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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

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Recording equipment for interviews


Kate Wills

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What is the latest thinking regarding recording equipment to conduct interviews?

Our history group was going to invest in mini-disc recorders (which I know and love) but I have read that these will be obselete in a few years. I'm not surprised, as technology marches on apace. We asked a local BBC radio reporter, who promised to get back to us, and we are still waiting.

Any advice anyone?

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I am in a previous stage of technology (my last investment being a telephone jack to record phone interviews on tape recorder).

My view is that obsolescence is a relative matter: if minidisk is good for some matters (i.e.: excellent sound quality) and there's a not-too-complicated way of transfer to other formats (CD or DVD), why not.

However, I think the latest developments are recorders with a memory stick (like digital cameras), which propably allow transfer to computer (and then to CD, mp3, etc... depending on your software).

Gloria

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A few years ago I paid a small fortune for a top quality MD player and I have the same fears as you - but the real secret was paying a slightly less fortune for a professional quality microphone.

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Sony mini-disk, with Sony exterior microphone. This can then be loaded from MD to a Wav file and edited on p.c. (not the master) copies can be made on a MD CD Audio cassette midi also available from Sony. this makes it easy to copy onto cassette for exterior uses or for transcribing. Good luck.. also consider doing DVD camcorder interviews I have done around 75 audio and 60 audio/visual interviews...

Rodge

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Anytime I've had to do oral histories with people I've always used minidiscs - they may be going out of style but they're easy to use and give really good quality playback.

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