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by PowerReviews
TascamDR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder
 
4.2

(based on 57 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (29)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (20)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (4)

85%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Excellent sound (40)
  • Easy to use (37)
  • Versatile (30)
  • Low distortion (24)
  • Good power output (16)

Cons

  • Poor quality construction (11)
  • Weak (5)

Best Uses

  • Professional recording (35)
  • Amateur recording (24)
  • Outdoor events / games (21)
  • Home studio (18)
  • Performances (16)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (39), Professional musician (10), Novice (3)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Best Field Recorder Under $1000

In the sub-thousand-dollar range, the DR-680 is without question the best field recorder on the market. While it lacks some features that more expensive units routinely offer, it delivers where it counts. ...Read complete review

In the sub-thousand-dollar range, the DR-680 is without question the best field recorder on the market. While it lacks some features that more expensive units routinely offer, it delivers where it counts. Preamps are quiet, sound quality is excellent, and the OS is easy to navigate.

That said, it does have some quirks and shortcomings, which are mildly disappointing. Most notably, it lacks timecode support, and there's little control over file naming. So, make sure your slate guy knows to write the sound file number on the slate for each and every take. Your editor is going to need that.

The fact that the DR-680 has RCA outputs is somewhat bizarre. Needless to say, when you get yours, a set of RCA to XLR adapters, and/or a set of RCA to 1/4" adapters, will be a must.

Some reviewers have complained about the fact that the DR-680's cassis is plastic. I don't see that as a problem, myself. Quite the opposite, it's actually somewhat of a plus, as the DR-680 happens to be one of the lightest weight field recorders I've ever used. When you're booming 12 hours a day, every ounce counts, and you find yourself greatly appreciating all light-weight materials.

Although the plastic chassis is more scratchable than a metal one might be, it's certainly not flimsy. The DR-680 is a solid unit. I wouldn't go dropping it off any cliffs or anything, but it's plenty rugged enough for serious field use. Just get a good case for it (like you should for ANY field recorder) and it'll be fine. I use mine with the Porta Brace AR-DR680.

I'd also like to take a moment to talk about battery life. I remember it was hard to find good information on this when I bought mine.

I recommend a good external 12V battery pack, of course. However, the DR-680 will take eight AA's internally, if you prefer. If you do go that route, here's what you can expect, assuming you're phantom-powering a boom mic:

- Energizer Ultimate Lithium AA's will last 12-18 hours.
- Alkaline AA's will last 3-5 hours.
- Rechargeable lithium AA's will last 2-3 hours.

As you can see, the Ultimate Lithiums are really the only viable option for AA's to get you through the day. On a shoot, you can safely expect to go through a set of them every 1.5 days. To cover that expense, simply add an extra $10 to your day rate.

Akalines are far less cost effective than Ultimate Lithiums, and you'd have to carry 4-5 sets of them every day, to be safe. So, don't even bother with them.

Rechargeables technically can work, if you have three or four sets of them on hand, and a couple of fast chargers to keep them juiced. But obviously that's a ridiculous amount to have to carry, and you'd burn them out within a year, since they'd all need to be charged multiple ties a day. Not to mention, having to stop every 2-3 hours to change batteries isn't exactly the best way to make directors happy.

Again, the best thing to do is get yourself a good external 12V battery pack or two, and then you'll never have to worry again. There are some nice, relatively inexpensive ones on the market these days.

Quick tip: No matter what batteries you're using, switch phantom power off between takes. You'll increase battery life by up to 50%.

Anyway, back the DR-680 itself, anyone in the market for a very good sounding 6-channel field recorder that won't break the bank should scoop one up.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

I can't recommend

As a professional remote recorder I need to count on my gear. I cannot count on this product. Like many I was taken in by cost, features, specs, and a brand name....Read complete review

As a professional remote recorder I need to count on my gear. I cannot count on this product. Like many I was taken in by cost, features, specs, and a brand name. I used for a year before unit starting acting up. It finally crashed with a typical "Sys Rom Err"
I researched this and found it to be a common failure issue. Tascam wants three tries at fixing before they'll replace. That's 8-10 weeks down time with shipping. That is just poor for a major manufacturer. I can't afford such downtime.
I do not consider this pro gear or up to the rigors of field recording. Simply put Tascam needs to do better. I am not a happy customer. Issues are still unresolved so BUYER BEWARE.

