"DP004 - Handy Little Item"
This reviewer purchased this item from Same Day Music.
The DP004 high impedance inputs bring in good clean signal source for direct in recording. The internal mics are exceptional compared to other portable recording units and will do if you have no external mic'ing capability. The playback sounds crisp and clean through the HP-VT1 cans included with the Tascam starter set. The microphone included with the starter set is a also very good. Although it is a low-end model, it is fine for most work one would be doing with this unit anyhow. The output files are CD quality sampling so... they sound as good as the recording/mixing quality that went into them.
The DP004 is not meant to be a final project device so there are not a lot of "bells and whistles" with the unit. It comes with two 1/4" input jacks that can be used individually, simultaneously, or in conjuction with one of the internal mics. There is a mini-plug line out for phones or speakers and it can interface through USB to export or import files and backup projects. There is no FX or other fancy processing. This is what it is - a simple portable 4 track recorder.
A USB cable and a set of "test' batteries are included as well as a 1GB SD card with a DEMO and blank song already on it to accompany the Quick Start lessons. Mine also came with the starter pack which included a set of headphones and an external mic, both of which are adequate. Buy the AC adapter! (Batteries will fail... and always at a crucial moment!)
Ease of Use:
The DP004 has a straight forward, simple interface providing a bare bones menu system that is functional and practical, leaving more time to record the music. The rest is handled by the analog knobs that provide for input, master, record and playback levels as well pan adjustments for mixing - which means it is functional and practical.
The device is housed in a plastic case that does not appear to be all that sturdy. I re-box mine between uses and transport it in an accessory bag with cables and phones. The jacks are "stiff" when plugging in and often do not feel securely seated, even though they seem to be so. particularly the phones jack for monitoring. The electronics and everything else delivers.
I had a frustrating moment on first use due to the tuner feature being inoperative, but one quick trip online to Tascams sight and the solution was easily found. There is update firmware to fix this and add a bit more to the selection options for input settings. Easy site to get information, manuals and other support.
The Wow Factor:
I was looking for a relatively inexpensive portable recording device to capture those moments of inspiration that hit sometimes during practice. I wanted to plug-in and capture it before I meandered off on some tangent and lost the original inspiration. I looked at all kinds of portable solutions that did far too much or cost far too much! This one fits the bill handily.
The DP004 does what it is supposed to do very well and that is provide quality and convenience in portable and "on-the-spot" recording needs. It is simple and versitile letting the user capture a creative moment without being bogged down in cable patches and technology.