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TASCAM HD-P2 Reviews

4.0 stars based on 11 customer reviews
Questions about the TASCAM HD-P2?

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  • c smart
    from September 23, 2014Music Background:
    production sound

    once, twice

    I bought my first Tascam HD-P2 in 2012. A lot of folks talk about they didn't like plastic feel of the machine but once its in the production bag, who cares. This recorder has a really nice sound quality, very analog compared to some other recorders. Timecode, 192khz of under a thousand dollars is a great buy. Why 2.5 stars? I have used many other recorders, SD788T, 744, Marantz, Zoom, Fostex, Roland even reel to reel Nagra. The first HD-P2 shut down on me on location, which i had no trouble returning, thank you Sweetwater! Its 2014 and the second unit ,which i hardly ever use, has done the same thing, shot down on location. I tried all power options. No extreme working conditions, in office building both times. I also recommended this recorder for my other place of work- they bought 4 of them- and 1 of them is giving a blank screen. I really like this machine's sound, but 3 times…….Reliability is the issue here. Oh and the limiter could be better.

  • John Harrill
    from Atlanta, GA May 1, 2012Music Background:
    Recording Engineer, Live Sound Engineer

    FANTASTIC!

    This is a wonderful unit. Very well designed. Easy to operate and great sound quality. When I was young, this capability would have taken a whole sound truck.

  • David Mann
    from California February 19, 2011Music Background:
    Sound effect editor

    Good but far from perfect

    I bought this machine for sound effects field recording, It is a good recorder but there are couple of things I don't like 1 ) battery life is not that great, I think the problem is that it slowly drain the batteries even when it is off ( I take one battery out when I am done recording for the day ( My sony D50 is way way better and use 4 AA this one take 8. 2 ) could use 6 DB more gain for quiet ambiance recs. TAke long time to get use to the menus - not very friendly, Use firewire but very slow download. headphone amp is not good and noisy, I have few more things I don't like but those are the main one. over all this feel like a 6 years old product. I keep it because it has good quality sound and phantom power but that is about it.

  • Cleiber
    from Kansas City June 18, 2010Music Background:
    Recording Engineer/Producer

    Now records on bigger-than-8 GB CFs

    Very good machine, although menus are not very intuitive for some functions. It *does* record on >8 GB CFs with firmware version 1.06 (I downloaded it from www.Tascam.de as it didn't seem to be available on Tascam's US site.) Very good sound quality and many "pro" features.

  • Mike
    from Northeast Ohio March 10, 2009Music Background:
    Hobbyist live sound taper

    Save your time

    This is a very nice recorder, a step up from entry level in my opinion but not by a whole lot.

    The reason this only deserves 3 stars...Is the fact; this recorder can not take any compact flash cards larger than 8GB. Tascam refuses to do anything about it. As a matter of a fact. This isn't even a tascam recorder it is made by Frontier, with a tascam badge.When several of us emailed Tascam looking for a new firmware to address the 8gb card limitation their reply was they would get with Frontier on that. 2 years later and no word from Tascam and they stopped responding to emails asking if this will ever even be addressed.

    Want to record at 192/24? Sure go ahead but don't expect to get more than 2 hours on your CF cards.Since it seems Tascam and Frontier won't address the end users of this issue I feel it is important to let everyone who is considering this product to be fully aware you will never be able to use a CF larger than 8gbs which is ridiculous.

  • Cameron Ogilvie
    from Toronto, ON, Canada August 4, 2008Music Background:
    Classicaly trained Pro Musician & Recording Engineer

    Excellent machine

    This machine is nearly perfect for my purposes.

    I record mostly live concerts and this is my back-up. It has dropped the ball only once in 150 concerts... After reviewing the situation, it actually was my fault for not formatting the memory card before the show.

    Additionally I have used it for field work as a sound-recordist for low-budget films. Works great in all sorts of weather... I just wish there was a better accessory battery or aftermarket battery product, as swapping out 8 AA batteries puts a halt in production for more time than you would like.

    The only serious complaint I have are some of the screws that hold the unit together have become corroded... I had the predecessor DA-p1 (DAT machine) and it never suffered from this even under the same environmental conditions.

    This is a fantastic product for the money. I am even considering buying a second one so I don't have to lug the pro-tools kit around for my smaller recording jobs.

