Hands-On Review:GT-R1 Guitar and Bass Portable Recorder
Meet your new songwriting partner
By Jeff Laity
Marketing Manager, TASCAM
Hot on the heels of TASCAM's best-selling DR-1 comes the GT-R1, the portable recorder for guitar and bass players. Like the DR-1, the GT-R1 has a pair of built-in condenser microphones for on-the-go recording. It adds an instrument input with amp modeling and effects, rhythm player for instant drum tracks, and instrument trainer features to make it the ultimate portable tool for guitarists.
You can record through the GT-R1's great-sounding stereo microphone or from an external mic or line sources. (Or the guitar input – we'll get into that below.) The microphone has a unique rotating mount that allows you to record from any angle. Set it on the edge of a table to catch a band practice or stick it in a coat pocket aiming forward to bootleg a show. The input level knob is strategically located on the side of the unit so you can quickly change the gain if the source gets too loud. An analog limiter and low-cut filter also help prevent distortion while recording.
The GT-R1 records to an SD card in either MP3 or WAV format. A 1GB card is included for hours of recording right out of the box and the included rechargeable battery also lasts for hours. WAV recording can be set to either 16- or 24-bit for better-than-CD-quality recording, and the MP3 mode can be set from 32kpbs to 320kbps. When you're ready to load your recording into a computer. Just connect the included high-speed USB 2.0 cable and transfer your files. The GT-R1 even charges its battery via the USB cable, so you're ready to record again once all of your music has been transferred to your computer.
Flip the unit over and plug a guitar or bass into the 1/4" input for direct recording. The GT-R1 has a library of effects on the input to make your instrument sound its best, from crunchy amp modeling to rich effects like delay, compression, reverb, rotary, and more. You get access to tons of great-sounding effects programs with the ability to edit the parameters and save your favorites.
The GT-R1 takes portable recording to the next level with its Overdub feature, which allows you to produce a song in the palm of your hand. Overdub mode allows you to record over another track without erasing it, merging the two into a new recording. Start with a rhythm track run through effects—amp distortion sounds really cool on the rhythm track! Next, plug in a bass and play along. Then start layering guitar and vocal tracks until you have a hit, ready to transfer to your computer.
Borrowing the best features of our instrument trainers, the GT-R1 allows you to loop and slow down songs and licks so you can learn new music. Load an MP3 from your collection, then press the loop button twice when you find a lick you want to learn. Use the PB Control button to slow down playback without changing the pitch, so you don't need to retune your guitar when practicing the part at half-speed. Play along and gradually speed up until you're playing along at full speed or faster. The guitar and bass cancel features eliminate the original part, so you can play your own solo with your favorite rhythm section. A chromatic tuner and metronome also help you sound your best.
Small enough to put in your back pocket, you won't want to go anywhere without the GT-R1. Take it along to record rehearsals, seminars, lessons, and concerts with CD quality. Sing song ideas into the built-in microphone while waiting at a red light. Plug a guitar in to practice using headphones, then record yourself to catch any mistakes. You can even put together a finished piece of music from the ground up—it's all up to you. There's never been a better songwriting partner than TASCAM's GT-R1.
The optional AK-DR1 accessory kit (which also works with TASCAM's DR-1 Recorder) includes a tabletop stand, microphone stand mount, and windscreen.
Features & Specs
- Portable stereo recording with built-in condenser microphones
- MP3 or WAV file recording, up to 48kHz/24-bit
- 1/4" instrument input for guitar or bass
- Amp simulation and multi-effects
- Over 80 rhythm tracks in a variety of styles
- Overdub function allows layering tracks
- Powered microphone input
- Low-cut filter and analog limiter on input
- Loop and change the speed of music playback without changing the pitch to learn and transcribe new music
- Guitar and bass canceller for play-along practice and fun
- Includes 1GB SD card and rechargeable battery
- USB 2.0 connection for file transfer to computer and charging
- 1GB SD card
- Rechargeable battery
- Carrying case
- USB 2.0 connector cable