Recording peculiarity

To record clips when mobile, this blogger uses a Creative Zen V Plus or Samsung Yepp recorder. The devices encode recordings in 160 kbps WMA and 160 kbps MP3 format respectively. When using the Zen to record line level audio from the Sony XDR-S10HDip or Blaupunkt Daytona, the WMA resultant audio clips exhibit a distinctive ‘chugging’ noise in the background which can be heard whilst listening to the recordings via headphones. These clips were recorded at moderately low volume (ie. in the green region on the VU recording meter). The noise does not affect recordings made on a component tuner or the Dabbler’s Dream portable receiver. The noise is present on recordings of both quieting signals and weak signals although in the latter case it is more noticeable.

The symptom could be due to:

  • recording not performed at a high enough level (ie. peaking in the red region on the VU recording meter) which perhaps increases the propensity of artifacts or
  • the effect of the FM signal preamplifier whilst using particular receivers that employ DSP algorithms.
  • The chugging does not seem to be caused by interference from the Zen, otherwise it would also appear on recordings made on the Tecsun radio, surely? The above possibilities will be eliminated (eventually, if time permits!) and indeed the Yepp might be completely immune, but someone out there might have some ideas.

    If none of the above makes sense, these links might make the peculiarity a little easier to understand! 🙂

    Recording quality on the 2U4U DMR-300 WMA Player

    Chugging noise from PC Soundcard

    The answer would appear to be the first explanation (only the Zen does it… and at low recording levels only). Here is a reward for suffering through this entry, being an example. If others can’t hear the chugging it must be the (excellent) imagination of this blogger. Please don’t deliberately taunt me! 😉

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