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julianr

Is MZ-RH1 my only option?

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Hi

I have been using an MZ N920 for several years to record my own performances (I am a classical singer). I always record in SP mode in order to obtain the highest recorded quality, and then transfer them to my iMac via an analogue connection. Although the quality is generally adequate for my purposes I have always wished I could transfer directly without DA-AD conversion.

1) Having read a number of the threads on this forum I have gained the impression that although any Hi-MD player can play normal MD recordings, the only machine that I could use to transfer SP recordings to a computer is the MZ-RH1. Is this correct, or can I actually transfer SP mode recordings using any other Hi-MD players (ie something cheaper)?

2) I have also read that Sony do not provide any software that is compatible with recent Mac OS's (I have an iMac with Snow Leopard (10.6.8) and a MacBook Pro with Lion (10.7.2)). I however believe that some of the gurus on this forum have developed some alternative software that might work. Is this correct, and if so, where can I find this software?

3) I am intending to install Windows 7 on my MacBook Pro and run it via Bootcamp (for various reasons). I have however read somewhere that the PC versions of x-Application might not work on a dual-boot machine. Does anyone know if this is correct? I do have access to a PC as well, so all is not lost if I can't do the transfer directly to a Mac.

4) Am I correct in assuming that the recording quality using a Hi-MD recorder (MZ-RH1 or something else suitable) would be better that that using SP mode on my old MZ N920, or would it be just as good to record in SP mode using my MZ N920 and just use the Hi-MD machine to transfer the recording to a computer?

Thanks for any advice.

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1. Correct

2. It's not fully implemented when I last checked

3. Don't worry about it, just try. I'm curious about this for an entirely different reason, is there a UK version of X-app?

4. I'd start using HiSP mode (or LPCM for which you would need a few 1GB disks)

Finally, there are other machines by Sony, non-MD (flash based) that you may wish to consider for the medium to long term, preferably before Sony stops making THOSE for whatever reason.

Cheers

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Hi sfbp

Thanks for your rapid reply.

The Sony.net site has something called "x-Application Launcher" in English, which seems to suggest that it would do what I require, but obviously I haven't tried it yet. I personally wouldn't have any problem with a Japanese version as I speak Japanese, but would probably stick with the English version if there is one.

Given that it would probably cost me at least £200 for a MZ-RH1 I think I'll first follow your final bit of advice and look at what's available as a flash based recorder. Do you have any recommendations, or is there perhaps a forum here somewhere that discusses those?

Thanks very much.

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Here are some numbers to check in google and/or amazon and/or ebay.

The diehards here swear by the PCM-M10 (which incidentally is not even sold in Canada). I got mine from the States and it was defective. I had to get a second one, and even then the MicroSD slot seems to be only quasi-reliable.

However any of this series you will (IMHO) love (however they probably are considered past stock at this point):

ICD-SX700 (1GB) ICD-SX750 (2GB) ICD SX-850 (4GB) ICD-SX950 (8GB)

The next generation to these are

ICD-SX712 (2GB with MicroSD slot), ICD-SX813 (4GB with MicroSD slot). There are some other differences between these two and the previous ones, some improvements but some removal of features too.

I've written quite a bit about these amazing little beasts. Unlike the PCM-M10 they don't need a tripod stand, although the included clip/stand thingy actually has the right hole for standard screw in mike/tripod. They can use external mics but the inbuilt ones are quite good anyway. And they are drag and drop.... no "protection" (in fact heavy duty DRM encryption) BS that bedeviled so much of the minidisc paradigm.

Hope this helps. I'd like to hear about X-Application Launcher - but last time I looked it didn't actually load the ENGLISH language version of Sonic Stage V, which the Japanese one most definitely DOES. That reminds me, I can actually try X-app on my NW-A3000 because it supports that. Not sure about the RH1 (and Sonic Stage V) in any event. What I am looking for is the software to load on to the generation of flash walkmans. Allegedly available in UK and Japan but not in the US/Canada model I got (only MP3/WMA/AAC etc).

Stephen

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Thanks again for your speedy reply and for all the useful information.

I've just had a quick look at the PCM-M10 on the Sony website and the spec certainly looks impressive. Available in the UK for £187, less than I'd have to pay for a second hand MZ-RH1.

I'll do some more digging around and let you know how I get on.

Thanks.

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the icd-sx712 is available on amazon for $113 at the moment

http://www.amazon.co...r/dp/B004M8ST2W

The 750 is available used refurbished from amazon for $122. It has the very useful LPEC codec, which I like (and better than MP3) for a lot of reasons. However for making CD's from your own singing, LPCM is fine.

http://www.amazon.co...ting/B00387E5D0

The 813 is available from Ebay for $255 or 162 quid.

http://www.ebay.com/...t-/280809047489

PCM-M10 is available in the USA for about $229.

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Are they quick to start up ? I had an Olympus LS-10 and a Zoom H4n, but they are so long to start up (40s for the H4n just to show the main screen) that I came back to MD for recording on the go, because they're so quick to start recording.

