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Mini Disc Recorders


Phil W

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I know we've discussed these (generally) in some instances in other threads, but . . .

My minidisc recorder/player has finally died (faulty earphone jack).

I was considering the Sony netMD (MZ-N10) as you can transfer tracks to computer via USB - or I was led to believe you could. Apparently, Sony's fear of bootlegs means that you can quickly transfer music from your computer to the MD player but NOT the reverse. This is not really useful for me as this is what I previously used and want to use an MD player for.

1) Record my gigs/rehearsals using my Sony T-mic (which has performed admirably)

2) Listen to the Minidiscs (no problem here)

3) Transfer tracks to my PC and either put on the web or burn CDs for band members etc.

 

I guess I could use a regular minidisc player and either input into a CD player and record; then rip to the PC.

Or plug the mindisc into the mic input of the PC and use Audacity (r other software) to record a copy onto the PC.

 

There's also the option of finding an MP3 player that you can record directly onto through an external mic (though I have reservations about the quality of MP3 for some of my uses).

 

What players do you use, what do you recommend?

 

I know another option would be to take my laptop to gigs/rehearsals and record direct through the mic. . . but I really don't want another thing to carry/worry about at the gig. Plus my wife would be none too happy that she couldn't use it meanwhile.

 

 

hmmm... :confused:

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I know these threads are out there:

1

 

2

 

3

 

3

 

And very helpful they are too; I'm just fishing for more points of view and advice on specific Minidisc recorder models. Also I'm keen on some kind of highspeed transfer to PC, though it's doubtful I'll get that.

 

My budget is very limited but I'm looking around at second-hand stuff.

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I recently purchased the MZ RH-10. It is one of the new Hi-MD recorders. I was worried about the SCMS issue but it has been resolved. In version 3.3 of the SonicStage software, you now have unlimited digital transfers of audio recorded through the analog inputs. Sony provides the patch. Seems that they finally realized that live audio recording is an important set of their potential cusomters.

 

The luminescent display is also a great improvement for reading it in the dark.

Never follow children, animals or Hare Krishnas!!
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I'm not familiar with your model of recorder but with mine all I do is plug the player into the USB port of my PC and the sonicstage software pops up and then you are off, it looks kind of like an FTP client.
Never follow children, animals or Hare Krishnas!!
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Hi, if you want transfer direct recordings to your pc, probablly a better option is the M-Audio MicroTrack 29/96. You can record in WAV format direcly and storage in a CompactFlash card, then you can transfer files via USB and is not too expensive. I can´t buy it yet but i found information at M Audio Web site.

http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/MicroTrack2496-main.html

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Thanks.

The Micro Track looks absolutely perfect except that, at $500, it costs about $400 dollars more than I can spend. Looks great!

Wurmholw, that's reassuring news about the software. The one I've been offered is missing the software so I'll probably pass on it or try to download the software somewhere.

With a regular minidisc, does anyone know if it works to just plug it into the mic socket of the PC and record straight in with software? Or does this create distortion?

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One of these with GarageBand 3.

 

For your other question, you can get Musicmatch Jukebox for your PC which can record from line in or mic.

 

I use my Mac Mini with GarageBand, and it's only getting better. I the past, I have used Musicmatch, but my older PC starts to have memory issues after a while of recording, requiring a restart.

 

Just my two cents.

 

ATM

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M-Audio MicroTrack 29/96.

or Edirol R-1

 

both kill minidisc in terms of sound and conviencence.

 

I record all rehearsals and gigs with the edirol. it's the best $400 bucks you'll ever spend. You'll learn more about your playing than anything else you could do.

 

it's way better than spending $400 on pedals.

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Dude, you really should consider some of the ridiculously portable MP3 players. Sony mini-disk is a compressed format, right? MP3 recorded at a suitable bitrate is going to sound little or no different. I have an MP3 player the size of a PC thumb-drive (the little USB memory drives) that has a built in mic, and it was ~$50 brand new...I'm sure you can find one that has a stereo mic input.

 

Dave

Old bass players never die, they just buy lighter rigs.

- Tom Capasso, 11/9/2006

 

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Yeah, Dave. Especially as I've recorded sessions with my old minidisc at 4X recording length and the had a relative copy to cd audio. That must have been fairly compressed but sounded great. High bitrate MP3 can't be worse, can it? So all I need is a decent MP3 recorder recommendation? ... and a friend to copy half a dozen old minidiscs to a different format.

Trouble is most mp3 and even minidisc makers haven't cottoned on to our (admittedly small) market niche. This means that reviews and product descriptions talk about voice recordings (memos?) and transfer of files is all about taking audiofiles off computers.

Big Daddy, I can't conceivably spend $400 at the moment, and I don't have any pedals* either though I'd love to experiment with all that. We are a single income family and the music income does not justify any variety of GAS beyond the essential.

I'll ahve a look into them, though, just in case I see something secondhand.

ATM, what is the Apple product?

