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Author Topic: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]  (Read 8311 times)

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Offline F.O.Bean

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Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« on: November 13, 2015, 11:15:05 AM »
I figured I'd start the DR-701D thread. Let's proceed 8)

The Tascam DR-701D is just an updated DR-70D, but the DR-701D has Timecode Inputs and HDMI Inputs/Outputs.

It's available for sale at B+H:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1189478-REG/tascam_dr_701d_linear_pcm_recorder.html
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Offline jmerin

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2015, 12:13:42 PM »
Tascam seems to come out with a new shitty deck each year.. Why not work to improve what you have! duh.....
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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2015, 04:55:59 PM »
Tascam seems to come out with a new shitty deck each year.. Why not work to improve what you have! duh.....
It's kinda hard to change the specifications on a product once it's released... And Trashcan doesn't seem to work that hard anyhow.
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Offline Len Moskowitz (Core Sound)

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2015, 07:09:04 PM »
B&H emailed me yesterday to say that they're in stock.
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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2015, 12:12:30 AM »
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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2015, 05:44:59 PM »

Offline acidjack

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2015, 08:31:25 PM »
Tascam seems to come out with a new shitty deck each year month. Why not work to improve what you have! duh.....

FTFY.  :P
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Offline Jonmac

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2015, 02:28:31 PM »
A review video from Curtis Judd here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bl0DnLRkFDE

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Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2015, 09:03:57 AM »
^ IMO, the reviewer failed to talk about the most important question.  He mentions that the 701d will sync with a GH4 via hdmi, but he doesn't say if it holds sync for an hour, two hours, or the entire time they are connected. 

About 13 minutes into the video review, he said he jam synched the 701d with a Zoom F8, disconnected them, and checked the sync after an hour. He appears to say the Tascam drifted 5 seconds ahead of the F8.  If they had stayed connected via the BNC input, would they have stayed in sync?  If a pro user has an external timecode generator, they would want the 701d to lock and stay in sync with it over whatever time they are shooting. 

I'm hoping that the 5 seconds of drift he mentioned  is some sort of testing error.  When I compared drift betwen my other Tascam recorders vs. my video cameras, I found drift of a few milliseconds over an hour, not 5 seconds. 

Since the key feature for the 701d is syncing audio to video, it seems to me that the key question is how well the 701d holds sync to video.  Best I can tell, the question of drift isn't 100% answered in the review. 
« Last Edit: December 19, 2015, 09:10:36 AM by 2manyrocks »

Offline Jonmac

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2015, 03:05:11 PM »
^ IMO, the reviewer failed to talk about the most important question.  He mentions that the 701d will sync with a GH4 via hdmi, but he doesn't say if it holds sync for an hour, two hours, or the entire time they are connected. 

About 13 minutes into the video review, he said he jam synched the 701d with a Zoom F8, disconnected them, and checked the sync after an hour. He appears to say the Tascam drifted 5 seconds ahead of the F8.  If they had stayed connected via the BNC input, would they have stayed in sync?  If a pro user has an external timecode generator, they would want the 701d to lock and stay in sync with it over whatever time they are shooting. 

I'm hoping that the 5 seconds of drift he mentioned  is some sort of testing error.  When I compared drift betwen my other Tascam recorders vs. my video cameras, I found drift of a few milliseconds over an hour, not 5 seconds. 

Since the key feature for the 701d is syncing audio to video, it seems to me that the key question is how well the 701d holds sync to video.  Best I can tell, the question of drift isn't 100% answered in the review.
Why don't you ask the question in the comments section of the video, he's good at answering questions.
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Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2015, 03:39:47 PM »
I don't have a youtube account to post a comment to ask him. 

Offline Jonmac

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2015, 07:38:51 AM »
I don't have a youtube account to post a comment to ask him.

I asked the question for you, the longest take he did was 20 minutes, and found a drift of about 1 frame in lip sync over that period.

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Offline voltronic

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2015, 09:23:17 AM »
I don't have a youtube account to post a comment to ask him.

