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Tascam DR10 mini recorder in use


Philip Perkins
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I'd been curious about the Tascam DR10 mini recorders, they seemed like an interesting cost-effective tool to have on hand as a remote plant-mic recorder, a recorder to be used in parallel with a wireless tx and many other uses I might encounter where a very small digital recorder would be handy.  I was able to get ahold of one via some friends overseas, where they are available apparently, although they could only get the "S" version, the one with TRS mini connectors theoretically designed to use with mics connectored for Sennheiser, Shure and AKG wirelesses.  I knew from experience that my Lectro-TA5F connectored mics worked fine with Sennheiser G2/3 transmitters via a simple hardware adapter, in my case a YPA MA507 TA5M to TRS mini male (sometimes avail from Amazon, also avail from YPA  Audio's webstore--shipped from China).  This turned out to be the case with the DR10--my various models of Countryman (B6, E6, B3), COS11, Sonotrim and Peter Engh Omnigoose mics sounded very good on the DR10 with the adapter.  I was able to figure the recorder out without the manual (supplied, in many languages), and was very happy with the audio recorded.  I made my own TRS mini to TA5f cables to hook up Lectro TX, and while I have that working fine as far as the TX audio goes the level on the DR10 drops to a lower level than I'd like when hooked up this way, esp if you were recording talent who weren't pushing a lot of air.  So I have some sorting out to do re that.  For setups where I know there will be range issues I think I would probably double mic the talent and use a mini TRS connectored lav for the DR10, but if the talent is speaking up (as in a car shot etc) doing the daisy chain thing with a TX would be ok.   The recorder came as a complete kit with a belt clip, a heavy duty rubber ring/band to attach it to a TX, manual, a carry pouch and the manual.  I used it with a Sandisc 16GB mini SD card, and it formatted and worked right away.  One nice thing about the DR10 is that it has a mini USB port, and when  put in "USB" mode showed up right away on my computers, for audio transfer.   In use, I was easily able to use two Neopax ankle straps one above the other--the lower for the DR10 and the upper upside-down with the TX in it (so the short cable between the two didn't have a sharp bend).  I'm sure there are many other good ways to rig this.

 

philp

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There is a model designed to accommodate the lectro TA5 mics.

Based on your post, I have just ordered one, so when I receive it, I will post my findings here.

Apparently the TA5 version is on special order, so I hope it doesn't take too long!

I see this as a potential life saver in a couple of situations I could find myself in.

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Regarding the level drop in the recorder, I haven't seen the manual, but my experience with Tascam's (as well as other brands prosumer recorders) handheld recorders is that when the limiters are engaged, the level is dropped automatically by 10 dB or so, which results in a significtanly raised noise floor. So this is just a wild guess, but maybe it has something to do with that?

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From my limited information of non-US market availability:

(and a rough translation from http://tascam.jp/product/dr-10c/ )

 

The TA5F version is not in production. 

The Sennheiser (3.5mm locking) is in production.

The Shure version is available as base model or as an option plate

The Sony/Ramsa version is an option plate.

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Too bad re the TA5F model, but the "S" version works very well.  This version has settings for Shure/Sennheiser/AKG, which you could probably use just fine with the YPA style hardware adapters and the custom interconnect cables a user will have to make or buy anyhow.  I hope Tascam starts selling these in the US soon.

 

philp

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I hope Tascam starts selling these in the US soon.

 

philp

Hey, Phil, you must know about the Zaxcom patent infringement regarding the Tascam unit you have been testing. I don't think Tascam will be selling these in the US.  I do have a question for you, are you planning on using this recorder here in the US in its intended and stated purpose connected to a wireless transmitter? If so, does it bother you that you are using a piece of equipment that is violating a US patent?

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Hey, Phil, you must know about the Zaxcom patent infringement regarding the Tascam unit you have been testing. I don't think Tascam will be selling these in the US.  I do have a question for you, are you planning on using this recorder here in the US in its intended and stated purpose connected to a wireless transmitter? If so, does it bother you that you are using a piece of equipment that is violating a US patent?

 
No, it really doesn't bother me.  I guess I don't see the occasional use of a $200 mono plastic recorder without TC, any wireless of its own, not to mention the advanced playback etc features of the high end units I think you may be referring to as being any sort of threat to sales of that gear.  I see the DR10 as a cool cheap problem solver that a non-feature/episodic level soundie can afford to have on hand for a few unforeseen do-or-die moments over the years.  No way is it a subsitute tool for the sort of recording-wireless heroics that mixers like Billy Sarokin have described here, and I doubt it was intended as such.  The suit-threateners need to chill and keep doing what they do best instead of trying to suppress innovation that doesn't touch their real market at all.  
 
philp
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I got another TA5M to TRS mini adapter (for DR10s) from the Chinese mic company YPA.  It was intermittent (unlike the first one I got from them).  They responded to an email the same day and are shipping a replacement immediately, no questions asked.  Shipping, as in shipping from China, taking about a week.  I was impressed, I'm going to check out their other products.

