Tascam DA 38 Anyone use these or have any other suggestions?

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Red Planet, Jun 5, 2005.


  1. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    I'm looking to do some home recording Mostly for arranging origionals or making my band demos and maybe some local band recording.

    I have a 32x8x2 Recrding/Live board and out board FX.

    Maybe dont need a mixer or anything else. Any suugestions?

    I've been out of this so long I dont have a clue.

    I was thinking since I have an 8 bus board one of these Tascams used would be good.

    I have seen 3 of em locally for around $350.00

    Or should I get some newer all in one deal that goes to hard disc. I doubt I would edit much just amature piddiling around.

    I want something easy to use.
     
  2. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    I had three DA-88s (similar model, a few more features) synced together for years. They're nice decks, and I think they still sound great.

    Sounds like your 8 buss board would work fine.

    The nice thing about working with tape is that it's so fast; and if you later decide to edit it, you can always dump the tracks to hard disk. The DA-38 has a very fast transport, and the autolocate points work very accurately. It's also easy to punch in, etc.

    If you can find one, get the remote and autolocator, too.
     
  3. glynn

    glynn Member

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    I've still got a 38. Its a great box, only one issue with the tape drive in all the time I've had it.

    Still sounds good, and it doesnt crash. Really great for live recording, and then dumping to DAW for mixing/post.
     
  4. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Whats the Auto Locater?

    I found three of these used for cheap.

    Is it worth it to get one of those new deals with the buyilt in CD Burner FX Mixer and all that Jazz.

    I saw Fostex has one thats 8 track with the works for $600.00 and a 16 for $800.00

    I believe these DA38's are $350.00 or so.


    And what does virtual tracks mean? Both those Fostex units also have so many more virtuall tracks aside from the "real" tracks.

    The days of laying down some tracks on a 2 inch 16 track anolog deck are gone. :(


    I've kinda lost touch being the old fart that I am.
     
  5. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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  6. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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    I have a Fostex D2424 and have never once used the virtual tracks. The virtual tracks basically make it a 56 track machine that will only play 24 tracks. I seldom use more than 16 tracks but I suppose the virtual tracks would be used for multiple takes of a track, so you can choose the best one. The D2424 is pretty stable. I've never had any pops of clicks to worry about. The transport is faster than tape based machines obviously. My biggest issues are the fan noise (quieter than most computers but still noticable) and the questionable ethernet performance. And the support isn't so great.

    As for the 38, it's much preferred over some other tape based machines. You'll have a small continuing cost for the Hi-8 tapes. And you'll have the additional expense of a CD burner. The 38 is a small investment and it's close by so you can inspect it before you buy.

    I think the all in one solution might prove to be a headache for live band recordings.
     
  7. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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    The auto locator is basically a big remote. It gives you transport controls, track arming and access to locate points.
     
  8. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    I'm leaning toward the 38. What I like about it is I can put it in my PA Rack. My Board sets on top of my rack for a kinda portable setup that can be easily moved. I have a CD Burner in my PC. Couldnt I just use it to burn to CD as I need to. That might be a pain to bring the deck upstairs to my PC or Vise Versa but its doable.

    Or maybe I could run me a cable downstairs to my Jam room and hook it up that way. When I need to dump to disc. I know my wife aint gonna let me keep our new PC down there. :D
     
  9. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Allright I called to check on the ones I saw. One has 800 hrs and the other one has 1500 hrs both are $349.00 .

    I was mistaken one is a DA88 should I get it? Whats the difference?
     
  10. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    I'm talking to myself again.

    I went ahead and got the DA88 FOR $399.00 with 950 hrs on it. I'm sure if I looked around I could find one cheaper but that really aint the point. I just couldnt afford $1500.00 right now for a new rack mount unit. I had looked at some and they were all in that area.

    They have a lot more tracks and features but I'm on a budget.

    The guy told me the DA88 is a better unit. For 50 bucks I think I can swing it.

    I'm gonna need to find a manuall for it. Any suggestions?
     
  11. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    I'm still talking to myself. :rolleyes: :NUTS

    I finally found the freakin manual to this thing. They hide them.
     
  12. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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  13. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Cool I have to pick it up tomorrow. I just called em and stuck it on my CC.

    Its gonna take me awilhe to figure out how to work it but I should be OK.

    Is there anything I should need other than cables and tape to get going?
     
  14. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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    Format the tape, arm a track and record. Pretty easy.

    Other than cables and tape, a place to set it all up. The Z series mixer stands are pretty economical and you can add a 6 space rack to the cross bar and monitor platforms for your speakers. Of course there are more furniture style workstations if that's more you preference.

    If you're recording bands at home, you might want to check out some multi-channel headphone amps and a few sets of phones as a future purchase.
     
  15. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Thanx.

    I'm gonna have to set this booger in my PA rack for right now. I'm just gonna use my Communitys for recording monitors now also. They are PA speakers but are very warm and smooth. They have six inch paper midrange and three inch tweeters for a very smooth sound.

    What I'd eventually like to do is make my Wifes junk all closet my Controll Room. Its about a 10' x 8' room that is right next to my Jam room. What would be nice is to set up my PC, Mixer, Studio Monitors, FX, and anything else in there so I can have a bonified Controll Room.

    I've done all this before but its been a while. :D
     
  16. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    If you use balanced +4 inputs and outputs, they're on D-sub connectors. DA-88s also have -10 (consumer level) RCA jacks on the back. These are available terminated with various other kinds of connectors at the other end at most GCs.

    I think I have a sync cable and possibly a remote cable hanging around somewhere, so if you ever need one, email me.
     
  17. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Thanx!:)

    I'd like to go Balanced. I need to look and see if my board sub group outs are. If they are thier TRS.

    I know my Inputs are Balanced so I should at least get a set of those.

    It would be better to be balanced wouldnt it?

    I'm gonna have to find a remote it dosent come with one. I'll just have to make do. I'm just about tapped out right now on gear money anyway. Those $1200.00 a month house payments dont waite.

    I'm gonna get the cables I need though.

    I had a guy tell me at GC that he would get me a used DA-38 for $600.00 He didnt know I'd allready seen these.
     
  18. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Here is the rack I'm gonna stick it in for now.


    [​IMG]
     
  19. covert

    covert Member

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    I may be wrong, but if memory serves the 88 was an earlier model, with 16 bit converters, and the 38 has 18 bit.

    I have 4 of the 38 and am quite hapy with them. The caveat is how much you use them. I bought two of mine from a studio that ran them about 10 hours/day and had to replace heads every couple of months.

    I wouldn't keep mine in a rack that got moved a lot, unless I was oing location work. They are pretty tough, but all digital tape units can be jarred out of line.

    I have a couple of the remotes that I might be willing to part with.
     
  20. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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    Good point. Althought they're both 16 bit audio, the 38 does have 18 & 20 bit converters. I always thought it was a little odd since the last 2 bits get truncated anyway.
     

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