I recently bought (per Matt’s suggestion) a Zoom H2 to try to alleviate some of the problems caused by using the on camera audio when filming with a Canon TX1 (most recently exemplified by Tokyo Pinsalocks, but also in Chris Brokaw, Ponies in the Surf, etc). In the past we got around this by using the stereo mic on a Canon XL2 or by bringing a digital 8-track to a show but both of these are bulky (and thus completely non-spontaneous). I’m still just testing this out and trying to get a feel for what works and doesn’t. Both of these tests were recorded in 24-bit stereo WAV (44.1kHz) then normalized and converted to 192kbps mp3.
The first test is of Montreal’s Famous Lovers from a recent show at O’Brien’s in Allston. They’re not particularly loud but this is recorded directly next to the PA, inside a fleece pocket for wind-screening with the 120 degree rear mic pointed at the band. The vocals are muddy (which was pretty much how they sounded live) but there’s no peaking out despite the volume.
Test number two was in a much quieter acoustic environment. This is from a set by Dustin Hamman of Run On Sentence from Audrey Ryan’s loft series. I again had the 120 degree mic pointed at the guitar from about eight feet at maximum gain (thus, the sounds of audience coughing and the sound of me shifting the device at 10 seconds).
A few complaints: the menu system is odd and difficult to navigate on the small & dim LCD, file transfers via USB are stupid slow, and whoever decided that a blinking red light means ‘ready to record’ rather than ‘actually recording’ screwed me up and cost me a set from the Concord Ballet Orchestra Players. Great.