Reviewed by 57 customers

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5.0

great

By quantumrider

from new york, ny

About Me Professional Musician

Verified Buyer

Pros

    Cons

      Best Uses

        Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

        super entry level recorder

        Share this review

        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        nice quiet, next level recorder

        By Chris

        from San Antonio, Texas

        About Me Novice

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Excellent Sound
        • Versatile

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Amateur Recording
          • Events
          • Nature recording
          • Professional Recording

          Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

          This recorder is a significant step up from my previous recorders (Olympus LS11 and Tascam DR100mkii). It has the benefit of 4 XLR channels and much quieter preamps. The switches on top give great access to controls although when in a case they can be tough to reach.I wish adjusting the trim didn't take two steps (trim button then dial), but I have quickly learned how to trim without having to search. However, the trade-off for this is tremendous versatility in controlling inputs, so I guess it is a worthwhile sacrifice.The preamps are deathly quiet and the step up in quality from my previous recorders was immediately noticeable.I don't like that it records 3 tracks for a stereo recording (mono L, mono R, and stereo) since that fills up a card faster, but I guess to some people that would be a positive feature. (It may be possible to turn that off?)For the money I paid at B&H (under [$]0), there is simply nothing that compares. You would have to pay more than 3x or 4x this price to get an equivalent recorder. No, it doesn't fit in a pocket but if you are serious about recording, this unit is a best buy. Sure Sound Devices make some better units, but at 4x the price or more.

          Share this review

           
          4.0

          Will do the Job

          By ckeehn

          from Monterey Ca

          About Me Experienced

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy To Use
          • Low Distortion
          • Powerful

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Amateur Recording
            • Home Studio

            Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

            I have not used it that much but overall quite intuitive and responsive. Good mic pre's and found the recordings quite alive and vibrant.

            Share this review

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Great

            By Eli

            from Brooklyn

            Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

            This is an excellent choice for sound guys just starting in the filming industry. I have no complaints this Tascam 680 is always reliable.

            Share this review

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Excellent affordable multitrack recorder

            By Tobi

            from Vina Del Mar, Chile

            Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

            Nice addition to my normal eng bag allows me to record 6 ISO tracks and a mix while still sending mix to cameras. Straight forward controls and records to SDHC cards. Very solid recorder

            Share this review

            (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Best Field Recorder Under $1000

            By ABBloch

            from Buffalo, NY

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • 6 Balanced Inputs
            • Compact
            • Easy To Use
            • Excellent Sound
            • Light weight
            • Low Distortion
            • Powerful
            • Switchable Phantom Power
            • Versatile

            Cons

            • Lacks Time Code Support
            • Weak File Naming Options

            Best Uses

            • Amateur Recording
            • Documentaries
            • ENG
            • Events
            • Field Mixing
            • Field recording
            • Filmmaking
            • Home Studio
            • Performances
            • Professional Recording

            Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

            In the sub-thousand-dollar range, the DR-680 is without question the best field recorder on the market. While it lacks some features that more expensive units routinely offer, it delivers where it counts. Preamps are quiet, sound quality is excellent, and the OS is easy to navigate.

            That said, it does have some quirks and shortcomings, which are mildly disappointing. Most notably, it lacks timecode support, and there's little control over file naming. So, make sure your slate guy knows to write the sound file number on the slate for each and every take. Your editor is going to need that.

            The fact that the DR-680 has RCA outputs is somewhat bizarre. Needless to say, when you get yours, a set of RCA to XLR adapters, and/or a set of RCA to 1/4" adapters, will be a must.

            Some reviewers have complained about the fact that the DR-680's cassis is plastic. I don't see that as a problem, myself. Quite the opposite, it's actually somewhat of a plus, as the DR-680 happens to be one of the lightest weight field recorders I've ever used. When you're booming 12 hours a day, every ounce counts, and you find yourself greatly appreciating all light-weight materials.

