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Zoom H4N

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The Zoom H4N is the latest in the Zoom's long line of digital recorders. I have been Using it's precursor the H4 for about 4 years. It does a great job capturing high quality sound. The H4N is a little more than just an updated version of the H4. They have completely redesigned the user interface... which was easily the least intuitive interface ever designed. The new model is much easier to figure out. The first time I used my H4 I was frantically flipping through the manual trying to get the settings the way I wanted them. You can record in several modes, mp3, 44.1kHz, 48kHz, or 96kHz. There's also level adjustments and input selections to figure out.  As I was in near panic mode trying to sort this out I realized the camera crew was also flipping through the manual of a new HD camera they had acquired for the shoot... it was calming to know I wasn't alone. The controls of the H4n by comparison were designed by someone who actually has used a hand-held recorder.They did leave out one important menu option on the H4N. They did not allow you to adjust the input level for each track separately. This has been fixed on the new units that are currently shipping and can be fixed with a free firmware upgrade on existing units. These recorders are a must for any indie film tool kit. They are very versatile.  The both the H4 and H4N accept input either from their high quality built in stereo mics or via line inputs with combo XLR/1/4" jacks. The units also can provide phantom power, though it does eat through the batteries. They record onto SD Flash Cards. You can get 8 hours of 48kHz DVD quality sound on one 8GB flash card.


Last Updated on Monday, 13 December 2010 14:37

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