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soul_fan96Offline
Post subject: Recording my vinyl to digital using a digital recorder  PostPosted: Dec 01, 2011 - 07:07 AM
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Hi. My Name is Dave and I'm new on here. I live in the UK and I've been collecting/listening to/enjoying vinyl since the 80's. I stumbled upon this group purely by chance and I'm now looking forward to getting to know a few of you!! Anyway, on with my first question and one that is very close to my heart....recording my treasured vinyl collection to digital...


I need some advice on transferring my vinyl collection from analogue to digital formats.

Firstly, I must state that my turntable and record collection are stored away (so that my 7 year old daughter cannot eat any more of my records or spin her toys around on the turntable Wink) and are taken out now and again so that I can convert my music collection to digital. To achieve this I currently use a minidisc recorder as a link between my turntable and laptop computer. Due to space restrictions, I cannot record straight from my turntable into my laptop.

Here's what I currently do:

I play my records and the signal goes into a phono pre-amp. The pre- amp output is then connected to the 'line in' of a portable minidisc player/recorder using a 3.5mm jack and I record the track being played.
When I have recorded enough tracks onto the minidisc I play them into my laptop soundcards input (an echo indigo io cardbus card) using the 3.5mm 'headphone' (3.5mm to 3.5mm cable) output of the minidisc player and record the resulting wave file using 'cool edit pro'.
The resulting .wav file is then normalised, tidied up, and separated into individual tracks before saving to my hard-drive.

This method seems to work pretty well and the sound quality of the finished files is more than adequate for my needs.

However,I feel that my current setup seems a bit long winded in that I record from analogue to digital then from digital back to analogue and back to digital,which is time consuming and has some loss of sound quality in the process.
I am also aware that my minidisc recorder is old technology and that when it wears out/breaks I will have to change my setup for one that records straight to digital.

With this in mind I was thinking of changing from a minidisc recorder to a portable digital one that records .wav files directly to an SD card. I was thinking of a Tascam DR-05, Tascam DR07 or a Zoom H2 Handy Recorder. My budget is about $200.
Does anybody use any of these devices for recording their vinyl and can you give me some advice?? Does someone use another brand of recorder that might be worth investigating??

Thanks,
Dave





















Thanks
David
 
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GraemeOffline
Post subject: RE: Recording my vinyl to digital using a digital recorder  PostPosted: Dec 01, 2011 - 10:06 AM
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Well, you're right of course, this two stage process is not doing you any faours in terms of recording quailty. A direct transfer to the computer in .wav format would be much better and avoid the ATRAC compression of the MD recorder.

Quote:

Due to space restrictions, I cannot record straight from my turntable into my laptop.


I fail to undertand this - if you have the space for a MD recorder, why can you not use the laptop instead?

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soul_fan96Offline
Post subject: RE: Recording my vinyl to digital using a digital recorder  PostPosted: Dec 01, 2011 - 11:25 AM
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Hi Graeme and thanks for your reply. There are really two reasons why I can't record to my laptop. The main reason is that my wife uses it every evening for her course work (she is in the process of completing a post graduate
Diploma in education ). This means that I don't have access to the computer a lot of the time. The second problem is that the only room in the house that is stable enough for jump free recording is the kitchen. There is only one free space on the worktop that I can place my turntable. If I were to put my laptop beside the turntable it would have to be placed on the floor. That's why I need to replace my minidisc player with something more up to date.
Thanks for reminding me about the ATRAC compression issues - that had completely slipped my mind.
Best wishes,
Dave
 
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MikeyOffline
Post subject: RE: Recording my vinyl to digital using a digital recorder  PostPosted: Jan 24, 2012 - 06:14 AM
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The Zoom H2 recorder does a great job... I have three of them that we use for live recordings. This is a good idea for your application The only limitation is that you cannot change the recording level once you have started recording. This may or may not bother you. It doesn't bother us because we can change the level being sent to the recorder from the mixing desk.
 
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CliveOffline
Post subject: RE: Recording my vinyl to digital using a digital recorder  PostPosted: Feb 11, 2012 - 06:12 PM
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I have an H2 as well, though I have never used it to transfer vinyl--not a bad idea actually. The H2 shows input levels prior to hitting record, so there's no reason why you couldn't observe some peak parts of a song before you record to see how they are. Additionally, the gain settings are changable on the fly while recording if you really needed to change them, but truthfully you'd be better off recording at a low level, not messing with it while recording, and then altering it as needed on the laptop at a later point. In general, the H2 is a nice unit; mine has held up well with near daily use for my job, despite having a serial number in the low 400s (i.e. likely their first day of mass-production!).

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