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Zoom H4N Digital Multitrack Recorder
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- Onboard X/Y Mics: High quality with easy to set selectable recording width (90 and 120 degrees)
- 2 XLR/TRS Inputs: Connect mics, instruments, and line level devices
- 24-bit/96 kHz recording
- Expanded Capabilities: Built-in effects, audio interface mode and on-board speaker
- Included accessories 2015: Plastic case, 2 AA batteries, Cubase LE and manual
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From the manufacturer
In the box
The H4NSP comes with everything you need to create high-quality audio for video.
- Protective case
- 2 AA batteries
- Operation manual
- Download license for Steinberg Cubase LE and WaveLab LE software
The Zoom H4N Handy Recorder
The gold standard in portable recording
The rugged and reliable H4n has long been a favorite of videographers working on location, but is equally well-suited for live concert recording and music production.
It offers four tracks of simultaneous audio recording, a built-in X/Y stereo microphone, dual external inputs, and comprehensive multi-effects, making it the field recorder of choice for anyone looking for high-quality audio in a portable package.
- Four-tracks of simultaneous recording
- Records directly to SD and SDHC cards up to 32GB
- Built-in X/Y stereo mic, adjustable between 90˚ and 120˚
- Dual mic/line/instrument inputs with XLR/TRS combo connectors
- Up to 24-bit/96kHz audio in time-stamped BWF-compliant WAV or a variety of MP3 formats
- Requires just 2 AA alkaline or NiMH rechargeable batteries, with up to 11 hours of battery life
Great audio for your video
The H4n can be connected to any standard tripod or mic stand, or you can use Zoom's optional Hot Shoe adapter to mount it directly to your camera, making it an invaluable addition to any videographer's field kit.
Two paths to perfect stereo
The H4n provides two different ways of recording great-sounding stereo: X/Y and MS (Mid-Side).
The built-in X/Y microphone provides two matched unidirectional microphones. The angle of the two can easily be changed from 90 degrees for a tightly focused stereo image to 120 degrees for a wider image. X/Y is an excellent way to cover a wide area while still capturing sound sources in the center with clarity and definition, making the H4n ideal for all types of live stereo recording, such as location video shoots and live concerts.
The H4n also provides an onboard MS decoder so you can do MS recording using external microphones. This powerful technique allows you to adjust the width of the stereo image in postproduction while maintaining perfect mono compatibility, making it especially useful for film, video and television projects.
Ideal for music-making, too
The H4n transforms any environment into a home studio. Its ability to record up to four tracks simultaneously, along with powerful overdubbing and punch-in features, allows you to do high-quality recording—up to 24-bit/96kHz—wherever you go.
Onboard effects such as compression, limiting, reverb, and guitar and bass amp modeling enable you to turn your musical creations into studio-quality recordings. Onscreen controls allow easy mixdown to stereo or mono, and the H4n can even convert your finished song to an MP3 file for emailing and posting to your favorite social networking site.
|Number of simultaneous tracks||4||4||6|
|Number of inputs||2||2 (expandable to 4)||4 (expandable to 6)|
|Uses interchangeable capsules||N||Y||Y|
|Provided microphone(s)||Built-in X/Y||XYH-5||XYH-6, MSH-6|
|Maximum SD card size||32 GB||32 GB||128 GB|
|Separate line out||N||Y||Y|
|USB audio interface in/out||2/2||4/2||6/2|
|Battery life (Alkaline)||6-11 hrs||15 hrs||20 hrs|
Compare to similar items
|Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Item Dimensions||2.5 x 6 x 1 in||3 x 7.7 x 5.6 in||3.5 x 5.5 x 8 in||5.24 x 3.07 x 3.67 in|
Zoom H4nSP Handy Recorder
Top customer reviews
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I do an A/B test on the video, but you have to wear headphones if you really want to hear the difference between the noise floors on the two units. If you can't hear it here because of Amazon's draconian compression, search "Zoom H4nPRO vs H4nSP" on YT for a higher resolution version of this video.
