The other day I heard a robin tweeting away on the studio's front patio and so I planted my Sony D50 recorder as gently as possible in an attempt to record it. Of course, i scared him (her?) straight off but I thought that if I left the recorder in place for a while he might come back. I shut the sliding door and carried on with the day...
Two days later, as we were gearing up to go on a family stroll to the local hills I remembered about poor old D50. There it was, still on the patio, unmoved, still waiting for the robin to come back. With my eyes closed I switched it on, fearing for the worst. When i re-opened them it turned out the memory was full and there was still one bar of battery (albeit blinking). Hurrah! She was still alive! I downloaded the files onto the computer but there was no time to check if the unit was working properly so I took some fresh batteries and left for our walk in the hills.
I'm very (very!) happy to say that the Sony D50 worked perfectly. Here's a recording of a leaves rustling to a subtle breeze in the hills.
The D50 had survived two nights out there. Luckily it has been the one and only week in the year where we have had no rain, I'm not even exaggerating, but still Ireland's autumn nights are very damp. I've carried this recorder around the world for more than 5 years and it has always delivered. It has overcome tank pass by splashes in England's wet winters, a year of 100% humidity conditions in tropical Sri Lanka, sub-zero temperatures in the Swiss Alpes, scorching 45+ degrees in the Andalusian summer, sand storms in Xinjiang's Taklamakan desert and torrential downpours in smoggy Beijing. The batteries (4x AAs) always last more than you expect them to, and the quality of the recordings is far above decent.
All my respects to this little recorder, probably the best of its class.
To finish off here's a recording of another group of patio visitors, taken that same day.
Do you have a piece of kit that has survived the odds? Let us know below. Have a great week!