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Author Topic: What to do what to do  (Read 1143 times)

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Offline Candace

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What to do what to do
« on: August 29, 2020, 05:45:41 PM »
So I think I fried my Tascam 680 by using the wrong AC power (I used my battery charger instead of the Tascam). I was getting a Sys Rom error, and now it powers on and records, but there is no gain on any of the inputs. Trying to figure out what to do.

A) Get it repaired (maybe, if Busman can do it)
B) Buy a new one (currently $379 on Amazon)
C) look at new options, maybe an F6 or a Sound Devices?

So looking for opinions. Are the new SD Mixpres all that and a bag of chips? How about the F6? Any other options I should look at? Repair the 680? Buy a new one?

Offline vanark

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2020, 09:23:41 PM »
If you have a problem relating to the Live Music Archive (http://www.archive.org/details/etree) please send an e-mail to us admins at etree(AT)archive(DOT)org or post in the LMA thread here and we'll get on it.

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Mics: Microtech Gefell M21 (with Nbob actives) | Church Audio CA-11 (cards) (with CA UBB)
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Offline jbell

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2020, 01:55:37 PM »
I would not waste money repairing a 680!  Get a new deck I have been super happy with my Mixpre6.
Microtech Gefell m20's> Nbob KCY> Naiant PFA(60v) or AKG ck61's & ck63's> Naiant Actives> Sound Devices Mixpre-6 @24/48

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Offline heathen

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2020, 10:53:35 PM »
Zoom F8 is as solid a choice as any.
Mics: AT4050ST | AT4031 | AT853 (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3 | Sennheiser e614 | Sennheiser MKE2 | DPA 4061 | CA-14 omni Pres: CA9200 | DPA d:vice Decks: Zoom F8 | Roland R-05

Offline fsulloway

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2020, 08:43:16 AM »
Definitely don't repair it. It would probably cost more than a new one and definitely more than a used one.
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DR680, SD 10T

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Offline Candace

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2020, 09:52:06 AM »
Thanks everyone. I'm considering my options. Right now I'm thinking either a MixPre6 or a Zoom F8N. My primary recording will be two track mix downs of my band from my mixing console, and secondary will be field recording, possibly doing matrixes with a board feed and a pair of MBHO mics.

Looking at the the SD and the F8N, I'd like input. FYI, one consideration for me is same as cash financing; I can get the Zoom with 24 months from Sweetwater, and the Sound Devices with 12 months from Amazon. It seems to me that the advantages of each are as follows:

Sound Devices: 32 bit float, power using Anker and only a USB C cable, possibly better sound
Zoom: 8 mic inputs

Anyone have any feedback on them? What are the power options for the Zoom?

Offline jerryfreak

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2020, 10:01:58 AM »
having owned both first gen mixpre and now a zoom f6, i woudl say 32-bit float would be the last thing on my list to consider... it makes the least difference in resulting recording quality

both are good units... mix-pre is more 'pro' and might have better sounding preamps at a cost of more power consumption.

zoom offers more channels for same price and much wider SD card compatability

i like my zoom because it checks all my boxes (# of channels, power consumption, reliability)

i also used to have a 680 but its a relative dinosaur by todays standards... the mixpre and zoom preamps are much quieter than the tascam

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Offline Candace

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2020, 10:07:31 AM »
Thank you. How do you power the Zoom?

Offline jerryfreak

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2020, 12:11:56 PM »
it runs forever on 4xAA + the sony l-series battery

USB available if needed
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #9 on: August 31, 2020, 02:12:55 PM »
I'll play devils advocate with a couple other things to consider:

Price-
May or may not be a factor, but one simply cannot beat the cost of a new DR-680 for a 6 channel/preamp recorder.

Quality of the recordings-
The newer SDs and Zooms being discussed are great recorders you will be able to make great recordings with.  Will those recordings be better than those made using your DR-680?.. maybe but probably not significantly so.