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I am slightly wary of mentioning other makes, but would appreciate any comments regarding the relative strengths and weaknesses of the following three machines:

Sony PCM-M10

Olympus LS-11

Tascam DR-2d

From reading around on other sites it seems that these three are roughly equivalent in specification and price but each have their own particular quirks and features, and I would be interested to hear from anyone who has experience of using any or all of them.

Thanks.

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To upload your old SP discs, yes, the MZ-RH1 or MZ-M200 (same unit with a microphone you don't need) are your only choices.

I have a PCM-M10. It is magnificent--my absolute favorite electronic toy ever. I'm sorry Stephen's was defective, but I have been using mine nearly since it was first introduced and it's like a brick, microSD slot included. For once Sony did not do goofy proprietary stuff and just made a useful machine. It takes probably 10-15 seconds to start up (depending on how much you have recorded and left on the microSD and internal memory), And here's a trick: don't turn it off, just let it go to sleep (which uses hardly any battery power), and hitting the Record button will start it up again almost instantly.

The battery life on the PCM-M10 borders on insanity--40+ hours with two AA batteries. I don't think the Olympus or Tascam approach that, although they may well match other features of the PCM-M10. Not ruling them out by any means because I've never used them.

If you haven't already, search www.taperssection.com and its forum for the other two makes.

Edited by A440

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Thanks A440 for your comments and for your suggestion of the taperssection site. I hadn't seen that one so have been interested to read the comments posted there.

All in all, seems as though the Sony PCM-M10 is the recommendation of most users. I'm used to using an external mike with my current old MD recorder, so would have no problem using one with the PCM-M10 if the recording quality is slightly better, as seems to be the case.

Thanks.

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Just to get my final shot in - the PCM-M10 is like a brick but the ICD-SX series is more like a toothbrush. And has all of the qualities A440's claiming for the PCM-M10 at half the price and half the weight. And if instant start is important, then it wins on that count (0 vs 15-20 seconds).

Maybe the (inbuilt) mikes aren't quite as good, but so far I have no evidence of that.

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The SX813 is very tempting, and there doesn't really seem to be a huge difference in the quality I can expect from that or the PCM-M10. I do nevertheless like the idea that I could record up to 40kHz were I to have a microphone that could provide such a range, which of course I don't (I could buy a car for the same price as a 40kHz microphone).

The SX813 isn't actually available in Europe, so would have to come from Hong Kong or elsewhere. If the customs people decide to charge VAT on arrival (at 20%), as they should, the price will end up being more than the PCM-M10, in which case I might as well buy the PCM-M10 in the first place.

I'm in no great rush so will continue to chew the cud over this for a while.

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The 712 is 2GB and you can still put 16GB in it.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sony-ICD-SX712-Digital-Flash-Recorder/dp/B004M8ST2W

And that's a UK price (sigh almost as many pounds as dollars).

The review (from Amazon.com) that's on the top of the pile seems pretty exhaustive. He has both it and the 750. I have only the 750. He likes it (the 712).

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The main difference between the 712 and 713 is the size of the memory (2GB instead of 4MB), other than which they seem to be the same.

The main differences between the 713 and the 813 relates to playback - Full Digital Amplifier and Noise Cancelling function, as well as a pair of noise cancelling headphones, which would be nice.

The price of the 813 in Japan is about JPY14,500 (£117), roughly the same as the 712 in the UK. The 713 is only slightly cheaper (JPY 13,500 / £109) in Japan. This wouldn't be of any relevance except that my wife is off to Japan for a couple of months to see her family (she's Japanese) and so if I can wait until she gets back in April then I could get an 813 for the price of a 712, and for two thirds of the price of a PCM-10M (£168 including P&P).

Will have a think about this.

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Aha! I missed the NC headphones. Those are very nice, I have a pair in a flash walkman - but the only way I can use them with another device is via a line in cable from the other device. Also I notice that the 713 has 4GB.... very sensible of Sony now flash isn't so expensive as a couple of years ago. The 713 hasn't made it out of Asia yet.

I found the brochure where they line the 713,813 and M10 up and label them all "Professional/Musician". Interesting. Mind you there's a small mistake on it - always look at the manuals rather than these marketing tools - the battery on the PCM-M10's are AA's not AAA's.

You may want to make sure that the 813 can be configured to have English menus. My 950 cannot - so sometimes I resort to looking at the menus for the 750 and working it out. But you read Japanese, and I don't.

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Yes, I noticed the same "Pro/Musician" grouping for all three. Also noticed a couple of mistakes here and there, but I think I have managed to work out what's correct.

I'm surprised that the 950 can't display in English, but since the 813 is available from Hong Kong on UK eBay as an 'English IC recorder' I presume that the menus can be switched to English. Not that it would really matter for me though.

Still wavering between the 813 and the PCM-M10 though. Since I don't have the real machines to look at, I'm comparing with things I have sitting around me - the PCM-M10 is almost exactly the same size and weight as my very old iPod, and the 813 is a bit longer and narrower than my almost as old Nokia phone.

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I think the 950 probably never made it out of Asia (I saw advertised versions in both Chinese and Japanese). The 713/813 manuals seem to show different versions. One for example shows English + Korean, another shows a bunch of European languages.

I also note that they seem to have restored the stand/clip thingy which I find incredibly useful, but was probably missing from the 712.

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