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Zoom F4 on sale for $350 And I thought US$350 for a *secondhand* Zoom F4 I've been seeing on eBay was crazy cheap. http://redirect.viglink.com/?format=go&jsonp=vglnk_154261401026713&amp

Zoom North America, “Firmware Update: V3.0 for F4”:    

Are monochrome displays less power hungry?

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6 hours ago, soundtrane said:

Rado - the website says this screen is readable in all ambient light conditions. :)

It may be readable but there is nothing that can be done about the UGLY. I would have trouble looking at a screen that looks like that. 1980s, you're being too kind.

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Spotted this quite exciting (for poor new people like myself, who have been hoping to save up for an F8) news during lunch break today. Now that I'm back home from a film shoot, I whipped up a quick blog post on this development:

http://ironfilm.co.nz/news-leak-zoom-f4-with-six-inputs-and-eight-tracks-is-like-a-new-low-priced-zoom-f8/

One of my more amusing thoughts about this news that I blogged about I'll quote here:

Quote

Crazy idea time: what next for Zoom after the Zoom F4? Is a “Zoom F2” next? The idea might sound hilarious! But being serious now, if it is bag friendly (a very small bag!!), ultra lightweight, and very cheap (perhaps US$400ish? Keeping the 50% price jump ratio from F2 to F4 to F8), then a Zoom F2 certainly would be popular!

For many jobs 2x XLR plus an extra stereo input (for up to 4x ISO tracks) would be plenty! (Plus a L & R XLR output, plus Timecode, etc… just like the F4)

Heck, for the last couple of days I’ve been doing a job with my Sound Devices 552 which only needed the one XLR for the boom to be recorded, plus one XLR output to be sent to the Sony F3 as a reference scratch track.

A “Zoom F2” would even be overkill for that! Could you pretty please make this "F2" dream come true Zoom?

 

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One recorder I wish would hit the market is a TINY (like a tentacle or a little bigger) that serves as purely a backup recorder. You'd plug one bnc cable to it or ethernet, like dante to record all the tracks you have on your huge rig. It would obviously mimic the exact metadata and timecode of that of the dante. That same recorder would then be the transfer unit to DIT or whatever , or be just a backup for you personally. Maybe redundant, but I b think it could serve a purpose with not just big productions, but with smaller camera omb things too. Maybe Zoom can deliver that eventually

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Yeah, kind of a 2016 Nagra SNN, that would be cool.  Yes, I know there is the little Zax, but hopefully the mini-Zoom would have some kind of display and would record in BWAV.  But I don't think that's Zoom's market.  The F recorders are far from perfect but they are doing the job for a lot of folks on a lot of movies.  Yeah, the newbs should probably rent better gear for their nobudg indie, but that's a tough sell when they can own for $700.  More so if they are working far from LA/NY etc.

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I think the screen looks very "zoomy", it reminds me of the H4n myself. I guess similar screens are popular on a lot of the lower end recorders, as I suspect the low resolution monochrome displays are as cheap as chips.

I'm sure it functions fine, I mean, I can read my H4n fine, but in a time where smartphones have super high resolution displays, it just looks chunky and clunky, and i feel readability would suffer, especially when you are cramming so much info onto a small screen.

I find it interesting that they didn't just scale down the F8, they have clearly cut a lot of features from it, i guess to get the price down they had to cut a lot of features. I guess they also wanted to make a product that wouldn't take too many sales from the F8.

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$350 might not be much more.... but that is 50% more than the price of the F4! And at this price point the target market would be very price conscious. 

