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Pick of the Camera Reviews

(Click the pictures for reviews & links) 


Yi 2 - Best Budget 4K 

Gitup Git2 (My Pick)

Xiaomi Yi


DR02 D - Best Budget Dual Cam

Yi Ultra 2.7K
Mobius (also works as a Dashcam)
Polaroid Cube+
Drift Ghost X

My favourite USB battery power Pack

This is the excellent USB power pack I use when I travel.

2 x 2.1amp outputs. 8400mAh capacity.

Two digit Led display shows battery level


What SD CARD should I buy?

If you want an SD Card for your camera - these are the ones I use and recommend. 

I'd strongly recommend not to buy any SD cards off ebay - I've heard about too many issues with counterfeit cards - often sold on by unwitting resellers. My inbox regularly gets messages from people who bought a £150 camera then cheaped out and bought a £3 memory card on ebay - Then when it doesn't worth they blame the camera! It doesn't make any sense. Good memory is cheaper than it's ever been - see the links above.

A lot of HD cameras will not work properly with cards larger than 32GB (cards over 32GB are usually SDXC rather than the SDHC standard used by 32GB cards. SDXC cards use the ex-FAT system rather than FAT32 - in short they are a different standard). - so don't just buy the biggest card you can afford - read the specs in the manual to see what it accepts.


RECOMMENDED CARDS (for action cams - see dashcams below)

CLASS 10 UHS-1 CARDS (For HD Cameras)


U3 CARD (For 4K cameras)




The SD card in a dashcam is re-written over, more frequently than in other types of cameras. Some manufacturers void their guarantee if an SD card was used in a dashcam. So, no surprise, there are special High Endurance SD cards made just for's some.


VERY IMPORTANT. These links take you to the product, however Amazon have three different ways of selling. There's Amazon Direct - This means that you are only dealing with Amazon themselves, then there's other sellers that use Amazon's facilities - these show as Fulfilled By Amazon and finally there's Market Place sellers that advertise on Amazon, but operate independently.  I strongly recommend that you only use the first...the Amazon Direct - Sold By Amazon option. Even if it appears that you are paying a couple of £/$ more it is more than likely you are comparing the price of a real item against the price of a fake.

To give you an idea of the extent of the fake goods problem. In a 2016 survey by Apple - 90% of the 'Apple' chargers sold through Amazon - using the other the two methods..which includes the "Fulfilled by Amazon" option -  were found to be counterfeit....90%! 

« The Gakken WorldEye | Main | On Wax/Off Wax - Building an Edison Wax Cylinder Recorder Kit »

A True Tech Classic - The Sony TC-D5 Field Recorder

There’s a reason why broadcasters buy professional products when consumer versions are often available for a tiny fraction of the price. It comes down to that old adage ‘No one ever regretted buying quality’. A camera with an intermittent fault or a fuzzy sound recording could be the thing that ruins months of planning. Like a faulty indicator light on a space rocket, the cheapest part has the capability to shut down the most expensive operation. 

Cassette recorders like the Sony TC-D5 were made for professional use, but when the pros moved on to digital recording these old analog machines often got packed away and forgotten about. Some are reappearing now thanks to estate sales and making their way on to ebay. People who spent the equivalent of £1000 on a tape recorder will have usually taken good care of it and many of these machines can be found in good condition. Whilst they aren’t cheap - they never were, but they now sell for a fraction of the original price.

The TC-D5 is an anomaly (in a good way), it’s put together like a piece of technology constructed in the late 70s, but it carried on being made into the 21st century. 

I doubt that any company could manufacture a device to this standard now, and even if they could, no one could afford to buy it. So if you want the best, this is one of those times where you have to look to the past. The video below explains more. 


Sony TC-D5
Alternatively these links will look for my second recommendation - the Marantz PMD430 (US) or CP430 (UK)
I've also put together a list below of some alternative models that might be worth looking into...I'm sure there's plenty of others too.
JVC KD-1635 
JVC KD-1636
Marantz/Superscope CD 330
Nakamichi 550
Teac PC-10
Technics RS-686 DS
Philips D-6920
Sony TC-D5
Uher CR-240
That Tascam Deck I mentioned at the end is currently on pre-order. Here it is on Amazon US
The cassette used in the video can be purchased from here


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Reader Comments (9)

HI Mat, Watching your wonderful videos allows me to relive a past I never actually experienced first time around! Back in the 1980s, I could have killed just to own such a superb machine as this Sony. Of course, I didn't have any more use for a professional quality cassette tape recorder then than I do now when I might possibly afford one. But watching you lovingly push all the buttons and turn all the knobs is a vicariously sybaritic experience (bet you can't work that phrase into one of your videos!) like watching the finished meal on Masterchef being sampled - you can't actually taste it, but you can imagine how good it must be.

On another topic completely, have you ever looked into testing some of those ridiculously expensive cables that allegedly carry power or signals better in one direction than the other? An otherwise normal friend of mine used to swear he could tell the difference, but I never could.

May 9, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterRoland

Fortunately my hearing isn't good enough so I can annoy myself with the minute differences that a cable may make... I have trouble differentiating a CD from a Tape. I like a good tactile object...this reminded me of the Curta calculator. I'm working on a video that should be out in a few weeks featuring another Sony device that until last week I didn't know existed. You should like has more buttons, dials, inputs and outputs then anything I've ever seen.

May 9, 2017 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Hi Mat

I was seriously considering buying the Marantz machine featured in this Sony D5 review. You have completely changed my mind! I had no idea how well these D5's were put together. As always, many thanks for a great video!

May 10, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSebastian Sekinger

Something quite familiar in this deck that was in the latest episode of Better Call Saul:
One of those "waaait a minute" moments :D

May 11, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterNTRO

Hi, I've just find a d5 and volume output is extremely low, something is wrong.

I need your help please!

May 11, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAlessandro

I'm not really technically competent enough to know what the problem is. Is the sound low though the RCA outputs, or the speaker and the headphones - and even when the 'monitor level' dial is turned up to the top.

May 11, 2017 | Registered CommenterTechmoan

Hi. Very nice unit, might just buy one of these one day. I am very much into field recording.
But for now at least, I am using another vintage model tape recorder, a UHER Report Monitor 4000 portable reel to reel deck.
It records and plays back very well. Cheers !

June 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterChris L

Please review the walkman D6C ASAP!!

June 22, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAC

the official deck of the deadhead need i say more

April 11, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterlogan

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