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Rechargeable battery solutions 9V, AA, AAA

Filed under: live sound and recording,parts,photography,tools — 2009-04-27 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2009-10-16 by Richard L. Hess

Battery technology continues to improve. In 2007, I bought some Sony fast-charge nickel-metal-hydride (NiMH) AA cells and charger. They have worked well for digital cameras, electronic flashes, and a portable audio recorder. NiMH cells are available in major stores and some offer long-shelf-life-per-charge and come pre-charged.

Recently, I did a thorough search for 9 V rechargeable batteries for wireless microphones at church. I was pleased to discover that iPowerUS (they have a Toronto office) was able to provide lithium polymer 9 V batteries that far outperformed the available NiMH offerings. We bought one DC9V charger and eight DC9V-520mAh batteries for alternate use in four wireless transmitters that we use regularly. We expect this system to pay off in a year or less.

I also bought their GC-60 tester/charger for my NiMH AA and AAA cells which, so far, looks excellent. Both chargers come with a “wall wart” and a car cord.

See updates in this article.


Zoom H2 line input

Filed under: archival practices,computer audio,live sound and recording,recording/mastering — 2009-04-13 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2009-07-27 by Richard L. Hess

The Zoom H2 HandyCorder is perhaps the lowest-cost digital recorder on the market that provides reasonable and useful results. While I have a Sound Devices 722 for my more serious work, I bought the Zoom to test it out to see if it could be part of a simple tape digitization system for archives on a budget who wish to do the work themselves. It does this reasonably well.

As with much equipment–and especially with lower-cost equipment–the performance specifications and the actual operational data is not published. There are reports of the H2 clipping on the line inputs in some of the reviews and it appears that a lack of understanding how the inputs were configured exacerbated that situation.

There is nothing wrong with the line inputs on the H2. BUT there are some caveats: (more…)


Kodak Durol triacetate tape with bad vinegar syndrome

Filed under: project notes,Studer A807,Tape Aging — 2009-04-07 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2009-04-07 by

I recently received two 7-inch reels of Kodak Type 31A Triacetate tape (1250 feet, Durol Base) that smelled of vinegar even before I got the envelope open.

These tapes were badly warped due, most likely, to the vinegar-syndrome induced differential shrinkage. Other factors may have been poor winding during long-term storage (I had received them after several attempts to play them on another machine). (more…)



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