« Zoom MRS-4 »Published on 05/26/02 at 15:00
This search lead me to the range of digital mini-studios currently available.
Not being the most wealthy musician around, I opted for the cheapest digital 4 track around - the Zoom MRS-4. I paid £220 and bought it in London.
This unit is so simple to operate, my Grandad could do it. Switch it on and within minutes you can be making decent recordings.
It's small (but not so small that you need tweezers to operate the thing!) and uncluttered.
It links via midi to my drum machine, so I don't need to use up a track recording drums (and you can re-work the drums after you have recorded the other parts).
Sound quality is excellent for the price.
32MB smartmedia card supplied is not big enough to do much at all.
Display is a little limiting - they could have made this an LCD and easier to read.
The in-built effects are ok, but not great. they are enough for noting ideas though - which is what I bought the unit for. You really need a seperate guitar FX.
One small point too - Although my drum machine is a Zoom unit too (123), it doesn't sync perfectly, if you stop the track half way through and then re-start it, the drum machine starts from the beginning of the drum song. You are better off recording using the in-built metronome and then adding the drums after.
Plastic but fairly solid. Zoom units always feel a little flimsy. Don't stand on it and you'll be ok.
Excellent value for money and if you already own Guitar FX and a drum machine, there is no point buying the Boss BR-532 as the inclusion of these is the only thing the Boss unit has over the Zoom MRS-4. Save yourself the money.
This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com