            Although the plastic chassis is more scratchable than a metal one might be, it's certainly not flimsy. The DR-680 is a solid unit. I wouldn't go dropping it off any cliffs or anything, but it's plenty rugged enough for serious field use. Just get a good case for it (like you should for ANY field recorder) and it'll be fine. I use mine with the Porta Brace AR-DR680.

            I'd also like to take a moment to talk about battery life. I remember it was hard to find good information on this when I bought mine.

            I recommend a good external 12V battery pack, of course. However, the DR-680 will take eight AA's internally, if you prefer. If you do go that route, here's what you can expect, assuming you're phantom-powering a boom mic:

            - Energizer Ultimate Lithium AA's will last 12-18 hours.
            - Alkaline AA's will last 3-5 hours.
            - Rechargeable lithium AA's will last 2-3 hours.

            As you can see, the Ultimate Lithiums are really the only viable option for AA's to get you through the day. On a shoot, you can safely expect to go through a set of them every 1.5 days. To cover that expense, simply add an extra $10 to your day rate.

            Akalines are far less cost effective than Ultimate Lithiums, and you'd have to carry 4-5 sets of them every day, to be safe. So, don't even bother with them.

            Rechargeables technically can work, if you have three or four sets of them on hand, and a couple of fast chargers to keep them juiced. But obviously that's a ridiculous amount to have to carry, and you'd burn them out within a year, since they'd all need to be charged multiple ties a day. Not to mention, having to stop every 2-3 hours to change batteries isn't exactly the best way to make directors happy.

            Again, the best thing to do is get yourself a good external 12V battery pack or two, and then you'll never have to worry again. There are some nice, relatively inexpensive ones on the market these days.

            Quick tip: No matter what batteries you're using, switch phantom power off between takes. You'll increase battery life by up to 50%.

            Anyway, back the DR-680 itself, anyone in the market for a very good sounding 6-channel field recorder that won't break the bank should scoop one up.

            Share this review

            (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

             
            1.0

            Almost a great value until it fails

            By atmzeal

            from New York

            About Me Experienced

            Pros

            • Easy To Use

            Cons

            • Poor Quality Construction
            • Weak

            Best Uses

            • Amateur Recording
            • Events
            • Home Studio

            Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

            Bought this unit from B&H in store in May because I thought it was a great value to location sound mix for film/tv. It records 4 xlr iso tracks in addition to other inputs, is decently built to do what needs to be done. However, there are a ton of issues with the menu interface. First, it has a basic numbering and naming files, but is not flexible. Customizing individual file takes is limited in how many characters you can input and bulky when doing so quickly. The 3/4" headphone jack gets loose soon after use while the headphone volume knob is unrefined (big jumps in sound when turned in really small degrees). it's made more for music as, firstly, folders can't be customized and always outputs in "music". For a product with a lot of amazing features, it's hindered by a lack of attention to detail that could probably have been easily fixed or improved by a simple firmware update, which they never did. It would have been better to have more turn pots to quickly fade/trim the channels individually but understandably, not everyone uses it for such reasons, resulting in a 2-step process to do so per track (hit the button channel, then turn). Power cable is a bit flimsy (uses a dc plug that will become loose over time, unlike a locking or more secure connection such as a hirose. they knew this as they built a strain relief into the 680 to protect the flimsy plug from accidental pullouts). They also don't have accessories that enable use of the unit with portable power sources like an np-1 battery (a big downside, forcing you to use 8 AA's that drain within two hours). Noisefloor is decent, probably second best to other products in the price range but it can be sent a line feed from a mixer with better preamps (a big plus)

