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Zoom H6, first modular audio recorder presented
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  • New module

    image

    The SSH-6 is a mid-side stereo shotgun mic capsule for ZOOM H5 and H6 recorders. Along with a super-directional shotgun mic for capturing sound in the center, it has a bidirectional side mic for capturing sounds from the left and right. You can change the stereo width as you like by adjusting the side mic level in the same way as with the MSH-6 mid-side stereo mic capsule

    http://www.zoom.co.jp/news/article/797

  • I was really impressed with the sound quality. Zoom has come a long way since the days of the H4 and H4n in terms of clean gain. I measured a practical noise floor of -60dB. By practical noise floor, I mean that after recording dialogue, I loudness normalized the stereo clip to -16LUFS and then measured the average RMS amplitude of a section of “silence”. -60dB is great.

    http://learnlightandsound.com/2015/06/29/zoom-h6-my-impressions-after-4-weeks/

  • I flat love mine. The preamp is quieter than my h4n. I use the limiter a lot since I'm running a one man show and it works beautifully as long as all the settings are good. Battery life isn't bad even driving phantom power.

  • I have a Zoom H6 which I really love to use. Since I'm short in budget and need lavalier mics for interviews, I bought an Audio Technica ATR3350, Aputure Lav Mic and a Chinese made mic.

    When I connect these mics to XLR ports with Rode's XLR adapter, there's an annoying signal sound, it's not hiss/humm, something else. When I use the 3.5 connection on the X/Y adapter of H6 with plugin power, this noise is still there.

    ATR3350 has its own battery, so I don't think it's about phantom power (however I shut the power down). Also I realized when I touch the USB connection of H6 at right with my finger, the noise reduces (really weird). Same happens when I touch to the metal plate on the front face of the device as well. Somehow, my hand is stopping the noise.

    When I connect these mics to Zoom H1, there's no noise. I contacted with Zoom product service, had a reply to my email, then they stopped talking with me. "Kind reminders" didn't work.

    My only options for now are these devices and for a long time I'll not be able to afford a wireless transmitter. Here you can find a sound record demonstrating my problem, sorry for my weak English and moaning voice :) http://1drv.ms/1PWQCIh

    Any solutions?

  • Are you using an external power source? (Like an AC / DC Adapter?). AS: Such problems are common if you power your recorder that way. Really seems like an ground loop / buzzing from an PWM converter (which is maybe built into the AC / DC adapter). Had the same problems already - Not with the H6 - But with different other audio recorders.

    Also keep in mind, that you could get ground loop / aka "looping" problems (or there is a risk for it at least) as soon as you make a loop in any kind. I always test out: Audio connections, HDMI connections, central battery setups and so on BEFORE shooting - And I test it out in detail for the best setup. That way I know exactly if it´s a problem for example to use a central battery with multiple devices OR to use a special setup (with many cable interconnections) -> Really important as soon as you use unbalanced audio connections. Btw. a loop could be for example: Central battery -> Camera body -> HDMI cable or audio cable to the external recorder -> And then the connection back to the central battery to power the external recorder. Though: Such problems are not THAT common.

    Also quite weird: Had already problems with a Saramonic AX100 passive audio splitter for example, which was grounded through the flash-shoe (so it had a grounding issure through the cameras flash socket). Took me quite a while to find out that it´s not insulated as it should be (using now the BeachteK MCC-2 - WAY more expensive but works like a charm ^^).

    Well - So check out maybe for such problems ...
    (You could even check out each device by connecting / disconnecting.
    But maybe it´s only a faulty H6 recorder - Who knows.)

  • I'm not using any power supplies or I don't connect anything but the mic and the headphones. H6 is operating with 4 batteries, lav mic is connected to the XLR port via Rode XLR adaptor for 3,5mm and the Sony headphones are plugged in. So, I really couldn't find a clue for a loop.

    I'm looking for balanced lav mics but I'm not sure how the manufacturers define them, I cannot see 'balanced' or similar term in mic specs. Do you have any suggestion, preferable budget friendly ones?

