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Monday, April 27, 2009
how to upgrade the firmware on your Tascam DR-1
Listening to:not tellin
Reading:Arizona v. Gant
Weather:75, sunny
I got this sexy little solidstate digital field recorder for xmas from my mom, the Tascam DR-1. It's about the size of a pack of cigarettes, has great battery life (about 5 hours), good built-in stereo condenser mics, stereo 1/4" input, stereo 1/8" line-in and mic inputs, nice little wheel navigation (easier and quieter than multiple button clicks), and overall nice warm .wav and .mp3 format recording. I've had no probs with it, though I've only used it a few times. I did, however, want to upgrade the firmware in order to increase the recognizable SD card size from 2g to 32g.

First, I had to figure out how to get my computer to recognize the little bugger. I haven't had to USB her up because it's been easy enough to just pop out the SD card to move files between device and computers or other devices. When I first plugged her in the screen on the device said it was USB connected, but the computer showed no recognition. And this machine I'm on runs Vista Ultimate, which I'm not too experienced on, so I had a little trouble finding how to manually recognize hardware. No instructions or drivers on the damn Tascam site, nice.

Anyhoo, here's the step-by-step for my configuration:
1. Download the latest firmware for the DR-1 to your computer from;9,12,3594,19.html (the tab is called Resources).
2. It's a crazy .tgz file. This means it's a tarball zipped. Whateveh. My Vista config had no clue, so I tried a couple of different zip programs, and the one that worked was 7-zip File Manager which I found here
3. Install 7-zip or your tarball unzipping program of choice, then unzip (extract) the .tgz firmware file.
4. Plug your miniusb into device and computer, THEN turn device on. Hopefully your computer will recognize and auto download driver. If not, good frickin luck finding the stupid driver. I just did the old plug/unplug a few times after boot and reboot and eventually it worked.
5. Once you're device is recognized, open the file explorer and drag the unzipped firmware file (the one currently is DR-1_29.200) to the Utility folder on your device.
6. Right-click the Safely Remove Hardware icon in your system tray on your computer, find your device, double click it, and your computer will tell you it's safe to remove your hardware.
7. Unplug the usb cable from both device and computer.
8. Turn off device. Now, while holding both Menu and Play/Pause button in the center of the nav wheel, turn your device back on.
9. You'll get a screen that says Program Update at the top and shows your upgrade file below that. Using your nav wheel highlight the file and click the Play button, confirm you really want to upgrade by hitting Play again, and
10. Ya did it! Files update themselves and you restart and you're upgraded.

Now you can apparently use massive SD cards to record hours of stuff. I recorded 45 minutes straight of the gig I played on Saturday night at the lowest .wav compression and it only took about a gig. Without an A/C adapter (which those cheap bastards make you buy separately) you could conceivably record 5 hours on a fully-charged battery with a 5g SD (which of course doesn't exist, probably next bigger size from 4g is 8g).

permalink posted by cat 10:55 AM

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Girlfriend, you truly are my geekiest friend in the whole wide world! :)
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how to upgrade the firmware on your Tascam DR-1