            I can accept these faults since what it gives, iso tracks and an average menu system, is things that typically only expensive products offer. And the price normally was a bargain until recently. However, the worst part, was the fact that the unit completely stopped working three months after I bought it. One day, an hour after I turned it off, I went to turn it on again and the screen lit up, then shut down. Then, it never turned on again (both battery and power cable). Sending it for repair to tascam i waited one week for a response and received it two weeks after i confirmed payment of labor (total of 23 days in to and fro, 16 days for them to repair and ship, Parts covered in mfg warranty, labor not), I was told a circuit board had to be replaced for the repair. No other explanation. Later received a mailed package, bubble wrapped unit, boxed with nothing else inside at all. Customer service wasn't bad, but it's unacceptable how poorly constructed the 680 is that i can't even rely on it for professional use. And the fact it broke after only about maybe just a week's worth of use total - only a few hours a day and only starting near the 3rd month since i had it.

            i was hoping for a bargain on digital features which wouldn't have increased internal parts costs, but instead wasted money that could have gone to more reliable companies with reliable units and better designs. With sound, you get what you pay for.

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              Excellent Digital Recorder

              By Folk Singer

              from San Francisco, CA

              About Me Novice

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Compact
              • Easy To Use
              • Excellent Sound
              • Versatile

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording
                • Events
                • Home Studio
                • Performances
                • Professional Recording

                Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                This unit is easy to use, has excellent sound, & handles a diverse set of live inputs/outputs. For the price, this is an excellent unit. Worked right out of the box, & reading manual helped to explain lots of extra features - I expect to enjoy using this unit for a long time & very often. Buy one. You'll be glad you did.

                Share this review

                 
                3.0

                Good for its price

                By Wrick

                from NYC

                About Me Novice

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Compact
                • Easy To Use
                • Excellent Sound

                Cons

                • Too Many Batteries

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording

                Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                Best things about the 680 are: the price for 8 tracks to record including 4 xlr, the options of quality of record, labeling of takes, its light, easy to function.
                Negative things are: 8 aa batteries to run the recorder- not very eco friendly-, there are no direct input level controls, doesn't work well with the bag it was designed with- cannot close the clear cover when headphones are connected.

                Share this review

                 
                5.0

                good device.

                By emil

                from trondheim, norway / san francisco

                About Me Experienced

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Excellent Sound

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Professional Recording

                  Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                  Im very happy with this product. It's no 'sound device' quality, but for the price this is atenfold better in comparison.
                  The cost/utput quality ratio is excellent.

                  I recommend using it with the tascam bag for protection though.

                  Share this review

                  (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  affordable professional quality

                  By davidp158

                  from Bellevue, WA

                  About Me Professional Musician

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Compact
                  • Excellent Sound

                  Cons

                  • Awkward Controls Location
                  • Plastic construction

                  Best Uses

                  • Performances
                  • Professional Recording
                  • Remote Sound For Video

                  Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                  Although I haven't used this on a project yet, my initial tests verify that the DR-680 is a big improvement over my Tascam DR-40. I needed more inputs for multi-tracking musicians and various forum reviewers gave this recorder very high marks. When B&H was offering this unit for $429, it was a no-brainer bargain for me.The good:• The preamps are very quiet with a good amount of gain. • Compact, light and portable.• Flexible recording and routing options• Produces recordings similar to much higher priced units at a fraction of the price. Very good price to performance value.• Firmware update adds mid/side recording matrix, and the ability to "gang" channels together for trim and pan level adjustments.The not-so-good:• Adjusting input levels per channel requires a few button taps to access the channel you need. Not a big issue for some, but this complicates making fast level adjustments for multiple tracks.• Controls are split between the front and top of the unit, making it awkward to operate, especially in a field recorder bag. While not a deal breaker, I'm surprised that Tascam didn't put all crucial controls on the front panel. Also, the top switches can be accidentally bumped inside a bag.• No 88MHz sample rate• No time code• Channels 7 and 8 are only recordable via digital input (thus, the recorder is essentially a 6 track recorder for the majority of users)• No safety track option, like my DR-40• Lightweight plastic construction doesn't seem very rugged, especially for a recorder that is intended for remote use.• Tascam dosen't offer a remote battery solution, which is essential for recording for long periods when using phantom power.Although my list of good is shorter than not-so-good, I feel the DR-680 is a great unit for the price. I can't afford a Sound Devices unit, so the DR-680 is a great, affordable alternative that will suite the majority of my needs.Due to recent price drops, its possible that Tascam may be replacing the DR-680 with another model. However, at $[$]I haven't found anything that touches the quality and value of the DR-680.

