Revolutionary for its portable design, built-in features, and performance, the Marantz Professional CDR300 is ideal for direct to CD-R/RW live recording applications. Simply place the unit on a tabletop and plug in quality microphones to the stereo XLR or ¼” mic/line inputs with 48V phantom power. Or use the internal microphone. Record levels can be adjusted automatically or manually. This fully professional CD recorder uses blank computer or music CD-R or CD-RW media. A speaker for playback is built-in. You can also record you own CDs from audio sources such as CDs, LPs, cassettes, or DAT.
I bought a CDR-300 a few weeks ago and have used it to record a few practice sessions of the band I play with and also tested most of the features at home including live/direct guitar and transferring tapes to CD, including recording to CDRW as well as CDR.
I think this device is AWESOME for the $$ (I paid $585) and I think it sounds better than the specifications imply. It blows away cassette (of course) and is quieter than my Tascam 34B 4-Track Reel-to-Reel deck.
I hooked 2 Nady SCM950 studio mics (cheap Chinese large-diaphragm cardoid condensors) directly to the XLR inputs and used the CDR-300's internal phantom power supply and preamp. After adjusting microphone position and setting some low-end filtering (having programmable filters in the CDR-300 is really helpful!) the recordings were awesome.
The band said that they were the best recordings they have ever heard of themselves... comparing them strictly to cassette and MiniDisc recordings that other past band members had done.
Operation was flawless and very intuitive once you understand how it works (RTFM!). I have never had such good recordings from so little equipment (CDR-300, 2 mics, 2 cables, 1 mic stand). You can download the manual from Marantz Pro for more info.
The unit can also run off a 12Vdc battery. Recording to CDRW is great! You can delete the last recorded track (or the whole disc) and only save what you want to keep. It is the audio equivalent of a Digital Camera in many ways. It has all the transport flexibility of tape without the drawbacks (no rewinds or cueing).
It isn't built to withstand a lot of abuse, but if you treat it with respect it ought to last a long time! I put mine in an old Camcorder case with cut-foam in it. Since the unit will record at angles upt o 45 degrees, I just open the lid of the case, prop up the recorder to expose the front panel (where the inputs plug in) and go!
I'll know more about it when I get some more chances to use it but I am heartily impressed with the design, performance and functionality of the unit. It has plenty of pro-level features (even if its actual performance is more akin to prosumer) to meet most field recording requirements!