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Entry-level Notebook Recorder

The DR-05 is Tascam's first foray into the "cheap and cheerful" Notebook-grade of solid state sound recorder. As such, it offers portable, reasonably high-quality stereo recording in MP3 or WAV format using microSD or microSDHC media. A pair of fixed A/B-oriented omni-directional microphones handles up to 125 dB SPL with acceptable detail. Users can also use consumer and semi-pro microphones or line-level sources through the mini-jack stereo input which includes plug-in power for microphones that need it.

The DR-05 Notebook is useable with one thumb. Operations like recording, adjusting levels, deleting bad takes and adding marks are only a button press away. Other features like limiting, low-cut filtering, Variable Speed Audition, chromatic tuner and others more are chosen from the menu. A Peak Reduction feature automatically reduces the level to prevent accidental distortion. It works in rehearsal mode or in record and can be combined with the built-in limiter. There is also a Level Align function that allows to smooth out any sudden volume jumps during playback, and a built-in mini-speaker is provided for quick check-back.

Internally, the DR-05s digital and analogue circuit boards are built separately for better noise performance, with a low-impedance design to further decrease hiss. A separate supply voltage is used for the A/D and D/A converter for improved audio performance. Whilst the budget-priced DR-05 cannot compare to more expensive recorders, it does deliver pretty clean sound quality for the money, with good signal-to-noise ratio, very little distortion and wide frequency response.

When funds are tight this Notebook is good value given the features it offers and the reasonable performance it delivers.


  • Portable, handheld recording

  • MP3 and WAV file recording and playback

  • Selectable recording formats:
    - WAV: 16-bit, 24-bit
    - MP3: 32-320 Kbps

  • 48-kHz or 44.1-kHz recording resolution

  • Built-in omni stereo pair of condenser microphones

  • Switchable low-cut filter (40Hz, 80Hz, 120 Hz)

  • Manual & Auto-level Recording with Peak Reduction & Limiter

  • Pre-record buffer (2secs)

  • Built-in mini-speaker

  • Headphones/Line out mini-jack

  • Flashback function for instant reviewing (1-10, 20 or 30 seconds)

  • 2-Gigabyte microSD card included

  • USB 2.0 connection

  • Powered by two AA size Alkaline or NiMH batteries (up to 17 hours)

  • AC adapter available as an option (PS-P515) - see Accessories below

  • Mic stand adapter on bottom side to attach the unit to a tripod or microphone stand


TASCAM DR-05 SPECIFICATIONS  | info | manual  | accessories | media |






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