  • Hmm. Ok. So no loop problem.

    Did you check the RODE adapter btw.? It seems like it´s designed for stereo inputs. And it makes problems with mono plugs without a 3-ring design - Only read it a few seconds ago in an online feedback (never used that specific adapter til now). I also read about a buzzing problem - even with no connected mic. I hope you tried the 3.5mm jack on the X/Y mic WITHOUT the RODE XLR to 3.5mm adapter in use. Otherwise it´s maybe the cause of your problems (even while nothing was connected to it) ...

    Btw.: I mainly use Sennheiser lavs. Robust as hell and dirt cheap (especially used). The ME2 is nice (at least the newer metal version). But also the better & more expensive MKE2 is great. You can get the MKE2 (in used condition) quite cheap from time to time - Around 60 to 80 bucks here in Europe for example. Though the MKE2 needs way more gain (the ME2 is a good "middle way" and also works with cheaper / lower power pre-amps).

    Btw.: Don´t forget - These mics need plugin power to work. So better use the "official" 3.5mm jack if possible (with activated plugin-power). XLR ports I personally only use with wireless mic solutions (as there you get already an compatible XLR adapter - And with such solutions you don´t have any plugin-power problems from scratch on).

  • Hi Tschekoff,

    Thanks for sparing time for this annoying issue :) I checked the Rode XLR's specs and apparently it's mono but a user in B&H claims it's stereo and may cause problems because of this (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/387850-REG/Rode_VXLR_VXLR_Mono_Mini_Jack.html)

    I tried also the 3.5mm input in the XY mic and still receiving the same noise. I'm using XY mic for ambient sounds while shooting interviews and at least 2 XLR ports for plugging lav mics, so even though XY's 3.5 plugin give clear audio from a lav, it doesn't work for me. What happens if I use a converter like this instead of using an XLR converter? : http://www.amazon.com/Hosa-GPM-103-3-5mm-TRS-Adaptor/dp/B000068O3T

    I have a H1 as well, works perfect with cheap Aputure mic. I still cannot believe I bought H6 before H1 and stuck with this problem.

    Thanks for Sennheiser ME2 recommendation, I'm trying to save some money and upgrade to a second hand Sennheiser G3 set with ME2 lav.

  • I've had an H6 for a few months. The xy mic worked well enough. But recently I purchased a few Rhode wireless lav mics and tried them connected to the XLR inputs. Very unsatisfactory hiss-buzz. Then I tried a regular mic ... same result. Then, im order to test the XLR input itself, I turned on the record for each rack one by one WITH NO MIC attached ... so that I could hear the sound of just the H6. Same results.

    Very not at all professional inputs.

    So I guess my question is ... is there anyone out there who does not have the H6 machine hiss in the background? Is this fault just for a certain series number...? or are all of the H6's faulty...?

  • Here's a comparison of an H6 alongside an RME UFX, a well respected audio interface: http://www.homebrewedmusic.com/2013/08/28/zoom-h6-vs-rme-ufx/

    If you crank record levels and playback levels to the max you'll hear noise. And the correct way to evaluate noise is not with an open or shorted input, but with a low noise 150 ohm resistor across the input.

    The H6 has an EIN of about -120 dBU. If you need better performance than that you can go to the Zoom F4/F8, better than that and you'll need Sound Devices.

    Fran

  • So, preamps are good on this recorder?

  • @MaxDepth

    They are not bad, but not too good.

  • $319??? Unless a person really really wants the handheld form factor then it makes no sense for a keen audio person to buy when the Zoom F4 has dropped down to only US$350 itself!! :-o

  • @IronFilm

    Difference in form factor, and F4 actually does not come with XY Microphone Module.

    also check ebay sold lists, if you are patient can get set for cheap with various modules

    https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_sacat=0&_nkw=zoom%20h6&LH_Complete=1&LH_Sold=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2045573.m1684