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M-Audio MicroTrack 24/96 2-Channel Mobile Digital Recorder
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Rugged and highly mobile, the M-Audio MicroTrack 24/96 is a high-fidelity 2-channel mobile digital recorder that makes on-the-spot recording unbeliev...Click To Read More About This Product
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Professional quality recording that's ultraportable and easy to use.
Rugged and highly mobile, the M-Audio MicroTrack 24/96 is a high-fidelity 2-channel mobile digital recorder that makes on-the-spot recording unbelievably easy. The MicroTrack Mobile Digital Recorder can record up to 5 hours of WAV or MP3 format audio to CompactFlash or microdrive memory cards via TRS or mini-jack inputs complete with phantom power. Level meters and headphones ensure everything sounds right. LCD screen lets you select and play files easily. You can transfer your recordings from your MicroTrack digital recorder to PC or Mac via USB for editing. Powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery that can be recharged via the USB port.
- 2-channel WAV and MP3 recording and playback
- Storage via convenient CompactFlash or microdrives
- Drag-and-drop file transfer to PC and Mac via USB 2.0
- Separate left and right input level controls with signal and peak indicators
- Professional balanced 1/4" TRS inputs with mic/line switch
- Dual microphone preamps with phantom power for studio microphones
- 1/8" TRS input with 5V power for use with stereo electret microphone (microphone included)
- S/PDIF coaxial input for digital transfers
- Monitoring via RCA line outputs or 1/8" stereo headphone output
- Stereo output level control
- LCD screen
- Navigation, record, hold, pause, delete, menu, and power buttons
- Software for editing and file format conversion
- 64MB CompactFlash card included
MicroTrack 24/96 2-Channel Mobile Digital Recorder
- MP3 recording: 96 to 320kbps at 32, 44.1 or 48kHz
PCM recording: 16 or 24-bit at 32, 44.1, 48, 88.2, or 96kHz
Battery life before recharge: 7 hours playback; 4-5 hours recording via line in or dynamic mic; 3 hours recording with phantom power engaged
Compatibility: WAV, MP3
PC requirements: Windows 2000, XP; USB 1.1 or 2.0 port
Mac requirements: Mac OS X 10.3.9 or greater; USB 1.1 or 2.0 port
2-7/16"W x 4-1/3"H x 1-1/8"D
4-13/16 oz. without card; 5-1/4 oz. with card
Review Snapshotby PowerReviews
Most Liked Positive Review
Good features, could use a little work.
The quality of the recordings is top-notch. I hadn't expected much out of the included microphone, but was quite surprised by its quality. (It is, however, less convenient than a built-in...Read complete review
The quality of the recordings is top-notch. I hadn't expected much out of the included microphone, but was quite surprised by its quality. (It is, however, less convenient than a built-in microphone; you can't just pull the MicroTrack out of your pocket and start recording.)While the unit does provide phantom power (one reason I chose it over Edirol's equivalent product), it's only 30V. It does drive all the condenser mics I've tried it with, which all say they need 48V, but it really drains the juice quickly; using the AC adapter is pretty much essential for recordings of any appreciable duration if you need phantom power.The 64MB compact flash card included with the unit is laughable at best; when recording a 24/96 WAV, it holds less than three minutes. One of the hidden costs of this unit is a CF card (or, better, a microdrive) big enough to hold a good-sized recording.The controls are pretty touchy, and there's often a lag between hitting a button and receiving a response. The firmware has some problems -- misreported playback durations; occasional brief glitches in which a fragment of another file will be played back instead of the file it's supposed to be playing; the A-B repeat function not working properly; the Hold key not locking out everything, to name a few -- but hopefully future firmware updates will address these issues.MP3/WAV file playback is extremely rudimentary; there are no playlists, shuffle or "repeat song/directory/all" functions. When you press Play, it will start playing the first WAV or MP3 file of the first directory it finds, and continue until it reaches the last file, then stop. Perhaps future updates will also incorporate a more capable playback functionality, though ultimately this is intended as a recording device than as an iPod competitor.While there are a few negative points to this product, the majority of them can be fixed in firmware. It thus has the potential to be a great product. As it stands now, I'd say it's only "pretty good". Its recordings are excellent, and that's really what matters -- but with some added firmware functionality, the rest of it could be spectacular as well.
