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New Zoom Recorder Announced: Zoom F4
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #241
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson ➡️
It is +24 AFTER the line input pad on the TRS input.



Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #242
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q ➡️


What is confusing about that? Look back at the specs: +14 mic, +24 line. That means a ten dB pad.

Why that picture? Is it your sig?
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #243
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q ➡️


I'm Irish, mine's a lot shorter......
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #244
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson ➡️
What is confusing about that? Look back at the specs: +14 mic, +24 line. That means a ten dB pad.

Why that picture? Is it your sig?
Well that's the StageTech analog in module. I thought you meant something else because you mentioned a TRS input.

Are we talking about the same thing? http://www.stagetec.com/en/audio-rou...oard-xmic.html
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #245
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deleted e479b20 ➡️
Well that's the StageTech analog in module. I thought you meant something else because you mentioned a TRS input.
We are talking about Zoom recorders Zoom F4 and F8 have combo inputs with XLR for mic and TRS for line. What does Stagetec have to do with it? Nothing!
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #246
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q ➡️
I think the thing can take +24dBu on it's input. From the sheet:

"With a maximum input level of 24 dBu (at 0-dB gain), it is almost
impossible to overdrive the converter. 24 dBu is also the maximum
output level of standard studio devices. As the XMIC+ board can
handle such levels without any proble
m, it can also be used as line-
level input board."

<sarcasm> Yeah, if it were impossible to overdrive a converter at +24 dBu, we'd never see clipping while recording, would we? </sarcasm>

My point, which you seem to be missing, is that a max input of +24 dBu is standard across manufacturers of pro audio gear. So there's nothing in this particular piece of gear that prevents a bad engineer from clipping the A/D input, and thus causing un-fixable/unpleasant distortion.

On the other hand, if they'd set the max input/ 0dBFS point to +30 dBu, then it would be reasonable to say "hey, you're gonna overload the output side of whatever you hook up to this A/D before you clip it", and in that case while you might still record a distorted signal, it'll be analog distortion, which is generally less unpleasant, and perhaps even pleasing.
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #247
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This seems to have gone pretty far off topic, it is a thread about the Zoom F4, isn't it?

Anyway, back to my earlier statement. By actual experiment, used intelligently, the limiter on the F4 works pretty well. Notice: I did not say in theory, or by what I read on the web. I said, by using the actual recorder.
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #248
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson ➡️
We are talking about Zoom recorders Zoom F4 and F8 have combo inputs with XLR for mic and TRS for line. What does Stagetec have to do with it? Nothing!
Wow, why so hostile?

Of course not. If you scroll up you can see that the discussion drifted off to 32bit converters and someone posted the specs of a StageTech 32bit converter and my response was quoting a posting from that "fork". Then someone quoted me responding with info referring to the F4.

Hence the confusion. Happy to let it go. Got tired anyway...
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #249
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graywolf ➡️
This seems to have gone pretty far off topic, it is a thread about the Zoom F4, isn't it?

Anyway, back to my earlier statement. By actual experiment, used intelligently, the limiter on the F4 works pretty well. Notice: I did not say in theory, or by what I read on the web. I said, by using the actual recorder.
Glad you like it and it works for what you do. Fact is you're limiting a signal that is already in the digital domain (and therefor can not clip further anyway inside the machine) while you're recording. If that's what you want from a limiter on a location recorder that's fine.

I see no "intelligence" in limiting an already digital signal while capturing a raw recording that will be treated, mixed etc....

Anyway, just my 2 cents...
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #250
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q ➡️
Glad you like it and it works for what you do. Fact is you're limiting a signal that is already in the digital domain (and therefor can not clip further anyway inside the machine) while you're recording. If that's what you want from a limiter on a location recorder that's fine.

I see no "intelligence" in limiting an already digital signal while capturing a raw recording that will be treated, mixed etc....

