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Old 1st July 2019
Lives for gear
James Lehmann's Avatar

Originally Posted by bkazez View Post
I need something that is zero-setup and near-zero risk of incorrect configuration
The only device I can think of that meets this criteria is the old Sony Walkman Pro.

Everything else in the digital age is likely to have screens and menu functions etc, and is inevitably subject to a certain degree of pilot-error.

That said, my H5 has never let me down - I've set all the settings to exactly how I like it and I never fiddle with them so it's always ready to go at a moments notice. Furthermore I don't think I have ever actually opened the H5 manual, which is a testament to the ease-of-operation of any device. Even more important is that the H5 has kept working for me in extreme climate from -20ÂșC to nearly 100% humidity in a Borneo rainforest.

In terms of start-up time - I've never had the lagging issues you describe but then my H5 is never anywhere near full as I 'empty' it on to my laptop regularly, much like you would a digital camera. Is there a reason you don't do this? Have you tried a faster SD card? The newer Sansdisk 32GB are very fast.

I know the quality of the built-in mics and pres on the H5 is never going to be good enough for BBC sound-library work, but as a point'n'shoot digital device for record-keeping I think Zoom did a pretty good job for $250. Next step up would be a Sound Devices and a couple of mics for a lot more spend and probably even more set-up fiddles.

Just for fun, here's a recording I made of the dawn chorus in my garden with the H5: