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changing from Edirol R09 to Zoom H4n - improvement?
Old 21st May 2015
  #1
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
changing from Edirol R09 to Zoom H4n - improvement?

This is my current set up for piano recording:

Edirol R-09 recorder
CAD M179 mic
Symetrix SX202 preamp

My thought: I could get better recording with two mics instead of one.
So I'm thinking to get another CAD mic, sell the Edirol, and get a Zoom H4N, because it has two XLR inputs. But I have been reading that the Zoom is noisy (because of it's preamps or its phantom power? not sure why noisy).

My question: Will I be better off with the Zoom H4N than I am with my current Edirol? Or will I regret it because of the noise from the Zoom?

Any experience or advise would be great!
Old 21st May 2015
  #2
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Liquid Shadow's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I recommend sell the Edirol, and get either the Zoom H5 or H6, both are better than the Zoom H4n (I had one myself). Or get the Tascam DR-44WL, it's supposed to be a great unit.

If you don't need onboard mics on your recorder, then also consider the Tascam DR-60D MkII or the DR-70D. I own the DR-70D and it's a great unit. Both unit are marketed toward videographers but they work equally well for pure audio recording.
Old 21st May 2015
  #3
Gear Head
 
kris.aps's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
I had a zoom h4n, lent it, never came back, bought the H6. If h4n comes back I will sell it. It is too noisy for quiet sound sources.
Old 21st May 2015
  #4
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OzGizmo's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
The H4n is now a VERY old design recorder..... the H6 (haven't tried the H5) is much better.
Old 21st May 2015 | Show parent
  #5
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Liquid Shadow's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by OzGizmo View Post
The H4n is now a VERY old design recorder..... the H6 (haven't tried the H5) is much better.
Yeah the H5 is supposed to be just a stripped down version of the H6, sonically they should be pretty much identical. In 2015, nobody should be buying the H4n anymore.
Old 21st May 2015
  #6
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
Thanks guys. Do the newer Zoom models solve the problem with noise that the H4N had?
Old 21st May 2015
  #7
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Liquid Shadow's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Yes the newer models are significantly quieter. If you are going for the H5, I highly recommend looking at the Tascam DR-44WL first. It's well built, has a HUGE screen that's way better than the H5, and often cheaper.
Old 22nd May 2015
  #8
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hbphotoav's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
They are two different animals. The R09-HR is a nearly decade-old "pure" shaver with limited "real" microphone choices (although my NT4 on internal 9V power and a miniTRS cable acquit themselves very well) that I find still very useful as a backup and s a tiny-footprint solution. I also own a Tascam DR-60D which has completely replaced it in primary acquisition role (usually a backup 2-mix whilst tracking choral/orchestral concerts).

I don't know about the H5/H6 models, but the H4N SUCKS batteries. I recently got 50 minutes and 47 minutes from two sets of fresh ProCell AAs recording a board mix of a play that ran 55 and 49 minutes per act. It was not my H4N... and the owner (who had a kid in the play in question) bought it strictly on the salesman's recommendation, and who, trusting the batteries, neglected to dig out the wall charger/PSU. That fact alone (unacceptably short record times on batteries, even with no phantom power drain) would cause me to continue my ongoing boycott of ZOOM in favor of Roland (since 2007 or so) and Tascam (since 1975) gear.

One old guy's experience...

HB
Old 22nd May 2015 | Show parent
  #9
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Liquid Shadow's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by hbphotoav View Post
They are two different animals. The R09-HR is a nearly decade-old "pure" shaver with limited "real" microphone choices (although my NT4 on internal 9V power and a miniTRS cable acquit themselves very well) that I find still very useful as a backup and s a tiny-footprint solution. I also own a Tascam DR-60D which has completely replaced it in primary acquisition role (usually a backup 2-mix whilst tracking choral/orchestral concerts).

I don't know about the H5/H6 models, but the H4N SUCKS batteries. I recently got 50 minutes and 47 minutes from two sets of fresh ProCell AAs recording a board mix of a play that ran 55 and 49 minutes per act. It was not my H4N... and the owner (who had a kid in the play in question) bought it strictly on the salesman's recommendation, and who, trusting the batteries, neglected to dig out the wall charger/PSU. That fact alone (unacceptably short record times on batteries, even with no phantom power drain) would cause me to continue my ongoing boycott of ZOOM in favor of Roland (since 2007 or so) and Tascam (since 1975) gear.

One old guy's experience...

HB
Yes it is well known that the H4n did not have stellar battery life. The new H5 and H6 though apparently have insane battery stamina, way better than the Tascam 60D and 70D. I replaced my H4n with the 70D recently myself and love the Tascam.
Old 3rd June 2015
  #10
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Seditionary's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I have an H4N... I recently mixed a film that was recorded on an H6N and man... it was still noisy!

Are there any other options? Tascam DR-44WL? I heard Fostex makes some nice units?

I have a Duet 2 that sounds so beautiful... if only it recorded internally... or if I could get a small computer!
Old 4th June 2015
  #11
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Pohaku's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
The Tascam units work just fine with outboard battery packs, especially the widely available USB packs sold for charging your phone. The DR70 is currently quite a deal as you can pick one up with a 32gb card and sound forge 11 and a pack of batteries for $253. A month ago the price was down to $200.
Old 4th June 2015
  #12
Lives for gear
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
That $253 deal with Sony Sound Forge pro 11 includes some features from Izotope so don't overlook the value of the software in that package. You could resell the software if you don't want it.

The 60d and the 70d eat AA's, but the problem is easily solved with a Ravpower 5v cell phone battery or equivalent. Then you can record for hours. Or use a 5v cell phone charger if you don't want to buy Tascam's wall wart power supply.
Old 10th June 2015
  #13
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Seditionary's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Thanks -- anything else worth looking at? Even stuff that might be a bit more high end? Do the preamps get quite a bit better at different levels? Too bad Apogee doesn't make a field recorder! I asked them about it and they said that the reason their stuff sounds so good is because it needs a lot of power
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