I asked the question for you, the longest take he did was 20 minutes, and found a drift of about 1 frame in lip sync over that period.

My understanding of TC is pretty rudimentary, but that response seems pretty contradictory to what he stated in his video.  5 seconds of drift seems really horrible if in fact his test was valid.  Sure you could just leave your TC source (probably a camera) connected, but you shouldn't be locked into that scenario to keep your audio and video synced - you should be able to jam it and take your camera somewhere else.  I think the jury may still be out on TC until we see a more thorough test.

Another interesting bit mentioned around 17:30 is the menu structure: It now is organized as 18 pages of menus, in contrast to the sometimes confusing sub-menus of the 70D.  I'm not sure that's really an improvement.

So far I think the F8 looks like a much better value than this unit, even at $400 more.  I would not upgrade to one of these over my 70D, but then again my 70D is modified with opamps that look almost identical in specs to those used in the 701D so I'm thinking the sound quality between the modded 70D and stock 701D would be pretty similar.  The new 701D opamps are certainly an upgrade over those in the stock 70D though.  Of course, I realize there is more to a good preamp design than the opamps, but it's the one element Tascam made a point to mention in their marketing for the 701D.

For comparison, here are PDF data sheets of the opamps I'm referring to:

TI OPA1652 used in 701D
TI LME49720 used in the JWmod for 70D
TI NE5532 used in the stock 70D
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Offline Jonmac

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2015, 03:10:46 PM »
I think he was describing the error in the inbuilt time code clock when not externally synced, this wouldn't effect the timing stability of the recorded file, just the accuracy of the embedded time code data in the file.

That would make it difficult for editing software to automatically align picture and sound.
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Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2015, 04:05:36 PM »
I don't have a youtube account to post a comment to ask him.

I asked the question for you, the longest take he did was 20 minutes, and found a drift of about 1 frame in lip sync over that period.

Thank you. 

With respect to the reviewer, my 60d drifts from my canon camcorder only a few miliseconds over 75 minutes of recording in my testing without any timecode.  I would have wanted to see a test of longer duration to tell us how well the 701d holds sync over an hour or two.   If the TC drifts, I don't see the benefit of spending $599.   

I'm glad Voltronic mentioned the 18 pages of menu.  That got my attention, too. 

Think I'll wait for longer term reviews of the F8 and the 701d to see what develops in normal use.

Offline voltronic

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #15 on: December 26, 2015, 10:22:50 PM »
From the 701D Downloads page:
Quote
For customers using version 1.00/1.01/1.02
We have received reports below.

    1. The incoming TC Frame rate is automatically detected, but 23.976fps is incorrectly identified as 24 fps.
    2. In a HDMI chain where both HDMI in and out ports are in use, HDMI in port can sometimes result in the DR-701D being unable to receive TC from the HDMI in signal.

These issues will be addressed in an upcoming firmware release.
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Offline dream

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #16 on: February 18, 2016, 11:10:22 PM »
Another question, for which I haven't found an answer yet. Maybe I didn't understand the manual fully. On Page 34 Tascam mentions "Gang Operation Mode". Does that mean all four input level controls can be ganged,
e.g. for Soundfield recording purposes? A feature the DR-70D doesn't have unfortunately.

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #17 on: February 19, 2016, 06:20:43 AM »
Another question, for which I haven't found an answer yet. Maybe I didn't understand the manual fully. On Page 34 Tascam mentions "Gang Operation Mode". Does that mean all four input level controls can be ganged,
e.g. for Soundfield recording purposes? A feature the DR-70D doesn't have unfortunately.

Yes, the manual page you cite clearly describes how to do this, but it's not all 4 linked or nothing.  You can have two "master" knobs that control a group of channels you choose.

I feel like they could easily add this feature to the DR-70D, but won't as it's a selling point of the 701D.
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Offline dream

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #18 on: February 20, 2016, 01:36:02 AM »
Another question, for which I haven't found an answer yet. Maybe I didn't understand the manual fully. On Page 34 Tascam mentions "Gang Operation Mode". Does that mean all four input level controls can be ganged,
e.g. for Soundfield recording purposes? A feature the DR-70D doesn't have unfortunately.

