Zoom H6

Our first stock of the exciting new Zoom H6 has arrived and are on sale now at £329.

First thoughts (14.8.13)

There is a lot to like on the Zoom H6. In no special order:

  • claimed battery life of 20 hours! Make it 15 hours for real world experience and it's still excellent.
  • you adjust the input level with real, rotating knobs, and see the effect on a 6-channel bar graph. Neat.
  • there are four XLR sockets built in the body of the recorder; you choose which input/s you wish to use by pressing a button for that channel. Very neat.
  • it comes with TWO built-in microphones - one X/Y like on the H4n, though with bigger diaphragm, and one M-S for adjusting the width of the stereo sound stage.
  • it comes in an excellent, practical hard case with space for the recorder, two capsules and bits and bobs. Double neat.
  • recordings using an external stereo microphone show that the claimed low noise floor from the mic preamps appears to be true - very clean. The built-in X/Y pair work well with a slightly fuller sound than the H4n's pair; these also adjust 90/120 degrees by rotating the capsule. Recorded level could be higher, but is manageable.
    The M-S paid has not yet been tested.
  • Using an external stereo hand mic results were predictably good: recorded level was much better; sound was clean.

Verdict: a great effort. Even easier to use than the H4n, better recorded sound, better versatility, and many details very well implemented.

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