Audio Technology / Recording / Recording Devices / Analog recorders...

The analog tape is able to provide the necessary frequency response and dynamic range to capture a fair amount of detail in the speech signal. In fact, if a premium-grade microphone and pre-amplifier have been used, a professional cassette recorder, such as Marantz PMD 222 ( PHOTO>> ), is capable of capturing fairly high-quality acoustic signals. Cassette recorders are usually quite durable and inexpensive. They also operate on regular alkaline batteries and use standard audio cassettes, which are inexpensive and widely available. However, analog recorders typically have noisy transport mechanisms and offer no time code, which makes logging and analysis more difficult. In addition, the analog tape is a rather fragile medium and should be avoided by researchers interested in long-term preservation of their recordings. Perhaps, the most serious disadvantage of analog recordings is that they have to be digitized before any computer-assisted analysis can be performed. Even though, the audio digitization process can offer an extremely high quality of transfer, it is often done poorly, which results in a considerable degradation of the original material.