Yes, the manual page you cite clearly describes how to do this, but it's not all 4 linked or nothing.  You can have two "master" knobs that control a group of channels you choose.

I feel like they could easily add this feature to the DR-70D, but won't as it's a selling point of the 701D.

Thank you for the answer. I have re-read the Gang Operation Mode again and the text is under the mixer topic. Maybe it only the channel levels for the mixdown are meant? It is not clearly described like in the DR-680 MKII manual.
I checked the German (my native language) manual and it is described differently and seems to affect input levels of the preamps. Maybe my confusion is: are there two level control points? One for the recording itself, another for the mixdown?

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #19 on: February 20, 2016, 07:28:11 AM »
Another question, for which I haven't found an answer yet. Maybe I didn't understand the manual fully. On Page 34 Tascam mentions "Gang Operation Mode". Does that mean all four input level controls can be ganged,
e.g. for Soundfield recording purposes? A feature the DR-70D doesn't have unfortunately.

Yes, the manual page you cite clearly describes how to do this, but it's not all 4 linked or nothing.  You can have two "master" knobs that control a group of channels you choose.

I feel like they could easily add this feature to the DR-70D, but won't as it's a selling point of the 701D.

Thank you for the answer. I have re-read the Gang Operation Mode again and the text is under the mixer topic. Maybe it only the channel levels for the mixdown are meant? It is not clearly described like in the DR-680 MKII manual.
I checked the German (my native language) manual and it is described differently and seems to affect input levels of the preamps. Maybe my confusion is: are there two level control points? One for the recording itself, another for the mixdown?

The levels are for the preamps.  Whether or not those levels are set individually or as a linked group (with Gang operation) does not matter.  Those are the levels that will be recorded for both the separate mono/stereo tracks, and also for the main stereo mixdown if you have the "6CH" option selected.  I do not believe that this recorder allows you set a different channel balance for the stereo mixdown, unlike some other pro recorders.
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Offline Len Moskowitz (Core Sound)

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #20 on: February 20, 2016, 06:59:27 PM »
Has anyone tested how well the channels track each other when ganged?

What are the input trim gradations? 1 dB? 2 dB? Less?
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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #21 on: February 21, 2016, 12:33:14 AM »
Has anyone tested how well the channels track each other when ganged?

What are the input trim gradations? 1 dB? 2 dB? Less?

I will report back next week - I have ordered a DR-701D which should arrive soon. One of the first things will be to check how it works with my SoundField SP200.

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #22 on: February 23, 2016, 11:17:02 PM »
I received my DR-701D and checked some functions.
Ganging the input levels works fine and straight forward. There are 100 steps (not dB) plus a mute setting, all with one knob. I like that a lot. The DR-701D is really tiny.
I bought this little recorder for a compact Ambisonics system which I have still to test in the field. As an owner of a SD 744T I was curious if the two recorders work in sync and I made a quick test sending Time Code from the 744T to the DR-701D and it worked right from the start. The recorders were recording something for a few minutes and I placed it in Nuendo 7 with the "Original Time" function and the audio aligned up perfectly.
Here are two photos and a screen shot. The screenshot shows Meldaproduction MAutoAlign and I let it measure the timing difference. The 38 cm (or 49 samples @44.1kHz SR) is around the distance of the two microphones I just placed around the recorders for this basic test. The second photo shows the Time Code sync cables with the necessary adapters that work very well in my setup. This way I can use the DR-701D as an add on for analog microphones with my 744T, which I use mostly with digital microphones and Neumann DMI interfaces.






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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #23 on: February 27, 2016, 07:19:43 PM »
There seems not much interest, in comparison, here for the DR-701D. Does anybody knows if Tascam reps are reading or lurking here? Where to make suggestions for the firmware?
I would like to see the possibility to record EXT 1/2 to the tracks 5+6 instead of the mix. As a plain field recorder it would be much more useful to have six channels filled with mic inputs.