 

 

* Actually a lie as I have a very cheap Zoom multi-effects box somewhere

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I saw a high end net/minidisc for £65 (about $110) and was considering it until I realised that it was missing the software (difficult), the USB cable (no probs), the manual (easy to find on PDF), the charger/adaptor and the fitting for an external battery (oops!). Needless to say, I'm not going to buy that one. I might even try to last until I get back to the US in July, as I know US prices will be better - but it seems a way off now.
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Originally posted by Dave Sisk:

Dude, you really should consider some of the ridiculously portable MP3 players. Sony mini-disk is a compressed format, right? MP3 recorded at a suitable bitrate is going to sound little or no different.

Dave, AFAIK very few of the MP3 players can record at all, and if they can it's at very dubious quality due to the massive amount of processing power that MP3 encoding on the fly requires.

 

Phil, my guitarist has a cheap minidisk recorder that he uses for our band practices - that recording you heard was done on it with a posh mic but normally we use a tiny stereo mic. I believe it talks to the computer via USB so you don't have to go through the pain of playing it into the computer and re-recording its output to get the audio onto the hard drive. I'll find out what model it is...

 

Alex

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You can record without compression with minidisk. I considered the Microtrack and the Edirol models but settled on the MD because it only cost 200 dollars and the media are very cheap. A gig worth of flash storage is still around 50 or 60 dollars while a 1gB minidisk is around 5 or 6 bucks.

 

With the money I saved going MD I was able to pick a matched pair of condensers and a phantom power supply, resulting in a complete, versatile rig.

 

Admittedly MD players don't seem particulary robust or to be specifically designed for this purpose, but stored safely in the padded mic box I'm not worried about it.

Never follow children, animals or Hare Krishnas!!
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The problems with MD are:

1. It's still a pain to get the file into the computer in a WAV file.

2. MD recorders will skip if you are trying to record in a loud enviroment.( like from the bandstand at a gig or rehearsal)

3. The price of blank MD's start to add up, with a flash card You only need to save the data untill you dump it into the computer, in other words 1 gig should last forever.

4. I've used (and own) both; and the flashcard recorders sound better and are more reliable. Though none of the portable recorders is perfect, untill you get up towards $1000.

5. The things are so small i sometimes lose them, (I know i've got a spare MD recorder somewhere)

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Points noted,

I'm going for basic recordings though to get ideas to improve my playing. Your suggestions seem the best options for sure and I will consider them, especially when I get to the States in the Summer.

Seeing as how my budget is extremely limited at the mo, and having made decent minidisc recordings before, I will probably buy another MD at this stage unless I see a bargain on Ebay for something more sophisticated. I'd also like to be able to play my old minidiscs as I have gigs and lessons and the like on there so in the short term, at least, I should get one.

Mostly, I can just listen to rehearsals gigs on a MD playe - it's only the odd thing that I would like to share via PC. I must post some recordings one day so you guys can get an idea what I sound like. Only Alex C is privy to that secret, though DavoLondon may hopefully find out soon.

The main problem I've had with portable minidisc players (and the like) is the headphone jacks getting messed up beyond repair (my bass trainer is in danger of going the same way) - AAAAHHH!

I've not suffered with jumping/skipping before. Though I have almost lost a MD recorder that I placed on a perfect location for a recording, then forgot - the cleaner found it later!

I guess I just need to get a bunch more decent paying gigs and then I might be ble to justify going down the M-Audio MicroTrack 29/96 or Edirol R-1 routes. Good as I've got on the bass (and commited as I am), I have to force myself to admit (though it's painful) that I'm beyond 40, not making a proper living playing music and my services are not in demand. Maybe it's just a hobby :cry: though it's the thing I devote most of my life energy to.

- Apologies for the self-indulgence here!

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Originally posted by Phil W:

Good as I've got on the bass (and commited as I am), I have to force myself to admit (though it's painful) that I'm beyond 40, not making a proper living playing music and my services are not in demand. Maybe it's just a hobby :cry: though it's the thing I devote most of my life energy to.

- Apologies for the self-indulgence here!

Not at all. That's just how I feel, except my work pays well and so GAS is more my problem.

 

Davo

"We will make you bob your head whether you want to or not". - David Sisk
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"I must post some recordings one day so you guys can get an idea what I sound like."

The homepage link above my posts now has a link to a recording of a jam on Cissy Strut witha couple of very talented musicians from Japan recorded a couple of years back. It's recorded on a minidisc through a Sony T mic, then converted to a .wav file, then compressed to mp3 for Myspace.

I'm playing my Wal using exclusively the neck pickup (which is rare for me) and with a battery that was on its last legs - hence a slight distortion. I don't remember the type of amp I used -it was in an LA Music Academy rehearsal room.

It's based on the John Scofield arrangement of Cissy Strut (I usually play a version closer to the original by the Meters). We're playing to an audience of 2, late at night after watching a gig. Just having fun! ;)

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