Nearly everyone in the music industry can benefit from a multitrack recorder.
When you begin exploring your options, you will find that some are quite simple, allowing you to record numerous channels that can later be mixed using DAW software.
On the other hand, some recorders are self-contained, having the ability to process the recording from beginning to the final product.
There is so much to think about when you’re purchasing a digital recording device, you need to take the time to learn about the reasons why a multitrack recorder will be beneficial for your recording needs.
Reasons for Using a Multitrack Recorder
There are five reasons why you should consider purchasing a multitrack recorder for your studio.
These are as follows:
- Does what it promises to
- Have plenty of extra features
- Not tied to your computer screen
- Can be connected to a computer
Types of Multitrack Recorders
Multitrack recorders have become popular in the music industry because they allow for multiple tracks to be recorded at the same time and then synced together for a final version.
These devices are widely used in musical recording, movie sounds, and even voice acting.
There are three types of multitrack recorders. They are as follows:
- Multitrack recorders w/ different interfaces
- Standalone multitrack recorder
- Computer software multitrack recorder
How to Choose a Multitrack Recorder
When it comes to choosing a multitrack recorder, there are several things you need to consider, including:
- Additional features
We have included nine different multitrack recorders from five different brands. Some are best for novices, while others are best for professionals. One thing is for sure though, each of these devices will give you the quality you seek for your recordings.
TASCAM DP-24SD All-in-one Channel Digital Multitrack Recorder
- Eighteen track faders and one master fader allows instant access to any track without selecting pages or banks of faders.
- 3.5" LCD screen and select, self-illuminated buttons - make it easy to keep an eye on your entire creative process.
- Records to SD/SDHC cards to provide fast, secure and reliable capture of every vocal line, guitar lick and drum hit.
- Built-in multi effects processor and mastering tools make it easy to go from demo to finished product.
- Remote connector for optional RC-3F footswitch. OS :Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Mac OS X Snow Leopard(V10.6), OS X Lion(V10.7), OS X Mountain Lion(V10.8), OS X Mavericks(V10.9)
When it comes to multitrack recorders, TASCAM is a brand that you can trust. This recorder has so many features, you’ll quickly turn your studio into a professional-grade one.
This is a 24-track workstation that allows you to record 8 tracks simultaneously. It also has a built-in mixer that has everything you could need to create a professional sounding recording.
It’s very easy to use and you don’t have to be tied to your computer to see what you’re doing with the recording. It has several built-in effects, such as delay, reverb, guitar amp modeling, and more that you can use when you mix your tracks.
This recorder weighs just under 14 pounds and is small enough that you can easily move it from one place to another. The dimensions are: 13.4×20.2×4.1.
The buttons are illuminated, so you can see your creative process at work.
In terms of performance and design, this multitrack recorder is amazing. Additionally, it is durable and comes with an excellent manufacturer’s warranty should something terrible happen to it.
- Easy to use
- Good effects
- Directions are easy to understand
Since Tascam is a trusted name in the sound recording industry, it’s no wonder that another one of their multitrack recorders is on this list.
This is actually the third entry of TASCAM here on our list for the best multitrack recorders this year. This is not surprising to see another product of the same brand in this top ten list simply because as mentioned earlier, TASCAM is a name that you can trust and rely on when it comes to affordable and high-end multitrack recorders.
The PortaStudio system that runs this multitrack recorder is what sets it apart. This feature makes it simple and affordable to record tracks. It allows you to record professional-sounding, CD-quality music and sounds. This device has everything you could want or need as a musician, including built-in mics and effects.
This digital multitrack recorder is one of the smallest ones on the market, measuring 8.2 x 11.4 x 2.1 inches and weighing only 4 pounds.
Based on TASCAM’s reputation for producing quality products, you can be sure that this multi-track recorder is quite durable. This means that you can always count on this device to work when you need to produce high-quality tracks.
- Files are easily transferable to PC
- Easy to use
- Great for traveling
- Great for the novice
TASCAM SD-20M Channel Digital Multitrack Recorder
TASCAM strikes once again with one of their high-quality multitrack recorders. You shouldn’t be surprised, as it’s packed with lots of amazing characteristics and features.
This device is easy to use and affordable. It features a dual recording mode that captures audio at a lower volume to avoid distorted takes. It comes with a wired footswitch/remote that can be used to control both recording and playback.
This device is designed for uses such as conferences, churches, and schools. It’s a bit larger and heavier than some of the other multitrack recorders on the market, weighing 8.8 pounds and measuring 10.1 x 19 x 1.8 inches.
Since TASCAM has put their name on it, you can be sure that you can count on its longevity and durability. It’s produced with high-quality materials, so you can be sure that it is an investment that will not wear out quickly.