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #24 on: February 27, 2016, 07:52:41 PM »
… and I would like to see the .w64 Wave format implemented. The 2GB chunks are a bit short, time wise, with 6 Ch, 25 bits, 96 kHz. Even a 4GB file size would be a significant improvement, which is allowed by FAT32.

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #25 on: February 27, 2016, 10:52:49 PM »
^^, ^ At one time, there was a Tascam rep (Tom Duffy) lurking here, but no longer.  I'll leave it at that to avoid bringing up old arguments.  You can still find him on JWSound and occasionally on Gearslutz. 

I wouldn't hold out too much hope for firmware suggestions.  I have maintained a firmware update request list for the DR-70D for quite some time, and sent it to Tascam several times but never received a reply.

You may be the only member here at TS who has purchased a 701D, or at the very least the first who has posted about it.  For those of us who bought the DR-70D, the 701D may not be enough of an upgrade to justify the much higher price.  My personal view is that the Zoom F8 represents a much better value, and you'll find several people here who did in fact upgrade from the DR-70D to the F8.  So I'm sorry to say that you may find very few people to share experiences with regarding the 701D at this point.

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #26 on: February 28, 2016, 12:53:48 AM »
Thank you for the answer, voltronic. I considered the F8 but I need a compact, lightweight recorder which has the option to gang all inputs together. Most work I do anyway with digital microphones (also several channels at once) and there is no need for eight analog channels of preamps otherwise. I never had a DR-70D because it lacks the ganging feature. As I mentioned, it is easy to sync the DR-701D to the 744T. The four inputs of the tiny DR-701D are good enough for 2xStereo, DoubleORTF, IRT Cross and Ambisonics.

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #27 on: March 20, 2016, 12:06:20 AM »
Looking at the DR-701D as an inexpensive recorder to save iso tracks from a SD 552 mixer direct outputs. Can anyone confirm that the Tascam will accept Line Out (+4 dB) using the XLR connectors?

Thanks,

Kevin
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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #28 on: March 21, 2016, 01:26:12 PM »
Thank you for the answer, voltronic. I considered the F8 but I need a compact, lightweight recorder which has the option to gang all inputs together. Most work I do anyway with digital microphones (also several channels at once) and there is no need for eight analog channels of preamps otherwise. I never had a DR-70D because it lacks the ganging feature. As I mentioned, it is easy to sync the DR-701D to the 744T. The four inputs of the tiny DR-701D are good enough for 2xStereo, DoubleORTF, IRT Cross and Ambisonics.

What's your impression of the sound quality relative to the 744T?

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #29 on: March 22, 2016, 02:56:55 PM »
Thank you for the answer, voltronic. I considered the F8 but I need a compact, lightweight recorder which has the option to gang all inputs together. Most work I do anyway with digital microphones (also several channels at once) and there is no need for eight analog channels of preamps otherwise. I never had a DR-70D because it lacks the ganging feature. As I mentioned, it is easy to sync the DR-701D to the 744T. The four inputs of the tiny DR-701D are good enough for 2xStereo, DoubleORTF, IRT Cross and Ambisonics.

What's your impression of the sound quality relative to the 744T?

I would have to make a real comparison first, same mics, same levels - I won't do that, I'm not a tester. The preamps of the 744T are really good and noise is very low and I got the impression I hear a bit more noise with the SPS200 connected to the 701D - before I used the SPS with the 744T and an additional Grace Design Lunatec V3. I will continue using this combo but the 701D comes in handy for a lightweight package with the SPS200 - it all fits in a small case (except stand of course). And when the 744T is used with my digital mics the 701D runs alongside with the SPS200. Generally spoken - you can get professional results from the 701D preamps and conversion - sound quality is fine to my ears (of course that doesn't mean much as nobody nows what I'm hearing - but my demands are quite high). Recording is rock solid so far on a SanDisk 64 GB card with six channels @ 24/96.  Here is a video frame crop from recording an old 300+ years old loom I did recently. Two Solution D KM184Ds -> 744T + SPS200 -> 701D, TC synced - 744T -> 701D

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #30 on: March 22, 2016, 03:28:26 PM »
Can you tell us more about the accuacy of the meters vs the 70d or the 60d mkii (because the numbers showed on them seam wrong to me)
« Last Edit: March 22, 2016, 03:29:59 PM by Lsadjan »

Offline F.O.Bean

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #31 on: March 23, 2016, 01:11:19 AM »
Very cool pic Dream :)
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Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #32 on: March 23, 2016, 11:15:38 AM »
Maybe they will offer some discounted promotional pricing to get units selling like they did with the 70d. 


