January 22, 2017 at 1:49PM, Edited January 22, 1:50PM


Build your own Portable Console for Audio Recorders / Mixers - $30 DIY

For "dual system audio" I build this DIY Console to hold and protect my equipment. It works very well!

Super easy to build.


Shown with:
Sony PCM-M10 Portable Audio Recorder and Sound Devices MixPre-D Compact Field Mixer.

$30 DIY: Portable Console for Sound Devices MixPre-D


Add a guitar strap and you're gold. I did something similar with a Zoom H4 and RNP 8380 using cold-rolled sheet steel and some basic hardware, including space for external battery packs and a guitar strap to handle walk & talk shots etc. out in the middle of nowhere. I have long since retired that rig.
Caveat; running a good preamp (MixPre D) into a bad preamp (hand-held audio recorders) sounds like an even worse preamp but with slightly less noise. For what you're paying, you're in better shape just buying a recorder designed for professional field work.

January 23, 2017 at 7:52AM, Edited January 23, 7:53AM


Thanks for comment.

I'll soon post my "mixer bag", that I fit this rig into. Without the cutting board, the SD MixPre-D wouldn't sit up in any mixer bag. My mixer bag is actually an old DVD portable case, like the ones you would buy for a car.

>... (MixPre D)into a bad preamp (hand-held audio recorders)...
SD mixers have a 110+ dB of dynamic range and when combined with Sony PCM-M10 recorder ( using little to no GAIN on the recorder ) the results are extremely good.
I also use the MixPre-D as a USB interface. So, I'm very happy with it. I'm not a pro but I did a lot of research into this. Since I bought this, I see Zoom has some good recorders (4, 8 channel) at good prices which are getting good reviews.

January 23, 2017 at 9:28AM


While adding an extra, high quality preamp in front of your recorder might help overcome recorder's noise, it won't negate the issues with the transfer function, slew rate, frequency response etc. You actually multiply the shortcomings of both.

I haven't been very satisfied with Zoom's stuff. Low head-room, grainy. They did the job (with some help) when I was getting started but aren't suited for pro use. A Sound Devices 702, even an Edirol will have better preamps. I know a guy with both the 8-channel Zoom field recorder and an SD 702. He uses the Zoom when he needs a lot of channels but says the 2-channel SD that costs twice as much still sounds noticeably cleaner. An audio electronics engineer said "It's difficult to design a good amplifier the size of a fingernail." I'll add, it's virtually impossible to design a good low-voltage, low-current amplifier and there's a huge difference between the sound of a $.35 chip used in consumer devices, a $5 chip used in semi-pro devices and a $50 chip in pro devices. Some of the better preamps I've used in the field can drain a pair of 12V 7.5AH batteries in 3-4 hours.

January 24, 2017 at 8:23AM, Edited January 24, 8:31AM


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