                    Share this review

                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Very Intuitive

                    By High Country Guy

                    from Denver CO

                    About Me Experienced

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy To Use
                    • Excellent Sound
                    • Low Distortion
                    • Versatile

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Professional Recording

                      Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                      Took the DR-680 out of the box and spent a few minutes setting it up and learning the features, it is very intuitive. Once we got it in the field worked like a champ. Our first video shoot with it had two cameras and three mics, it was easy setting the channels up and getting it synced with the video back in the edit bay.
                      The audio quality was great, looking forward to using it on all our shoots.

                      Share this review

                       
                      5.0

                      GREAT FOR THE MONEY!!!!!

                      By EDJIM

                      from New York City

                      About Me Experienced

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Easy To Use
                      • Excellent Sound
                      • Powerful

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Amateur Recording
                        • Professional Recording

                        Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                        THIS EQUIPMENT IS AMAZING. VERY EASY TO USE AND SUPER AFFORDABLE. THE QUALITY OF SOUND IS COMPARABLE WITH THE BEST.

                        Share this review

                         
                        5.0

                        Works as Advertised

                        By Don Dada FilmWorks

                        from South West, Nigeria.

                        About Me Experienced

                        Pros

                        • Compact
                        • Powerful
                        • Versatile

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Professional Recording

                          Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                          It appears it work as advertised. I am just using it now for the first time and there are some things that should be improved:- modulation meters. These are a little too simple. You can see when it is going 'over' but it is difficult to modulate near 0db. But then anyway it records so well that you hardly notice when you adjust this in ProTools. For inputs, the DR-680 is smartly designed with six channels of phantom - power -optional microphone preamp -- four with XLR and 1/4" combination jacks, two on 1/4" jacks alone --along with two extra channels available via S/ PDIF digital. Each channel features a low-cut filter as well as a variable limiter. Each of the channels is capable of recording in 24-bit, 96kHz resolution, with stereo 24-bit, 192kHz recording mode for any two channels. The true value comes from the flexibility of channel parameter values. You're able to do a lot with the DR-680,including mixing down in real-time a stereo mix of the six analog channels, in lieu of using all channels to record individual channels. You can also change all of your settings.

                          Share this review

                           
                          4.0

                          great recorder for the $

                          By sumered

                          from Long Beach CA

                          About Me Experienced

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Compact
                          • Easy To Use
                          • Excellent Sound
                          • Low Distortion
                          • Powerful
                          • Versatile

                          Cons

                          • Enclosed In Plastic

                          Best Uses

                          • Professional Recording

                          Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                          great recorder for the price. ez to use - lightweight - many built in features

                          The con is the plastic housing

                          Share this review

                          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          4.0

                          Very Pleased

                          By videodad

                          from Nashville, TN

                          About Me Experienced

                          See all my reviews

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Easy To Use
                          • Excellent Sound

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Professional Recording

                            Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                            We use this recorder with our DSLR cameras for interviewing multiple subjects so everyone can be on their own track. We have it set up for 6 mono tracks (instead of 3 stereo pairs) which works well when syncing in our timeline. I tried to use the last stereo pair (inputs 7/8) using the digital input, but could not get it to sync to my analog to digital converter, so I can only get 6 tracks, not 8. I'll have to research this. Overall I am pleased with the unit, however I wish you could monitor the inputs without having to be in record/pause mode.

                            Share this review

                            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            4.0

                            Just bought this device, works well.

                            By Wil

                            from LA, CA

                            About Me Experienced

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Compact
                            • Easy To Use
                            • Excellent Sound

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Amateur Recording
                              • Home Studio

                              Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                              Looking to use it for small productions and it appears to work as advertised. Nice design but be sure to order the bag with it. Would love a sound devices mixer for better quality control on mixing on the fly, but DR-680 is a great compromise.

