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Everything posted by ozpeter

  1. I think you guys are now over this - good. I'm sure the rest of us are! Meanwhile, do listen to http://mefeedia.com/entry/3423836/ as mentioned above. Very good. By far the best review so far.
  2. It's always kind of risk to try to compare apples and oranges - even though they are both fruit - and then when you you start throwing in considerations like whether it's essential for your needs to have a fruit that doesn't need to be peeled, or whether you're wanting to get best results with a juicing machine, then it gets even harder! So, the RH-1 is going to be ideal for some, depending on their criteria, and the H2 is going to be ideal for others, depending on their different criteria. I'm going to have both and choose which to use according to need at the time (lucky me) - when the effing thing gets to Australia. The tragedy for us here is that Sony should be looking at the H2 and thinking about how minidisc could be adapted to address those areas where the H2 has something handy to offer (limiting for instance) for many users. But there's every sign that a Hi-MD recorder with a built in limiter is never going to appear - or even another one without one. Hi-MD died (in the sense of lack of new models) some time before the H2 had any pretensions to be its killer.
  3. Chief problem I hear seems mp3-related, noticable in the bugs' high frequencies. The 15 minute sample I downloaded from elsewhere sounded pretty good quality-wise - I ran it through the Audition analyser (aggregating the whole 15 mins) and that showed high frequencies extending pretty flat to 16kHz, then a 5dB dip to 19600 where the response inevitably dropped off sharply. Bottom end was well represented in the curve. Noise from domestic appliances, traffic, etc etc was way above that of the H2. That's the trouble - it's actually quite hard to find circumstances where the natural background noise level is quiet enough to be revealing when testing modern equipment. Until we have concert hall and/or studio recordings and direct and careful comparison tests with HiMD in wave format I think the jury will stay out. Those I can get once it's released over here.
  4. Hey, Guitarfxr, thanks for all the info and thoughts. Part of the reason why there are high expectations - possibly exaggerated ones! - about this and similar devices is their provision of high bit rates/sample depths (24/96 for example) - which leads potential purchasers to suppose that Zoom haven't front-ended a 24 bit recording device with an 8 bit preamp! But of course that's the kind of thing that can happen - the numbers game is all, as well illustrated by the megapixel wars in digital cameras. It's pretty clear that lots of pixels can, in some designs of camera, be an actual disadvantage, but many purchasers simply don't realise that and just go by the numbers. In the case of the H2, we'd know more if Zoom published proper specs - but as far as I'm aware, they haven't. Meanwhile there's a speech sample at http://www.cc-chapman.com/2007/08/24/zoom-...recording-test/ - though if the guy had paused for breath a few times so we could hear the background noise (both from the environment and from the device) it would have been more helpful!
  5. What I mean is, the bigger the output overall mic output (for any given sound level) the more likely you are to be able to have the mic gain switch and the recording level at lower settings, which one would expect to produce less preamp noise. Conversely, mics with a low output - regardless of their audio quality - will need additional gain applied at the preamp of the device, and if the preamp is not the most quiet, then the outcome will be greater overall noise. Elsewhere someone has commented that they are not getting much level from their mics, comparatively, when connected to the H2, so it does seem like the range of gain available, even with the three settings, isn't as great as with a RH-1. Actually, you could test that fairly easily - maybe plug your AT-822 into the RH-1, turn the gain right up, put the mic in front of an out-of-tune FM radio, and adjust the volume of the radio's hiss till the RH-1 meters just hit full scale. Now without moving the mic, plug it into the H2 and see whether the H2's meters go all the way up with that same sound level at the mic, with the H2 also set to maximum gain. I'm guessing - perhaps wrongly! - that they wouldn't. Heh, you see I'm just trying to get you to do the kind of test I'll be doing eagerly when mine arrives!
  6. It sounds from various comments I've read that the gain on the preamp for external mics is set low - so to record quiet stuff, you'd need an external mic with a beefy output, so you wouldn't need the gain up high on the H2. Or, as you say, use a mixer or other external mic preamp. The Naiant mics have a pretty high output - when I eventually lay hands on my H2 I'll give them a try (and everything else in the cupboard! - eg Rode Stereo Videomic would be interesting with the H2, and I have one).