Ease of use-
All of the newer recorders are more dependent on menu use, so consider your personal tolerance for that and how it relates to how you will work.  DR-680 is super easy to use and reconfigure, the others typically take more time to setup the way you want, and are more likely to have unnoticed settings "doing things".  The others generally provide more options for power users at the cost of more interface complexity.

Functionality-
DR-680 has digital in/out, and can  gang all channel gain controls together for simultaneous adjustment with a single knob while retaining individual channel gain offsets, meaning ganged channels don't all have to have the same gain <F8 can gang but all ganged channels must have the same gains.  Not sure about SD.


I went from 680 to F8, driven primarily by the need for 8 channels with preamps.  I power it using the same Tallentcell battery I picked up near the end of the time I was running the 680 regularly, which provides simultaneous 12V, 9V and USB (5V) outputs and lasts a full day or more of recording.  I sometimes miss the digital in/out (rarely), the ability to gang channels while retaining individual gain offsets (often), and the lack of individual channel outputs (often for me but probably won't matter to anyone else).  Other than those things, I love the F8.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2020, 02:15:31 PM by Gutbucket »
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
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Offline heathen

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #10 on: August 31, 2020, 03:33:58 PM »
Another advantage of the Zoom is the ability to use two SD cards for redundancy.  You'll pretty much never have to worry about a card crapping out on you (it's definitely happened with a MixPre-6, which only uses one card).
Mics: AT4050ST | AT4031 | AT853 (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3 | Sennheiser e614 | Sennheiser MKE2 | DPA 4061 | CA-14 omni Pres: CA9200 | DPA d:vice Decks: Zoom F8 | Roland R-05

Offline Gutbucket

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #11 on: August 31, 2020, 04:18:18 PM »
I have two cards in my F8 but never having had any card problem with it I've settled into using just one at a time, the other there as an always available extra.  I think SD can do the same to an external USB stick but I'm not sure.  This may be more important in the SD case as there have been a considerable number of card problems reported.  Unless that's been addressed with a firmware update, I'd stick with a known reliable and personally tested card with the SDs.  I don't think twice about using a new card in my Tascams (DR-680, DR2d), Zoom F8 or Roland R-44 as long as its a reliable brand I use regularly and purchased from a reputable source.

[edited to strike unconfirmed hearsay]
« Last Edit: August 31, 2020, 05:16:46 PM by Gutbucket »
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<<

Offline aaronji

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #12 on: August 31, 2020, 04:53:43 PM »
^ I can only recall a single user reporting SD card failures with the MixPres in real-world use (morst). As there are tons of users, with lots of different cards, I am not so sure this is really a concern. Of course, any card can fail in any machine at any time, so redundant cards are a definite plus, but, at least on an anecdotal level, this hasn't been much of a problem... 
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #13 on: August 31, 2020, 05:14:24 PM »
OK good to know and I stand corrected.  For some reason I recall significant posting about generic cards not being reliable enough and which cards did and didn't work, but I don't have any personal experience with the SD MixPre recorders.

Writing simultaneously to two cards provides redundancy over card-level failure and its nice to have that option to cover what is a relatively common enough problem to justify it, especially when recording professionally with higher expectations. Doing so is only at the cost of an second card, a bit more processing and battery power to write to it, and the workflow of emptying it afterward, all of which are relatively trivial compared to loosing a recording.  So its a nice option to have.  Only note that it will not provide any redundancy over a failure of the recorder to correctly write the files.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2020, 05:18:09 PM by Gutbucket »
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<<

Offline aaronji

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Re: What to do what to do
« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2020, 06:05:18 PM »
^ There were some "stress tests" (8 channels at 24/192 run until completion, or not, on a MixPre-6 version 1) which saw failures. In normal use, however, I don't recall hearing about any issues other than morst's (which sounds like it may have been due to defective cards). Those were also with the first version; reportedly, SD increased processing power in the second version and I haven't heard of any card problems at all.

All that said, I really would like a redundant card option...
People whose posts I won't see: jerryfreak

 

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