Anyway, just my 2 cents...
we were talking about how much Headroom the Zoom's had before they would Crap Out .. we made references to the StageTech ..

i am just waiting for someone to say that the Zoom's can handle a fair amount of gain before the A/D .. and at that point what then does the Digital Limiter do sound wise ..

we got off track .. lets come back around .. anyone willing to test the Zoom ?? obviously, they are probably fine with nominal levels .. it is the Peak's that we are all concerned with .. what can these Babies do when Pushed .. do they collapse or standup and fight !!!!
Old 18th January 2017
  #251
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The test for the zoom would be to increase signal level at the analog side with the digital limiter engaged and see if you can get the signal to clip. If the limiter is acting on the input of the AD converter, you might not. But if it's acting on the digital side, you'll end up with a clipped signal with the amplitude reduced.
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #252
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TMetzinger ➡️
The test for the zoom would be to increase signal level at the analog side with the digital limiter engaged and see if you can get the signal to clip. If the limiter is acting on the input of the AD converter, you might not. But if it's acting on the digital side, you'll end up with a clipped signal with the amplitude reduced.
yeah, i assume it would hit at the digital side, by the manual and what owners have said here .. would love to see how much the input can take (real world) before it gives up the ghost !!! dynamic dialog, whisper to yell and a gunshot !! and some Jingling Keys of course ..
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #253
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by graywolf ➡️
Sure there is. If you design the equipment so the preamp's, and converter can take more input than the limiter, and the limiter reduces the gain of those, then limiting starts before they can become overloaded.

Can they still be overloaded? Yes, but it takes a very loud, very sudden (micro seconds) noise, like a pistol shot close to the mic. An analog limiter would not be much good in that case either.

The Zoom F8/F4 seem to be designed to professional standards. You probably can not expect such performance from consumer recorders.

Common internet wisdom is quite often wrong.
the f8 handle easy the loudest drums you can play & the ad too, so easy to mix with ipad app, the input have enough power, headroom... its a great recorder with great preamps, handle ribbon mics nice too,
try it & see u will never get a better 8 channel preamp for the price & size
Old 18th January 2017 | Show parent
  #254
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Continental ➡️
the f8 handle easy the loudest drums you can play & the ad too, so easy to mix with ipad app, the input have enough power, headroom... its a great recorder with great preamps, handle ribbon mics nice too,
try it & see u will never get a better 8 channel preamp for the price & size
thats what i am talking about .. thank you for some real world !!!! cheers john .. i will rent one for a weekend and check it out ..
Old 19th January 2017
  #255
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🎧 5 years
I just wanna know, when did Zoom become midrange? Or was I sleeping under a rock all along? I always thought of them as cheap junk, maybe just a notch above Behringer. It seems like they're making stuff now that's meant to compete with the big names in midrange prosumer audio like Focusrite and MOTU, not just in features, but in price.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #256
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jscomposer ➡️
I just wanna know, when did Zoom become midrange? Or was I sleeping under a rock all along? I always thought of them as cheap junk, maybe just a notch above Behringer. It seems like they're making stuff now that's meant to compete with the big names in midrange prosumer audio like Focusrite and MOTU, not just in features, but in price.
Well, yes. H-series and R-series zoom stuff is as-was, kind of low end very cheap gear. They put a lot of new effort into the F-series stuff: did a lot of beta testing and talking to professionals etc, and have come up with something substantially better than those earlier recorders. Recordists, esp. people with some taste and ears but not a lot of $ to spend, are voting with their feet. The F8 anyhow has been a very successful product so far.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #257
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jscomposer ➡️
I just wanna know, when did Zoom become midrange? Or was I sleeping under a rock all along? I always thought of them as cheap junk, maybe just a notch above Behringer. It seems like they're making stuff now that's meant to compete with the big names in midrange prosumer audio like Focusrite and MOTU, not just in features, but in price.
The F8 is very cheap. 1000$ for 8 ins/channels are 125$/channel.
An SD788 (which actually is midrange between cheap and machines like the Nomad or a Cantar/Nagra) costs about 850$ per input (mic input that is).

The F8 is a tiny bit more expensive than a Zoom H4 when you look at it from a $ per mic in perspective.

So yes the F8 is extremely cheap compared to the mid-field (Sound Devices 744/788 etc. or smaller Nagras)....
I wouldn't say it's the mid-field. It's in the low cost segment.

It's funny considering that most of us probably wouldn't even think about recording a concert with a 100$ mic preamp.

Times (and people) are changing I guess...

As a mfg, you have to cut corners somewhere to come up with such a retail price. Customer support system, dealer support etc. world wide fast repair is part of that.

Not saying the F8 is junk BTW. It is a very low cost machine.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #258
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q ➡️

Times (and people) are changing I guess...
Indeed. When you look at the DAD and Merging micpre/AD cards, you see prices between 200-300 euro/ch, for highend mic preamps + highend ADC.

