Still like your recorded media removable? A 1GB MiniDisc is just US$7 — meaning you can stock up on them a lot more easily than you can CompactFlash cards. While previous MiniDisc recorders suffered from fidelity loss and timing issues due to their ATRAC compression, new Hi-MD recorders use standard uncompressed PCM.
Sony has two new Hi-MD recorders (via Harmony Central): the MZ-M100 and MZ-M10. They include stereo mics, USB connections for PC or Mac, and rechargeable batteries. You sacrifice a lot: 16-bit/44.1 kHz only (not even 48 kHz for video work), no mic pres, no digital in. I can’t even find a line in jack (though those are common on previous models, so maybe I’m missing something). For pro applications and extras, you’ll want to wait for our solid-state/CompactFlash recorder roundup. But if you need to record a lot of media, cheap, this is the recorder you’ve been waiting for. Bottom line: You’ll use this to record band practice, but not your soundtrack for your next film.
Pricing/availability: $439.95 and $329.95, due in August
CDM 5 words: Cheap removeable, no pro features.