Field recording



Yeah, I’d love to hear anyone’s thoughts on the same question. I have the Naiants but for some reason am tempted to check out the Usis.


I use a hanger for trousers to clip my USU pro’s to. It’s cheap and makes a good stereo bar, the hanger part of it also hangs to branches etc.

I’m very much a beginner hobbyist, so want to get used to the kit and workflows before buying more items.

I will say that the bubble wind shields are indispensable and that the +48v phantom power EATS batteries on my Marantz.

That’s maybe the age of my Marantz though…


the bubblebee windshields are excellent!
I’ve used them on both the Usi and with a pair of DPA 4060 taped to my ears for a pseudo binaural recording outside - it came out great.
Which Marantz do you have? I still use the PMD660 as I like it for wild-track recordings whilst I’m doing other stuff.


How is this attached to the K&M stand? I can’t make it out.



I’ve been chatting with Jonas at LOM and he said he’d be more than happy to answer any questions about the Usi mics, just email


camera clamp mount - something like this:


I also use a PMD660, and have used it professionally and non professionally for a long time, i like its heft and the simplicity of it.

As mentioned though, it does eat AA for breakfast when using Phantom power,

Incidently I found a field recording website which measured the stats of a load of handheld recorders and the PMD660 came out well. In fact well enough that I didnt see the need to upgrade.

Wouldnt mind an android/IOS mic for keeping on me for impromptu recordings, (especially sad I am on holiday now and the Marantz wasnt feasible to pack) but the changing connectors for each phone makes it obsolete with every upgrade.


i have an old PMD660 in a drawer but it has not been too useful to me. The preamps are not particularly quiet and don’t give much headroom, making dynamic mics difficult to use. I had other recorders (including a slighlty less hissy but “3h-on-8-AA-batteries”(!) PMD690) at that time so i did not bother with it. I read someone did a preamp mod for the 660 which apparently made it a good machine.


Hi! I’m thinking on doing with some field recording. I would like to start with something small and portable, not very expensive. Maybe a Zoom H4n, ¿some suggestions?


Don’t get a Zoom H4n. The microphone pre-amps are terrible with the built-in mics useless in all but noisy situations. I have one and have been very frustrated with it. I now use external mics with it and that helps a lot.
The feature set is good but the overall quality is very poor. At first I thought it was ok, but after about a year I realised it’s crap :slight_smile:

Here is an article worth reading, a guide to entry level recorders.


I think Sony PCM-D100 is what everybody suggest as the best investment, with the PCM-D50 being the second best. It’s not really what you are looking for… because it’s pretty expensive. I do have a Zoom H5 and it seems pretty decent to me. There’s a bit of noise coming from the mics, but it’s a lot better than the H4N (did use that once and found it terrible).

Might want to check this:


Wow, that’s way over my budget. I’m afraid to not get hooked on field recording and ending with a 600 $ piece of gear in a drawer…

Thank you for the link, I’ll check those options.


What’s the consensus around here on the Tascam DR-100mkiii? LIke @azurga I think the Sony is a little expensive (and if I was spending that sort of money I’d be looking at the Mixpre).


Yeah, wasn’t really suggest you get that. To be honest the H5 is a lot of value for what you pay (about $300 round here). You can also use it as an audio interface and that can be handy.


OK, now I really want an H5, thanks for your advice.


There’s the discontinued Sony PCM-M10:

I’d consider selling mine for somewhere in the vicinity of $300. Red faceplate. Very handsome.


By the way, @rvx, thanks for the tip on the K&M stand. I bought one. It’s actually kind of cute! Smaller than I expected. I like it a lot; small, well-made. Very useful!


You need to think about what your goal is. If it’s just for fun, or documenting something were pristine or even clean audio is not required then I guess there are lots of budget recorders available… even the H4N, or get a gadget that attaches to your smartphone. But if you want to capture what you hear clearly (especially anything quiet in nature), and use/present/enjoy/process those recordings, spending a couple of hundred euro extra really pays off in the long run, and really enriches the process of field recording. I’m in a “buy cheap, buy twice” situation but can’t afford to upgrade at the minute.


Almost every field recording thread ends up in a race to the top. you can enjoy/use/process and present a shitty recording…

The best camera is the one you have with you, so maybe buy something small and cheap and when you feel yourself outgrow it, then spend on a pro device. you’ll know that you get something out of field recording, and also know what is important to you ( functionality/ portability)

I am just weary of everything ramping to BigSky,MF-104,Cirklon levels of expectation/budget when unles you are actually being paid to do this, good enough is usually good enough…

I’m Kent Brockman, and thats my 2c.


In that vein, if somebody would make a smartphone with a decent built-in microphone, I’d get one immediately.

A few years back, I did a year-long fieldwork in Southeast Asia. Recording equipment used: Rode Videomic Pro, Zoom H2n, and my smartphone. I have hundreds of hours of recordings, mostly speech, some music & ambient sounds too. The real gems I managed to record were the ones I did with my smartphone, because I happened to carry it when the magic happened. Needless to say, audio quality is awful.