Zoom H2N: The Future of Portable Recorders
Samson, the company that makes Zoom recorders, sent me a prototype of their new portable digital recorder the H2n. I originally wrote a blog detailing my initial impressions of the recorder before I was able to get my hands on it. Now that I have had the chance to play around with it, I must say that I am quite impressed with their new recorder.
Thoughts Post Demo
I wrote a blog on the H2n before I got my hands on it and I had some things that I thought were lacking. For instance I did not like how there was no XLR, 1/4 inch combination input like on the H4n. My doubts were quickly erased when I used the on board mics and played around with the menu functions. The mics are great and implementing an external input would have made the recorder larger and less portable.
In addition I did not like how a shoe mount was not incorporated into the package for DSLR cameras. I quickly realized that not only can you easily purchase an adapter to work with the H2n, but also that the mic should be operated by someone separate from the camera man. This will insure the best possible audio recording when working in the medium of film. For musicians, I think it is one of the best portable recorders for capturing instruments. You now have options for how you want to capture sound which is a huge plus in my book.
One of the things I could not comment on previously was the actual feel of the recorder in my hand. I was able to see photos and review specifications but it was not until I got my “grimy little paws” on it, that I was able to see how versatile and portable this recorder actually is. The overall size is smaller than the H2, but that’s because all of the menu functions are now selectable within the LCD screen. That allows for a much larger mic capsule with the 5 on board mics. Brilliant!!!
But what I really like is that the side with the LCD screen is recessed. So when you pick it up and hold it, it feels like it should fit into your hand. This is a huge improvement from the H2 where you had a boxy feel. The H2n feels much more ergonomic with its design. The record button fits into the recessed part of the recorder, which helps with being accurate when selecting the perfect time to record and stop. No more errors when recording on the fly.
So Samson provided us with some test recordings which we used in the video. I had a chance to do some of my own vocal recordings, but felt that you guys would want to hear how instruments sound, as well as noises out in the field. Now that we have some content for you to drool over, I will take the time to do some of my own field recordings and report back with links to the sounds.
So listen closely to the test recordings that Samson provided. If you put headphones on and listen to the train, it feels like you are surrounded by the sound of the train. Also if you listen to the mid side recording of the drum set, you can hear the tom tom playing though the right side while the main beat is coming from the left. This type of stereo surround sound recording is such a new and exciting innovation for these recorders. It blew me away and got me really excited for the future of portable digital recorders.
I highly recommend picking up this recorder when we get our shipment here at uniquesquared.com. Its small, lightweight design and top quality on-board mics (there are 5!!! holy cow!!!) make it the perfect recorder for all types of audio geeks out there. I am picking mine up as soon as I am finished writing this sentence. Done!