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Topic # 205872 30-Nov-2016 14:31
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I was rooting around in a drawer of old stuff and came across my Sony MiniDisc player.

 

It's a recording one - model is MZ-R50, all metal body etc.

 

Do these things still have a use/value or are they like Edison wax cylinder players these days?!






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  Reply # 1680117 30-Nov-2016 14:39
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If you're going to sell it I may be interested if you have some mini-discs to go with it - I have a stupid jap import with a stereo headunit that's hard to replace and integrated with the air-conditioning,etc. It has a mini-disc player, broken cd player, no aux-in and picks up very limited radio stations in NZ, so another way to get music playing through it would be good... 

 

How does the recording work with it though, what inputs can it take?  (I completely skipped the whole MiniDisc thing and went straight from tapes to CDs ;-) ) 

 

No idea on value....




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  Reply # 1680119 30-Nov-2016 14:43
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Discs are available on TM. I looked!

 

 

 

Sockets are 6v DC in, Line In (Optical), Line Out, Mic, Remote. I think the Line In is a 3.5mm combined optical/analogue such as those found on iMacs etc because I used to record things on the discs and never had an optical way to do that.

 

I have the original rechargeable battery (proprietary) but no idea where the charger is - may never have made it here from the UK for all I know.






 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1680122 30-Nov-2016 14:55
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Geektastic:

 

I was rooting around in a drawer of old stuff and came across my Sony MiniDisc player.

 

It's a recording one - model is MZ-R50, all metal body etc.

 

Do these things still have a use/value or are they like Edison wax cylinder players these days?!

 

 

 

 

Oh, memories. I had one of those. It travelled around the world with me about 7 or 8 times in my first job. My PS2 came with me between Auckland and Sydney too. I had a Sony CD player too, with an optical out that I used to record onto it via the Optical in. Between the built-in lithium rechargeable battery and the bolt-on pair of AAs (which you would buy lithium too) you could go around 20 hours non-stop music. Noise-cancelling headphones, eye-mask, and then you could lay back and NO I DON'T WANT DINNER DID I LOOK LIKE I WANTED DINNER!!? - ah, no thanks, I'm actually trying to sleep.





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  Reply # 1680129 30-Nov-2016 15:10
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I also had one of those. Fantastic quality and good memories, though it was a pretty bulky package by today's standards. Recording is via optical input or regular analogue stereo, though the optical is much better. Quality far better than MP3 and also better than CD. Disks started out as 60 minutes, then went up a bit later. It is antiquated in one sense, though it could conceivably still be a worthwhile addition in another, depending on needs and wishes. Not sure if you could sell it for much, though. Don't remember what the battery life was like. It seemed reasonable at the time, might be anemic by today's standards.

 

 

 

 

 

 





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  Reply # 1680130 30-Nov-2016 15:17
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How does the recording\playback work with MiniDisc?  Do you record everything in one go, so it all plays back as one long track like a tape, or does it have some concept of tracks so you can skip songs, etc? 


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  Reply # 1680134 30-Nov-2016 15:35
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Seem to recall you could track skip just like a CD.

 

I had a mini-disc walkman before moving over to an iPod.

 

Mine came with some propitiatory Sony software that worked much like iTunes and would let you rip CDs, convert MP3s into the ATRAC format used by mini disc and "burn" playlists to the MD.

 

Don't think I ever tried traditional "line-in" type recording.  


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  Reply # 1680142 30-Nov-2016 15:43
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sidefx:

 

How does the recording\playback work with MiniDisc?  Do you record everything in one go, so it all plays back as one long track like a tape, or does it have some concept of tracks so you can skip songs, etc? 

 

 

 

 

Assuming you use optical input and a compatible optical output source (like the old Sony CD player I had) then you hit record + pause on the Mini-Disc and then Play on the CD player. The mini-disc begins recording as soon as the music begins, and track breaks are automatically created for you. If you get really keen you can then go back later and put names on all the tracks.

