#1
Hey,

I'm really looking to buy a recording device, and after reading all kinds of FAQ's about this I'm stuck with two questions (please keep in mind I'm a total noob in this area).

1. Is something like this: http://www.musicstore.com/en_EN/EUR/Fostex-MR-8-HD-inkl.-40GB-Harddisk-intern/art-REC0003951-000 . Any good sound-quality-wise? Because if it is why do people still use their PC for recording.

2. Does this fix the problem of having a crappy soundcard in my PC? Since I assume DIGITAL recorder means that my computer doesn't have to convert it from analog to a digital signal.

Thanks in advance
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#2
Some people prefer digital recorders, and some prefer recording through the computer. I just use an interface that goes into the computer, and I like having all my tracks right there in front of me. The thing about those recorders is that they are more portable in case you want to take it anywhere. I've never used that particular recorder but it looks like it would be good for the job. It will solve your problem because the information will go straight to the recorder and the data will store on there, where when you use your computer, the signal has to go through the soundcard to store information in the system.
hope that helps.
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#3
I reviewed the MR8 MKII which is basically a step down from that 80GB unit you are looking at. Personally I would not get one again. The preamps are not great by any means and I had some "glitching" every now and then...
Check my youtube page for the video review, I think it's under Gear Review #1...


If you use the MTR to record you dont really need an audio interface. The problem that comes up though is that you are limited to the amount of tracks on the MTR and believe me, it's easy to fill tracks up when recoding. If you record with the MTR you don't need an audio interface because your computer will only be used to play back the audio after you transfer the audio though the MTR and get it onto the desktop as a final mixdown. IF you wanted to you could get an interface for better sounding playback but TBH you don't really need it at that point...

Now if you do want to record to a laptop or desktop you really should get an interface. They provide many advantages such as low latency monitoring, correct style input, preamps, and better AD converters. Another good point is interfaces are generally cheaper than MTRs and yet you get unlimited tracks to work with.

I personally feel working on computers is the easiest way to go. Those MTRs can be good and useful but that's only the higher priced ones. IMO, the computer/interface setup is still the best way to start recording


The only real time I've seen a studio use a MTR is when it was a high end unit such as something like the Alesis HD24 (paired with a digital mixer) or Roland VS2480DVD
Last edited by moody07747 at Nov 7, 2008,
#4
Thanks for the answers.

So that would mean for me to get a mixer and plug that in to my laptop.

But as I understand from the FAQ, won't I need an awesome sound card to record a good sound? Kinda hard to cram that into a laptop.

EDIT: Thanks for the youtube review, it's really great.
There's always money in the banana stand!
Last edited by TheRisen at Nov 8, 2008,
#5
No, you wouldn't need a mixer, or a new soundcard as such. You would be best off purchasing an audio interface, which is an external soundcard. This works as a soundcard, in terms of allowing inputs to your computer and outputs from it, and also converts analogue to digital in the same way. However, an interface is far higher in quality than a standard soundcard, and will allow low latency recording and playback, as well as higher quality sound. When plugged in, it will bypass your stock card.

There are a large range of interfaces on the market. Which one to get will depend on your budget, and what you want to record, as well as other factors such as your OS and the specs of your computer.
There is poetry in despair.
#6
Ok thanks,

I also read somewhere that USB audio interfaces aren't as good as the Firewire ones. Since I have a laptop and no firewire inputs, will USB really suck that bad?
There's always money in the banana stand!
#7
No, not at all. USB 2.0 actually has a faster speed than Firewire (it just can't transfer as much data at the same time). If you're only planning to have a two input interface, then USB won't be a problem at all, particularly with a 2.0 connection.

A decent unit with USB2.0 is the EMU 0404.
There is poetry in despair.
#8
Thanks that helped a lot. I'm going to look into it right now.

So to summarize... This thing is the only thing I need to record decently on my laptop (maybe apart from a mixer for extra tracks, and of couse logically the laptop, mics, cable, software etc.)?
There's always money in the banana stand!
Last edited by TheRisen at Nov 8, 2008,
#9
Quote by TheRisen
Thanks that helped a lot. I'm going to look into it right now.

So to summarize... This thing is the only thing I need to record decently on my laptop (maybe apart from a mixer for extra tracks, and of couse logically the laptop, mics, cable, software etc.)?


Yep the interface will bypass your stock sound card and give you better inputs and outputs to use. You should get some good headphones if you dont have them already.

You can run instruments from a mixer then feed the mixer into the interface however it's not suggested that you do this as you are then mixing down tracks. If you had something like a fully miced drum set you could get by doing this but you need someone watching levels and listening to the mix as it's being recorded. Once that is recorded you wont be able to change one or two mics as they are all mixed down.
#10
Quote by moody07747
Yep the interface will bypass your stock sound card and give you better inputs and outputs to use.


if you want it too.. you can still use your old soundcard aswell.

Quote by moody07747
You can run instruments from a mixer then feed the mixer into the interface however it's not suggested that you do this as you are then mixing down tracks. If you had something like a fully miced drum set you could get by doing this but you need someone watching levels and listening to the mix as it's being recorded. Once that is recorded you wont be able to change one or two mics as they are all mixed down.


tecnically, you can use a mixer as a way of recording two mono tracks at once. and when recording single instruments you'd probarbly use mono anyways. and if you get a mixer with direct outs for every track you'd be able to get a soundcard later on with more inputs, which means you could use all the tracks on the mixer straight into your recording device. so if you're into the whole idea of having real faders to push around then a mixer might be a good solution.
#11
Quote by rasker
if you want it too.. you can still use your old soundcard aswell.


tecnically, you can use a mixer as a way of recording two mono tracks at once. and when recording single instruments you'd probarbly use mono anyways. and if you get a mixer with direct outs for every track you'd be able to get a soundcard later on with more inputs, which means you could use all the tracks on the mixer straight into your recording device. so if you're into the whole idea of having real faders to push around then a mixer might be a good solution.


Both statements are true however with more outputs on interfaces these days it's not too common to see anyone use a stock sound card for their playback once they get an interface. Usually you will hook up monitors and such to the interface outputs.

The larger mixers have many outs but most of the time on this board I see everyone saying you need a mixer to record and the original poster goes out and gets a small mixer like the Yamaha MG10/2 expecting to be able to track a full band in one take. This simply isn't the case.

Behringer has the MX9000 which works quite well with something like the M-Audio Delta 1010 rack interface. It works but IMO it's not an ideal start setup as you need to spend quite a bit on a large mixer followed by the interface.

Most interfaces such as the PreSonus FP10 can be chained so 3 can be used at one time using one firewire connection to the computer. With that type of setup you can easily track 24 inputs at one time and not have to spend a ton of money on hardware.

Also they make control surfaces so if you still want that whole "hands on" feel you can still get that but with a compact setup.