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Best recording device for sync sound on a low budget


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#1 davidhughens

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 11:05 AM

I'm looking for a low cost -- under $500.00 -- recording device to record sound for my short films. Can anyone make a suggestion? I'll be filming with either a Canon 1014XL-S or Nizo 6080. Thanks! Dave
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#2 Chance Shirley

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 11:44 AM

Hey, David -- funny running into you here!

For under $500, your options are limited. There are a couple of units in that range here:

http://www.zzounds.com/cat--3644

You also might want to consider a MiniDisc recorder, if you can find one with a decent mic input. They're pretty inexpensive.

If you have a good laptop, you could get a USB pre-amp and use the laptop as the recorder.

And, if you look around enough, you might be able to find a used portable DAT recorder for less than $500. As usual, eBay is a good place to start.

Happy hunting...
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#3 Michael Most

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 12:00 PM

I'm looking for a low cost -- under $500.00 -- recording device to record sound for my short films. Can anyone make a suggestion? I'll be filming with either a Canon 1014XL-S or Nizo 6080. Thanks! Dave


M-Audio MicroTrack. Under $500.

Go to http://www.m-audio.c...k2496-main.html
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#4 davidhughens

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Posted 13 December 2006 - 12:06 PM

Hey, David -- funny running into you here!

For under $500, your options are limited. There are a couple of units in that range here:

http://www.zzounds.com/cat--3644

You also might want to consider a MiniDisc recorder, if you can find one with a decent mic input. They're pretty inexpensive.

If you have a good laptop, you could get a USB pre-amp and use the laptop as the recorder.

And, if you look around enough, you might be able to find a used portable DAT recorder for less than $500. As usual, eBay is a good place to start.

Happy hunting...


For sure dude! I was surprized to see your name on this post. Thanks for the reply. I bought a DAT of ebay, but wasn't pleased with the mini jack input -- it was real loose. It would be nice to find a recorder with XLR inputs. I did find a recorder from Zoom called the H4 that has "1/4 / XLR" inputs, whatever that means, but at least 1/4 inputs would be better than that sloppy mini. That unit is about $299 + 139 for the 2GB memory card.

I called you a while back to hear about an update on your project -- so, how's it going? Feel free to give me a call and I'll call you back on my dime (free LD) -- I'd like to hear what is happening.

I am trying to "gear" up to shoot some shorts. I have purchased a couple of Super 8s and I'm looking forwarded to filming soon.

All the best,

Dave
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#5 Bernhard Zitz

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 05:05 AM

Small devices like the Edirol or the M-Audio don't have any fader or knob to set level, can be hard to control. The M-Audio looks more userfriendly with a up-down button per channel, the 1/4"jack inputs and the rca-chinch outputs on M-Audio look better than the mini-jacks on the edirol. Both devices are small enough to be placed on actors when using a lav-mic, (no need for wireless)

Both manufactures claim to have phantom-power on board, although you should check if it's real 48V, if lower some mics probably won't work...

otherwise any MD-recorder is sync enough for movie-making, most don't have phantom-power...
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#6 Bernhard Zitz

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 05:16 AM

I did find a recorder from Zoom called the H4 that has "1/4 / XLR" inputs, whatever that means,

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Edited by Bernhard Zitz, 14 December 2006 - 05:16 AM.

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#7 Daniel Smith

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 10:12 AM

Not that this really answers your question, but it's the pre-amp that's really going to alter the quality.
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#8 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 10:30 AM

Hi,

You could always record sound to a miniDV camera if you have one around. DAT quality, easy to capture, crystal sync. Obviously get a Beachtek preamp box or whatever.

Phil
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#9 Andy Sparaco SOC

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 10:52 AM

You might check this out>

http://www.tapcoworl...kusb/index.html

A USB/Preamp takes hi/lo inputs/1/4 and 3 pin XLR/ powered from USB port. Marketed by Mackie includes there multi-channel software. Records up to 96mHz
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#10 davidhughens

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 11:24 AM

You might check this out>

http://www.tapcoworl...kusb/index.html

A USB/Preamp takes hi/lo inputs/1/4 and 3 pin XLR/ powered from USB port. Marketed by Mackie includes there multi-channel software. Records up to 96mHz


So, being a sound novice, all these suggestions are starting to confuse me. What's the set up with this USB device? Mic to USB device to...?

