just to throw in a bag and have to record song ideas on the fly, or to record myself practicing new songs, etc. I'm in the military so having something compact is important when I deploy.

I would also like to use it for recording live performances to sync up with video from iphone/GoPro/DSLR. I figured I could mount it somewhere to pick up FOH speakers as well as some of the ambience of the venue. Also, I may possibly use it for home recorded videos at home.

I should also note that I have a pretty nice Presonus 4 channel audio interface that I use with my Macbook Pro and I have a few decent mics....so I can use that for more serious recording at home. This would primarily be more for on the go stuff.

Here's what I'm looking at:
Zoom H1n
Tascam DR-05X

Anyone have experience with either? I could experiment and then possibly hook up an external shotgun mic if that would work better. Would it be worth stepping up to the Zoom H4n or H5? I apologize if this has already been discussed, but I did a search and didnt see much of anything about H1n or DR-05X. Thanks!
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 05-24-2020, 07:20 AM
paulp1960 paulp1960 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 1,058
Default

I've owned a Tascam DR-05 for years now. It's easy to use and sounds good and the battery life is good. Not too expensive either.
__________________
Yamaha AC3M Acoustic Guitar
Gretch G5220 Electromatic
Squier Classic Vibe 50s Telecaster
Squier Vintage Modified Telecaster Special
Yamaha BB414 Bass
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-24-2020, 08:38 AM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 3,073
Default

I had the older second generation H1 and disliked it. I sold it and purchased a Tascam DR-05 and was somewhat surprised at how much better the Tascam product was built. I love the DR-05 and I'm sure the newer version is even better.

The only thing you'll have to take into consideration is the DR-05 uses omni capsules and not the more commonly used cardiod capsules.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-24-2020, 10:16 AM
anton anton is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Portland OR
Posts: 637
Default

I have a Zoom H6 which works well. It has mics that come with it that attach to the unit, and you can also use external mics with its four XLR inputs.

Alot of folks seem to like the Mix Pre series by Sound Devices, but they only have inputs for external mics I think. Nothing built it so you can easily pull it out and record an idea.
__________________
Website - Celtic Fingerstyle Guitar
Youtube
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 05-24-2020, 10:24 AM
ljguitar's Avatar
ljguitar ljguitar is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: wyoming
Posts: 39,218
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by EWman View Post
…Here's what I'm looking at:
Zoom H1n
Tascam DR-05X!
Hi EW

Experience with both. I'd say comparable quality and price.

H1n is the most compact little marvel not only for the small size, but for features, recording on the fly, and really decent quality. For me it's not just about quality, but how easily a recorder is accessible, and useful. The H1n is not just a newer H1, it's a redesign, and so much better.

I'm using it for casual interviews with older family members and it does a great job. I also use it to capture songs I want to learn, and lyrics I want to remember when I'm writing. I prop it up, pop it on top of tripods, or boom it down from the top (or just set it on a table). One button record is quick, and the batteries last for hours-n-hours.

Shirt pocket small - with room left over! Travel worthy rugged. Mine travels in my DSLR bag, suitcases, backpacks and pockets depending on the needed usage. The Tascam is 12 ounces and the H1n is 2.5 ounces.







__________________
Larry J

Baby #01
Baby #02
Baby #03
Baby #04
Full-size Full-Scale Baby #4

Larry's songs...

…Just because you've argued till a discussion turns silent doesn't mean you have convinced anyone…
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 05-24-2020, 10:35 AM
jjbigfly jjbigfly is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 334
Default

Spire Studio. You can get good results with small units once you get them figured out. But with the Spire Studio you turn it on, do a sound check and have at it. Really. It has a decent on board mic, or you can use your own and plug in a guitar also. I have used mine with a mixing board output. If you use a smart phone app you can get 8 tracks along with minor mixing and some effects.
Lots of other things it can do also. But the basic thrust is that you could be working on a original song almost anywhere. Say you are in your car/boat/house. Hit the power button and sing. Have dinner, then add the guitar track. Perhaps send it to me and I can add a rhythm track and send it back to you. So you think the vocal is off, re-record it in place of the original or as a different track. It really is that simple.
Do a search here for Captain Jim or Spire Studio....lots of info.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 05-25-2020, 01:22 AM
EWman EWman is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 8
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ljguitar View Post
Hi EW

Experience with both. I'd say comparable quality and price.