 

phi p

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I may have been mistaken with my comments regarding Tascam's certification of this product.

 

All our products are FCC, CE and CCC tested in our own accredited facilities in Tokyo. This occurs prior to Mass production and would be unaffected by external decisions.   Whether the paperwork is filed with the FCC is a matter of a few dollars.

 

http://ts.nist.gov/standards/scopes/2003620.htm

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It's interesting that only the TA5 version of the DR10 has been stifled, it's really hard to see that as anything other than Zaxcom taking a swing at their closest competitor in the wireless business.

Yet another thing that makes them seem like a company I don't want to give my money to, yes they're innovative, creative, ground breaking even, but the way they conduct their affairs leaves a lot to be desired.

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It's interesting that only the TA5 version of the DR10 has been stifled, it's really hard to see that as anything other than Zaxcom taking a swing at their closest competitor in the wireless business.

Yet another thing that makes them seem like a company I don't want to give my money to, yes they're innovative, creative, ground breaking even, but the way they conduct their affairs leaves a lot to be desired.

 

To Jon: it is not only the TA5 version of the DR-10c that is not available in the US --- I believe that the DR-10c with any of the connectors offered is not being sold in the US. Zaxcom did not "take a swing" at anyone or any company --- Zaxcom defended their patent when it was clear that a company, Tascam, had produced a product that infringed their patent. That's it. Your personal feelings about what company you may or may not want to deal with is your own business.

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Thanks, Tom, for the clarification. I would actually love to see this whole "discussion" end because it is obvious that few or any of us really have a clear grasp of what is going on with regards to this product and the topic seems to have just presented an opportunity for wild speculation, criticism and accusation --- I'm not very pleased with all of this. I don't want to stifle discourse here on JWSOUND, that is never my intention, I guess I can only hope that it all quiets down a bit in the near future.

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To Jon: it is not only the TA5 version of the DR-10c that is not available in the US --- I believe that the DR-10c with any of the connectors offered is not being sold in the US. Zaxcom did not "take a swing" at anyone or any company --- Zaxcom defended their patent when it was clear that a company, Tascam, had produced a product that infringed their patent. That's it. Your personal feelings about what company you may or may not want to deal with is your own business.

 

Jeff, it's a simple fact that the only variant of the DR10C that's being stifled worldwide is the one with the connector used by Zaxcoms direct competitor in that market, even you can't argue with that. It stinks, but people will work round it, and even more people will think poorly of Zaxcom for making them come up with workarounds.

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" is the one with the connector used by Zaxcoms direct competitor in that market" :are we taking Lectro transmitters with TA5?Huh,Lectro does not make recorders,and does Zax have a US /worldwide patent to a recorder with TA5?Is that what this is about...?Really??

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No offence, but now that  bralleput has joined in this topic is getting more and more out of hand. 

 

-from Jon Gilbert: "Jeff, it's a simple fact that the only variant of the DR10C that's being stifled worldwide is the one with the connector used by Zaxcoms direct competitor in that market" --- in an effort to further your agenda, criticizing Zaxcom at any and every opportunity, you are further confusing this topic with incorrect assertions and assumptions. First of all, to the best of my knowledge, and based on the Tascam website, the DR10C is not being stiffled "worldwide". It is not being sold in the US, any variant with any kind of connector, but it is being sold outside the US. Tascam's choice to not supply it with a TA5 connector panel is their own decision (for reasons which even Tom Duffy, our resident Tascam person, is not able to speak about). Zaxcom's patent, incidentally, does not extend outside the US so any "stiffling" of the recorder outside the US is at the discretion of Tascam.

 

Do you think it might be possible to end this topic so as to avoid any further speculation or any more dragging these two fine companies through the muck?

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Tascam makes an XLR, plug-on version of this.  It is available in the US.  How about comments on the recording quality of that version?

It is my understanding from my reading of the functions and specifications, the DR-10X (with the XLR connector) is the same recorder that is used in the DR-10c model we have been discussing.

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We seem to be in that position on JW unique to Zaxcom where everyones view is valid as long as you agree with JW, I don't think you ever ask people to stop posting on a thread unless they're criticizing Zaxcom Jeff. Either our views and opinions are all welcome and valid, or they're not, if this is just a place to talk about people you like, and espouse views you agree with, just say, and it'll be fine, as long as we know.

 

I'm amazed I've got this far without abusive PMs from you know who, it usually happens!

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Jeff, I really don't get it when you say "now that  bralleput has joined in this topic is getting more and more out of hand".What do you mean with 'out of hand'?I just ask questions with ??? And there are no bashing remarks at Zaxcom at all,just wondering why no TA5 ?(No answers yet..) Still very misty....And can we have a discussion on this one ?(or are we talking lawsuit in this case: Zax vs Tascam?everybody shssst)

Regarding "It is my understanding from my reading of the functions and specifications, the DR-10X (with the XLR connector) is the same recorder that is used in the DR-10c model we have been discussing."

All these recorders are the same.DR-10C only available with mini jack ( Europe..)

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