PS - Writing reviews has become an accidental hobby for me, and it always makes my day to know that people find my reviews helpful (and if not, why.) Also, if you have any questions, clarifications, or comments please feel free to leave a comment below. I usually respond pretty quickly and almost always within 24 hours.
I setup the Kodak Zi8 about 5 feet from the sound source, which is an upright piano... that's me noodling on it. The Zi8 is mounted on a tripod.
About 15 feet away from the piano, I've setup the Zoom H4n recorder. This unit has an XY stereo microphone built into it. It also has the ability to record two inputs, in the form of XLR or 1/4-inch. So, we'll be hearing the built in XY microphone on the unit as well as a pair of AKG 414s which I positioned above the piano, pointing into the open lid.
"Kodak Zi8 Internal Microphone"
Here we hear the internal microphone on the Zi8. Mono, a bit noisy and perhaps a little too close to the piano to capture a clean sound. In any case, this does the trick for capturing an idea, but definitely doesn't cut it if you're looking for high-quality audio.
"Zoom H4n XY Microphone"
Here the stereo image opens up suddenly. This XY microphone which is built into the unit is capturing a very natural, coincident stereo sound. It's a very reflective room, so you hear that, as the microphone is about 15 feet from the sound source.
"Zoom H4n Pair AKG 414s"
Here we're hearing the pair of AKG 414 microphones pointing into the piano. Because the microphones are very close to the sound source, there is significantly less "room" sound. This would be more suitable for a studio recording, while the XY sound would be more appropriate in perhaps a classical or field recording.
"Zoom H4n Mix of XY + 414s"
Here we have the best of both worlds. We have a blend of the direct signal from the 414s AND some of the room sound from the XY microphone. I believe this is the best overall option in most scenarios.
Finally we return to the Zi8 internal microphone to hear the major difference when using external audio equipment. At under $200, I believe the Zi8 does a great job capturing the visual and at under $300, the Zoom H4n does a remarkable job with the audio.
My late 90's audiobook, "Exploring Music & Sound on Your PC" was hailed as one of the most complete introductions to digital audio ever found in one title. It covered what MIDI and MOD files were, but most of it was about sampling rates, mics, copyrights, etc.(I am considering releasing it under the -free- creative commons license when time permits.)
So this review is not for folks needing to record music. I know NOTHING about that! :)
First, this is one of the easiest to understand digital recorders I've owned. In most cases, the menus are logical and the operation easy to understand. Also, the step-by-step manual is FAR better than others I've read.
The built in mics are fine sounding, but use the foam cover to stop "pops" from plosives when working close to the mics for that personal one-to-one sound that makes podcasts and voice work much better. It made for this unit, so if you lose it, you may have to hunt one down!
Videographers and folks recording lectures, etc., please note that a recording made from halfway across a room is NEVER going to sound as good as a wired or wireless mic clipped to the person...unless you borrow some technology from the NSA.
It is possible to record with external mics, great for guests on talk shows. You can use FOUR mics, but the two on the unit will obviously sound more like "recorded in a room" than the two on stands near the folks speaking.
SD cards are cheap, so record WAV files and convert to MP3 later if needed.
So why four stars?
I found (as others have) that trying to load an audio file directly into and audio editor via cable doesn't work well. It scrambles the file on the editor. This is my case with Windows 8.1 and Adobe Audition 1.5 (still a favorite for a lot of people). Perhaps a newer editor will not have this concern. It IS possible to copy files via copy and paste using the cable to get them on your hard drive. Of course, you can also take out the card and pop it in a reader or slot on your computer.
The unit can be used as a USB mic and has other goodies for music recording.
Summary: Solid feel, easy to understand, good mics, and a fair price. Also it comes with a fitted plastic case which will offer some protection. Hope this helps