Most Liked Negative Review
The features, size, and design of this unit are what drew me in. But after just a few uses, I quickly came to realize that this was nothing more than cheap electronics wrapped...Read complete review
The features, size, and design of this unit are what drew me in. But after just a few uses, I quickly came to realize that this was nothing more than cheap electronics wrapped up in an attractive, but completely unusable package. To start with, the unit is small - the smallest of its kind. But the bulky external mic makes the overall footprint just as large as some of the palmtop units that this was made to replace. Second, the unit has a built-in rechargeable battery that cannot be removed. So, when it crashes, which it does frequently, there is no way to "cold-boot" the unit by removing the battery. This is also a problem because it reduces the unit's true portability because you can easily get stuck with no remaining battery life and no AC power to recharge it. Then, what you have is a paperweight. Oh, and by the way, when you do have it plugged in to charge, the backlight is always on (even if the power is off). So forget about using this unit as a plugged in desktop recorder either.But, all of this aside, the firmware simply does not work. It locks up incessantly and, with no way to reboot, you literally have to unplug it, wait for it to auto-power-off, and hope that you can start the machine up again. And, to add insult to injury, the body is a cheap Chinese-made piece of plastic with absolutely no meat on its bones. Overall, don't be taken in by the low price. Paying any amount of money is too much for a unit that doesn't work.
Reviewed by 19 customers
I picked this up practically on a whim, wanting something to quickly record ideas and get them down.This little machine works shockingly well! With the provided microphone and proper setup and placement a good guitar sound can be recorded from a decent distance (better than most 4-track recorders, and even amateur studios pre-pro-tools era).I bought mine clearance and didn't get the manual so it took some time to figure out how to change the settings, but this is well worth the price.Wether getting a basic idea of your songs down good enough to remember them, or to get a decent mix of a live setting, this is well worth the money IMO.
I was looking for a way to record my live shows. I thought about getting a mini-disk deck or a DAT deck for roughly half the price of the Micro Track. I ended up getting this little gem for my birthday and have been amazed by ease of use and the quality of the recordings. At first, it seemed a little pricey for something so small but it's PERFECT. I just run a line out from the PA (1/4, 1/8, RCA, whatever) and I get a crystal clear STEREO recording. The best part is how easy it is to use. With the USB interface, I get home, plug it into my computer, and just drag and drop the recordings onto my hard drive. They are already in MP3 format (or WAV if you rather) and I can remix, master or edit right away. And because it uses a flash card, I can then delete the recordings off the Micro Track and keep reusing the same flash card over and over. No need to buy more disks or tapes. This baby is very rugged and versatile, about the size of a PDA and you won't get a better quality recording outside of the studio. Don't let the price tag scare you; it's worth it!
i just took one of these to norway, recorded a glacier, hikes through snow to a lake, birds, wind, and everything else you can find in a relatively harsh climate. it survived sitting in the rain, being dropped and general abuse from living in my pocket for 14 days. i charged it every night from my laptop and NEVER had a battery issue at all. i don't know what all teh knocks are on it in terms of durability... i had ZERO issues with it. also in terms of quality, most of the folks i was with used sound devices mucho expensive gear... i had this with a few very cheap mics, and everyone else seemed pretty darn impressed with the quality i got out of this thing. i can't imagine how sweet it would be with a tiny mic pre... and it weighs nothing. i will eventually have an arsenal of these. if you are recording out in the world and willing to charge the thing every night, this is a dream.
I purchased the MicroTrack 24/96 to record nature sounds. I researched several types & my final decision was because I thought the use of a compact flash card would eliminate mechanical noise from the recorder. I was wrong. A hissing sound was present in all recordings. I contacted support at M-Audio to find out what adjustments I needed to make to increase the quality of my recordings. Recording at 24-bit & 96 KHz should result in pretty clean sound(better than CD). After several communications I was told that the hissing sound was "self noise" from the recorder. We discussed a few possible alternatives and finally I was told sorry. Anyway, if its clean clear CD & better quality you want and you are recording a source that is lower in volume, this is not the recorder you want.
