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ZoomH1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver)
 
4.4

(based on 489 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (264)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (181)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (28)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (6)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (10)

95%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to use (279)
  • Excellent sound (218)
  • Versatile (167)
  • Compact (121)
  • Low distortion (116)

Cons

  • Poor quality construction (60)
  • Weak (20)
  • Not durable (9)
  • Difficult to use (6)
  • Handling noise (6)

Best Uses

  • Amateur recording (172)
  • Outdoor events / games (135)
  • Professional recording (95)
  • Home studio (91)
  • Performances (88)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (193), Novice (54), Professional musician (22), Tech savvy (16), Movie enthusiast (9)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (145)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

A pretty great little recorder

So you are probably like me, sorting products by price - low to high and you found the H1 right there at the top. Your next question will probably be if going cheap will...Read complete review

So you are probably like me, sorting products by price - low to high and you found the H1 right there at the top. Your next question will probably be if going cheap will take you all the way to heavenly field recordings. Then you start imagining what the size will allow you to do. It fits nicely in your pocket and is light enough that you can actually keep it in your shirt pocket. At least these were some of the things I wondered about before getting mine.

First of all, anyone who ever thought of getting one of those voice recorders - you should all get this one, because it gives you superior sound quality and is just as small. Having said that, depending on what you plan to record, you might want to compare the sound quality with other products. I use mine mostly for voice recordings, field recordings for music and to record rehearsals and concerts. As I just mentioned, voice recordings come out perfect and a conversation with several people in a big room, such as a conference room or even a lecture hall is no problem. For my field recordings, the H1 does indeed lack some detail, especially in the higher frequencies, slightly altering the sense of room space, transparency, depth and distance, both indoors and outdoors. But the noise level is very low, which allows you to do more detailed work on the recordings on the computer. Rehearsals at very high volume do sound a bit compressed and distorted and obviously you are going to lose dynamics and clarity, but it still does a pretty good job of separating highs, mids and lows, leaving you with a fairly accurate description of what was actually going on during the recording.

What I really don't like is the clicking sound that seems to be impossible to avoid at the beginning and the end of each recording. This forces you to edit every single file by hand, regardless of how the actual recording came out.

What I do like is the size versus sound quality and the price. It really leaves you no excuse to not bring it with you to record any sound that you might encounter during a day. This kind of flexibility, at least for me, almost always leads to more creativity. Although be careful with recording sounds close to a police officer, it does look a lot like a taser.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Decent compact unit. Forget superlatives

declaration: B+H lured this review with a competition incentive.
2nd declaration: this review will not sound like the generic zoom press release as many others ive read do!
Read complete review

declaration: B+H lured this review with a competition incentive.
2nd declaration: this review will not sound like the generic zoom press release as many others ive read do!

I'd had my eye on smaller solid state recorder for a little while when this came on the horizon, the other main contenders were Sony IC internal memory units. H1 won over on paper with the better mics and recording to card instead of internal memory.

As many others have mentioned, the wind noise is very very sensitive. I wouldn't ever have the small windsock off unless it was really safe indoors. The mics already bulge out of the top of the unit so a windsock and certainly a windjammer add significant size to the unit. All this leads to more 'poking out of your pocket; rather than pocket sized recorder. This makes me think how the H2 is in many ways more suited to the 'pocket sized' tag as its pop filter mesh handles light breeze well and the whole unit is a rectangle.

Also the "cheap plastic" feel which has been well covered is pretty accurate. But it feels like an AV remote, not a phone or something solid. The main impact of this apart from peoples 'quality perception' is that it makes handling noise really sensitive as the plastic case creaks into the mics.