  7. That's great! What's that site where you can upload a minute of location audio from wherever you like? They'll be getting a lot of material from H2's! I'd say the image is very satisfactory - quite a sense of people talking first in front, then at the side, then behind. Only comment from me is that elsewhere it's been said that on high gain, it gets a bit hissy - maybe I'm deaf but I can't hear anything grossly hissy about this recording, though the location is perhaps too noisy to reveal it. I look forward to hearing your further thoughts in due course.
  8. I'd oblige with such a photo if the one I have on order gets delivered before anyone else posts a side-by-side. But I'm sure the H2 is significantly chunkier than an RH-1. Then again, an RH-1 with four mics attached to it wouldn't be as small as an RH-1 on its own! I don't doubt that anyone who wants an H2 because it does what they want well, will find it has advantages over an RH-1. But anyone wanting for instance, digital input, as a prime requirement, will prefer the RH-1. Horses for courses. I guess for nature recording, having an attached mic without it picking up the mechanics of a disk drive is right away something handy. Part of the attraction of the H2 is perhaps that they've got the feature set and ergonomics right for significantly sizable markets. Some previous such devices have suffered from the kind of "gotchas" that plagued many forms of portable MD, till Sony finally got it right with the RH-1 (apart from it still writing unwanted track marks in quiet music passages!). Zoom's own H4 seems to be good in principle but not so good in execution. (Odd that the H2 has 4 mics and the H4 has 2 mics... what were the marketing people thinking of?!). For anyone who has already got something like an RH-1, in some applications the RH-1 might make a handy backup for an H2. It's always wise to have two lots of media being recorded. I can picture an H2 on top of a mic stand with a thin line-out to line-in cable to an RH-1 at the bottom. It'll be interesting to see what proper tests and reviews reveal in due course concerning actual sound quality and specs. The H2 manual is curiously silent on those matters!
  9. Yeah, I think this one finally gets it right. But it depends exactly what your needs are - too big for really stealthy recording, or as a pocket player. As a one-piece recorder, or for use with the same kind of external mics that you've been using for MD, it look brilliant, and I don't doubt it will be a huge seller (backorders of 10,000 have been mentioned already). In fact, one wonders whether Sony's attitude to further MD production was influenced by the sight of this kind of thing coming over the horizon. Perhaps, for many markets where MD was king, this is the nail in the coffin. But I'll still be using my MDs for some purposes alongside this (when it reaches Australia...) Some links to discussions elsewhere and the Zoom site, to save us going over the same ground:- http://taperssection.com/index.php/topic,89082.0.html http://www.videouniversity.com/forums/gfor...SC;mh=25;guest= http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/naturer...s/message/29879 http://groups.google.com/group/rec.music.m...cdc313b01e9940c http://www.oreillynet.com/digitalmedia/blo...rder_detai.html http://rontech.blogspot.com/2007/07/first-...n-internet.html http://www.samsontech.com/products/product...916#servsupport
  10. It seems pretty clear that new improved MD/HiMD equipment is not going to appear. Gradually, a significant number of the members here will be forced to turn to other media formats and hardware to fulfil the role of their MD equipment, when their current stuff dies or they want something new or better. There's a fantastic resource among our members here relating to recording with small, high quality recording equipment that just happens to be MD based, as well as the living knowledgebase about totally MD related matters, which will remain invaluable for years to come. Should we consider at this point adding another forum for "Non-MD portable recorders" (o similar) or should we leave that to TapersSection and suchlike? Is there a danger of our membership leaching over to that or other forums? I don't think we're quite at the "adapt or die" stage but given the time it takes to turn a big community round, like a big ship, perhaps it's not too soon to kick some thoughts around? This suggestion is not any kind of attack on this community - it's to do with preserving a great resource, and building on it.
  11. Try Reaper (www.reaper.fm) - one of its handy features is instant non-destructive normalise. Also, its "ripple editing" feature is great for working with the kind of multiple files you get from live recording - it leaves all the joins visible, which can be handy, but as you cut and paste and drag the audio around, everything on the track is treated as one file. Its graphic eq and multiband limiter are very handy too.
  12. A search reveals no match for Naiant - seeing that they make excellent low cost mics some of which are suitable for MD use, I'm either searching wrong, or nobody has mentioned them here yet? I have four of the Naiant MSH-1 mics together with an adapter from XLR to minijack that they supplied, and they seem to work well. Anyone else tried them? You can't complain at the price ($25). They also do a stereo battery box, see the accessories section of the site.
  13. Korg D888 must be the smallest and cheapest 8 track digital recorder around (with 8 mic preamps and can record on all at once for about 25 hours with 80Gb hard drive) - but it's none the less about 40cm wide and 35cm deep. Transportable rather than portable.
