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  #1  
Old 2004-12-21, 12:28 AM
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Question iMic, yea or nay?

Ok, I saw the iMic in a show's lineage and was curious as to what it was. So I browsed its homepage and it seems like a bang up product. Of course I am only seeing it through their eyes. Does anyone have one, and if so what do you think of it?

For such a low price I am thinking of picking it up. As of now, I am extracting my minidisc shows via the headphone jack of my Sharp MD-MT180 through a 1/8" male to 1/8" male cable that came with the minidisc (I am guessing it is analog) and into the analog in of a Sound Blaster Audigy MP3+. Would it produce any positive difference if I used the iMic instead of the sound card?

Also, can anyone recommend a good cable with which to use in the transfer? It seems I could do better than the default cable.

And no comments such as "You should get such and such equipment" or "send it to someone who can do it digitally". If I could seriously upgrade my equipment I would, and essentially all of my shows are of local or lesser known bands so it would be hard to find someone who would be willing to transfer all of them. I just want to know about the iMic, if it would be better compared to my current situation, or some good cable recommendations.

Thanks
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  #2  
Old 2004-12-21, 01:09 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

the iMic looks like a complete waste of time--it's like a soundcard that interfaces thru your usb port and is still 100% analog so far as I can tell. I looks like a cheap version of this. What you need to do is check if your md recorder has a digital out, then get a card that accepts digital in, I think for MD you need "optical" and a special cable that goes from 1/8" digital to one of those funny little square inputs. I have a card that supports this, but it's more for musicians:
http://www.emu.com/products/product....incategory=754
Strangely enough, my md only has digital in, but no digital out (??!!).

So, my adivce is "nay", take your md to a sales rep you trust and tell them that you want a sound card that can do digital transfers from your md straight to your hd if that's possible.
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  #3  
Old 2004-12-21, 01:16 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

If my recorder has a digital out, it is hiding very very well. Unless I have been huffing paint for the past two years, the MT180 has no digital out.

So I guess I will be sticking with the old headphone jack/analog in approach.

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  #4  
Old 2004-12-21, 01:16 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

Five has it covered...I just wanted to add that since that MD doesn't have a digital out (which manifests itself usually in the form of an optical out), no matter what signal you feed the input device, and no matter what it does to it before passing it along to either a) the soundcard or b) the hard drive, it will still be an analog signal at heart. In other words, analog > analog and analog > digital won't produce different results.

Unfortunately, the only way to get a digital out would be by using another unit with digital out capabilities.
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  #5  
Old 2004-12-21, 01:34 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

*note to self - kill the person who recommended I get a minidisc recorder when I started this expensive addiction, then wipe his seed from the Earth*

Can't wait until I can afford the Neuros.
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  #6  
Old 2004-12-21, 02:14 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizby
If my recorder has a digital out, it is hiding very very well. Unless I have been huffing paint for the past two years, the MT180 has no digital out.

So I guess I will be sticking with the old headphone jack/analog in approach.

yeah, I just looked at the manual (available here). Your MD has digital input available, you need a special cable with 1/8" on one end and optical on the other (I know because my Sony MZ-R30 is the same). No digital output. One other thing worth mentioning is watch out when you're using the headphone out--you should be using a "line out" which your MD doesn't have. Headphone outputs supply voltage that is meant to drive little speakers (headphones), and can sometimes cause damage when they're hooked up to line-level inputs (like your soundcard). This almost never happens, but I had to warn you because this actually happened to a friend of mine. On the bright side, I've done it many times and have never damaged anything. See if you can borrow an MD from a friend for the transfer.
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  #7  
Old 2004-12-21, 02:25 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Five
See if you can borrow an MD from a friend for the transfer.
...Friend, buddy, pal, amigo, compadre...how are you?

But seriously, I am the only person I know who tapes (and a total lack of friends hurts that idea as well, but that is a whole other issue). So I'll just stick with what I have. Thanks for all the info! That's $40 I can keep and put towards the purchase of better equipment.
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  #8  
Old 2004-12-21, 02:36 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

glad to help out. save up and get the Neuros!!
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  #9  
Old 2004-12-21, 03:18 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Five
glad to help out. save up and get the JB3!!
I'm sure this is what you meant :P

I love love love my Nomad Jukebox 3.

Also, unless it's an incredibly pristine recording, there's a decent chance that you may not even be able to tell the difference between a recording transferred via 1/8" cable, and one transferred with optical cable.

Your bigger hurdle with that MD is that since it doesn't have a line-in on it, it's not going to be able to handle higher decibels very well (usually denoted by an SPL, or sound pressure level). A mic connected to the mic-in will be able to handle up to a certain number before distorting...much of the lows and highs that a concert brings will be truncated or distorted.
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  #10  
Old 2004-12-21, 03:25 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

The MT180 has line-in. And the JB3 is my second recorder of choice in the "I will eventually have this much money, I will just need to wait a good long while, oh why don't I still I have a job?" category.
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  #11  
Old 2004-12-21, 03:32 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wattershed
I'm sure this is what you meant :P

I love love love my Nomad Jukebox 3.
yeah, I was just quoting from above... as you can see from my model of MD I'm a bit behind the times lol. I've got a pretty good taping rig, trouble is it isn't steath!
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  #12  
Old 2004-12-21, 08:02 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

I think you guys are being a BIT harsh on the iMic here. It is certainly a lesser-quality unit than it would be to use a digital-out from the MD to the PC, but it's still a notch better than running analog out from the MD into analog in on the PC. Like it or not, PCs are noisy environments, and lots of extra junk can be added to the signal.

If you don't have a digital out on the MD, this $40 unit would be at least a moderate improvement to going directly to the soundcard analog input.
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  #13  
Old 2004-12-21, 11:22 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

See, that is what I was originally thinking. It would be at least be a slight cut above. Hmm, now I am torn.

Alright blue team, your time is up. Red team, your side is still con. You have 60 seconds. Go!
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  #14  
Old 2004-12-21, 11:46 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

the usb possibly being quieter is a concept... I wanted to get the M-Audio usb "card" but I asked for some opinions and the guy at the store said the drivers were a bitch to get working. It might be worth a shot, just get some opinions on it first. Or save and get something a little better.
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  #15  
Old 2004-12-21, 11:55 AM
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Re: iMic, yea or nay?

Of course I will get something better in the future. But I plan to never touch any recorder that uses tapes ever again, much less minidiscs. So, for the purpose of getting slightly better transfers for all the shows I have, this would hopefully produce better results, even if they are nowhere approaching a digital transfer.
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