That used to be 5-10x higher, until 10 years ago.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #259
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick ➡️
Indeed. When you look at the DAD and Merging micpre/AD cards, you see prices between 200-300 euro/ch, for highend mic preamps + highend ADC.
The non-premium Merging Mic Pre & A/D cards are closer to €160 per channel. That's not much more than the F8 cost per channel, but the quality increase is significant.

The value of the premium cards is incredible, especially since they are only €100 more per channel than the non-premium cards.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #260
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick ➡️
Indeed. When you look at the DAD and Merging micpre/AD cards, you see prices between 200-300 euro/ch, for highend mic preamps + highend ADC.

That used to be 5-10x higher, until 10 years ago.
Slightly apples and oranges but yes. And you get a whole recorder with outputs etc. on top when you buy an H4 (unlike with just an mic pre card)

But keep in mind that it's much more difficult to build a portable machine that meets pro audio specs driven by instable DC from all sorts of sources and needs to last hours while being sturdy against being thrown around and being rained on and withstand arctic cold and desert heat without hickups (and all that for an "Why do I have to pay 1000$ for such a small machine"-audience) and building a card for a studio machine that can draw whatever current it needs from an endless mains PSU and lives in a room and size doesn't really matter.
Old 19th January 2017
  #261
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The real difference is durability with "pro" machinery. Electronics is almost secondary, like optics. A Nikon lens will stand up to crazy abuse, Vivitar not so much (especially zooms). Both lenses are very sharp. With a Nagra you are really paying for the ruggedness of the unit. Obviously the converters and preamps will be better. I'm wondering how much better Sound Devices and Nagra's are? I'd like to get a Zoom as a stand alone and am wondering mostly about conversion since I have a great preamp. Would an Audient, Apogee or Tascam converter be a big step up from what's in the F4?
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #262
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMetzinger ➡️
The test for the zoom would be to increase signal level at the analog side with the digital limiter engaged and see if you can get the signal to clip. If the limiter is acting on the input of the AD converter, you might not. But if it's acting on the digital side, you'll end up with a clipped signal with the amplitude reduced.
Which if you go back up a long ways, is exactly what I did. I was not able to get it to clip by shouting into the mic close up. Of course, I had things set intelligently.

I also commented just a bit back that it looks from the circuit drawing in the manual that the preamps, ADC's, and Limiters are all in one IC. Going by that, I assumed, that that digital limiter limits the preamps.

You commented that if it did that, you considered it an analog limiter.

Then you went back to saying the F4 was junk. Have you ever used an F4?
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #263
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🎧 10 years
The reason they can sell the F8 and F4 so cheaply seems to be new integrated circuits that have much more in them than previous ones. The F4 appears to use only one IC for the 4 mic inputs. I assume the F8 uses two of those same IC's.

Those high end companies will probably be using those chips in their next generation products too. But don't expect their prices to drop all that much, they are not in the business of selling stuff as cheaply as they can.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #264
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q ➡️
Wow, why so hostile?

Of course not. If you scroll up you can see that the discussion drifted off to 32bit converters and someone posted the specs of a StageTech 32bit converter and my response was quoting a posting from that "fork". Then someone quoted me responding with info referring to the F4.

Hence the confusion. Happy to let it go. Got tired anyway...
I just saw this again and want to say I did not mean to be hostile - was just pointing out the irrelvancy of the Stagetec to the F4. Not hostile at all... Just we were off on a tangent.

Back on topic, In the manual for the F8 on page 130, it shows clearly that the limiter is after the A/D and not controlling the analog input. Surprisingly, the trim control affects both the analog and the digital levels!<L>
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #265
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ardis ➡️
The real difference is durability with "pro" machinery. Electronics is almost secondary, like optics.

It's not the same task to generate P48 with pro current specs from two AA batteries (like the SD MixPre does) or to do that from an mains power unit that can draw endless current without any consideration of a run time in the field.

Portable gear is a very different task. Things need to be as light as possible, sturdy as a tank, draw VERY low energy but every one wants pro P48 to drive 8 Neumann mics and +24dBu of analogue out etc, bright displays top notch pre-amps etc. etc. and in the end hours of runtime.

Constructing a field recorder is definitely not like building a sturdy version your desk-top mains powered mic-pre.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #266
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson ➡️
Back on topic, In the manual for the F8 on page 130, it shows clearly that the limiter is after the A/D and not controlling the analog input. Surprisingly, the trim control affects both the analog and the digital levels!<L>
Yes, the limiter is shown after the converter. BUT, does it control the preamp, that is the question. Since it seems to be the part of the same IC chip I think it does.

