DV Info Net

DV Info Net (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/)
-   All Things Audio (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/all-things-audio/)
-   -   Zoom H4n weakness... (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/all-things-audio/474403-zoom-h4n-weakness.html)

Tony Davies-Patrick April 7th, 2010 05:40 PM

Yes, for when using an external stereo mic. For mono mics, like you mention, recording to one channel is OK.

Andy Balla April 7th, 2010 06:09 PM

Got it. Thanks! I thought I might have been misunderstanding something. Andy

Terence Brockley April 29th, 2010 04:11 AM

H4n additional Mikes.
Please forgive my ignorance, but I have only just purchased the Zoom H4n recorder to use when recording my choir singing in concert. I have been playing about with the different mode settings ,Stereo and 4 channel. I used the recorder in Stereo mode during a recent concert for the first time to test the internal mic pickup without extra inputs. Whilst I was happy with the sound quality I did experience the occasional sound dropping when either the choir sang too quietly or the piano stopped playing at the end of phrases and I missed the begning of the next bar, etc. I also has difficulty in picking up the soloists as changes in their volume output also led to sound dropping. I did say I was a beginner with this type of recording and no doubt had used the wrong input settings -maybe too high to pick up the drop in volume?

However, I have bought a Kam KWM 1932 wireless mic set and have switched to testing the 4channel mode keeping the internal mics on and linking the wireless mic receiver via an XLR connection to Input mic 1 port on the base of the H4n and also with a 1/4 inch jack lead from the receiver's jack point to input port 2 on the H4n. This enables me to mic up the soloist(s) with a lav mic and allow the choir presenter to use a hand held wireless mic from the set. All 4 channels appear to work happily together as I assumed that enabling the internal mics to operate alonside the additiopnal mics in 4 channel mode was a good thing to have?

I expect that the internal mics will pick up the full choir and, the lav mic the soloist, at the same time when they perform together? It is important that the internal mic and the lav work together. The radio mic can be used on its own. The internal mic will be used to record the piano when accompanying the solo artists without the choir as well. I realise that this has not answered your question directly but I may have misunderstood that using the internal mics and the external mics to record together is either NOT supposed to be possible or that you can switch off the internal mics when recording. The manual is not that helpful. Sorry for the length of the post but I would welcome further advice. Please note that I am a novice. Thankyou

Seth Bloombaum April 29th, 2010 10:06 AM

Your basic assumptions about 4-channel recording are correct. You can use the internal mics and the XLR-1/4" inputs simultaneously, when in the 4-ch mode.

It's a little difficult to tell from your description the nature of the problem with your technique. Obviously, you're hearing a problem. Can you say more about what you're perceiving when the audio "drops out"? Is the volume now too low to hear, or, has the recording stopped and restarted?

Potential problems:
Use of the "Auto Rec" function, which could turn off the recording function when the sound volume drops below a preset level. This one is found in the Rec submenu, Auto Rec should be switched "Off"

Use of automatic recording gain controls, which are almost always a poor choice for music, and may be producing volume-related "drop out" problems. This is found in the Input submenu. Level Auto should be switched "Off".

(While you're checking these menu settings, I'd also recommend that you select Input | Comp/Limit and set both the Mic and Input to "Limit2".)

Once you're no longer using automatic recording levels, you'll need to set these levels manually.

a) In 4-ch. mode, press the Rec button once - it is now flashing, it is in record-pause.

b) Have the choir and piano perform at their greatest volume that will be used.

c) Click the Input-Mic button once, then (within 2 seconds), use the Rec Level control on the side of the recorder to set the Mic volume display such as the peaks in the volume hit about 3/4s up the scale.

d) Have the soloists do the same, perform at their greatest volume.

e) Click the 1 or 2 button, then (within 2 seconds), use the Rec Level control on the side of the recorder to set the IN volume display such as the peaks in the volume hit about 3/4s up the scale.

f) You're now ready to start recording, click the Rec button again - it is now lit solidly and you're recording.

These recording volume settings will be retained, and you should not need to touch them again during a performance or rehearsal.

These is the start of a "best practices" approach to recording in 4-ch. mode. I'm hopeful that this will cure your drop-out problem, however, it is quite normal to do further work on the volume of quiet & loud passages by bringing recordings into a computer-based audio editor.

Harry Simpson August 23rd, 2011 02:23 PM

Re: Zoom H4n weakness...
Thought I'd ring in on this. Yes this last gig I dropped the H4n and broke the other external mic....I'd dropped it a few weeks ago and broke the first one.....jbwelded it back on and will probably operate on the other mic tonight - definitely needs a guard or some kind on it cause it's going to drop eventually.

Wish I could order a top mic portion from somewhere but don't know where that would be.

Dan Brockett August 30th, 2011 08:27 AM

Re: Zoom H4n weakness...
My H4N was mounted on the hot shoe of my 5D MKII and the camera tipped over while on the ground as I was getting something out of the gear case. So from falling about 6", the glass/plastic window over the display cracked? Didn't break off a mic, but I agree with the others and would warn newbies that the H4N is as consumer as they come when it comes to build quality. Definitely disposable. You get what you pay for. The sound is decent though, but the battery life is horrible.

Time to step up to a Sound Devices real recorder I think! The H4N is a toy.


Andrew Smith August 30th, 2011 05:40 PM

Re: Zoom H4n weakness...
Also, use fabric softener when it comes to washing your towels.

(boom boom!)


Mark Mathews February 2nd, 2013 02:09 PM

Re: Zoom H4n weakness...
I recently dropped my H4n; I didn't damage the built-in mics but now the xlr inputs don't seem to work. The top mics work fine and I was able to limp through the following session plugging my lav mic directly into the 1/8 inch input on the back. Anyone else have a similar issue?
I've left the unit off at a local electronics repair place and am getting the runaround saying they can't find parts (?)

Steve House February 2nd, 2013 04:35 PM

Re: Zoom H4n weakness...

Originally Posted by Mark Mathews (Post 1776821)
I've left the unit off at a local electronics repair place and am getting the runaround saying they can't find parts (?)

Take a look at the Samson web site and under 'Support' you can look up the authorized factory service center for your area.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:22 AM.

DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2021 The Digital Video Information Network