  • Buck Natas
    from ATX May 14, 2008

    Great DAT replacement

    Now if I could afford a Nagra I would get one but this was within my budget and after researching all of the recorders in this class the HD-P2 seemed the way to go. I have had no problems with this unit at all. Excellent recording quality with my Earthworks QTC40 at 24/192. The large display makes the menus easy to read and navigate. Does what it says it will and does it well. The CS-P2 case is very nice too and I highly recommend it also. Tascam did this one right.

  • James Solomon
    from Orlando, FL February 8, 2008Music Background:
    Student, Sound Designer, Boom Operator, Field Recorder, Post-Production

    GREAATT

    Bought this a couple months ago after getting sick of using its DAT version of this hardware. Knew it would be great to go digital. After using it on various projects including some movies, it has proven to save time and work beautifully. I have yet to use all its features but for what I have used it for I am glad I made the purchase. If you are in the market for one of these I would truly recommend it!

  • Wave Junkie
    from Seattle, WA November 29, 2007Music Background:
    Recording Engineer, Musician

    Almost everything was as I wished

    I liked just about everything about this unit. The sound quality is decent, it is user friendly, and had all the features I wanted.

    However I went through two of these and BOTH had the same firewire issue. I never did get either of them to work with my completely functional firewire port.

  • Bob Sellman
    from Haddon Heights, NJ November 28, 2006Music Background:
    Recording engineer (and amateur performer)

    Tascam got it right!

    Tascam really designed and built this recorder right! Everything works really well except for two minor complaints I have (and an easy solution for one). I've used it for both master recording sessions (I do stereo acoustic type recording on location) and for concert performance recording, using AC power and using battery power.

    If you are looking for a 2 track recorder, look no further!

    Here are my comments about specific aspects of this recorder:

    Sound quality: Excellent, top quality sonic quality including excellent mic preamps.

    Metering: The meter level displays are clear and easy to read in spite of the small overall size of the recorder (about the size of a large book). There is no peak hold ability, although I do not consider this a problem (just a minor complaint).

    Input level controls: Excellent ganged rotary controls that work well. Since they are ganged you don't have to attempt to raise or lower two separate controls an equal amount if you need to adjust levels.

    Power handling: It really shines in this area. Uses an external AC supply or internally 8 AA batteries and works well on NiMH batteries (about 2.5 hours recording time). What is really impressive is that it switches automatically between AC and internal battery power depending upon what is the best source at the moment. If you keep batteries in it, if you lose the AC power it should keep on running because it will switch to the batteries automatically (while recording!).

    Display: Display is clear and readable and a decent size for the overall size of the unit. If you need to change a setting while recording, you can push the menu button and select the appropriate item from the menu without interrupting the recording. I recently was recording a concert on battery power and realized that the batteries were losing power faster than they should have because when I had previously used it (on AC power) I had the display backlight set to always on (which consumes much more power). I was able to go to the menu and change the backlight time so it would go off after 2 minutes (and conserve battery power)....and I did this while the recording continued.

    Media handling: It uses compact flash media and includes a test function that will test your media and tell you which sampling rates/bit levels your media can successfully record at in an easy to read chart. Obviously, since it uses compact flash media and not an internal hard drive, there is no noise from the unit.

    Monitoring: Here's where there is a minor problem (with an easy fix). Headphone monitoring works extremely well with a wide range level control; however, when the headphones are not plugged in the internal speaker ALWAYS is on and cannot be turned off. The simple solution is to always leave the 1/4" to 1/8" adapter for the headphones plugged into the headphone jack so the speakers are always turned off.

    The Case: Really well designed case that enables complete operation of the recorder while it's in the case by opening the appropriate access covers. You even have access to the batteries if you need to change them.

    Recording options: Records at any combination from 44.1kHz to 192kHz with 16 or 24 bit depth (as long as your compact flash card handles the highest sampling rates). I personally would prefer to record at 96 kHz and 32 bit depth than 192kHz and 24 bits, since I feel that a higher bit depth would be far more useful than a higher rate, but that has no effect on my rating of this recorder.

    In summary, with this recorder, a pair of excellent mics, a mic stand, mic cables, and batteries you are set to record at the highest quality with ease.

  • Art Pisanski
    from Toronto, Canada April 6, 2006

    This is what I was looking for!

    Amazing little piece of machinery here!
    The menus are so easy to use, the recorder sounds amazing.. playback and recording is just too easy to do here! Everything is so neatly organized on fast compact flash cards.
    Here's a tip though: To save on the cost of storage (which is a penny a gig now), get yourself two compact flash cards and just swap them between the laptop and recorder. Love it!

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