Recording technology
  • rogue63
    Posts: 404
    Any suggestions for a classroom thingy to record some singing? I have Audacity--that's simple enough---but the built-in mic on my laptop is only so-so, and the recordings I've taken don't reflect the reality (or maybe I'm just thinking REALLY positive about my students). Anything in the ballpark of $200-250 or less?
  • Well... I have an Olympus DS-30, which I find I use the most. It is very small, gets pretty good sound and is easy to use and listen and re-record if you need. Drawback... it is in .wma format, which has to be converted to mp3 or wav for editing. I found a simple software download that does the trick, but it is an additional step. Costs about $125 or so (I think, haven't checked recently).

    Also have a Zoom H4. Gets much better recording quality and lots more options for about $250 (again, I think, haven't checked recently). records in mp3 or wav format.

    As I said, I end up using the little DS-30 most, because of ease and quickness of erase and listening for making practice recordings.

    Lots of good stuff out there... probably more up to date than mine... but just my two cents.
  • marymezzomarymezzo
    Posts: 173
    I'm with Janet on the Olympus. Our newspaper office has a couple of these babies, which we use to record interviews, homilies, and other newsworthy happenings. I've borrowed one many times to record everything from voice lessons to concerts (our own). The sound quality is decent--good enough, I think, to give you an idea how well the schola sounds. Obviously the sound is best when you're recording in a good acoustical space and when the recorder is well placed.

  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 7,590
    The prices have been dropping as new models are introduced. I picked up an Olympus DS-40 (similar device with slightly more internal memory) on the net under $100 a few months ago.

    My Linux systems are able to recognize it as an "external disk drive", read the WMA files, and convert them (with 'mplayer') to WAV format for Audacity to read.
  • Jeffrey TuckerJeffrey Tucker
    Posts: 3,624
  • just looked at the R-09... sounds great in the description: Amazon link to R-09

    Oh... yeah... my html book is coming in handy! And, it worked :)
  • Pes
    Posts: 623
    The R-09 works great for me, too.
  • Semi-Off Topic...but may be useful to some. At one point I was in charge of a music program that involved a weekly radio program. The sound of the choir on the air was poor. So I studied and came up with the the following:

    A simple mixer that can handle 3 microphones. Place two microphones with the elements facing left and right, spaced as if they are the distance between the ears. These two go right in front of the choir to pick up the consonants. Pan them hard Right and Left on the mixer.

    Then run a third microphone out 30' from the choir and the two microphones. Set the Pan on it to center. This provides the sound of the vowels and the additional benefit of 30 microseconds of delay, which warms up the sound greatly.

    Balance the microphones out using the gain control. You will probably find that they should all be about the same, with a possible emphasis on the one that is Pan center.

    This will make the choir sound great...and even a single singer sound great as well.

    These little recording units, including the ZOOM H-2 and H-4 will accept external microphones and mixers.
  • rogue63
    Posts: 404
    Thanks for all the advice, folks. And Noel, thanks for the rundown on your recording scenario---I'll keep that in my "toolbox".
  • Wow... that sounds great, Noel. Any possibility of coming to the Colloq? I know the job situation isn't great...
  • Carl DCarl D
    Posts: 980
    I have a Zoom H2, which is awesome quality. Records both WAV and MP3 at various bitrates, and can record using 4 internal microphones.
  • mjballoumjballou
    Posts: 986
    I've been happy with my H4 and Audacity for the recording thus far. And I'm really rotten at technology (i.e., this recorder and Audacity software are good for the electronics-impaired). I'm also happy that the H4 will take external mics, but even happier that it has built-in stereo mics, which means easy and unobtrusive recording.
  • The Colloq is a dream of mine...

    [Long diatribe deleted about increasing choir to 46 from 16 while being told that my part-time music salary is a financial drain and is putting the church in the red...with many of those new 30 singers transferring to the parish....and their giving to the parish, including $10,000 from one new member toward an organ]

    So Chicago is almost definitely out. I think a friend has plans of attending, so maybe i will get a T-Shirt? Or....better yet, one of the official bow ties.

    While were were not permitted to sing Ubi Caritas this evening...remember, I had to agree to do everything out of Breaking Bread to return to the choir as a volunteer, after Communion and prior to the procession, we were permitted to sing the Miserere by Lotti....

    To get back on topic, the H4 is MUCH easier to operate than the H2.
  • I'd have to say the R-09HR by Roland/Edirol is the most amazing handheld recorder I've ever used. It sells for about $375 street (close to 475 retail)