  14. Not suitable for pro use? I use the RH-1 for backup on recordings of classical music concerts for FM radio broadcast, and it's perfectly good for that - and some months back, being asked to record a symphony concert at one of the ABC (Australian) radio concert hall studios (not for the ABC itself though) I grabbed the RH-1 and NH-1 (to back up the RH-1) and got a perfectly fine result. It ain't what you've got, it's the way that you use it. I think they have probably sold quite a few to radio stations worldwide, and could probably go on doing so for a couple more years while the replacement technologies mature.
  15. Well, it seems to be a good compendium of advice compiled from various websites - Google for some of the phrases used and you may find yourself at sites which can extend what's contained in the pdf.
  16. Some relevant sites if you want comparative tests under more controlled conditions:- http://www.avisoft.com/recordertests.htm http://www.avisoft.com/test/noisefloors.pdf (does not include MD but still makes some interesting points) http://beale.best.vwh.net/measure/audio/MZ...Mic_30_150Z.htm - loadsa RH1 measurements.
  17. Indeed, the HHB machine has been around for many years. It's a tragedy that they never updated it to Hi-MD. It could have been the ultimate portable. Imagine an RH1 in that form factor. (Well, no good for stealth, but for pro use, excellent).
  18. The "Joyce Hatto scandal" has reverberated around the world of classical music for some weeks now, but for those few who are not aware of it, the background can be read at http://www.gramophone.co.uk/newsMainTempla...newssectionID=1 Now the admitted perpetrator of the hoax has revealed that the necessary editing was undertaken on minidisc. See http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol...icle1466154.ece for details. However, given that time-stretching and eq and reverb also appears to have been involved, there must have been more to it than that. Still, as far as MD is concerned, there's no such thing as bad publicity.
  19. If still looking, try Reaper - it's built in ReaEQ in the latest version is rather nice - easy to use. 2Mb download and unlimited uncrippled trial.
  20. Any conversion from ATRAC to anything else lossy (ie mp3) is not a good idea. Put them on good quality CDs. Keep an installation version of the software required to play them. It's going to be a long time till nothing will read a CD. And as new formats emerge, you can copy them from there.
  21. Why not just copy the MD via the PC in faster than real time?
  22. Or, as in my case, your local retailer who found some in the storeroom and put them in the window at a quarter of the original sticker price. Yay!
  23. Heh, I didn't know my RH-1 had this feature! I don't normally use it with the remote (indeed, I don't normally use it for playback) so I had (a) realise you need the remote plugged in to access the feature and ( then to find it using the "sound" button on the 40ELK remote I'm using. A quick test indicates that it's a fairly normal compressor. Not too bad of its sort - handy for listening not too seriously in a noisy environment to tracks with varying volumes. If you don't have a use for it, just ignore it (like me!). (In the context of simple playback, compression can use a bit of "lookahead" to get good results - it can slightly delay the audio so that, having discovered that there's a peak in the upcoming audio, it can turn it down and then play it, rather than being taken by surprise as it were. Whether this uses such a scheme I don't know, but if I had been the Sony designers, I'd at least have considered it. Perhaps this is why they chose the name "Dynamic Normaliser" - it's not a true normaliser, which as stated earlier in this thread requires that the whole track is assessed for peaks before playback, but it's at least checking for peaks a few milliseconds ahead).
  24. But the unit only sends upload/download data through the usb connector - when you play back on the unit the audio is not routed to the usb port. I suspect you are the first person to try...
  25. I'll finsh my report here thought it's not really on topic... Heh, well that didn't quite work as expected. I've only just got the unit back - and was charged about $95 (Australian). Apparently the free upgrade is no longer available, and also there was a delay of several weeks to obtain the necessary software CD that has to accompany the upgraded unit. The joke is - the software disc is SonicStage 2.3!! Fortunately after all that, the player works just fine with SS4.0 - though when first connected a message came up telling me that the unit would not work with that version until all files had been deleted from the player, which was no problem to me. Then it came up as a recognised device. I've just wacked a CD's worth on mp3 files onto it, which was very fast now that no conversion is taking place. They show up on the display as mp3 with the bit rate also given. And it sounds fine. For the total price now paid - $250 - I could probably have got a non-Sony 20Gb player, but it wouldn't have played classical recordings in Atrac format, nor my RH-1 recordings natively. So I'm content.
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