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Multitrack Recorder Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 11th December 2010
  #1
Gear Nut
Multitrack Recorder

Hi,

I've decided, for a number of reasons, that using a PC for recording is not for me, though I may use one for editing and mixing songs with more than 16 tracks.

I'm looking at buying a second hand recorder.

These are the ones I'm looking at:

Yamaha AW4416
Yamaha AW2400
Tascam SX-1
Akai DPS24
Roland VS2480
Korg D32XD

I have some reservations about each unit, but was wondering if anyone has particular experience that might help me decide which is best for me.

I like the SX-1 but I a concerned about the cost if in 6-18 months time something goes wrong with the unit. If something stops working on it or it develops a fault, will I be able to get it repaired?

I had heard that you can still get the Yamaha units repaired if they develop a fault. The AW4416 looks like a capable unit?

The Roland unit looks capable too but again have some concerns - don't they use some sort of proprietry system for data storage?

Pre's are something to consider too - which unit do you think has the best pre's?

I'm interested in any views or experience highlighting where a unit excels or how they compare in the real world.

Any help appreciated as I'm torn between them!!

Thanks
Darren
Old 11th December 2010
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Space Station's Avatar
I have experience of the aw4416 and the roland...

The yamaha was rubbish, really noisy..hated the sound of it...sold it within 2 months.

The roland is a far superior machine, everything was better on it.

Some people swear by the Akai, some the Roland..those are the two most useful machines, imho.

The roland backs up on CD or DVD in its own format or as wav files..
Old 11th December 2010
  #3
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Space Station View Post
I have experience of the aw4416 and the roland...

The yamaha was rubbish, really noisy..hated the sound of it...sold it within 2 months.

The roland is a far superior machine, everything was better on it.

Some people swear by the Akai, some the Roland..those are the two most useful machines, imho.

The roland backs up on CD or DVD in its own format or as wav files..
AW1600/AW2400 are not the same as the older ones. They have USB connection to computers and DAWs and can do 24 bit recording. Yamahas are the more robust mixers, with full dynamics and parametric EQ available simultaneously on every input, every recorder track and every bus. Lower track count that most, however. Preamp noise is high when gain is cranked, so I use external preamps on quiet sources.

All that said, I pretty much only seem to use it for portable and remote stuff. I track and mix to tape in the studio.

Cheers,

Otto
Old 11th December 2010
  #4
Gear Maniac
 

hi. i've had the korg d16xd (d32xd with just 16tracks and no motorfaders) and the yamaha aw4416 here. they are both very loud, due to their fans. i'm sure its no problem to replace them with a lo-noise fan. might involve a little soldering though. regarding the workflow: the yamaha is a joke. i say its nearly impossible to understand the crazy menue system. it will take months to literally *study* the machine before it works for you the way a multitrack should work for you. the workflow of the korg is very convenient, takes a little studying but not too much. very intuitive menue structure. i finally chose a hd24xr.
Old 11th December 2010
  #5
Lives for gear
 
AndyFromDenver's Avatar
What about a 1/4" tape 8 track and a little mixing board?
like this:
YouTube - Fostex Model 80 1/4" Analogue Tape Recorder 8 Track
(not me on there I just searched for a link)
You will rule the home recording school with this.
Old 11th December 2010
  #6
Gear Addict
 

I disagree completely with the AW4416 analysis, above. A room of our studio is built around multi AW2816 units. The AW2816 is an AW4416, without bells and whistles. We tried them all, and decided on Yamaha, because of the sound, and solid dependability. MY8-AT ADAT cards allow communication with the outside world. We have produced hundreds of projects over the years, with these units. We do use external pres and effects, as needed. At 24/44.1, their sound is excellent.

Please read specifications concerning the newer Yamaha units, carefully. While the AW2400 will give one 24 channels, all 24 channels are not available at 24 bits. 12 channels is the max, at 24 bits. On the older units, all 16 channels are available on the AW2816 and AW4416, with full 24 bit depth.

