All user reviews for the Tascam DR-40

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Average Score:3.9( 3.9/5 based on 11 reviews )
 4 reviews36 %
 2 reviews18 %
 2 reviews18 %
 1 user review9 %
Audience: Anyone

rlh100's review"Use an external USB battery"

Tascam DR-40
The DR-40 is a standard recorder in the videography world. Especially for DSLR cameras and camcorders without XLR mic inputs.

It is simple and easy to use. With a 16 Gb memory card it will record days of audio. I am not sure about the noise floor as I am doing location recordings of shows which are never absolutely quiet. I record in 24-bit mode at a lower gain and then boost and compress in audacity which works for me. I can hear the audio purists gasp :-)

I have recorded both phantom powered mics and unbalanced line level mixer outputs and both work well. As to batteries, I work around that problem by using an external USB battery pack. You need to remember to connect it and set it as an external power source before you start recording.

I am very happy with my DR-40 and at less than $100US for a used unit, a very good value.

AndyPeters's review"Not bad, but not much better than a phone"

Tascam DR-40
The thing I like the least is the 1) sound quality, 2) the WAV file format (bulky) and 3) unreliabilty (broke down twice in 6 months). Please see details below.

1) Sound Quality

Having used condenser mics with excellent results I was expecting similiar from this unit. However when I received and unpackaged the unit the mics were the smallest condensers I've seen which may not be a problem however, they give nothing like the quality in playback I get from even the cheapest nastiest, "real" condenser mics. The sound quality is comparable to what you'd expect from a phone, a cheap phone, and I have actually heard recordings made on phones of the same concert I was recording with the Tascam which sounded alot better.

2) Bulky unusable files.

The WAV file format is so bulky its almost unusable when uploading files, for example 1 minute of WAV might take 15 minutes to upload to Soundcloud for instance, while the MP3 format is only usable on 96 k setting and is still at times audibly shabby. Which when combined with the terrible mics makes for some seriously crappy sound.

3) Reliability.

In my personal case after about 4 months of use several times a week one day it just wouldn't turn on. Sending it back under warranty, after about 9 weeks and many emails I received a replacement without any explanation of what was wrong, or even so much as a "we are sorry for the inconvenience". UPDATE: this happened again a month later after getting it back.

Cons aside, the DR-40 is useful as a very basic reference, similiar to how you might use an old school hand held tape recorder. Capable of taking 3 batteries, with rechargables it does allow a good deal of recording to take place before going flat, ie: comfortably records about 3 hours of a music performance for instance.

I am glad I was able to discover the "DIVIDE" feature which enables me to cut out the parts of the recording I don't want but only from the beginning or the end of each file. Each unwanted part remains as a seperate file and has to be deleted manually. At least with this option each song in a recorded performance could be editted to have its own file, and dead time between songs, for instance could be removed.

It is a pity it doesn't come with a protective case or an AC adapter, especially given it is quite an expensive unit, and these would be handy features.

I haven't used any of the mixing, or multi track features, with the low sound quality it is a bit of a waste really. Nor have I used better mics with the XLR inputs. If transporting stands and extra mics, I might as well bring a higher quality portable studio along as well is my thinking, however I might try the XLR inputs with some decent condensers just out of curiosity at some stage and check the results. The extra features probably for most people will never be used and not really worth the extra dollars over the more base models.

UPDATE: A few months after writing review the TASCAM DR-40 died again. This time I'd had enough so asked for and recieved a refund. I assuming there is a known fault with this unit. Hopefully they can sort out the probs with this recorder so to make it a nice unit.


vsavagellc's review"Best Recorder In It's Price Range"

Tascam DR-40
I want to start off by saying this is a very good recorder. Tascam truly delivered with this unit and I'm surprised other companies don't follow in their footsteps.

What I liked Least:

I hate the floor noise, the preamps are a lot noisier than other recorders in this price range, but not by much. I making this non because it could have been a little quieter. But still, fantastic recorder and the noise is nothing that can't be cleaned

Other Recorders:

I've tried tons of recorders: Zoom H1, Fostex FRle, Zoom H2n, Olympus etc... I'd like to focus in on the main competitor this recorder rivals which is ZOOM's H4n.

The DR40 doesn't have as many features as the H4n, but it has enough as well as 2XLR inputs and it's $70-$100 cheaper than the H4n. There is no record in the DR40's price range that offer 2 XRL inputs, that's something major to consider.

The stock mics switch from XY to AB pattern and they have a guard which helps reduce the chances of the mics breaking when bumped around unlike the most recorders.

I also love the fact that the DR40 has "Dual Recording" Mode. This means it has a auto safety track so if one track clips, there is a another track (a back up track) which is recorded lower than the original.

That allow is a really great feature and one that has saves me time and time again.

Sound Quality:

I would say the Dr40 sounds just as good as most recorders. Especially it's close rival the H4n. I've put the recorder up against a more expensive recorder like the FR2LE and could hardly notice a difference.

The stock mics sound good, but not as good as a shotgun mic so I would suggest using this recorder a long with a shotgun mic.

If you're planning on getting this recorder, know that it accepts 3 AA batteries. I would buy lots of rechargeable batteries and keep them on hand.

When you use the Phantom power (to power mics) it eats at the batteries a little quicker, so be prepared
Joseph sardin11/01/2013

Joseph sardin's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" Perfect"

Tascam DR-40
Used for nearly two years to enrich my music library online. I also used a few years the HDP2 Tascam is both more complete, but more cumbersome.

I particularly like the phantom power, two internal microphones and XLR / Jack for external microphones.

I would do this choice.

berl's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" Excellent portable recorder!"

