For various reasons, I have decided to move from my very novice PC-based recoding (Cool Edit Pro 2.0), to a stand-alone unit. First, with graduate school, etc. it is very difficult to keep my hard drive clear for recording, etc.

Also, I want a recorder that has the aesthetics I feel I have missed out on. IE: faders, three band eq, etc.

I know my desire for EQ knobs, etc. rules out many of the digital recorders, however I have considered the following (some analog, some digital). I want to try to buy something on Ebay for 350 or under, if possible.

Here are the units I have considered:

Yamaha MD8
Tascam 564
Tascam 246
Tascam 488 MkII

Also, are there any affordable 4 or 8 tracks that use 1/4" tape? Any other machines I should consider (of any format).

Anyhow, which of the above units would you experienced users recommend? How should I factor in the cost of the media needed, sound quality, the ability to mixdown to a WAV on a PC and retain quality, etc...


PS: I also posted this thread in the newbie section, just wanted to get some other perspectives in this forum.