Best.
Byll
Old 11th December 2010
  #7
Lives for gear
 
79_Limited's Avatar
 

Multitrack Recorder

It would require an external mixer but why not the Alesis HD24 24 track recorder? If you can swing it get the XR version (I had this one) and the sound was great.

What I liked most is you could do all of your tracking in the Alesis just like an old tape machine then transfer the .wav files to the computer via HD24 tools for editing/mixing.
Old 11th December 2010
  #8
Gear Maniac
 

thats exactly how i use it. the alesis is a wonderful machine. hook up a simple line mixer for monitoring and you're ready to record.
Old 11th December 2010
  #9
Gear Nut
alesis hd24

Quote:
Originally Posted by check_your_head View Post
thats exactly how i use it. the alesis is a wonderful machine. hook up a simple line mixer for monitoring and you're ready to record.
Can anyone suggest a mixer or use with Alesis HD24?

I only have a VLZ1202-Pro.

Thanks,
Darren
Old 11th December 2010
  #10
Gear Maniac
 

for monitoring i use one of these:


i wouldnt really use it for final summing though
Old 11th December 2010
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Ephi82's Avatar
 

you might consider a tascam 2488. I've had mine for 7 years. 24 bit sound and not terribly difficult to learn how to use.....

since I "cut only" eq, the onboard eq is fine. the board also supports outboard pre amps, effects and compression, and that's the route I take, although the unit has all of that on board which is "usable".
Old 11th December 2010
  #12
Gear Nut
Thanks.

I did look at the 2488 and 2488 ii neo. The only thing that put me off was that it doesn't have moving faders, whereas the others do. I think it's quite handy and easier when using mix automation to be able to physically see what levels tracks are actually at.

According to Tascam's info, the 2488 is supposed to be a replacement for several models, including the SX-1, but I think not having moving faders is a minus for me. I had kinda assumed it had them before reading the spec etc.
Old 11th December 2010
  #13
Gear Addict
 
buddachile's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMan View Post
Can anyone suggest a mixer or use with Alesis HD24?

I only have a VLZ1202-Pro.

Thanks,
Darren
Do you want a digital or analog mixer? Budget?

I was thinking along the lines of a Yamaha digital mixer or something like that. I've never used one so I can't say how good they may work/sound but if memory serves they have eq/dynamics/verb/fx and total recall, and should be relatively cheap used.

Just a thought.
Old 11th December 2010
  #14
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyFromDenver View Post
What about a 1/4" tape 8 track and a little mixing board?
like this:
YouTube - Fostex Model 80 1/4" Analogue Tape Recorder 8 Track
(not me on there I just searched for a link)
You will rule the home recording school with this.
As common and cheap as Otari MX5050 MKIII 1/2" 8-tracks are these days, I'd highly recommend that format over 1/4" 8-track. YMMV.

Cheers,

Otto
Old 12th December 2010
  #15
Lives for gear
 
79_Limited's Avatar
 

You can use your VLZ Pro for now although you will only be able to monitor 8 tracks but it is plenty to get you started.

A great mixer to use with that would be a Soundtracs Topaz.

They are fairly inexpensive now days.
Old 12th December 2010
  #16
Lives for gear
 
GordZilla's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMan View Post
Can anyone suggest a mixer or use with Alesis HD24?

I only have a VLZ1202-Pro.

Thanks,
Darren
I use a Mackie LM-3204 line mixer to monitor while tracking with my HD24, and it works like a charm, while taking up little space in my rig.

It is a discontinued model, but you can often find them on eBay for cheap ($150-$300). Rack-mounted (5-space), it gives you 16 stereo channels (or 32 mono) and 4 aux busses (for up to 4 separate cue mixes). And the sound quality is excellent for monitoring purposes. I have mine in an 8-space SKB rack, along with an FX unit, headphone amp, and patch bay. Relatively compact, and easy to set up.
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