Tascam DR-40
Purchased in late 2012 to replace a Swissonic MDR-2 (which was used to record REPES) ...
I wanted 2 XLR inputs with phantom and a better quality recording. I'm not disappointed at all, it is simple to implement and the S / N ratio is good, except when necessary to push the gain: it blows a little while, without it being unusable.
The phantom is correct and feeds my most consumers easily microphones. I like the XLR, this was the purpose of the purchase, and they are combo XLR-Jack. Possibility to record four channels: two internal and two external.
A very nice feature is the immediate start recording (pre-rec), which does not "miss" the beginning of a decision: it takes 2 seconds BEFORE starting ... formidable!
In short, a very decent quality recorder, ergonomic, full!

Notator's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" Good stuff"

Tascam DR-40
I've had a week, I use it for the time to scan my vinyl, and I am very satisfied with the result.

Contrary to what is said elsewhere, you can return it in perfect mono jacks, so unbalanced.
This is what I do, and it works very well (obviously, we need a sufficient level line inputs).

The sound is very clear, very clear, no breath, and I get files to CD quality. I could resize the DR40, but I find it more convenient to transfer to the computer, and the tinkering with Audacity.
The transfer is very simple, it is as if you plugged a key or USB hard drive.

At ergonomics, it is very well designed, easy to use for basic use, and simple enough for advanced functions.

It comes with 5 or 6 records, each in a different language.
The French instructions (I did not bother others) is very clear and detailed.

Before buying, I read a lot of opinions and descriptions on the Net, and I was a little afraid that this is a gasworks complicated to use. Well no, the grip, once you've mastered the basics, is seen as obvious.

A little trick beast at first I fumbled for a while before figuring out how to turn it on, and I finally had to bring myself to look in the manual to learn that we must support and keep supporting few seconds 'Home' to turn (I did, but I did not stay long enough ;-) supported).

I do not regret this purchase. This is a two-track recorder, player and four tracks, so you can make a model rudimentary bounce and rerecording (and there's a reverb). Optionally, there is a wired remote foot, and another hand. Oh yeah, it also makes tuner and metronome.

pegase54's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" erratum on the notice of freufleux"

Tascam DR-40
the prcedents opinions are very fouills nothing wrong thank you them to get a good idea of ​​the device, for among these are Neutrik combo jack, so possibility to enter ( directly) with one or two guitars unlike Tascam DR100 and sony pcm 10.

shukran33's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" Nifty little tool"

Tascam DR-40
used for 1 month and 3 répets

Zoom H4 test for 1 month also

what I love most: versatility and simplicity, full connectivity, quality external microphones, more than enough to save repets with a very decent quality. Compatible linux (opensuse distro)

minimum: the plastic side, it seems a bit light compared to the zoom (lightness is bluffing)

value for money: for 150 € and almost new occas ... most excellent!

not a lot of experience, but for repet records for analysis later, it's great (I have not tested transplanting a table ... I can not wait!) ... this remake choice without flinching

Arsonjulie's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)" Good but not great"

Tascam DR-40
I used the Tascam DR 40 for registrations of moods, for which it should very well. on the other hand for voice, prampli much breath.

AlexisSoleil's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Tascam DR-40
I just want to thank Oliviercool for his time to analyze various digital recorders.
I wanted to buy a good quality recorder to record a conference in order to make a CD.
Well, I left off with the old technology, and I did some research on the material now (forgive me ... I left off the DAT I was not interested ... more about).
And there I see that for 200 to € 300 you can have something unimaginable 25 years ago.
So I head quickly zoom H4N a priori well (especially true XY microphones).
And then made a comparative Oliviercool Zoom H4N - Tascam D40, especially vis-à-vis autonomy H4N, anyway low.
Also, I prefer to use rechargeable batteries, greener, cheaper, but lower capacity than alkaline batteries. Thinking about the actual duration of autonomy.
Our friendly analyst also deals with ergonomics better on the Tascam.
In short, I finally decided for the Tascam, and I discovered.
The plastic side is no problem: it looks strong, provided we do not throw it (but hey, this type of equipment is not in the wild ...)
The ergonomics are downright good, the user manual (given for many languages, including French) is very clear.
I find it very pleasant to use.
My first recording with mics is clear voice. No problem.
Anyway, if you want really good, we must separate microphones, electrostatic, a good string sound with good pre-amps, it is no longer the same budget. So: for € 200, I think it's great!
It is very sensitive if handled during recording, it is inherent in the fact that the electret microphones are integrated into the case: any manipulation with the fingers is a structural noise picked up by microphones.
A priori, all models will be affected.
On the other hand, a small delay of 0.3 s is scheduled between when you press "Record" and when it registers: we will not hear the sound of the button, but it is not very reactive. The best seems to use the "Pre Rec", which, when the unit is armed to record, in fact, running up to 2s signal before pressing record on actually (I think when the camera records he is armed, a buffer, which validates the last 2 seconds when actually on record). Still, then, the plop of the key is taken! In short, for quality recordings, I think the wired remote control is needed, including any trademarks, or even to stop! In practice, pressing gently, it passes.
I stop here my missive.
This unit is nice, would recommend.
Oh yeah I bought a wind filter to eliminate such a Rycote wind noise: it remains.
There is a low-cut function (which cuts?), But I am not served.
I will try to treat it for editing, but I would lose the tone of voice. What to see
I just downloaded audacity, which seems simple enough. Is it enough for a voice recording?
I saw that there was a software professional, always in open source: ardor, apparently more complicated.
Does anyone have experience of these two programs, in an optical assembly, to inquire about their capabilities, especially for a soundtrack as clean as possible? In advance thank you.