Gear and Gizmos

Here are sound files captured from four different field-recording rigs that I bought on the road to the decision as to what to use for our bioacoustic project here at Prairie Haven.   Clockwise from the upper-right they are:

Wildlife Acoustics – SM-4
iPhone with a Shure MV88 mic
Open Acoustic Devices – AudioMoth
“Pro rig” – a MixPre3 v2 with two Sennheiser 8040 mics in a wind-shrouded ORTF array

I eventually decided to use the Wildlife Acoustics SM-4 recorders for several reasons.

Noise level — isn’t the very best, but it’s a strong second place to the “pro-gear” rig
Cost — quite a bit less than “pro-gear”
Battery life — “pro-gear” last about 8 hours on a charge, SM-4 lasts three weeks
Weather proof — yep
Configurable schedule — yep

Here are the results of a side-by-side test that I ran while I was deciding.  The SM4 sounded way better than the iphone or the AudioMoth to me and close-enough-for-jazz to the pro-rig, but you ears may speak differently to you.

Wildlife Acoustics SM-4

Click here for the audio file

iPhone – with a Shure MV88 mic

Click here for the audio file

Pro gear (A MixPre3 v2 recorder with two Sennheiser 8040 mics, ORTF configuration with a windscreen)

Click here for the audio file

Open Acoustic Devices – AudioMoth

Click here for the audio file