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Marantz PMD706

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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby forumuser915213 » Fri Nov 30, 2018 4:29 pm

I have a rather newbie question to ask please!

I'm considering on of these or the DR-70D. I'm a photographer as well as muso, so I can see uses both with and without a camera attached. Can these machines be used without the camera please?

Thanks! Gavin
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Wonks » Fri Nov 30, 2018 4:44 pm

Hi Gavin. Yes, they certainly can. They are certainly designed for field recordings, but they can be used equally happily with or without a camera.
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Mike Stranks » Fri Nov 30, 2018 5:16 pm

forumuser915213 wrote:I have a rather newbie question to ask please!

I'm considering on of these or the DR-70D. I'm a photographer as well as muso, so I can see uses both with and without a camera attached. Can these machines be used without the camera please?

Thanks! Gavin

What's your budget? Subsequent reviews of this machine suggest that its mic preamps aren't that good. I s'pose they had to cut corners somewhere to get it at the price.
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby forumuser915213 » Sat Dec 01, 2018 12:26 am

Peanuts! In the circumstances, broadly I'm keen to pay off the mortgage rather than buy gear.

So I'm looking for more usable channels at the least possible cost.

From the specs noise seems about on a par with my DR100 mk2, and I haven't had cause to complain too much about that machine.

I've looked around (as you do) but I'm not clear what the complaint about the DR-70D is except that later and more expensive machines are better and that you can't use it for foley without a pretty. Well, I don't really do foley...

I did look at the new Marantz machine's specs and they seem comparable, apart from having two more very desirable channels.

However there seem to be complaints that it doesn’t record very long before shutting down. I can't work out whether that's true, or not. It's surely the sort if thing that would get fixed?

Gavin
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby forumuser915213 » Sat Dec 01, 2018 9:22 am

Wonks wrote:Hi Gavin. Yes, they certainly can. They are certainly designed for field recordings, but they can be used equally happily with or without a camera.

Thanks Mike. That's great to know.

Gavin
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby ConcertinaChap » Sat Dec 01, 2018 9:43 am

Don't forget second hand if you want to get more recording channels at a reasonable price. For instance I use a Tascam DR680 for field recording, it's a decent bit of kit and gives me up to 6 channels at once. A quick check on ebay shows me they go for £2-300 there "preloved".

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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Mike Stranks » Sat Dec 01, 2018 10:27 am

ConcertinaChap wrote:Don't forget second hand if you want to get more recording channels at a reasonable price. For instance I use a Tascam DR680 for field recording, it's a decent bit of kit and gives me up to 6 channels at once. A quick check on ebay shows me they go for £2-300 there "preloved".

CC

Yup! I used to have one... good machine; recommended.

OP: for reviews of many of these type of recorders - including (I think) the DR70 - check out the Youtube audio techniques channel of Curtis Judd. A man who works in the AV industry, knows his stuff, does quality reviews and whose standards are way above the typical "unboxing" dross that litters Youtube.
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby forumuser915213 » Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:46 pm

ConcertinaChap wrote:Don't forget second hand if you want to get more recording channels at a reasonable price. For instance I use a Tascam DR680 for field recording, it's a decent bit of kit and gives me up to 6 channels at once. A quick check on ebay shows me they go for £2-300 there "preloved".

CC

CC: Is this the 680 or 680mkII you're recommending please?

Thanks, Gavin
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby forumuser915213 » Sat Dec 01, 2018 3:12 pm

Just to be sure...
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby ConcertinaChap » Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:40 pm

I have the DR680. The MKII is supposed to have better preamps but the original's preamps I can say from my own experience are fine and I'v never felt the need to upgrade. So get either if the chance comes up.

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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby forumuser915213 » Mon Dec 03, 2018 12:39 am

I've found a mkII and hopefully it will arrive in a few days.

I failed to notice that the DR-680 isn't USB powered, doubtless because USB wouldn't provide enough power for the machine running, say, six condensers.

So if I acquire a stash of rechargeables, how many would I expect to need to power the 680 and say four condensers for 2-2.5 hours please?

