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Roland R-26 6 Channel Recorder
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Roland R-26 6 Channel Recorder

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The Roland R-26 is a step up from the popular 4-channel field recorders out there.  The R-26 is a bit larger than something like the H4N and is capable of recording 3 stereo tracks (6-channels) simultaneously.  The R-26 boasts two sets of internal XY mics with either an omnidirectional pickup or a directional pickup pattern.  There are two XLR/TLS inputs as well.  The R-26 will record at 96khz/24Bit.  There is also a plug in power 3.5mm stereo jack for running mics that require plug in power.  

One feature that we really like is that the XLR inputs will accept both MIC and LINE level input giving you lots of flexibility in the field for recording whatever signal you can get your hands on at an event without neeing to carry around pad adapters.  The other big thing is the backlit touchscreen which makes adjusting settings a breeze in comparison to fiddly scroll wheel type buttons for navigating menus.

Other notable things we enjoy about using the R-26 is the auto level sensing feature.  This allows the recorder to sample the input level and make a suggestion for the appropriate setting for the best recording.  The safety track feature will allow you to record the same source to two separate tracks at different input levels so that you're sure you can avoid peaking situations where the audio can be unpredictable.

Overall this is a more mature take on the portable field recorder with a wealth of features to take some of the stress and headache of capturing high quality audio in the field. 

Type Portable Digital Audio Recorder
Number of Channels 6 (3 Stereo Pairs)
Signal Processing 24-bit AD/DA Conversion, 44.1/48/88.2/96kHz
Recording Format WAV/BWF: 44.1/48/88.2/96kHz, 16/24-bit
MP3: 44.1/48kHz, 128/160/320kbps
WAV + MP3: 44.1/48kHz, 16-bit, 128kbps
Playback Format WAV: 44.1/48/88.2/96kHz, 16/24-bit
MP3: 44.1/48kHz, 32-320kbps or VBR
Recording Method SD/SDHC Flash Memory
Built-In Microphone 1 x Omnidirectional Stereo Microphone
1 x Directional (XY) Stereo Microphone
Connectors 2 x XLR/TRS Combo Inputs
1 x 3.5mm Stereo Mini Mic Input
1 x 3.5mm Headphone Jack
1 x USB Mini-B Port
Input Level Analog Inputs: +4, -2, -8, -14, -20, -26, -32, -38, -44, -50, -56, -62dBu
3.5mm Input: -7.5, -21, -26dBu
Input Impedance Analog Inputs: 5 kOhms
3.5mm Input: 3 kOhms (Med/High), 2 kOhms (Low)
Maximum Input Analog Inputs: +24dBu (Sens @ +4dBu)
3.5mm Input: +4dBu (Sens @ Low)
Output Level 35mW + 35mW (16 Ohms)
Load Impedance 16 Ohms or Greater
Frequency Response Not Specified by Manufacturer
Phantom Power 48V ±4V
10mA or Less in all Channels
USB High-Speed USB Audio
USB Mass Storage Device Class
Display 160 x 160 Dot Touchscreen Graphic Display
Power 4 x AA Batteries (Alkaline or NiMH)
AC Adapter
Current Draw 500mA Max
Dimensions (WxDxH) 3.25 x 7.1 x 1.6" (82 x 180 x 41mm)
Weight 14 oz (370g)