Can you overload the converter? Yes, if you are stupid, you can. I try not to be stupid.

I get the impression that most audio people have no electronics knowledge. I was trained as an electro/mechincal tech by the military way back in 1961. Supposedly, the equivalent of the technical part a BS in electrical engineering. Anyway, the University of Wisconsin, who designed the course, would give you credit for the technical part of your BSEE, all you had to take was the general studies. After a lot of self study I claimed to have the equivalent of a BSEE, none of my employers ever disagreed with that.

All that means that while I can not say with authority that a Zoom F4 sounds as good as a SD-744T, to me it does; I can say with authority that that the limiter in the F4 works fine.

Why I have to write all the above is beyond me, "I have a F4, and the limiter works fine" should be all that is needed. Instead we, who have one, have to keep arguing with "experts" who never have seen, handled, or used one.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #267
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Quote:
Originally Posted by apple-q ➡️
It's not the same task to generate P48 with pro current specs from two AA batteries (like the SD MixPre does) or to do that from an mains power unit that can draw endless current without any consideration of a run time in the field.

Portable gear is a very different task. Things need to be as light as possible, sturdy as a tank, draw VERY low energy but every one wants pro P48 to drive 8 Neumann mics and +24dBu of analogue out etc, bright displays top notch pre-amps etc. etc. and in the end hours of runtime.

Constructing a field recorder is definitely not like building a sturdy version your desk-top mains powered mic-pre.
Good points! I was more thinking of a multitrack on that level. Battery powering and location uses are quite different. Was more thinking pres and converter. My main point being I think the major quality difference is on build quality between pro and prosumer gear. Not sure how hugely different the Zoom and say Nagra are, soundwise. Be interested in someone's opinion who knows!
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #268
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graywolf ➡️
Which if you go back up a long ways, is exactly what I did. I was not able to get it to clip by shouting into the mic close up. Of course, I had things set intelligently.

I also commented just a bit back that it looks from the circuit drawing in the manual that the preamps, ADC's, and Limiters are all in one IC. Going by that, I assumed, that that digital limiter limits the preamps.

You commented that if it did that, you considered it an analog limiter.

Then you went back to saying the F4 was junk. Have you ever used an F4?
Nowhere, EVER, did I say the F4 was junk, unless it was sarcasm. Please quote me.
Old 19th January 2017 | Show parent
  #269
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graywolf ➡️
Why I have to write all the above is beyond me, "I have a F4, and the limiter works fine" should be all that is needed. Instead we, who have one, have to keep arguing with "experts" who never have seen, handled, or used one.
Because "because I say so" is never an acceptable answer to a question, or an acceptable way to end an argument about objective facts. Worse, it makes the person who hears/reads it feel like a child listening to a parent, and that triggers a rebellious reaction. I'm perfectly happy to listen to an authority figure say "I think" or "I feel" or "In my experience", or to offer some evidence to back up the statement.

The discussion about limiting was not about whether the recorder sounded good, or whether the limiter functioned well under most conditions. It was about whether the limiter actually protected the AD from overload or not. That question has still not been answered. It's not an argument. It only becomes an argument when someone asserts something as fact without corresponding evidence and expects it to be taken as Gospel. You know, because we're supposed to be scientific when discussing reality.

I was interested to see if the X32 dynamics worked on the analog side, so I did an experiment and was able to prove to my satisfaction that they didn't. I didn't offer an opinion on how they worked until I'd tested and verified that opinion. And if a peer came along and pointed out a flaw in my test, then I'd be annoyed (with myself).
Old 20th January 2017 | Show parent
  #270
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How different do Zoom and Nagra sound, opinion

After hearing the Zoom F8 compared to the SD 788T I was disappointed because they used a Schoeps mic and the Zoom made the mic sound a bit thin and the top end was slightly edgy. The Zoom made the mic sound like a $50.00 mic by comparison. I heard the same character with the Zoom 6 compared to a SD recorder. Sound Devices is the best made stuff out there, it's built like a tank. We opened up a 788T and the construction is amazing, my 2 Nagra's, LB and Seven are very well made but SD is fantastic. These units are not only made to be rugged but both are very quite and highly tweaked for audio character with SD being very neutral and Nagra with it's famous lively sweet musical character, a very appealing sound. Maybe using an outboard preamp with the Zoom would help but that defeats the purpose, and what does the line in sound like? Hard to beat the good stuff and those are the reasons people will spend the bucks.
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