 

But it records in real-time - if you have a 60 minute CD, it takes 60 minutes to record. I seem to remember some of the later ones having a USB connection so that you could use special software to write directly to them, but that model does not.





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  Reply # 1680143 30-Nov-2016 15:43
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evilengineer:

 

Seem to recall you could track skip just like a CD.

 

I had a mini-disc walkman before moving over to an iPod.

 

Mine came with some propitiatory Sony software that worked much like iTunes and would let you rip CDs, convert MP3s into the ATRAC format used by mini disc and "burn" playlists to the MD.

 

Don't think I ever tried traditional "line-in" type recording.  

 

 

 

 

I used to record CD's direct from a Naim CD3 to the MD and it worked fine.






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  Reply # 1680172 30-Nov-2016 16:14
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Rikkitic:

 

I also had one of those. Fantastic quality and good memories, though it was a pretty bulky package by today's standards. Recording is via optical input or regular analogue stereo, though the optical is much better. Quality far better than MP3 and also better than CD. Disks started out as 60 minutes, then went up a bit later. It is antiquated in one sense, though it could conceivably still be a worthwhile addition in another, depending on needs and wishes. Not sure if you could sell it for much, though. Don't remember what the battery life was like. It seemed reasonable at the time, might be anemic by today's standards.

 

 

 

 

How do you figure that?!? That is, given that it used lossy ATRAC encoding and that source material was likely from CD in the first place....


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  Reply # 1680176 30-Nov-2016 16:23
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Cool, I think I'll buy a minidisc off trademe and confirm it does work in my car :)


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  Reply # 1680181 30-Nov-2016 16:38
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If you can get a Net MD it will be a lot easier to manage and if you are going to use it on Windows 10, you need to boot windows up to allow it to install the unsigned NetMD drivers.

 

 

 

I have this setup so I can play tunes in my car as and it works well with Sonic Stage (Sony's equivalent to Itunes) to record the MDs.


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  Reply # 1680183 30-Nov-2016 16:51
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tangerz:

 

How do you figure that?!? That is, given that it used lossy ATRAC encoding and that source material was likely from CD in the first place....

 

 

Subjective assessment. The pre-recorded ones I had at the time sounded noticeably better than my CDs. There could be different reasons for this but the minidisks did have richer sound. Didn't Sony choose ATRAC compression because no-one could hear the difference?

 

 





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  Reply # 1680208 30-Nov-2016 17:55
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Ahhh memories.

 

I nearly purchased one of those. I had the cash ready, and was good to go. Then I read up on them and found:

 

1.  Although you could connect them to a PC, Sony's DRM meant that you couldn't copy files digitally to a PC - even when they were legitimately your own recordings (birthday speech, uni lecture etc);

 

2.  They wouldn't play MP3s natively, but forced you to transcode them into Sony's proprietary ATRAC format;

 

3.  Sony's ATRAC format was coming dead last for quality in blind listening tests; and

 

4.  Sony's proprietary software that you had to use to transfer files onto the player was universally panned as awful.

 

So I passed, acquiring a creative MP3 player followed by an iPod instead. But I came so close to buying anyway......

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 1680266 30-Nov-2016 19:33
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They're not dead by any means though. For my daughter's birthday last year we took her to Hamilton (yeah, she's a lucky girl, eh?) to see the Russian Ballet perform Swan Lake. We were sitting close enough to the sound desk that I was able to see that all the music was being played off a Mini-Disc.





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  Reply # 1680349 30-Nov-2016 22:25
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I had one of those - solid unit. They were made long enough after the technology's introduction that a lot of the problems had been sorted out so they worked well and didn't cost too much.

 

You have to remember that when these came out , a 'large' MP3 player had 64-128MB storage. But i think their strength is not just playback but recording.

 

They're ideal if you want to record sound or music while mobile as the quality and reliability just blows cassettes away.

 

The on-disc editing features are superb (with MD in general) which is something analogue could never do. You can record 10 tracks and then delete tracks 2-8 and the free space becomes available for fresh recordings.

 

But yeah, real time transfer in each direction so don't be in a hurry.


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