- No hissing/extra background noise
- Solidly built
- Excellent audio recordings
- Easy to use
- Tidy/clean look
ZOOM R8 Multitrack SD Recorder Controller and Interface
ZOOM is another name you can trust when it comes to multitrack recorders. This brand is affordable and an excellent choice to meet your needs.
This is a full-featured 8-track recorder that has the ability to act as a loop-based sequencer, pad sampler, and even rhythm machine. Additionally, it has advanced features including dual mic/instrument/line inputs, built-in stereo condenser mics, and over 140 DSP effects.
This multitrack recorder is versatile and has a compact design that allows you to be mobile and go anywhere you need to with it. It only weighs 2.7 pounds and the dimensions are 10.1 x 7.5 x 2 inches.
Since ZOOM is a trusted name in the industry, you can be sure that you can trust this product to be durable. It is definitely an investment that will last for many years.
- Easy to use
- Outstanding mixing capabilities
- Includes built-in guitar processor
- Amazing, editable effects
ZOOM R24 Digital Multitrack Recorder
Another option from a Japan-based company, Zoom, is the R24 Digital Multitrack Recorder and it has lots of great features that make it a desirable device for creating professional digital recordings.
This device was originally intended as an international product, not available for sale in the United States. However, you can be sure that in regards to features and overall performance, it offers just as much quality as other Zoom products.
This device offers a compact, slim design. It only weighs 2.9 pounds and measures 14.8 x 9.3 x 2.1 inches, making it easy to take with you when you need to be away from your studio.
Since this multitrack recorder is from Zoom, you can be sure that it’s a product you can count on to be durable and last for a long time.
- Excellent standalone recorder
- Useful in a variety of settings
- Small, but powerful
ZOOM F8 Multitrack Field Recorder
This multitrack recorder is designed for filmmaking and sound design. This brand has been in the industry for more than 30 years and has gained a reputation for manufacturing innovative, affordable products that everyone can enjoy.
This device is one of the most compact multitrack recorders on the market. In fact, it’s the smallest one to have 8 XLR combo preamps. It has a 2.4 inch, full-color, backlilt LCD display with adjustable brightness that can be used in a variety of settings, regardless of the light conditions.
The recorder is easy to manage as well.
This multitrack recorder is capable of recording 8 different tracks, as well as a stereo mix, which makes it perfect for professional/serious filmmakers and sound engineers. It features a low noise floor, thanks to the finest mic preamps.
It also features a pre-record function that allows you to record 6 seconds prior to hitting the RECORD button. This is the first recorder to offer wireless Bluetooth technology for controlling the device.
While this multitrack recorder is one of the smallest of its kind, it is actually highly rugged and durable. This device has an aluminium chassis, assuring you of this robustness.
- Bluetooth capable
- Great value for money
- 8 inputs
- Excellent preamps
Belkin TuneStudio Portable Digital Multitrack Recorder
If you are passionate about sound recording and still using your iPod more than your smartphone, this is definitely a multitrack recorder you should consider owning. This recorder from Belkin allows you to record tracks directly onto your iPod.
If you find yourself drawn to traditional looking design, this one will be quite attractive. It’s also lightweight, making it great for those who are constantly on the go because you never know when inspiration might happen.
This multitrack recorder allows you to mix four channels at the same time. Additionally, you can record uncompressed WAV files to your iPod. While the quality isn’t really the best compared to other models in this price range and category, it does offer semi-professional results.
This device features LEDs that indicate various aspects such as audio level, compression, power status, and peak indications. If you’re a novice user, you might be intimidated by the many knobs on the device.
While this is a wonderful device or the price, the durability isn’t the best. The overall construction seems cheap and the knobs look like they will break under rough treatment.
- Provides interference-free sound
- Can be used in PC/Mac or iPod
- Offers phantom power
- Includes an onboard compressor
VocoPro SDR4000 Channel Digital Multitrack Recorder
You may think VocoPro is something new and different, but this is definitely one of the best multitrack recorders you’ll find on this list.
This recorder offers the ability to record audio files directly to an SD card or USB drive via XLR or line-in jacks. The dual recording design makes it possible for you to record or playback independently on each side.
This recorder looks pretty bulky and even heavy with the following figures: 8.3 pounds for its weight and 23 x 21 x 21 inches for its dimensions.
Since this product is included on our list, you can be certain of its overall quality and that includes its durability. Thus, this is something that will definitely stay with you.
- Simple/easy to use
- Amazing recording quality
- Flexible wiring options
- Flawless input gain control
Multitrack recorders are very useful for just about everyone in the music industry, from the singer to the producer. However, it can be quite difficult to choose the best one, since there are so many options on the market.
In this article, we have explored a few of the multitrack recorders that stand out from the pack. We hope that this will help you make a decision on the one that will be best for you.