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4 thoughts on “Amateur Recording 102

  • June 9, 2014 at 11:24 am

    The basic problems with using a smartphone are:

    – it might get an incoming call, a text, or have an alarm of some sort come up, disrupting the recording;

    – you lose the use of your pocket computer – which is really what a smartphone is – during the thing you’re recording, as well as your phone; and

    – unless you’re going to stay with it, your risk from theft or accidental breakage increases from the loss of a specialized device to the loss of your phone and pocket computer – it’s the old “putting all of your eggs in one basket” problem.

    Add to that the reduced storage capacity of smartphones compared to external devices – one of my app programmers responded to my request that it let me store my data on my SD card that Google is actually now restricting apps from making use of the interchangable SD cards that are one of Android’s advantages – and I’d far rather use an external device.

    The phone is appropriate to use when something comes up unexpectedly, but shouldn’t be made the basis for a recording rig.

  • June 9, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    Hi Mark,
    having one all-purpose device surely has it’s charm.
    However, you left out my main reason for wanting to have dedicated units for a special purpose like taking pictures or listening to music: at least the Android devices I’ve owned so far run out of battery so fast, it’s not funny! Just switch on the GPS for a while and you can see the battery indicator shrinking by the minute!
    As long as this problem is not solved, I’d much rather carry around different devices, knowing they will last the day…

  • June 10, 2014 at 12:59 am

    Hi Mark,

    Since you’re planning on taking on professional equpiment as well, I’d like to know what you thoughts are on software. As I’m sure you’ve noticed, I am a big fan of the work of Todd Garfinkle. As a musician, I’d like to be able to record my own music and that of fellow musicians and friends. I like the open and dynamic sound of Todd Garfinkle’s recordings, and also the idea that you can make such fabulous recordings without breaking the bank. I’m thinking of buying a pair of omnis, a mic PreAmp and A/D converter and record to my laptop’s harddrive, and since I prefer PCM over DSD, and won’t use anything similar to the KORG unit that Todd Garfinkle uses and the software features it comes with, which software would you recommend, and how necessary is it?


    • June 10, 2014 at 3:45 am

      I’ll be talking about professional portable equipment today. I know Todd and his approach to recording…it’s a purist minimalist approach that is not far from Peter McGrath or Morten Lynberg of 2L, also very good engineers. Personally, I find Todd’s recordings too distant and full of room sound. But this is my personal preference. He sells his wares at the same shows as I do and does very well…so there must be many people that agree with you. I don’t understand his preference for DSD recordings. He captures in DSD and then converts to 44.1 kHz/16-bits for release on CDs in stereo. The High-Resolution PCM DVD-ROM discs that he sells at 176.4 or 88.2 kHz show the ultrasonic noise in spectral analysis.

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