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Thread: DR40 vs DP008-ex

  1. #1
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    DR40 vs DP008-ex

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    I have done all my recording, editing, and mixing on the computer for many years (hobbyist). I sit in front of a computer all day at work, and I want to move away from the computer as much as possible for music. So I am looking at the DR40 and DP008-ex for recording and possibly mixing. Here are my concerns for each...

    DR40: I like that it can record 4 channels at once, using a combination of the internal mics and my own external mics. I often do single take recordings with two mics on my guitar for a stereo image and one on my vocals, and it looks like I could do those all with this unit. In some videos I have watched, I hear a high pitched sound constantly in the background when using it though. Have you experienced that?

    DP008-ex. I like that I could record a total of 8 tracks per song with this, albeit only two a a time (which is a limitation that gives me some pause). I like that I could do some level of mixing and EQ'ing with it. But the conversion from the proprietary MTR format to WAV being required before export to the computer sounds like a pain. Is it? If the unit ever broke, I would have to buy another Tascam to get them off of there.

    I want to get demos of my songs up on soundcloud without too much fiddling. I don't mind doing some level of mixing or mastering on the computer, and I am very used to doing that, but I want as little screen time as possible. Any thoughts or suggestions would be most welcome.
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    I understand your question, but I will say it anyway. If you take a simple laptop and a two+ channel interface that pulls its power from the USB plug, and your favorite DAW you would be set.

    You wouldn't have to sit in front of the computer, just setup your recording templates so when you pull it up, the tracks are there, get a feel for the settings and record. I use a bigger unit for my interface to record complete bands, but like today, I put my laptop in a bag, threw my Presonus USB audio in there, if I needed it, some mics and cables and a single duel mic stand, and I am rolling.

    If you don't make the setup complex, a laptop and an interface can be simple. On the low end, without mics, about $400-500 to include a cheap laptop, interface and Reaper. Just make sure the interface pulls power from USB.

    I didn't answer the question, but I really think there are better alternatives.
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    Thanks for the reply DM60. I understand your point. I actually already have a multichannel audio interface, plenty of mics, a few DAWs, and a good computer. I also don't want to be around a computer because then I will get distracted with plugins and email and surfing the net.

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    I understand, but it did make me think, based n=ion your comment. A good fundamental set up would be a simple DAW, an 8 band EQ, a good compressor with a limiter, and maybe a reverb. That would be the only effects a person would need on a good computer based porta-studio rig.

    Good Luck!!!
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    Mysterious Unit

    I picked up a DP-008EX on a one-day sale for $99 a year or two back for fairly similar reasons.

    I've only used it once or twice since then.

    The conversion process was a nightmare that took a HUGE amount of time, something like fifteen minutes to convert a three-minute piece. I was dumbfounded...but it appears that the SD card I got for it now tests defective -- or else the unit damaged it when it reformatted and partitioned it (why?) to their screwy proprietary format. I'm totally unclear on this, but that part of it is very unintuitive and awkward, plus I've read that it will only take Class 4 SD cards (and good luck finding them!). I don't know if this claim is true, but I don't think it makes any sense, if I correctly understand flash media.

    I may be making this harder than it is, but I've never been able to get past this and I've never found an active support forum for these devices where I could get competent advice and information. I've never found anyone else with one of these.

    Another downside is that (like most Tascam portable gear) the thing eats batteries like a furnace and incredibly, for a $400 MSRP unit, doesn't come with an AC adapter.

    The aftermarket adapter I got for it has a really short cable and is therefore a pain to use.

    Aside from this, though, the unit is a very nice and well-conceived product with good sound quality and decent microphones as well as usable effects. It's complex, though, with a substantial learning curve.

    In the end, I found it failed to be the easy and convenient alternative to working in the studio I had hoped it would be.
    Last edited by bongolation; 06-26-2015 at 14:17.
    You'll never progress musically until you stop thinking like a musician and start thinking like a producer.

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    Thanks for the info bongolation. I have read a few things that say conversion/file transfer is a pain, but that sounds ridiculous. How many tracks were you converting that it took 15 min for a 3 min song?

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    Quote Originally Posted by pdadda View Post
    How many tracks were you converting that it took 15 min for a 3 min song?
    One (1)...and I think it was probably longer than fifteen minutes.

    Again, I think this may have had to do with the defective (or damaged) SD card. I don't know -- but the whole SD proprietary formatting and geeky forced partitioning weirdness completely confuses me and seems poorly explained in the manual. Once you figure it out, I assume it's a non-issue, but it left me scratching my head, and I'm still not sure if modern SD cards will even work properly in these. It comes with some old 2G card, so we're talking about obsolete OEM stock.

    Noise floor and other QC seems to vary from unit to unit as well. I constantly see complaints about the noise floor and microphone quality on these, but mine seemed fine. The sound quality was surprisingly good, to my ears. The variability in the reviews on Amazon also seems to suggest loose QC, user error or unreasonable expectations -- maybe a conjunction of all three.
    Last edited by bongolation; 06-30-2015 at 19:40.
    You'll never progress musically until you stop thinking like a musician and start thinking like a producer.

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    Anyone know how the internal mics compare on the DP series and DR series? I have a decent mic collection to use when I really want to lay down an album, but I was wondering if I could get good enough mic quality with either the built in ones on the DP008ex or DR40 (or DR44wl) for demos. I live in a freaking tiny place where I can't leave my recording gear out all the time.
    Last edited by pdadda; 07-06-2015 at 11:19.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pdadda View Post
    Anyone know how the internal mics compare on the DP series and DR series?
    Sorry, no idea.
    You'll never progress musically until you stop thinking like a musician and start thinking like a producer.

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    I've used a dp008ex for about a year now and have had no issues with it. I personally found it to be quite simple and intuitive to operate. The sound quality is top rate and as far as converting the song file to a .wav file its just takes a couple of simple menu clicks to accomplish this. I does take a couple of minutes to do it but that never really bothered me much... It does it all by itself so I just hit the command and then do something else for a few minutes and when I come back to it, its all done. I think just about every basic Sandisk brand memory card you can buy is a class 4, I've never had any problem finding one as one poster alluded to. It's a great recorder. I just upgraded to an dp03sd because it had some features I preferred like actual sliders and eq knobs, and is a little larger with better feeling knobs and switches, etc.

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