And for many people the F4 could even be a better fit for their needs than the F8! (bigger pots, XLR instead of TA3 ouputs, and.... *CHEAPER*)

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It looks nicely made for the money with its larger alloy side plates and in a way it's better than the F8 - it has a camera return and slightly more useable fader knobs. And the disappointing screen may use less power, so not all bad. I heard a rumour about this "smaller" machine and hoped they might do something a click up from the F8 - Eg. keep the features (the ipad control would have been good), resolve some of the issues of the first 1 (knobs, return and maintaining TC through a power cycle(?)) and focus on delivering a solid machine. On paper looks like a great back up recorder, 'crash' (high risk) recorder (1 of the cheapest parts of the kit) and a start out recorder-mixer. If this thing can reliably send and monitor a mix to camera as well as record isos and metadata I can see it doing well. Ie. rental houses etc.

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Greedy companies knocking down the barriers to entry to every industry they can find in an effort to make a quick buck and destroy jobs in the process. The nagra did that for the tape operator, this will do that for the mixer if we let it. Or am I being pessimistic?

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2 hours ago, JonG said:

Greedy companies knocking down the barriers to entry to every industry they can find in an effort to make a quick buck and destroy jobs in the process. The nagra did that for the tape operator, this will do that for the mixer if we let it. Or am I being pessimistic?

Yes - pessimistic. F4/8 cheap but add a boom, some radios, decent cables and it adds up so the price of entry is still a challenge for some (and proportionate to the cost of some of the cameras out there). 'Greedy companies' do employ people and Zoom are not exactly Union Carbide or Coca Cola. Its a global market place for manufacturers and there are lot of productions around the world shooting on eos, bmc and FS5/7, should they only use the camera mic until they can afford expensive american or european equipment?

 

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5 hours ago, JonG said:

Greedy companies knocking down the barriers to entry to every industry they can find in an effort to make a quick buck and destroy jobs in the process. The nagra did that for the tape operator, this will do that for the mixer if we let it. Or am I being pessimistic?

it's not exactly greed, perhaps financial gain is a better way of putting it. the process of introducing new and lower priced technology into professional and consumer marketplaces is nothing new. i think the effect of this item on pro mixing is negligible. the 5d crowd is a different mindset that does not generally have deep pockets.

on the other hand, the F4 does, for sure, blur the line between indie and pro.

i give zoom high marks for balls in competing against its own 8 tracker and the pro companies at the same time. the pro companies chose not to compete against their own higher priced products and did not introduce a similar item, although they easily could have. you can't blame zoom for that.

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Little known fun fact: the Zoom F4 can also record to Blu-ray disks as well as SD cards! ;-) 

As the new Zoom F4 is "#1 New Release in Blu-ray Recorders" on Amazon, that is a new feature we didn't hear about from Zoom...  that it can record not just to SD cards but to Blu-rays as well! ;-)  ha

That isn't even the oddest thing about this Amazon listing, it  indicates the RRP is $799 and won't ship until November 30th! :-o

Yet Zoom has stated pricing of $650 and shipping in October ( B&H Photo Video Pro Audio has expected availability of October 11th), thus I'm guessing that is two more things Amazon got wrong. 

https://www.amazon.com/Zoom-F4-Input-Multitrack-Recorder/dp/B01LOR91FC/

Zoom F4.jpg

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2 hours ago, IronFilm said:

thus I'm guessing that is two more things Amazon got wrong. 

That's a listing for some reseller I've never heard of, AVLGear. Maybe they're fine, but the mistakes in the ad are theirs, not Amazon's.

I'd rather buy from a more well-known dealer.

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On 9/7/2016 at 0:36 PM, AnuarYahya said:

zoom is killing it. How can someone justify buying an SD 744T now.. 

This may be true in some sense, but if you change 744T to 633, there are a myriad of reasons to choose the 633 over an F4 (and F8 as well).

While Zoom has clearly upped their game with the F8, the F4 not so much.  Though if you read the comments, some people may disagree.  No serious audio professional will use a Zoom in any capacity as their premier recording device.  Long term it's just too limited.  If all you do is single person talking head interviews, direct to camera in a studio for corporate work, maaaaaaybe you could get away with it I guess.  But Sound Devices, Zaxcom, Sonosax, etc. are kings of the industry for a reason.

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