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Old March 21st, 2008, 06:36 AM   #1
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Cost effective sound recording

I can remember a number of years ago that the Sony Minidisc was a good option for recording background audio. Is there a solid state equivalent around today?

Andy Davies
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Old March 21st, 2008, 07:28 AM   #2
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Lots of options, just do a quick search for Digital Audio Recorders within this section of the Forum and you'll quickly find many reviews and comments on what's available by a wide community of amateurs and professionals alike.

I use Zoom H2 but, despite it's obvious strengths in it's price point (about 140-150 quid), I'd suggest spending MORE than that. I find when I really need "quality audio" it's not, quite, good enough. People who know say the old Sony Minidiscs recorded better quality audio than it's capable of - but it's small and useful and does get used frequently for impromptu stuff and is often better than any expensive on-camera shotgun etc. mics especially if like me you shoot in HDV with it's crippled audio format (yes, really, almost any day as it can be put where you need it, right close up, and record in WAV format.)

I also use a Fostex FR-2LE which is excellent/will take XLR mic inputs and has Phantom power and again is ideal for getting close up to the audio but it is quite a bit bigger to lug around, not too big though but not pocketable like the Zoom H2 - Fostex costs about 380 quid over here. Quality kit though!

One of the new Sony audio recorders (PCM D50) look nice and seem to be ideal/getting rave reviews if you can afford it (better quality than the Zooms, very good on board mics, not too big BUT don't take XLR mics or have Phantom power as is - only via expensive and bulky adapter.) About 500 quid over here I think, a bit less if you import it from B&H in NYC I believe....not sure if that's over your budget but consider cost effective as "I'll only buy it once and then I'm all set for getting quality audio for years and years.....if you put it in the right place = up close and personal" and it could be. I'll probably swap my Zoom H2 for this Sony (one day!)

Just my thoughts but searching will quickly get you many other suggestions.
Andy K Wilkinson -
Cambridge (UK) Corporate Video Production

Last edited by Andy Wilkinson; March 21st, 2008 at 11:20 AM. Reason: typos
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Old March 21st, 2008, 06:54 PM   #3
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I still like HiMD. It's the next generation of minidisc and lets you record 1 gig of uncompressed files that you can finally download digitally. You can also use it to capture your old minidisc files digitally as well. Biggest drawback is you have to use Sony's proprietary software and I have concerns over how long Sony will support the format. If you got the cash though, the SoundDevices recorders are awesome. I've been using the SD722 on a shoot for the last month and it rocks.
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Old March 21st, 2008, 08:34 PM   #4
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For long sound effects runs at airfields I use a pair of Sony Hi-MD minidisc recorders with Audio Technica AT822 mics. Price/spec/soundwise I haven't seen anything better.

2 years ago I managed to score 40 Hi-MD 1G discs locally at $A1.50ea. There's still some bargains around.

This is the same deal I got from BnH about 2years ago, looks like it's still available and at the same price too. Don't know what these folk are like to deal with and it's the US version of the MZ-M100. Check out the specs. You also get SoundForge 8 which is upgradeable to 9.


Last edited by Allan Black; March 22nd, 2008 at 07:23 AM. Reason: found an MZ-M100
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Old September 11th, 2008, 06:49 PM   #5
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I got my Sony MZ-RH1 Hi-MD unit in Spring 2007 mainly to record stand-up comedy and to also use in a short film video production. I was using an HC1 at the time. I seeked a lot of advice from the forums, in particular, these two threads:

recording stand up comedy:
Recording Stand up / Stand-up comedy - Best Minidisc Solution? - Minidisc Community Forums

using a minidisc in a video production:
Using Minidisc For Video Production - Minidisc Community Forums

The AT822 was the mic that was highly recommended and I never got around to purchasing it. But, I just purchased an XH-A1 today (thanks Dave, and now want to finally get around to getting the AT822.

I'd love to hear some more on the AT822 & Minidisc combination. I saw some creative minidisc solutions being thrown around in this thread the other day:

I had been meaning to thoroughly go through the suggestions.
Current Audio Equipment: two AT822 mics, Sony MZ-RH1, and KE-110CCR. What else should I get for short films and recording stand-up comedy?
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