Portable 6-Track Audio Recorder

  • 24 Bit / 96 kHz
  • Up to 6 channels can be simultaneously recorded
  • Changeable clip-on microphone (optional)
  • 4 XLR/jack microphone-/line inputs, expandable to 6 inputs (optional I/O module)
  • 6/2 Channel USB audio interface
  • Supports SD/SDHC cards up to 32 GB, as well as SDXC cards up to 128 GB
  • Colour LCD
  • Built-in loudpspeaker
  • Powered via 4 AA batteries or USB
  • Dimensions without microphone (W x D x H): 77.8 x 152.8 x 47.8 mm

Delivery:

  • Zoom H6
  • X/Y- and Mid-Side microphone
  • 2GB SD Memory card
  • Foam wind shield WSH-H6S
  • USB Connector cable
  • Cubase LE software (download code)

Further information

Integrated Stereo Microhone Yes
Recording Tracks 6
Microphone Inputs 4
48 V Phantom power Yes
Line Inputs 4
Storage Medium SD/SDHC Card
Headphone connection Yes
Integrated Speaker Yes
Resolution max. 24 bit
Max. Sample Rate 96 kHz
Limiter Yes

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Zoom H6 + Thomann SD Card 16 GB Class 10 + Thomann Micro SD Card 16GB + Superlux E523/D +
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Zoom H6 + Thomann SD Card 16 GB Class 10 + Zoom APH-6 + Zoom APH-6
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201 written ratings Read all reviews
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handling
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My impressions after a few months of use.

PaintItAcoustic, 15.09.2017
Pros:
Mics are preamps are quite good, works best with loud instruments/sources, but remember that it's all about gain setting and microphone placement. Noise levels of course don't match my studio setup (Neumann mics with RME interface), but with proper setting you can get very high quality results and I found myself preferring them in certain situation for sound quality and easy of use.
I even know professional musicians who recorded albums on this recorder.
Interface is quite intuitive, you might have to consult manual for more advanced features though.
Overall build quality is pretty good with a few suggestions (see below).

Cons:
ZOOM points out that this recorder is not traditional multi-track portastudio, so overdub function is very limited. It's pretty usable if you use line inputs when overdubbing (you can simply record many takes on top of the basic one and mix it in DAW later), but if you intend to overdub with clip-on microphones - this feature is very limited, I strongly recommend you to research web first, there is a lot written on this.
LCD placement is somewhat arguable. It is indeed comfortable when recording outer sources, but when you playing and recording at the same time it's hard to see levels properly. Also the screen gets dirty easily, they could have included screen protector.
Original case is not good, there's barely any space even for included items and no foam protection at all, I don't recommend to use it for anything other than just storing it at home/studio, it's not safe at all to use in the field.
I very much liked X/Y mics and don't see a point in having Mid-Side mics with this noise level. Instead of adding useless for most people Mid-Side mics they could have improved signal to noise ratio or at least include good case.

Overall: there are good things and not so good things about it, think hard what you intend to use it for and if it has all the features you need. What I like about it is that there are many uses for this recorder, you can record acoustic instruments, electric instruments, overdub and all this in one portable device, but each of this features on its own is not perfect and could use some improvement, so my opinion - it is definitely good device, but not perfect, I hope for the next generation recorder ZOOM will take customers suggestions into account and will come up with more thought-out device.
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Total
handling
features
sound
quality

Super field recorder and more!

Ian1617, 26.02.2014
I've had my Zoom H6 for around 4 months now. It has been working flawlessly and beyond my expectations.
i use the Zoom H6 both as a field recorder and an I/O device in conjunction with my laptop.
My older equipment included an industry standard CF card recorder and a coveted, but no longer available Filmtek location mixer. My standard microphone is a Neumann RSM 191.
I have used the recorder with this microphone in very diverse situations.
Recording foley for sound tracks reveals how much effort has been put into the completely re-designed microphone pre-amplifiers. I really expected to need an external mixer to get the best out of my lovely microphone, but even in situations where I needed a large amount of gain from the H6 preamps they performed admirably.
Using the device as a sound-card is a doddle. I've engineered several recording sessions with the H6 connected to my laptop. The H6 monitor mixer performs well in this situation and the fact that there is a headphone output and a line output means that it is possible to perform reasonable monitoring functions with ease.
The color LCD display is well thought out and easy to read. The rear panel has a standard 1/2" mount which makes mounting the H6 on a camera rig very easy. Despite the fact that the H6 is a very sturdy device, it is light enough to be stable on a camera rig without adding too much extra weight. On my rig it is attached to a ball head. This way I can adjust the angle to get best view of the display, or I can swing the H6 forward on an arm and use the appropriate microphone to record as I film.
The included microphones are really not to be underrated. The stereo capsule is far more dynamic than I expected and has very acceptable self noise characteristics despite its ability to record very high sound levels with low distortion. It can also be configured at 90 or 120 degrees for a wider stereo image and has a stereo line input on 3.5mm jack.
The mid-side capsule is equally good. If a user is new to using mid-side recording techniques it might be worth pointing out that by virtue of design, even the best mid-side microphones can appear more susceptible to self noise. This is because the side capsule should be recorded at -3dB compared to the front capsule to maintain an accurate stereo image. In these circumstances the mid-side capsule holds up very well. If recording in MS RAW mode it is possible to record the output from the 'Side' element and 'Front' element without processing. This way it is possible to adjust the width of the image on mix-down to get the most appropriate mix. MS recordings are absolutely mono-compatible. This technique is much favored by broadcasters.

In conclusion I have to say that the Zoom H6 easily surpasses my expectations at this price point. It is carefully thought out and designed. It has a very sturdy feel. Operation is logical and straight forward. the included microphones sound great. The feature set is good. I think that this will be a modern classic in its field.
I've also bought the optional EXH-6 unit which provides for 2 more XLR or 1/4" Jack inputs. This is equally as sturdy.
It would be difficult to buy a pair of microphones with the quality of those provided, without spending as much as the entire cost of this product.
In my eyes this is clearly the best unit of it's type at even a much higher price point. Buy it!
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