Digitising equipment?

Claire Bowern claire.bowern at YALE.EDU
Fri May 14 15:41:53 UTC 2010

I have one of those M-audio converters and I think the results
obtained with the Edirol R-09 line-in are better, fwiw. I can't do a
proper comparison here (not least because I'm 500km from the audio
equipment) but I also had a lot of trouble getting the M-audio to be
recognised by my computer.

On Fri, May 14, 2010 at 2:39 AM, Margaret Carew
<margaret.carew at batchelor.edu.au> wrote:
> Thanks David & Linda
> I mis-described my cable, actually I do have a twin RCA to plug into the tape deck, also an amp if I need that.
> I have a little audio recorder (Edirol R-O9) but it only has 3.5mm input so I'll invest in a device to do the A-D conversion.
> Cheers, Marg
> -----Original Message-----
> From: David Nathan [mailto:dn2 at soas.ac.uk]
> Sent: Fri 14/05/2010 15:29
> To: r-n-l-d at unimelb.edu.au; Margaret Carew
> Subject: Re: Digitising equipment?
> Hi Margaret
> The setup you describe has the Mac doing the the analogue to digital
> conversion. I don't have any knowledge about your model's ability in
> this area but in general computers without some specialised audio
> hardware are not optimal for digitising. Also, especially if you use
> the higher resolutions recommended for analogue sources, you are
> expecting your computer to handle high throughput, and you can
> sometimes end up with "skipping" where the hard disk could not keep up
> with the incoming data rate.
> I would recommend you think about getting/using either a computer with
> known good audio hardware (eg a desktop with dedicated sound card),
> or, probably better, some kind of audio interface, which might be in
> the form of:
> (i) a box or device that sits between the audio source and the
> computer, that does the A-D conversion, and then supplies the digital
> data simply for storage on the computer, such as this one
> (http://www.dolphinmusic.co.uk/product/3012-m-audio-transit-usb-hi-resolution-mobile-audio-interface-.html)
> or this much more upmarket one
> (http://www.sounddevices.com/products/usbpremaster.htm) - and there
> are others in between.
> (ii) a good quality digital recorder that has a suitable line-in
> connection. For example, I have used a Marantz PMD 671 to do similar
> work. In this case, you create the audio files on the recorder's own
> storage (CF card) and then later just copy them to your Mac.
> The software doesn't really matter, as it doesn't affect the
> digitising quality; in any case, if you use the solutions suggested
> above you would use software that came with the interface or indeed
> none at all. The good news is that you can get a pretty good idea of
> the quality of any setup by making test conversions and comparing with
> the original by listening carefully using some decent headphones
> (assuming the cassette deck is up to scratch!). Watch out for tape
> types and settings, although others probably know more about this
> side.
> best
> David
> --
> -------------
> David Nathan
> Endangered Languages Archive
> -------------

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