The Zoom H4n Handy Recorder: Because Four Channels are Better Than Two

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Written By: Alan Wigley


Perfect for all your audio needs!

Recording sound can sometimes be a tricky, time-consuming, and even heavy experience, especially if you’re a first timer. Not to mention, intimidating too. But the Zoom H4n Handy Recorder is durable, straightforward, user-friendly device that’s perfect for all sorts of audio needs.

And did I mention small? Yes, the Zoom H4n Handy Recorder can practically fit in your back pocket.

Whether your recording live music, interviewing a subject for a documentary, capturing dialog from an actor, or on the go for some wild sound for your project, whatever it may be, this handy device will most definitely become your little pal. “The H4n is the epitome of sophistication made simple.” –

From the purchase alone, you will receive a 1GB Memory Card, Wind Screen Mic Protector, Mic Clip Adaptor, AC Adaptor, USB Cable, and a handy hard plastic protective case for storage and damage-limitation purposes. This is very unusual and above-and-beyond what you would normally expect. Other companies would make you pay of adaptors, the memory card, and protective cases additionally, whereas the guys at Zoom are truly thinking about the best experience possible for you. You are clearly not being taken advantage of.

And of course, as mentioned in the title, the H4n is the only handheld recorder that allows you to record on four channels simultaneously by using its onboard mics with either external mics or direct inputs. You can then use its built-in mixer to blend the channels for perfectly balanced recordings. And with built-in X/Y stereo mics record at either 90 or 120 degrees, your recordings can be richer than ever before.

Other features include:

• MP3 recording for increased recording time
• Built-in reference speaker to check recordings
• Stamina mode enables 10 hours of continuous battery life
• Built-in mounting joint for tripod and mic stand mounting
• Studio effects onboard, including guitar and bass amp modeling
• Optional remote control (RC4) available
• Plus Much More…!!

The only other feature I would recommend throwing into the list above, is some type of shoulder/waist strap. As much as the recorder captures crisp, quality sound, sometimes it’s difficult to know what to do with it when you’re in “hand-held” mode, and running a boom mic off of it on a film set. It would be nice to conveniently and effortlessly attach the recorder to your body and not have put it in your pocket for the time being, as much as it can fit there. If you’re wearing jeans, it becomes a problem as the tight denim can put force on the buttons and you may start recording, or stop recording, accidentally. However, if you’re a savvy one, I’m sure you could just make your own strap of some kind.

Overall, if you’re looking for a very affordable, user-friendly audio recorder as a first-timer or professional, the Zoom H4n Handy Recorder is being widely used and loved by all sorts of individuals. At a retail price of $250-$300, it’s worth every penny. Even a second-hand one would still be a good shape, based on the durability and longevity of this fantastic piece of technology.

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