H1n is the most compact little marvel not only for the small size, but for features, recording on the fly, and really decent quality. For me it's not just about quality, but how easily a recorder is accessible, and useful. The H1n is not just a newer H1, it's a redesign, and so much better.

I'm using it for casual interviews with older family members and it does a great job. I also use it to capture songs I want to learn, and lyrics I want to remember when I'm writing. I prop it up, pop it on top of tripods, or boom it down from the top (or just set it on a table). One button record is quick, and the batteries last for hours-n-hours.

Shirt pocket small - with room left over! Travel worthy rugged. Mine travels in my DSLR bag, suitcases, backpacks and pockets depending on the needed usage. The Tascam is 12 ounces and the H1n is 2.5 ounces.







Thanks for the review. The H1n is what I'm leaning toward. I love how compact it is, and would probably purchase the accessory kit for it, mainly for the case and mic stand adapter. Have you ever used an external mic with it?
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 05-25-2020, 01:27 AM
EWman EWman is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 8
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjbigfly View Post
Spire Studio. You can get good results with small units once you get them figured out. But with the Spire Studio you turn it on, do a sound check and have at it. Really. It has a decent on board mic, or you can use your own and plug in a guitar also. I have used mine with a mixing board output. If you use a smart phone app you can get 8 tracks along with minor mixing and some effects.
Lots of other things it can do also. But the basic thrust is that you could be working on a original song almost anywhere. Say you are in your car/boat/house. Hit the power button and sing. Have dinner, then add the guitar track. Perhaps send it to me and I can add a rhythm track and send it back to you. So you think the vocal is off, re-record it in place of the original or as a different track. It really is that simple.
Do a search here for Captain Jim or Spire Studio....lots of info.
The Spire seems like a pretty awesome recorder. I think it may be a little more than what I need. It seems a bit bulkier than something like the Zoom H1n. Can the Spire be mounted on a stand or clipped to something out front to capture FOH sound at a live performance? It also seems like I have to have it connected to my iphone or ipad to record. I really like how they have it set up for ease of use and for quality, but I also have a presonus 4 channel that is pretty good quality. This purchase is more for portability and an add on to the presonus that i already have for home recording. But I do think that the Spire is awesome. I probably would have ordered it instead of my presonus if it had been available then.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 05-25-2020, 09:34 AM
jjbigfly jjbigfly is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 334
Default

Understood. Spire has built in rechargeable (4 hour) battery. And works fine without a phone.
But....people are getting good results with what you are looking at. Martin makes a fine guitar, but I don’t play one. Different strokes........
All good.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 05-25-2020, 10:47 AM
lkingston lkingston is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Asheville North Carolina
Posts: 1,942
Default Portable recorder recommendation

My current favorite guitar and vocals setup:

H6 with an SSH-6 shotgun mic. The SSH-6 mic is set to full shotgun with no side mics. It is pointed straight at my mouth, about six inches away so as to be in the video frame, but not blocking my mouth. My guitar is plugged into the first free combo input. I use a dual system pickup/mic system in my guitar, and in this setup I turn the mic way up (since without a monitor there is no feedback). I can use this setup as a mixed source directly into my phone (like a USB mic), into my mirrorless camera (with the line output dialed down to mic level), or recording the vocal and guitar separately to be synched in the video editor.

It sounds like this:
https://youtu.be/ySMkQkRd29k

...or this:

https://youtu.be/CLEiF6w2XHQ

Last edited by lkingston; 05-25-2020 at 10:56 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 05-26-2020, 07:12 PM
ethanay ethanay is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: TBD
Posts: 65
Default

I have the Tascam DR-40 and it works great as a portable field recorder.