Offline dream

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #33 on: March 23, 2016, 09:43:14 PM »
Very cool pic Dream :)

Don't say anything good about my pics … I could feel a motivation to post more. Like this one - showing the SPS200 within the loom. I used the Rycote gag ball for dust protection.


(pic is copyrighted)

Offline caymanreview

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #34 on: March 23, 2016, 10:38:22 PM »
Dont hold back on the pics! Thanks for sharing!

Offline Sentry

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #35 on: March 24, 2016, 01:13:25 AM »
Can you tell us more about the accuacy of the meters vs the 70d or the 60d mkii (because the numbers showed on them seam wrong to me)

Still waiting your answer...

Offline dream

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #36 on: March 24, 2016, 01:32:39 AM »
Can you tell us more about the accuacy of the meters vs the 70d or the 60d mkii (because the numbers showed on them seam wrong to me)

Still waiting your answer...

I don't know if you mean me … I never had a 70d or 60d MKII in my hands … The numbers I see on the 701D are surely not in dB scales and frankly I don't care what they really show - these are just numbers for comparison of the channel input level settings. I want to have the inputs for the four channels of my SPS200 ganged and matched and then I record quite conservative with levels because there are no limiters before the A/D. The levels can be set at an offset and ganged from there.The 701D works very well for me as straightforward stereo or four channel recorder. I really like this little machine - it should have some software improvements: four channel recording without the mixdown going to Ch 5+6 and being always embedded - I delete these channels afterwards to get a four channel interleaved Wave. The ability to route the little bus powered stereo input to channel 5+6 instead of the mixdown would also be nice.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 11:05:24 AM by dream »

Offline Sentry

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #37 on: March 25, 2016, 01:08:13 AM »
On the 60d or 70d the input gain meter is a little misleading: getting the levels peaking around where the little triangle hashmark is, results in fairly low recordings. It's the same thing on the 701d ?

Offline dream

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #38 on: March 25, 2016, 01:53:11 AM »
On the 60d or 70d the input gain meter is a little misleading: getting the levels peaking around where the little triangle hashmark is, results in fairly low recordings. It's the same thing on the 701d ?

 I think so … but I like conservative metering - if it is not a very good metering like with the 744T. With 24 bit there is not much to worry about. If you have enough experience with the device and know the behaviour, just turn up the gain a bit …  ;)

Offline F.O.Bean

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #39 on: March 25, 2016, 02:31:02 AM »
Very cool pic Dream :)

Don't say anything good about my pics … I could feel a motivation to post more. Like this one - showing the SPS200 within the loom. I used the Rycote gag ball for dust protection.


(pic is copyrighted)

Ahh, I love those BBG's! If my Movo screens don't cut it this summer, I'm getting [4] BBG/Windjammers for all my caps :)
Schoeps MK4's | MK41's ->
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Offline D.Dastardly

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Re: Tascam DR-701D [Part 1]
« Reply #40 on: November 19, 2017, 03:19:50 AM »
Well, I switched from 70D to 701D and I love my decision. Hoever I paid half the retail price for it.

I like the casing, which is a Al/Mg casting, and parts can be replaced easily. Screen has a nice feature, never turning the backlight off totally. It operates in two modes so you can actually see what the thing is recording even during the night, so you dont have to press anything and get pops and clicks into the recording.

Easier to match levels now as faders levels are displayed on the screen. Or assign them to a group and tweak one only.

Can record infrasonic to about 3-4Hz.  Flat @ 10Hz.

The menu is a long list, a bit dumb tho`.

 

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