Hear Griffin, Belkin, XtremeMac recorders, directly compared | iLounge News


Hear Griffin, Belkin, XtremeMac recorders, directly compared

To help consumers interested in choosing a fifth-generation iPod- or second-generation iPod nano-compatible recording device, iLounge has posted a set of three audio files that will help you make direct comparisons between all of the current and soon-to-be-available options. All three files were recorded at the same time using new iPod nanos, with Griffin’s final iTalkPro, Belkin’s TuneTalk Stereo, and XtremeMac’s MicroMemo placed next to each other on identical angles. Each device is set on high (stereo) recording mode and given an opportunity to use its built-in automatic gain control feature, if any, to record audio at close and increasingly far distances, with slight ambient background noise. The files are:

Belkin TuneTalk Stereo Uniform Test
Griffin iTalkPro Uniform Test
XtremeMac MicroMemo Uniform Test

Also: see our full reviews and First Looks coverage in the Recorders - Audio section of our comprehensive accessories guide.

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Thank you greatly for this side-by-side comparison. This has pretty much made my decision for me on which mic I will be purchasing. My only wish is that there was a part 2 to this comparison utilizing a professional level mic, like say Audio Technica AT822. I know that a lot of field recordists would like to hear the difference in quality utilizing something better than the internal mic.

Posted by Bosco in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 17, 2006 at 1:16 PM (CDT)


Bosco, Which one did you choose? Great idea to demo all three microphones at the same time. I have the Griffin for G4 ipod and xTreme for G5 and the jury is still out.

Posted by RMOM in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 17, 2006 at 4:14 PM (CDT)


I decided to go with the Belkin.
One reason is I like the design of the Belkin allowing it to be used through a case. This is good for me because I plan to be outdoors a lot and field recording with it.
The second reason is that based on this test here, the Griffin sounds like it distorts at the same distance that the belkin didn’t. My only gripe about the Belkin is that there is no level meter, but I suppose I can manipulate that in post.
I actually haven’t purchased it just yet, but when I do, I will do some tests with my AT822 mic and post a link here so people can get a more accurate listening with a pro mic. (Well “pro” is subjective, but the mic is about $280 and rather a standard for some field work.)

Posted by Bosco in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 17, 2006 at 4:25 PM (CDT)


which recorder of the three works best for recording more than 90 minutes at a time. It seems that the micromemo relies on the battery and cannot be plugged in while recording. is this true of the others as well?

Posted by Deryk in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 17, 2006 at 8:55 PM (CDT)


Thanks for the tests.
I’d like to hear all three mic systems put thru a series of tests, not just voice, but live music of varying challenges: acoustic (folk, classical, jazz), rock, etc., using both built in mics and a plug in mic.

Posted by Mitch in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 18, 2006 at 9:09 AM (CDT)


Thanks for a well done test! I am choosing the XtremeMac MicroMemo as it meets my needs, and I like how “crisp” the voice comes across. I do not need stereo, and I like to keep matters simple.

Posted by FahrenheiPod 451 in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 18, 2006 at 11:29 AM (CDT)


Any word on when Griffin will ship the italk pro?



Posted by toymaker in East Amherst, NY, USA on October 20, 2006 at 3:03 PM (CDT)


The Belkin model allows for a true stereo external mic set, whereas the XtremeMac version will only allow a stereo input from a powered source at line level.  The latter fact prompted me to return the XtremeMac version and purchase the Belkin TuneTalk.

Posted by shooting35mm in East Amherst, NY, USA on November 23, 2006 at 11:48 PM (CST)


I bought the Belkin Tunetalk but was so annoyed by the sound of the hard drive being recorded every 20 seconds that I returned it. I don’t understand why I don’t hear the hard drive on your test. I wonder if the kind of case affects the noise of the hardrive. I have a hard plastic case which may cause the sound to echo as opposed to a leather case which might absorb the sound.

Posted by mathias in East Amherst, NY, USA on November 30, 2006 at 11:14 AM (CST)


They used an iPod Nano for the tests. That´s why you can’t hear the hard drive. There isn’t any.

Posted by Rey in East Amherst, NY, USA on December 15, 2006 at 9:47 PM (CST)

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