I wouldn't recommend the Tascams for any MTR-type recording or voice-overs unless they updated their firmware to allow for recording from non-zero locations (e.g., for punch-ins or to add parts to anywhere but the beginning of a song). I'm kinda pissed they didn't do that with the DR-40, but I've since accepted its limitations and use it for what it is.

But for capturing 2-4 tracks all the way through it's great. You can do a 4 mic setup or just take a mixer feed, either of which can add A LOT of options for mixdown later.

Just took a look at the DR-40X manual, they do allow punch-ins, they call it "overwrite" recording for some reason. Glad they finally added that feature, that makes it useful for voiceovers as well.

I would strongly recommend something like this vs the DR-05. Its not appreciably larger, gives you two different microphone arrays (X-Y and A-B), M/S decoding and the option to record a stereo feed.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 05-26-2020, 07:18 PM
ethanay ethanay is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: TBD
Posts: 65
Default

Their DP-006 Portastudio is also simple enough to be used as a field recorder and can be camera mounted. It can only record 2 tracks at once, either from a feed or from the built-in microphones (which are the same mics as the DR-40, I believe, and are very decent).

So if you want something that leans more toward a portable MTR, that's a good option.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 05-26-2020, 09:13 PM
ljguitar's Avatar
ljguitar ljguitar is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: wyoming
Posts: 39,218
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by lkingston View Post
My current favorite guitar and vocals setup:

H6 with an SSH-6 shotgun mic. The SSH-6 mic is set to full shotgun with no side mics. It is pointed straight at my mouth, about six inches away so as to be in the video frame, but not blocking my mouth. My guitar is plugged into the first free combo input. I use a dual system pickup/mic system in my guitar, and in this setup I turn the mic way up (since without a monitor there is no feedback). I can use this setup as a mixed source directly into my phone (like a USB mic), into my mirrorless camera (with the line output dialed down to mic level), or recording the vocal and guitar separately to be synched in the video editor.

It sounds like this:
https://youtu.be/ySMkQkRd29k

...or this:

https://youtu.be/CLEiF6w2XHQ
Hi Laurence

That was great fun to listen to!

Very workable rig…



__________________
Larry J

Baby #01
Baby #02
Baby #03
Baby #04
Full-size Full-Scale Baby #4

Larry's songs...

…Just because you've argued till a discussion turns silent doesn't mean you have convinced anyone…
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 05-26-2020, 11:48 PM
lkingston lkingston is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Asheville North Carolina
Posts: 1,942
Default Portable recorder recommendation

Quote:
Originally Posted by ljguitar View Post
Hi Laurence



That was great fun to listen to!



Very workable rig…









Thanks for listening!

For quite a while my favorite home recording mic has been the Shure SM7B because it sounds wonderful and rejects a lot of the crummy sound of a less than perfect room at home. I’ve also loved how it rejects enough of the acoustic guitar that you still have control over the levels when you mix.

As I’ve started recording video, I’ve realized that that while that the SM7B sounds wonderful, it is big and has to be so close to your face that it blocks the camera view.

Plus, you want a simple mobile setup that you can use with battery power, at low volumes, and in different visual settings.

A shotgun mic has much of the same room and guitar rejection that I love about the SM7B, but you can move it six or eight inches away and still get an intimate vocal sound.

With the H5 or H6 and the shotgun module, you have a simple one piece solution that can mic vocals and take a direct line from your guitar, and record them either as a stereo mix or as separated tracks. If you have a dual system mic/pickup, the direct sound from the guitar can be very good. You can use it free running, or directly into your phone through USB, or into the mic input of a DSLR or mirror less camera. You can even use it feeding headphones, and a phone and a camera at once for two camera shoots. It sounds close and intimate and yet you can keep the mic away from your face.

It really is a wonderful dead simple solution for self recorded singer songwriter videos with great audio!

Last edited by lkingston; 05-27-2020 at 12:21 AM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > RECORD

Thread Tools



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:13 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=