Performance by: myspace.com/duoesperanza.uk
This is a test recording made with a Zoom H1 Handy Recorder, a "bare bones" version of the higher specification Zoom (SAMSON in the US) recorders.
It comprises a very good quality pair of microphones and electronics, and the minimum expenditure spent on everything else, with the intention of making the unit affordable.
For the recording, the unit was place on the (accessory kit supplied) adjustable tripod stand, in a sheltered doorway, and with the (accessory kit supplied) windscreen ball attached.
Note that the sprung Power ON and OFF slider switch must be held for at least a second before taking effect. There is also a "HOLD" lock position.
Because the microphones are so sensitive, the stand is very useful for minimising handling noise. As with all sensitive microphones, the windshield is very useful for outdoors use.
The supplied 2GB microSD card gives almost two hours of recording at 48 kHz / 24 bit in WAV format. (Up to 96 kHz / 24 bit recording is possible, for very best quality.) The very lowest quality MP3 bit rate of 48 kbps affords over 92 hours of recording using the external power supply included with the accessory kit.
The microSD slot cover should be very gently prised open by lifting it slightly from the body of the unit along the lower edge of the cover. There is no hinge, the cover is attached by a relatively brittle, moulded toggle, fixed through a hole in the main body under the top right corner of the cover / flap. Once loosened, the cover can be rotated very gently clockwise around the top right corner to reveal the microSD slot. The Micro SD slot has a spring mechanism: push the card in to install; push the card in again to release.
The (accessory kit supplied) USB cable saves having to ever fiddle again with the supplied micro SD card once installed. On a PowerPC Mac running OS X 10.5.8 the unit appears as a simple external storage device, with each track appearing as a .WAV file contained within an obvious directory structure. The files can be "dragged and dropped" to copy, and the files play directly with Quicktime.
Some reviewers have complained that the microphones seem "loosely attached". There IS some "give" if you feel compelled to poke them, this is most likely a design feature to help acoustically isolate the microphones from vibration.
The single AA / LR6 size batteries needed for portable power are ubiquitously available, with a quoted life of over 9 hours.
I don't know if Vimeo stream the full audio quality of uploaded videos, but the original video - uploaded here to demonstrate the sound recording quality - was made at 48kHz and 24 bits. Login / signup to Vimeo and download the original file (subject to daily download limits) if you feel the steamed audio is wanting, and would like to listen to the original track.