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Thread: A few options, but which one to choose?

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    I was at the american music directory and they have a pretty good assortment of entry level 4 tracks. The Yamaha MT 4 X, the Fostex XR5-4, XR5, the TASCAM 424 MKIII, and the most interesting one the Marantz PMD 740, all under $500. Now the question is, which one is the one to go with? And where does a guy go to find reviews for such things? Every search engine is just a brain melting trip into wasted time town.

    Thanks a lot,

    Snakedriver

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    It depends a lot on what you are planning on recording. I think the Yamaha MT-4X is the best if you are planning to synchronize to MIDI (and just overdub to the other three tracks). But if you are recording drums or a live band, then having 4 or more XLR inputs would be a big plus. There are a lot of inexpensive, high quality mixers available now, so I wish more companies would sell 4-tracks with no mixer at all. For example, I use the Yamaha MT4X, but I don't use the mixer section at all.

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    Hey Snakedriver,

    I have an old Yamaha MT4, before it was the MT4X. I have enjoyed it, but I do have a few gripes. First of, the switches for changing the inputs from tape, mic, or off are cheap and start to give you problems after @3-4 years. I also don't care for the fact that it doesn't have XLR, Phantom powered jacks as this means buying either another mixer (which I did) and/or an off board preamp (like the ART MP Tube). I've often wished I could find a decent 4 track recorder without a mixer or one that is much more expandable (Audio/Technica used to make one with 6 mic inputs--it was a big beast but I wish I still had it). Tascam's 424 seems to get plenty of good reviews on this site so it must be pretty hot. And MD and stand alone hard disk units are dropping fast so at $500 don't count them out because another $200-300 would get you there easily.

    Peace, Jim

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    Make the trip to a large city near you,and go to several big music stores. There is no substitute for feeling and seeing the item you are considering. I have bought things though the mail, and then been dissapointed by the cheap plastic construction. (Not easily discernable from the photo!)Besides that: going to the music store is a blast!

    Sincerely;

    Dom Franco

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