Thanks, Dave
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#11 Daniel Smith

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 12:02 PM

So, being a sound novice, all these suggestions are starting to confuse me. What's the set up with this USB device? Mic to USB device to...?

Thanks, Dave

It looks like an audio interface for the computer... not sure why that was mentioned, we're still on the portable audio recorder to plug the mic into on set right?


Take a look at this:

http://www.music123....0-i162149.music


We have these in college, the quality was pro.

*USB cable out to PC or Mac*, makes it very easy to transfer and mix in the audio with the video. (it's like plugging in a USB pen drive, and downloading the files from it)



Tommorow we are going to be using it to record a voice over for a film I'm making. I'll find out what mic it is. That will give you a good idea of what the quality is like.

Edited by Daniel Ashley-Smith, 14 December 2006 - 12:06 PM.

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#12 Andy Sparaco SOC

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 12:10 PM

So, being a sound novice, all these suggestions are starting to confuse me. What's the set up with this USB device? Mic to USB device to...?

Thanks, Dave



....USB port on a laptop. You can us tha audio software on the cmputer or the supplied Mackie software to record. Most Pro mics are 3 pin XLR.
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#13 Joe Lotuaco

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 12:51 PM

....USB port on a laptop. You can us tha audio software on the cmputer or the supplied Mackie software to record. Most Pro mics are 3 pin XLR.



How much hard drive space does audio take up when recorded through a USB pre-amp such as the Tapco? I'm more familiar with video rates, but I can't recall how much audio takes up. Say you record 24-bit/96Khz audio, 1 minute of audio = X MB of hard drive space?
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#14 Daniel Smith

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 04:13 PM

How much hard drive space does audio take up when recorded through a USB pre-amp such as the Tapco? I'm more familiar with video rates, but I can't recall how much audio takes up. Say you record 24-bit/96Khz audio, 1 minute of audio = X MB of hard drive space?

Well.. I think it might vary in certain ways, but the 96khz 24bit files I have run at about 4600kbits per second. (575 kbytes)

Almost 35mb per minute.

Edited by Daniel Ashley-Smith, 14 December 2006 - 04:15 PM.

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#15 James Erd

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Posted 14 December 2006 - 04:43 PM

I'm looking for a low cost -- under $500.00 -- recording device to record sound for my short films. Can anyone make a suggestion? I'll be filming with either a Canon 1014XL-S or Nizo 6080. Thanks! Dave


There were two DAT's that I thought were OK. Sony's TCD 10 and then there was a panasonic my friend had, that was also good. They both had XLR inputs and not the consumer 1/8 jack like the TCD 7 & TCD 8.

I have a TCD 7 and it's about the most finicky unreliable piece of "equipment" I have ever owned. The tapes are an issue as well. They are very fragile and prone failure. The deck was also prone to freezing up and the only way to reboot it was to interrupt the power by pulling the batteries out :( All this while the rest of the crew is waiting for you to get your act together. Oh and sometimes you would think the deck was recording when it was actually just monitoring. There wasn't any reliable way to know you were getting a good recording.

After all that, you still have to get the sound off of the DAT and into a file format you can use on your computer. This is not necessarily as straight forward as one might think. I tried to do this with my Dual G5 using optical cables. The G5 had a very hard time sussing out the sample rate of the DAT tape, [even though I had chosen it in preferences ] I spent many hours adjusting every setting and still there was always a problem. It's just never a simple task to marry to different eras of technology.

DAT's were amazing for their time, but no one is currently producing them, so before too long it may become impossible to get DAT tapes, not to mention service, parts and repair. Then again that's what people used to say about Super 8 :D However given that DAT's are a dead-end technology it's probably better to invest in a solid state recorder. Besides getting it into the computer is so easy! B)
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#16 Dennis Kisilyov

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Posted 03 February 2007 - 04:17 AM

Daft Question, I was checking this section, but it seems none of these support SMPTE Timecode input? Maybee it can be added as a "clock" on the SPDIF in.

Would that matter with a crystal sync unit? Or is crystal sync just for the camera motor, while sound get the clapper to sync with picture?

Edited by Dennis Kisilyov, 03 February 2007 - 04:18 AM.

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#17 Robert G Andrews

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Posted 11 February 2007 - 11:44 AM

how about a nice reel-to-reel.......? I guess not quite enough for a Nagra really....
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