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on 15 February 2013
Great quality hand recorder - for basic recording it's intuitively easy to record stuff and transfer the files on to the computer for editing. Trying to install and license the accompanying CUBASE LE6 software is painful - I've given up for now. The instructions are unclear and you need an activation code which is not present. According to the documentation "The Cubase LE 6 installation process automatically creates a Soft-eLicenser with a temporary Cubase LE 6 license." It didn't for me. According to the documentation "The Soft-eLicenser authorization is also covered in detail in the Operation Manual PDF." - not a single mention! Again, according to the documentation "An activation code can be requested free of charge within the MySteinberg area of the Steinberg website" - you cannot even get into the MySteinberg area without an activation code!!!! Zoom and Steinberg need to get together to make sure this issue is documented better and that there is support.
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on 25 June 2013
Following a discussion with a sound engineer while working on Merlin he showed me his Zoom H4n. I was extremely impressed and came straight home and located a supplier and ordered one. Arrived in a couple of days and was linked up straight away to both of my Radio Mikes. A very easy to use piece of equipment which I use to record the sound for my caving videos.
It sits in a Peli Case with the receivers. Battery life is good. A well made a professional looking piece of equipment that I would recommend to anybody looking for quality sound recording at a very competitive price. A good sized screen lets you see what is being recorded. Easy adjustment of all of the various controls. Headphone outlet lets you hear what is being recorded and what has been recorded.
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on 1 April 2015
This recorder comes with a steep learning curve. My particular recorder has dissimilar microphone outputs ... about 2 dB's. If left to its own devices, it will be very bass biased, however, this may be filtered out. This is an ideal device for those who like to experiment and once you get the hang of it, can produce some pretty awesome reality. Mine is used for video narration, at which it excels. This is not for the novice, unless professionalism is sought. It can play tricks on you, e.g. if you record using battery power, it won't necessarily play back when powered from the mains. You must understand that everything must match precisely as when making the recording ... that's when it starts to get complicated. However, it comes with an excellently detailed manual ... but it doesn't tell you everything. Near perfection is possible, but you've got to earn it.
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on 1 September 2014
A great device that works excellently with nice little features like the screw thread for tripod mounts. Nice basic plastic case that keeps it safe and sound quality is excellent. However, I also own the Zoom H1 which is an amazing product at a much cheaper price. I would argue that the H1 and the H4N deliver equally excellent sound quality however, the Zoom H4N offers way more features and ports. But you might not need these features. So do your research before purchasing. I own both devices and use both of them on different types of jobs.
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on 20 October 2011
The Zoom recorders have always, to me, looked and felt a bit like toys. Very clever but just a little flimsy-feeling and difficult to use with their hard-to-read display.
Now, with the H4N, Zoom seem to have got it right. A much more sturdy case which feels like it can take some rough treatment, a much bigger and easier to read display and a better button and menu configuration.
The sound of the internal microphones is good and external microphones can easily be used for increased flexibility.
I would say it's a vital piece of kit for the new breed of digital SLR film-makers but, at the amazingly low price, it should be part of the standard equipment carried by anyone vaguely involved with sound recording.
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on 31 October 2009
I had my eye on one of these solid state recorders for a while and when the Zoom H4n was announced it seemed to tick all the boxes for me
Well it does tick all the boxes and then some!
Not only a stereo recorder but a 4 track recorder as well - it also is seen by a computer as a mass storage device (ie a USB memory stick) and this makes mananging the tracks and folders a breeze
As well as all this the unit acts as a USB audio interface with your computer - amazing
Totally recommended. the best purchase I've made in a long time
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on 20 June 2013
At the moment I am experimenting with this machine. I read as many reviews as I could before I purchased and do you know what all the reviews were right, it is a great piece of equipment for it's cost. The service I had from the supplier was first class, delivered in 2 days. And now I'm just having fun "playing" with the bells and whistles. As an ex BBC/ Commercial sound recordist in the good old analogue days, to get this much quality would have involved buying ( as I had to in the day) many hundreds of pounds worth of gear.
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on 3 April 2013
I've been borrowing one of these for the past 4 years and finally gave in and bought my own. Used it to record musical theatre, brass bands, symphony orchesrtas, etc. The 24 bit sample depth allows you to bring up quiet passages with no noticeable noise. Microphones are small, but do an excellent job. Frequency respose extends from very low bass drums to high strings and cymbals. Usually cut around 2.5 to 4KHz as it can be a bit tinny. But after some EQ and subtle compression I've used these recording for broadcasting and always got extremely positive comments.
There are less expensive recorders available, but from my experience this one gives consistently professional results. Highly recommended.
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on 9 April 2013
I'm sure this device is great for people who want to record instruments or live performances in musical environments but this isn't for me.
As a filmmaker I need a device with easily accessible controls and a fast user interface to navigate. I had to send this back after one day of using it and I replaced it the Roland R-26.

I'm rating this three stars because it seems like a decent product, but its just the wrong one for me.
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on 25 March 2013
Really great audio recorder. I took lots of advice before buying and am glad I did. While the Zoom H4n is a fairly heavy lump of kit, ithe sound quality is so good I find myself carrying it with me most of the time. Battery drain is rapid so buy the best batteries you can afford! I also bought a wind muff because these mics are too sensitive without this in anything but the calmest indoor conditions.
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