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DAT is dead we are all recording on computers


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yep and I don"t miss that POS! I did like the pd2 compared to the nagra, always hated the pd4. Fostex sure didn't keep up with us though. It seems weird that they were a leader in digital location recording. Ric Canata was the best thing about Fostex ! You could get the guy on the phone when things went tits up.

LL

There was the concenus that PD stood for Pending Disaster.

Eric

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Ah, I really loved the old PD4. Really good machine... except for the time I encountered a very humid evening in October about four or five years ago when the humidity triggered a transport shutdown, and the entire Fostex lit up like a Christmas tree! That's a very bad feeling when you look down and see that on the cart. Not good.

Good lesson learned, though: I never do a job unless I have a backup recorder available somewhere, even if it's just the 552 mixer. One of these days, I'll break out that backup Marantz Minidisc recorder I've been meaning to use for about six or seven years...

--Marc W.

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And put what into it? Minidisc has joined the DAT tapes on the dustpile of history, they used to be HUGE in live theatre for FX playback and editing... Then this magical thing called a CD showed up in 20 cent per disc cost... And the $1 per disc MD carts with their ultra-proprietary ATRAC format... Joined Betamax.

Did anyone notice, or had they moved on already themselves to better formats that let you transfer PURELY digital, rather than breaking out through an A/D to leave the disc?

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Good lesson learned, though: I never do a job unless I have a backup recorder available somewhere, even if it's just the 552 mixer. One of these days, I'll break out that backup Marantz Minidisc recorder I've been meaning to use for about six or seven years...

Fun story about minidisc (slightly OT sorry, I'll explain my point later in the post)

I was cleaning out my storage room in my apartment the other day, and found this plastic bag with a LOT of minidiscs and my ol Walkman portable player/recorder. Memories washed over me, that thing had been lodged in my pocket for at least 5 years before i made the switch to mp3. Seeing the player after 7 years of being in that plastic bag made me a bit nostalgic, so I started pressing the buttons for fun, and lo and behold the thing starts spinning away, batteries FULL (!!! Single Alkaline cheapest POS battery, 7 years!?!?!?) and making no fuss about anything.

Point:

Minidisc is great.

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Yep, MD is great. I have two Sony portable models, one from ´95, and one of the new Hi-MD where you can record to these 1Gb discs, and it´s amazing how reliable they have been. Not that I have been using them for work as much as I would like, due to battery life but also because I have had more urgent investments to do than a Sony stereo microphone exclusively for these machines.

The Aeta Mixy portable mixer has an optical line-out that would be perfect but again doesnt look like a logical investment, it´s a shame no one else implemented this optical line-out on a cheaper box.

Does anyone recommend any particular mic to use with the portable Sony recorders?

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I have a couple of portable Sony minidisc machines that I know there's no point putting on ebay, they never seem to attract bids, it's not that long ago that I had a minidisc unit in my hifi separates system, and even one in the car, how things change.... I know that one day though, the Sony portable recorder and box of 6 discs I keep in the back of the car will come in handy, so there it stays.

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Just put them all out on any water jobs? If any of them get dunked / soaked, then production insurance has to pay out replacement value... which in this day and age, since they are discontinued, would be something like a Zaxcom ZFR unit? Maybe local soundies could pool together equipment they are willing to let go out on "high risk" situations?...

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Ooh Tom... That is a brilliant idea, in an evil genius kinda way. Anyone have a hazardous gig that needs my old Pioneer laserdisc player? Its one of the newer combo units from *just prior* to the DVD evolution, takes 6 inch and the old 12 inch discs... And I haven't a single one of either.

I've tried ebaying that thing several times, and zilch. It doesn't even make an effective doorstop, too big.

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Did anyone notice, or had they moved on already themselves to better formats that let you transfer PURELY digital, rather than breaking out through an A/D to leave the disc?

Actually, I have another portable Minidisc recorder that will do uncompressed WAV files. For certain situations, it's surprisingly good (especially for its size). I've always had the ability to transfer D-D, not going through an analog stage, using the S/PDIF outputs. It's about 320kbps in normal SP mode, which is not quite uncompressed, but is still a pretty high data rate. The HiMD units are even better and have much longer playing time. As a backup, it's fine. I'd never use it for everyday dialog.

I completely agree that MD is a very defunct format, no more or less than DAT, and actually much worse due to the lack of timecode. Just nostalgic at this point. I loved MiniDisc as a substitute for analog cassette, and used it extensively for that purpose in the 1990s.

--Marc W.

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Ooh Tom... That is a brilliant idea, in an evil genius kinda way. Anyone have a hazardous gig that needs my old Pioneer laserdisc player? Its one of the newer combo units from *just prior* to the DVD evolution, takes 6 inch and the old 12 inch discs... And I haven't a single one of either.

I've tried ebaying that thing several times, and zilch. It doesn't even make an effective doorstop, too big.

Al McGuire who posts here from time to time has a 38' sailboat. Perhaps I could broker an anchor deal between both of you?

Eric

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Hate to admit it but I too actually keep a portable mini disc recorder and a few discs around in my engineering box as an emergency backup recorder. Ah those were the days my only problems with them was the input output never supported transferring files in anything other than realtime if I recall and the lack of tc on most all of the units. I actually liked them at the time but they did really end up getting bypassed.

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I loved those cool Sony PCM-7000 series studio DAT machines -- those were built like a tank! Weighed a ton. Worked like gangbusters, though scrolling through all the menu settings was a bit of a pain. They were wonderful machines for dailies.

They started out costing $10,000 in the early 1990s; now, you see them for $250 on eBay with no bidders. Sad.

I keep a PCM-7040 around just for that day (which may never come) that I have to play back some old archival DAT. The last time I had to do it was for outtakes from Oliver Stone's Nixon on Blu-ray, and it was very nostalgic to hear dailies from 1995 sounding like they were recorded yesterday...

--Marc W.

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I actually have quite fond memories of the PD-4 probably because it was the first location machine I used. It was heavy and never filled me with that much confidence but still miss the thing. I also had a Sony TCD D8 DAT walkman that was really cool as a small handheld machine that could go anywhere, It sounded great with my SD302 in front of it. Somebody eventually dropped that and it was never the same again..

I do have some interviews and other material backed up on DAT that I cant play back at the moment.. maybe I'll start looking on ebay. Anyways none of this can equal the nostalgia you more senior folk must feel for your Nagras!

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My lovely Sony DAT machine is gathering dust and the beautiful Sharp mini disc-man is on the shelf complete with spare batteries and a couple of mini stereo mic's. Can't chuck them, they where expensive when I was poor. Took a long time to acquire them and surely one day I'll need them...

In truth I think the DAT is never going to be used again but the mini disc might. Good point above about wet missions.

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I actually have quite fond memories of the PD-4 probably because it was the first location machine I used. It was heavy and never filled me with that much confidence but still miss the thing. I also had a Sony TCD D8 DAT walkman that was really cool as a small handheld machine that could go anywhere, It sounded great with my SD302 in front of it. Somebody eventually dropped that and it was never the same again..

I do have some interviews and other material backed up on DAT that I cant play back at the moment.. maybe I'll start looking on ebay. Anyways none of this can equal the nostalgia you more senior folk must feel for your Nagras!

On behalf of the "senior" folk here, we would prefer "more experienced" or "legendary"..............yeah "legendary" is good.

Eric

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