Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Zoom H4n recorder

This is part documentation post, and part simple gear lust indulgence.  In my never-ending (and, let's face it, rarely-purchasing) quest for doing-it-all-in-a-compact-box, I had never thought of using "a handheld recorder" as the basis for the system.

Thus my stumbling onto the H4n from Zoom, today, was a bit startling.

I was not prepared for what this little gizmo is supposed to be able to do.  Check this out:
  • Built-in stereo mic, rather cleverly arranged.
  • Can act as an external mic for a video recorder.
  • Changeable SD/SDHC cards for storage.
  • Variable speed playback without altering pitch (i.e., phrase trainer).
  • Various standard recorder features (autoplay, filesharing, etc.).
  • Two combination XLR / 1/4" inputs with preamps. (!!!)
  • Modes for recording in simple stereo, two stereo tracks, or true multitrack recording.
  • Can apply DSP effects when multitrack recording.  (!!!)
  • Onboard audio editing (including project-based editing when multitrack recording).
  • Can act as computer recording interface.
Street price seems to be in the $270 range as of this writing.  If it really does all this, that somehow seems cheap.

Will cogitate further.