I've owned and used this piece for over a year now, recording live, transfering from my Akai 16 channel recorder, unplugged with acoustic, and through my Pod XT Live floor unit. Initially I was impressed by ity's quality, audio that is. I was carrying speakers and evidently the speaker rubbed against the unit and it defaced the screen insomuch that you can now barely even read the screen at all. If it didn't light up when turned on I wouldn't know it was on. You have to be very careful with this unit because it is very fragile...thin plastic. I've taken the covers off to see if I could just replace the screen...nope...and it's not all that sturdy inside either by the way. The sound quality is tremendous if you set it up properly, but be very careful. Another bummer is the fact that you can't record with a good large condensor mic at 48v phanton power...there's nothing. Had I known this before I honestly wouldn't have bought it. A couple other negs: You have to set the peak level so low that it changes tones on guitar, etc. most of the time. I would assume a good preamp may help with this though...not really sure to be honest. And if you use the (2) 1/4" inputs, you have to be certain to keep the cables from moving or you will hear it in your recording. Even though most of thos sounds like a negative review, it has still [produced some great recordings for me in many venues, as stated above. I probabluy wouldn't buy it again, unless they made it a bit more sturdy and reliable.
I use the device to assist recording at weddings and receptions to recover lost audio for the final DVD. The unit mates well to all the audio systems I have encountered so far (4 months) and has excellent room recording capabilities HOWEVER I am not impressed with the battery life of 3 hours and not replaceable on the fly. On the other hand I would buy another one.
I've used this at rehearsals and live performances. After you upgrade the Compact Flash mem from 128megs to 1, 2 or 4 gigs, the hardest part is finding someone trustworthy to operate during the gig. My buddy flipped the three-way level switch from "M" to "L" during the first song of our set. This saved the entire recording. The resulting recording quality is very high using the "comes with" stereo mic. Edit the resulting .WAV or .MP3 and you've got a new demo or bootleg album. Can't be any simpler.
The latest firmware upgrade (May 06) addresses many of the issues that were originally problematic with the 24/96, If you use microphones that can operate on 30V phantom power (instead of the nominal 48V) you should get good results.
Purchased Thursday to record a show on Friday. Rushing to the train to get to the show, it slipped out of my carry bag, and I drop kicked it about 10 feet on a brick sidewalk! Screen was frozen in place. Didn't have the manual, thought I was USC with no paddle. Tried a few inspired guesses, and got it to reset by pressing Delete and the power button and holding them down. Bingo! Back in action.Recorded in a muffled bar, using some CoreSound binaurals, bass roll off selected, fresh battery, at 24/48 (not 96, was worried I wouldn't have enough space on the CF card I got). Soon as show was over, plugged headphones in and played back, was BLOWN AWAY by the sound quality, particularly compared to my Sony D8. Had a little more noise/mic hiss than desirable (but still less than my D8), but I had the gain down pretty low to avoid clipping. In retrospect, I should have let them clip since it was only crowd clapping that was causing clips.Is it all things to all people? No, of course not. Is it a solid performer for low presence recording of shows? Absolutely! If I had thousands of dollars to spend, and was willing to use a team of Sherpas with forklifts to cart my gear around, sure, I'd get something else. But to be able to enjoy the show, pack up in 2 minutes, thank the artist for the performance, and fit the whole recording rig into my pocket (for under $600 with mics), I'm astounded. The best purchase I've made all year. I'm now in the market for some decent carotids to round out my recording setup.
M-Audio is working on a firmware update for the Microtrack 24/96. The firmware that ships with the product is virtually unusable, and the current upgrade on the M-Audio website is a "beta" version that does not solve all the problems. Waiting for the promised new firmware update would be a good idea if you hope to get the advertised capabilities.