Tascam 788

788 Digital Portastudio
Integrated digital recording workstation


High audio quality, nonlinear editing capabilities, built-in high quality effects, SCSI port ....
The various inputs on the 788 can accept mic and line levels. A HiZ switch is also provided so you can plug your guitar or bass directly into the 788. Stereo outputs for mixing down, monitor outputs to send audio to your speakers and aux outputs are all included on individual connectors. Also, MIDI In and Out jacks are provided for syncing your audio tracks to synthesizer and software-based sequencers or other devices that use MIDI Time Code, MIDI Machine Control and MIDI Clock. A S/PDIF digital output makes it easy to send your audio to CD and DAT recorders for two-track masters.

8-track, 24-bit hard disk recorder workstation

250 virtual tracks for comps and alternate takes

7.5GB internal hard disk for nearly two hours of 8-track recording

Built-in high quality digital effects: reverb, chorus, distortion, multi-effects and more

High audio quality: 24-bit uncompressed sonic fidelity, 24-bit AD/DA converters

Non-destructive editing: 999 levels of undo

3-band EQ with true parametric mid

Versatile inputs/outputs and flexible routing

S/PDIF digital output for digital mixdown

SCSI port for data archive and CD burning


Frequency Response: 20HZ-20kHz ± 1dB

Dynamic Range: better than 82dB

Channel Separation: better than 80dB

Total Harmonic Distortion: <.01% (1kHz tone)



Inputs A-D: 1/4" TRS

Aux Input: (2) 1/4" Phone Connectors

Nominal Level: -10dBV @ 15kOhms


Stereo Output: (2) RCA Connectors

Nominal Level: -10dBV @820 Ohms


Monitor Output: (2) RCA Connectors

Nominal Level: -10dBV @820 Ohms


Aux Output: (2) 1/4" Phone Connectors

Nominal Level: -10dBV @820 Ohms


Headphone Output: 1/4" TRS, 60mW per side, 30 Ohms

Remote Port: 1/4" Phone, Accepts TASCAM RC-30P

MIDI Ports: (2) 5 Pin Din

SCSI Port: SCSI-2, 50 pin

$1149.00 USD

Operational Questions

How many tracks can the 788 record at once?

Six tracks can be recorded at once. There are six analog inputs, each of which can be recorded on discrete tracks at the same time.

How many inputs can I mixdown?

You can play back all eight tracks, plus bring in six other sources for a forteen channel mixdown.

If I want to record my mix in the 788, do I have to sacrifice tracks?

No. The 788 provides a mixdown mode called PRMASTERING which allows all 8 tracks to play back, while recording the mix to a stereo track. In v2.0 firmware for the 788, you can even copy that mix back into the song, effectively allowing the PREMASTER function to be used for bouncing, as well. 788's with older firmware can be updated to v2.0.

What resolution is the PREMASTERING function recording at?

The bit depth of the PREMASTERING function is the same as the song. So, if your song is recording 16 bit, your PREMASTER will be 16 bit. If your song is recording at 24 bit, the PREMASTER will also record at 24 bit.

Input/Output Questions

How do I plug my microphones into the 788?

Inputs A-D (1/4" TRS connectors) can accept levels from microphone to balanced line. The 788 ships with two XLR->TRS adapters to help you make these connections. (These are not impedance adapters, they just change the connector on the end.) This will work fine for most any dynamic microphone.

Does the 788 have Phantom Power?

No. If you want to use a condensor mic with the 788, you will need to get a phantom power adapter. They are available for around US$20. Some users have opted to get a basic external mic preamp, given their falling prices and great performance. Dedicated mic preamps also offer phantom power.

Does the 788 have digital audio in/out?

The 788 has digital output, but not digital input.

Does the 788 export WAV files?

The 788 gained WAV file import/export with v2.0 firmware. An approved CD-Recorder like the CDR-788 or CD-RW788 can be used to import or export WAV files on ISO-9660 formatted CDs. 788s with older firmware can be updated to v2.0.

Hard Drive/CD-R(W) Questions

Can I use CD-R media for back-up or burning audio CDs?

Yes. Tascam has put together the CD-RW788 bundle, which comes with everything you need to burn CDs with your 788.

How big is the internal hard drive?

7.5 GB.

How much record time does the internal hard drive offer?

At 24 bit resolution, the internal drive stores about 1 hour and 45 minutes of 8 tracks.

How big a drive can the 788 use?

With v2.0, the 788 can recognize up to 4 partitions of 16GB each. This makes a formatted capacity of 64GB of space can be recognized (per drive) by the 788. Before v2.0, the 788 can utilize up to 4 partitions of 4GB each. That put a maximum size of 16GB on the drive. 788s with older firmware can be updated to v2.0.

Can the 788 have a song span hard drives?

No. The entire song must fit within one partition. The song file is limited to 4GB of space, which works out to about an hour of 24 bit audio across all 8 tracks.

Can I record to external hard drives?

Yes, the 788 can use external hard drives as target record media. There is no need to swap projects in and out of the internal hard drive just to work on them.

Can I replace the internal hard drive?


Can I use Zip, Jaz or other removable media with the 788?

Tascam has tested the 788 with Jaz drives, and the Jaz drive is too slow for 8 tracks of 24 bit audio. While it can squeak out 8 track of 16 bit, Tascam still doesn't recommend it. You can use these formats to back projects up if you wish, but CD-R is a much more affordable (and more robust) method. Plus, the CD-R drive will also help you make audio CDs you can play.

What hard drive and file format does the 788 use?

The 788 uses a proprietary format of audio and hard drive format. It is not standard Mac or PC format.


Numerous users of the 788 have wanted to export tracks from the 788 to another system. Some people are using the 788 as a portable recorder, so that they can later dump tracks into their DAW at home. Others are simply looking to collaborate with musicians who record on other systems. The 788 does not offer a WAV file export function. Waiting for this implementation, meanwhile there are 3 export methods:

-Analog Transfers :the 788 has 6 outputs on it, each of it can carry an independant signal. This enables you to transfer 6 tracks at once. This is the fastest method... certainly the way to go for analog machines.

-Digital Transfers: by using the SPDIF digital output on the 788, you can transfer two tracks at a time to a digital input on a computer, or another workstation. This is the fastest option that keeps everything in the digital domain.

-Creating Audio CD Tracks to be Extracted : this method basically uses the audio CD burning capability of the 788 to create single tracks in audio CD format. Then, each track can be extracted into the computer with any CD ripping program. This is the most time-consuming, but also the most fool-proof method. It does require that you have an approved CD-R drive for the 788, though.

TASCAM (Parts Department)
7733 Telegraph Rd.
Montebello, CA 90640-Usa
Tel: 323-727-4840


Tascam Italy contac: TEAC tel.(++39) 0266010500 - fax.(++30) 0266010484

advanced technologic sound magazine
2002 issue 103

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