                              Share this review

                              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              4.0

                              good recorder

                              By The Lemon Kid

                              from Netherlands

                              About Me Experienced

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Compact
                              • Excellent Sound
                              • Low Distortion
                              • Outstanding Sound Quality
                              • Versatile

                              Cons

                              • Modulation Meter Limits

                              Best Uses

                              • Amateur Recording
                              • Events
                              • Home Studio
                              • Professional Recording

                              Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                              I am a professional radio feature maker. Many colleagues use smaller products that have less features. But I also want to be prepared to record music and quality sound effects that I use with the features.This recorder can capture all I need and more... Even MS stereo.I am just using it now for a few weeks and there are some things that should be improved:- modulation meters. These are a little too simple. You can see when it is going 'over' but it is difficult to modulate near 0db. But then anyway it records so well that you hardly notice when you adjust this in ProTools. And at 24-192 you have a lot of overhead.- With the above in mind the limiter could be improved.- It can record 8 tracks but 2 of them only through line inputs.

                              Share this review

                              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              5.0

                              I would buy this product again and again

                              By David Lobaina

                              from Miami, FL.

                              About Me Experienced

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Compact
                              • Easy To Use
                              • Excellent Sound
                              • Low Distortion
                              • Powerful
                              • Versatile

                              Cons

                                Best Uses

                                • Amateur Recording
                                • Events
                                • Home Studio
                                • Mobile DJ
                                • Performances
                                • Professional Recording

                                Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                                I,m a video producer for [*], I was using my Zoon H4N for a long time, but I think that is time to get something with a better quality sound. I was looking to a sound device, actually I get one to use with my zoom h4n, but I wasn't happy. Then I decided to get this DR-680 from Tascam. OMG!!! . Big different.he DR-680's features are awesome at this price. For inputs, the DR-680 is smartly designed with six channels of phantom-power-optional microphone preamp -- four with XLR and 1/4" combination jacks, two on 1/4" jacks alone -- along with two extra channels available via S/PDIF digital. Each channel features a low-cut filter as well as a variable limiter. Each channel is capable of recording in 24-bit, 96kHz resolution, with stereo 24-bit, 192kHz recording mode for any two channels. The true value comes from the flexibility of channel parameter values. You're able to do a lot with the DR-680, including mixing down in real-time a stereo mix of the six analog channels, in lieu of using all eight channels to record individual channels. You can also change all of your settings for storage, format, and gain all within the rather easy to navigate menus.While the interface and features are top-notch, the most important questions is, as always, how does it sound?Quite simply, any audio product is only as good as the results you get from it. The DR-680 certainly doesn't disappoint. Recordings I made with the DR-680 sounded fantastic, even in MP3 mode (you can record up to four tracks in MP3 format), and the DR-680's built in preamps are surprisingly quiet with a very pleasing, neutral sound signature. Unlike some preamps in lesser-quality field recorders, these are able to handle reasonable levels of SPL and don't crack under pressure from bass-heavy recordings.

                                Share this review

                                 
                                4.0

                                So far so good

                                By Grummy

                                from Edmonton, AB, Canada

                                About Me Professional Musician

                                Verified Buyer

                                Pros

                                • Compact
                                • Easy To Use
                                • Low Distortion
                                • Versatile

                                Cons

                                • Feels A Little Fragile

                                Best Uses

                                • Surround Field Recording

                                Comments about Tascam DR-680 8-Track Portable Field Audio Recorder:

                                I've only had it for a little over a week now but so far it does everything it's supposed to. I'm a composer and sound designer and I bought this unit cause I want to get more into collecting my own sounds in the field. I already have a Zoom H2, which works great for what it is. The Zoom is just way too noisy for quiet sources like quad ambiences. With this unit I am able to collect surround ambiences and more. A lot of bang for the buck on this unit and the price B&H offer is something like $300 lower than anywhere I could buy a new DR680 in Canada.

                                It does feel a little fragile though. Very light and lots of plastic. I'll need to get a case for it. Walking around too any cables that bump the hard plastic back make noise. That would be another reason to have a soft case to put it in.

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