If you are looking to bypass a computer as your recording device, then you may want to look at some "All-in-One' Audio Recording Devices.
These devices will have the microphones, pre-amps, and a way to save the audio data all built into one device.
The advantage of these is they can be a quick and often inexpensive way to get into recording audio. They have everything you need built into one device.
These devices are great for capturing audio when you are away from home and don't want to take your entire audio recording setup with you. They can essentially do the job that a laptop, an audio interface, and a microphone would do.
The disadvantage of these is that you will still need a way to edit the audio after you have captured it with them. Often times these devices will save the audio it captures to an SD card or some type of internal storage.
After you capture your audio recording you will then need to get the recording on your computer to edit it.
Tascam and Zoom are the companies that are dominating in the portable audio recorder industry. Both companies have a variety of products that fall into this category and all do the job well.
When deciding which portable audio recorder is right for you it comes down to what features you will need from it.