Recording equipment - bit off subject

  jimmylove 20:02 04 Jan 2005

Sorry if this is not the right place, but I just don't know where else to ask and figured someone here might just be able to help me out.
I'm a concert pianist and have some quite important (to me) recitals coming up. I'd like to have them recorded but don't want any fancy equipment/laptops etc. Just a small mic and someting to plug it into. Would mini disc be my best bet or is there something else on the market that would do. Budget up to £500 or so and I'd like the finished recoding to end up on CD. So any ideas??

  Totally-braindead 20:18 04 Jan 2005

I don't know enough about the subject to give you a definate answer though I'm sure someone else will, the only thing I can do is list options I can think of. Record it onto standard audio tape then convert it on your computer into digital and burn to cd, minidisk may be an option but I've never had one or perhaps MP3. I'm sure there must be a MP3 player with built in audio recording that is good quality ie it uses an external mike. I've got a little dinky solid state 256mb MP3 and it costs £45 and records voice with a built in mike but obviously the quality must be far too poor for what you want. Anyone out there know of a good MP3 that can do what jimmylove wants? I'm thinking of the hard drive mp3 players.

  wee eddie 20:26 04 Jan 2005

I think that you should consider the Band Width you want the Master Copy to be.

Most small towns have a Local Recording Studio, usually in an unused factory lot. They are almost always short of business and would have all the recording equipment available.

Another possibility is to enquire at your local Radio Station. They might do a deal for the right to broadcast at some later date or you they might know what or who to hire.

Setting up a recording can be fraught with potential glitches (as I know to my chagrin)and having a professional doing it might reduce the chances of catastrophe.

  Gaz 25 20:44 04 Jan 2005

Creative Zeb touch 40Gb and a microphone would be your best bet.

  Gaz 25 20:49 04 Jan 2005

Creative Zen touch 40Gb that was meant to be.

It will record with the optional remote thing, which is £44 from Creative. click here have it on special offer the Creative ZEN touch 40Gb for £205

  jimmylove 21:07 04 Jan 2005

Thanks Gaz. I have a 40GB (3G) iPod. Can I get a mic for this or do I need the Zen touch?

  wee eddie 23:04 04 Jan 2005

OK if you are only going to play it through an ear piece but if you tried to play it on an ordinary stereo player you will not hear much of the piano's timbre.

If you play such a recording on a serious system, I'm afraid you would weep tears of frustration.

If, as you say, you are a budding Concert Pianist, don't throw away the recording of your first public Concert because of a group of quality deaf technophobe.

You will get a truer sound reproduction from your home stereo and an old cassette tape. Really, MP3's compression makes it that bad.

  Charence 23:19 04 Jan 2005

You can buy a mic for you iPod. You won't need a Zen touch.

Mini Disc would be a good option. I agree with wee eddie, I don't think MP3 recording is that good, not on my 128MB MP3 player anyway!

Your budget seem rather a large! Wouldn't it be easier to get a professional to do this?


  Colinp 23:47 04 Jan 2005

I would suggest mini disc, or DAT (Digital Audio Tape), and a good Sony mic. I wouldn't even think about using ordinary cassette tapes. Use a pro if you can.
Blank Mini Discs are 80 mins long, so you dont have to worry about turning the tape over after 45mins. DAT, I don't know how long they last for. Both are CD quality, near enough, and an absolute doddle to transfer to HDD and then onto CD.
Don't forget to take a microphone stand along as well.
I have been in a couple of recording studios. One recorded straight onto the HDD and then ditched what wasn't wanted and the other used DAT. Hope this helps.
Best of luck from a fellow musician

  VideoSentry 07:46 05 Jan 2005

As an Ex recording engineer I would have to go with wee eddie's suggestion, though most of the items suggested for the actual recording will be fine you will be dissapointed with the final sound,due to the availabilty of suitable microphones. Pianos are very difficult to record without the correct mics AND stands.There are some hire places which have good equipment ( though it may cost a little more than buying a mic for your I pod ). But as its your first public performance get the best you can afford!
Best of Luck.

  jimmylove 08:39 05 Jan 2005

thanks for all the advice guys. Will try and get a professional in this time and see how (s)he does it...

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