REVIEW > Company name DIGITAL ONLY REVIEW > ReCoRdeR Roundup
• 24-bit/96 kHz recording; handles SPL
levels up to 140 dB.
• Built-in tuner, metronome, and
Lissajous phase-correction mode.
• 8-track recorder with bounce capabilities of up to 999 tracks.
The LS- 100 ($399, street) is an elegant 96
kHz/24-bit PCM-based machine that simply
screams “professional field recorder.” But it also
offers the flexibility of a multitrack machine,
with up to eight independent tracks (or four
stereo pairs), with bounce-down capabilities to
up to 999 tracks. It features two XLR/phone
combo jacks, and its top-quality stereo condenser microphones boast a frequency range
of 20 Hz- 20 kHz, while handling up to a
whopping 140 dB. They can also be used as a
USB microphone with your computer DAW.
The LS- 100 is certainly a pro-grade recorder, but its multitrack mode is decidedly no-frills: no effects, no rhythm tracks, and no amp
models (there is a built-in compressor/limiter
for the main recorder function). The LS- 100
clearly believes that it’s more important to
Olympus, LS- 100, Street: $399,
• Front panel knobs for level, pan, and
record arm controls.
• Quality built-in stereo condenser mics.
• 4-track recording with awesomely classic design.
The Tascam DP-004 ($149, street) is a
straightforward digital 4-track machine without a lot of bells and whistles, and that’s its
strength. First of all, the input and output
level knobs, record “arm” buttons, and the
pan knobs are right there on the front housing—no scrolling through tiny LCD menus
or using “multi-function” buttons on this
baby. (Yes, I said “knobs”—actual physical
knobs.) This old-school approach still makes
a ton of sense, frankly, as does the inclusion
of front-panel transport buttons for RTZ
(Return to Zero) and LRP (Last Recording
Position). These are all very sensible controls
for a songwriter to have in easy reach.
The DP-004 has no reverb or other
effects, and no amp models or “jamming
buddy” modes, so it’s not pretending to
be the ideal guitar-on-the-go partner. But
it’s a smart, simple and good-sounding
little 4-track machine (for less than 150
bucks!) with an intuitive design, a stream-
lined workflow, line/guitar inputs, and
an excellent built-in stereo
condenser mic that’s optimized
by a range of input sensitivity
presets for recording a band,
guitar, or vocals. It records in
CD-quality 16-bit, 44. 1 kHz
audio, and allows you to bounce
multiple tracks to a single track,
even if that track is part of your
bounce group. Tascam has been
making 4-track machines since
1979, and it shows. It’s great to
see that they still know how to
focus on what they do best.
Tascam, DP-004, Street: $149,