Tascam DR-40 vs DR-40X – Why Is The DR-40X An Upgraded Model?

The original Tascam DR-40 digital audio recorder was released in 2011. It’s a nice little portable recorder that provides 4 tracks recording and you can easily operate the recorder easily wherever you are.

After 8 years, the new Tascam DR-40X recorder, which came out in 2019, has replaced the old Tascam DR-40 model. What improvement has Tascam made in these years, let’s check out the Tascam DR-40 vs DR-40X comparison.

Tascam DR-40 vs DR-40X Audio Recorder: Design


The new Tascam DR-40X does not abandon the original design of the DR-40. It still looks pretty similar to the old DR-40 – Tascam did not change the size of the recorder at all, and the DR-40X and DR-40 are identical in dimension(70 × 155 × 35 mm). According to the official specs, the DR-40X is a hair heavier (8.3 oz.) compared to the DR-40(7.51oz).

You can see from the picture, there is not much difference when it comes to their buttons and controls. What you can tell is that the new Tascam DR-40X audio recorder comes with a blue display screen with larger fonts that are less dark while the old Tascam DR-40 has a yellow screen with pure black fonts.

Also, you might have noticed the microphones seem a bit changed. Tascam painted the new built-in stereo microphones black with a red ring decoration. However, these mics are still the same as the original DR-40s.

Tascam DR-40 vs DR-40X Audio Recorder: Features

There are some important upgraded features here.

The DR-40X supports an audio interface function, this allows you to use the recorder as an external microphone by connecting to your PC or other devices. With this feature, you can directly record audio through the recorder to your DAW software. Additionally, you can connect the mics through the XLR jacks to do professional voice-overs.

As an upgraded model, the DR-40X supports recording media with larger memory. With the Tascam DR-40X digital audio recorder, you can use an SD card (64MB to 2GB), SDHC card (4GB to 32GB), SDXC card (up to 128GB). Compared to the new model, the original DR-40 only supports SD cards (64MB to 2GB) and SDHC cards (4GB to 32GB).

I’ve seen people online claim that the original DR-40 does not have a built-in tone generator for video editing, but that is not accurate. You can check out the DR-40 manual, and it does have an AUTO-TONE function.

Tascam DR-40 vs DR-40X Audio Recorder: Ports & Jacks

When connecting your recorder with a computer, you need a USB cable, but DR-40 and DR-40X can’t share one USB cable because their USB jacks are different. You need a Micro-USB B for the DR-40X and DR-40 requires you to use a cable with a USB B-Type connector. They are both designed for peripheral devices, but the Micro-USB B offers a connection physically smaller in size to a USB Mini-b without sacrificing the transfer speed rate.

Tascam DR-40 vs DR-40X Audio Recorder: Battery Life

Tascam DR-40:


Tascam DR-40X:


In terms of recording time when using AA batteries, there are some tiny differences if you look at the data that Tascam provided on their site, and you can see the picture above. It seems that the Tascam DR-40’s battery life is 1-2 hours longer than the DR-40X. However, Tascam claims that all times are approximate, I believe there are no obvious advantages.

3 thoughts on “Tascam DR-40 vs DR-40X – Why Is The DR-40X An Upgraded Model?”

  1. DR-40, the older one, in fact supports 128 GB SDHC.
    I just have connected it and it works. It was a _noname_ micro SDHC in adapter, which I had at home and used it before in DR-40x (it have died this summer.) So, at least _some_ 128 GB SDHC will work.
    For me personally, the capacity is quite important, because I use the recorder as a _audiotrap_

  2. How can you turn off the auto-record which is triggered by sound level?
    I am frustrated by the unit stopping recording when the audio level is low.


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