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Old January 22nd, 2006, 10:59 AM   #1
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Tascam HD-P2 stereo recorder - user comments?

Has anyone had any experiences using the Tascam HD-P2 stereo with timecode recorder? Comments, feedback, comparisons to other stereo field recorders (especially recorders with timecode) appreciated.
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Old January 22nd, 2006, 03:43 PM   #2
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I've had lots of experience with double system sound in the olden times of longitudinal tc stripes on various tape media, expensive playback machines with servos that can bump and sync with other machines. Thank goodness those days are gone! Lots of maintenance issues, lots of things to go wrong, really expensive post environments.

Lots of experience with double system with DV formats and minidisc and hard drive recorders, no timecode. Most of this has been music, with reference sound on the camcorder, and easy to sync by hand (my NLE is Vegas). Been fun, inexpensive and easy. (but I've had lots of easy sync points).

A little experience with a Sound Devices 744T, syncing it via time-of-day timecode to DV and HDV. The 744 uses BWF format, same as the Tascam. I'd imagined something like a timecode stripe, but it's not continuous tc record - instead, the tc is stamped in the file header when you start recording. From there, the recording runs free, but of course it's extremely accurate in the 744 and probably the Tascam P2 as well.

But this is what you end up with - a timecode stamp in the file header. The real questions come in when you want to sync in your NLE. Vegas has what I'd call "rudimentary" tools, they work fine but very much first generation. Also, Vegas works only with 1 or 2 ch. BWF, not the polyphonic files, but there are utilities to split bwf.

What is your editor? I could go on and on about doing it in Vegas... but I have no idea what happens with BWF header stamps in other NLEs.
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Old January 22nd, 2006, 03:56 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum
I've had lots of experience with double system sound in the olden times of longitudinal tc stripes on various tape media, expensive playback machines with servos that can bump and sync with other machines. Thank goodness those days are gone! Lots of maintenance issues, lots of things to go wrong, really expensive post environments.

Lots of experience with double system with DV formats and minidisc and hard drive recorders, no timecode. Most of this has been music, with reference sound on the camcorder, and easy to sync by hand (my NLE is Vegas). Been fun, inexpensive and easy. (but I've had lots of easy sync points).

A little experience with a Sound Devices 744T, syncing it via time-of-day timecode to DV and HDV. The 744 uses BWF format, same as the Tascam. I'd imagined something like a timecode stripe, but it's not continuous tc record - instead, the tc is stamped in the file header when you start recording. From there, the recording runs free, but of course it's extremely accurate in the 744 and probably the Tascam P2 as well.

But this is what you end up with - a timecode stamp in the file header. The real questions come in when you want to sync in your NLE. Vegas has what I'd call "rudimentary" tools, they work fine but very much first generation. Also, Vegas works only with 1 or 2 ch. BWF, not the polyphonic files, but there are utilities to split bwf.

What is your editor? I could go on and on about doing it in Vegas... but I have no idea what happens with BWF header stamps in other NLEs.

Timecode on any BWF files is just a timestamp in the header - the Tascam does sync its sample clock to incoming timecode or video blackburst though. I'm pretty well acquainted with the various issues surround double system sound and timecode in general - Was asking more about impressions of the Tascam recorder per se, say, as compared to the 744T or 722 (of course, the 744 is 4 and a half times the price so that's really not a fair comparison.) or other location recorders. Issues like sound quality, reliability, etc. Got my sights set on a SD442 mixer and 744T recorder eventually but may have to go with something less ambitious pricewise for the immediate future and was thinking about the SD302 mixer and Tascam recorder as a combo for double system location sound. That setup is about $1500 less than a 302/722 combo, both would do stereo but the Tascam also gives timecode timestamping and sample sync while the 722 does not.
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Old January 22nd, 2006, 04:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve House
Timecode on any BWF files is just a timestamp in the header - the Tascam does sync its sample clock to incoming timecode or video blackburst though...
Right - well, in my limited experience that may help one sleep at night or increase credibility with a video engineer when you take master sync, but my syncs have been fine without sample level syncing. OTOH I have done sample sync with multiple ADAT-HD24 recorders, and was glad :-)

Sorry I don't have any direct experience with the Tascam to offer - hasn't it only been out a few weeks? The Tascam DAP-1 DAT recorder, which was about the same size and features (except TC) was a well-respected box, I rented one a couple times, it was very good.

I wish I had reason to own the Sound Devices mixer and 744, it is very, very good stuff. But if it was the wishlist we were talking about, the HHB Portadisc looks mighty fine, too. Champagne tastes, but my beer budget will more likely accomodate an Edirol R-4. Matching with the DV prosumer equipment I typically use, it has Control-L control from the camera, so recorder takes match camera takes.
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Old January 23rd, 2006, 04:44 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seth Bloombaum

...I wish I had reason to own the Sound Devices mixer and 744, it is very, very good stuff. But if it was the wishlist we were talking about, the HHB Portadisc looks mighty fine, too. Champagne tastes, but my beer budget will more likely accomodate an Edirol R-4. Matching with the DV prosumer equipment I typically use, it has Control-L control from the camera, so recorder takes match camera takes.
Sounds like we're in the same boat regarding budget! LOL And of course being able to accept timecode or sync to a camera or house clock presumes too that one has a camera that outputs timecode. Tascam says the recorder will accept composite video for the clock sync.
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