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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby ConcertinaChap » Mon Dec 03, 2018 9:02 am

I don't think you're going to regret having this. It's very straightforward in use as well. You are spot on with the power demands of a fistful of mics on phantom power. I never use mine on battery power as such but I always have a set of rechargeables on board. The reason for that is if some clot trips over the power lead and unplugs it then the DR680 will switch to battery power and carry on its way, like having a built in UPS.

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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Mike Stranks » Mon Dec 03, 2018 10:27 am

Yup! It's a good machine... I'm sure you'll get on well with it.

Couple of 'gotchas' to look out for:

1) Mics 5 & 6 are on balanced jack connectors. Phantom power is available. Be careful to switch off phantom if you're connecting unbalanced jack line inputs at any time. Caught me out once... no damage done, but weird audio artefacts.

2) You can configure how the recorder stores it's tracks. Mine came as a default with them stored in 1 combined file of tracks rather than 6 separate mono tracks. Some DAWS don't support the 1 combined file approach. However, should you get caught on this - I did - then Sound Devices offer a free 'unpack' utility - available on their website. But better to set the machine to the format that's best for you!

HTH
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby ConcertinaChap » Mon Dec 03, 2018 11:14 am

Yes, a couple of this sort of thing is what you need for channels 5 and 6. You can solder them yourself if you're handy with a soldering iron. As you're buying second hand you might find it will come with suitable adapters. Of course, channels 1 - 4 need no adapters.

I didn't hit the problem Mike had with the default file format, mine was set to separate files on arrival. Nevertheless it's worth looking out for. As separate files, everything is nicely aligned and when you import the files into your DAW everything sounds as it should. I do my recording at 44.1kHz 24 bit which always worked well for me. When setting the levels there is a line on the meters display. If you aim to get your levels at around that line and only peaking over it occasionally then you'll find that when you transfer them to your DAW the levels are just where you want them to be.

Cheers,

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DR680 power

Postby ConcertinaChap » Mon Dec 03, 2018 6:35 pm

On the mains-free front, I've got a powerbank rated at 23000mAh which I use to power my wife's electric piano on gigs. I think I might try as an experiment using it to power the DR680 and see how long it will run for with 4 mics on phantom power. Probably next week, we're insanely busy this week and the powerbank is needed on Friday for its proper use.

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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Wonks » Mon Dec 03, 2018 6:44 pm

Say 6mA per mic @ 48v = 1.15W. So add that to the power consumption of the DR680 and you should get a rough idea. Voltage conversion will be lossy, so you could probably add 40% and say 1.5W.
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Sam Spoons » Mon Dec 03, 2018 6:51 pm

The website specs say :-

"Via (4) AA batteries (Alkaline or NI-MH), USB bus power, or a USB adapter
Consumption: 2 W (with phantom power off), 4 W (with 6 channels and phantom power on)"
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Wonks » Mon Dec 03, 2018 7:11 pm

Sounds about right for 6 max spec phantom power mics, though some only take a couple of mA, so reality will be a bit less.

So 4W @5v = 800mA. 23000/800 = 28 hours.

You should be good for recording a long gig, even if the battery pack doesn't quite perform as well it states.
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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby ef37a » Mon Dec 03, 2018 7:32 pm

Wonks wrote:Sounds about right for 6 max spec phantom power mics, though some only take a couple of mA, so reality will be a bit less.

So 4W @5v = 800mA. 23000/800 = 28 hours.

You should be good for recording a long gig, even if the battery pack doesn't quite perform as well it states.

I would expect better than 30 hrs for a 23Ah battery? The Ah spec depends upon the drain current. Pull 100A off a 70Ah car battery and it won't go nearly 1.4hrs. Pull 7 amps and it will probably hit spec'. Pull 700mA and it could last 2 months!

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Re: Marantz PMD706

Postby Wonks » Mon Dec 03, 2018 8:01 pm

The main issue with powerbanks is that they are normally set up for charging phone batteries etc. and often cut off once they think the battery is charged. You'd certainly need to test whether it is happy constantly powering a recorder.
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