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    Gear Quest - Zoom


    hi everyone,

    i've managed to save up some money and wanted to get myself one of those portable recorders, namely Zoom. i had my sights set on the H4n for a while but then i saw the new H5 and so i got stuck trying to pick one of the two. so i'm asking for advice - which of the two is better value for money and should i buy the extras for them? i saw a few reviews on youtube and tests but those are somewhat biased as they're mostly done by music shops trying to sell them.

    thank you in advance! smile

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    The H4n would be better value for money. It has the same pre-amps as the H5 so the audio quality and signal-to-noise ratio is pretty much the same, the best thing about the H5 is that it has interchangeable attachments so you can change the microphone type on the fly by switching to a different capsule. Wether or not to buy the H5 would depend mostly on your intent to expand your attachment selection for recording different subjects/scenarios. If you're only planning on doing field recording then an XY pair will be ideal, which would make the different attachments redundant because you most probably won't be needing an extra two XLR/TRS inputs either; it already comes with two. Shotgun microphone attachment would only be ideal for recording dialogue in an outdoor setting. Mid-Side attachment is good for stereo recording where you want control over the stereo image after you've done the recording unlike traditional XY pair of microphone capsules. These attachments cost more money albeit. Note, that the H5 has physical dials to adjust input gain for channels which is always going to feel better to use.

    The H5 has some minor additional features with the interface, so if you are really thinking about saving money then get the H4N would be my advice, it will do the job just as well but with less features and flexibility. Whichever you buy, you will need to make sure you get a proper wind-jammer and not just use the foam shield, as it's really poor for outdoor use.

    In the future, if you're serious about this as a viable career choice, then you'll be willing to spend more money on a piece of kit and make an investment anyway. In this case you'll be going for something better than Zoom Handy Recorder series with superior preamps and circuitry, so you may appreciate your decision to not spend too much in the beginning.

    Hope this was of help to you.


    I am the thing that goes bump in the night...

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    http://www.sam-mallery.com/2014/10/audio-test-zoom-h5-vs-zoom-h4n-vs-tascam-dr-40/

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    thanks for your quick and extensive response. i apologize for not replying sooner.

    i've already seen the test linked here on youtube and i'm leaning towards the H5 slighrtly and contrary to what was said here, all the reviews on youtube said the H5 has the preamps from H6 and not H4n and on some tests the H5 had way less noise with the XLR inputs and other microphones in general.

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    a_guy_1 wrote:
    thanks for your quick and extensive response. i apologize for not replying sooner.

    i've already seen the test linked here on youtube and i'm leaning towards the H5 slighrtly and contrary to what was said here, all the reviews on youtube said the H5 has the preamps from H6 and not H4n and on some tests the H5 had way less noise with the XLR inputs and other microphones in general.

    Happy to help

    Sorry, I was led to believe that the preamps were almost identical between H4N and H5 whereas the H6 was improved slightly. I guess that's wrong.


    I am the thing that goes bump in the night...

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