Portable Audio Recorder Suggestions

Discussion in 'Electronics' started by Spiffyguy, Jul 17, 2017.

  1. Spiffyguy

    Spiffyguy Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Messages:
    1,003
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    St Charles, MO
    Quick question. I do youtube vids and for the most part my audio is decent enough from my camera, point and shoot Olympus SH2. But I have been thinking about getting a portable recorder that I can use with a clip on mic. This would allow me to have a more consistent audio source that does not change levels if the camera is turned or if I get too close. Also I can use a wind sock on it to help cut wind noise.

    Requirements would be an 1/8" in for the mic. If there are on-board mics that would be ok. But I want to have that mic in for a clip on lapel mic. Not sure if they have blue tooth but would prefer the hard line due to power charging. So next thing I would like to find is one that can be recharged via USB. Not sure if they have these or not but it would be nice. I carry a large battery brick to charge up my camera, phone, headlamp. So would be nice to go that route. If not, AA/AAA would be preferred over a proprietary battery. That is about it.

    So any thoughts on some good models or experience using an external audio recorder? I will be using Vegas to edit all footage and audio. Thanks.
     
  2. tabasco_joe

    tabasco_joe Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,110
    Likes Received:
    2,689
    Location:
    pennsylvania
    Spiffyguy likes this.
  3. Spiffyguy

    Spiffyguy Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Messages:
    1,003
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    St Charles, MO
  4. marbleman

    marbleman Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2015
    Messages:
    888
    Likes Received:
    1,958
    I have a Zoom of some kind. It's old now, but still works very well. 192khz digital is still 192khz digital! Mine has a proprietary non-removable battery which is bad, but can be charged with USB (there's also a separate power input, that you can charge with. I found a wall wart of appropriate voltage, and soldered on connector). Wind socks can be very important outside. Mine has a case that the top flap is foam. I'm out of touch with the latest and greatest. Here are some general things.

    External mic? Make sure it can accept two inputs. You may not need it for Youtube, but the ability to record stereo is important.

    Change formats? Some intended only for dictation may be locked into a lessor format. Avoid proprietary formats. It's best to record a high sample rate, downsample on mixdown.

    Tripod mount? Not required, but good if using internal mic, reduces handling noise. It sucks to have a good take ruined by rumble.

    Internal media? Make sure it's a standard SD card, not something proprietary.

    USB I/O is good. Again, avoid being locked into a proprietary cord.

    Be sure to name them something useful, every time they go to a PC. file_abc-123.wav is not conducive to keeping track of it.

    Save the original, work with copies. Since it's digital, copies are perfect clones.
     
    Spiffyguy likes this.
  5. Spiffyguy

    Spiffyguy Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Messages:
    1,003
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    St Charles, MO
    Marbleman. Thanks for the response. Good information there. I have looked at a few of the zooms. The H1 is on the list with the Tascam DR-05. I would plan to use a stereo mic and I believe both have a stereo mic input. I think that should work out. Certainly need a stereo sound. Think that would sound odd on Youtube without it.
     
  6. marbleman

    marbleman Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2015
    Messages:
    888
    Likes Received:
    1,958
    Oops, another thing to consider is Phantom Power. Some better mics are called condenser mics, they require 48v to be sent to the mic before it can work. More regular mics are called Dynamic Mics. You just plug them in and they work. Dynamic mics are fine for Youtube.

    The recorder would have an on or off switch for Phantom Power. Make it a habit to leave it off, you can kill a dynamic mic or other outboard gear with it.
     
  7. Spiffyguy

    Spiffyguy Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Messages:
    1,003
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    St Charles, MO
    Good point. I am familiar with phantom power, used to do music tech work back in my younger years. Years touring in the truck drove me to an office job. Not as fun but make a bit more :) While having a condenser mic is nice I would plan on a plan dynamic. Perhaps this sony. Power is a concern in the bush as well of ease of use. Nice thing about that Zoom H1 is there is a one push record compared to the tascam. My hope with going external on audio is to get better quality. If I am doing a tent vid or something like that where I am farther from the camera I don't have to shout. Been watching a ton of the Paul Kirtley vids and the audio was pretty good. Got me thinking. He has some good content too, if you are in to that bushcraft stuff :)

    https://www.amazon.com/Sony-ECMCS3-Omnidirectional-Stereo-Microphone/dp/B0058MJX4O
     
    tabasco_joe likes this.
  8. tabasco_joe

    tabasco_joe Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2015
    Messages:
    1,110
    Likes Received:
    2,689
    Location:
    pennsylvania
    That's the one I am using.
     
    Spiffyguy likes this.
  9. Spiffyguy

    Spiffyguy Guide Bushclass I

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Messages:
    1,003
    Likes Received:
    147
    Location:
    St Charles, MO
    Sound quality is pretty good?? Don't mind spending the money if it is warranted. All a write off anyway lol
     
  10. marbleman

    marbleman Supporter Supporter

    Blog Posts:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2015
    Messages:
    888
    Likes Received:
    1,958
    Once you are accurately recording at 44.1 khz sampling rate (the same as a CD), they all sound the same. Differences are in internal mics, operating features, convenience. Realistically, a high bitrate MP3 is perfectly adequate for voice.
     
    Spiffyguy likes this.

Share This Page