In the first few weeks of use ive had the flimsy card door dislodge and get lost, lost one recording which didn't save, juggled a few outdoor interviews trying to block the wind with my or the interviewees bodies and only drop it a couple of times (should attach a strap soon)

The sony IC recorders still win out for the minimalists as they are significantly slimmer + small, have their own slide out USB plug and charge a single battery thru that plug. Poor metering though. Important considerations for a cycle touring sound ethnographer / field recordist - but this unit is very decent. Just don't believe the ipod style "this is the new very best thing, in the smallest package for the cheapest price" spiels! enjoy.

Reviewed by 489 customers

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5.0

This is very easy to use

By JInsoo Kim

from Glen Cove NY

Verified Buyer

Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

Small & Compact very easy to use

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5.0

Exactly What I Was Looking For!

By Andrew

from USA

Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

This portable audio recorder was exactly what I was looking for when I got inspired for a personal project.

It seems big for being portable, but it's actually pretty discrete and no one noticed when I carried it around in public - even strapped on my chest! Good audio quality, automatic level adjusting, and record time. With a 32GB card and .WAV format, I can record for +40 hours! May need three to four batteries for that, but again, exactly what I was looking for.

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5.0

Great product

By Tyler

from Kentucky

Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

Works great and is everything I expected

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5.0

Love it ^-^

By Mason

from houston, texas

Verified Buyer

Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

Incredible recorder love it.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

Great!!

By Destination video producer

from Detroit

Verified Buyer

Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

This is a great recorder for the price. Sound quality is great, battery lasts a looooong time, and they are reliable. I have been using the Zoom h1 for a few years with no problems. The silver is nice too, and is easier to hide at weddings because it blends in to more decorations. Would definitely buy again.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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4.0

H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder

By VIP man

from west tennessee

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Pocket Size Easy To Read

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

      The H1 portable recorder is just what I needed being a writer & photographer for 3 magazines. When my assistant is out of pocket I can record the names and comments and then incorporate info later at the office.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      5.0

      Very Easy to use

      By zoomies

      from north platte, NE

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy To Use
      • Quality
      • Weight

      Cons

      • No Cons Yet

      Best Uses

        Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

        I have been using it for a little while now and it is super easy to use and not complicated!

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        5.0

        Workhorse simple recorder

        By Keith J.

        from Orange County, NY

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Compact
        • Good Sound
        • Portable
        • Reliable
        • Simple Operation

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Concerts
          • Events
          • Weddings

          Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

          These are such great, basic recorders. All the settings you'll really need are adjusted by actual switches on the back of the unit. No need to go sifting through menus. I've used these for years and they're true workhorses. I've dropped them and they keep on keeping on. Granted they are made of plastic so a really big drop would be a bad idea. They take micro SD cards up to 32GB, which will give you up to 50 hours of recording time. These are great to use with a lav mic. I use them mostly at weddings and they're my favorite. I have 3. There are much more advanced recorders and I haven't had the need for anything with any additional features. The external mics have good sound. I've used inexpensive and expensive lav mics with these and they all sound good. I've also put these on stands in front of DJ speakers. You can set auto gain control or set the level manually with just a plus/minus switch on the side. So simple. Great recorder!!!!!!

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          5.0

          nice product

          By te

          from MA

          Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

          purchased on 4/3/2016 for $99.99

          now a price drop

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          5.0

          Great

          By Positive Vibe Media

          from Baltimore, MD

          Verified Buyer

          Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

          Does the job it says it will do. If you are looking for a cheaper zoom mic I would definitely recommend

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          5.0

          Great Product!

          By Ethos Media

          from Dallas, TX

          Verified Buyer

          Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

          I use this any time that I can for lav-captured audio because it obviously doesn't have any issues with RF interference like a true wireless unit does. You can plug a lav mic right into the input and it works fine. The single AA battery lasts a very long time and while doing certain things with the interface requires a bit of a learning curve, it's still overall a solid investment to make for capturing audio. The built-in XY microphones are generally pretty good too, although don't expect to use them outdoors without substantial wind cover. I hear most zoom products are like that.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          5.0

          Great sound quality

          By Sam

          from Los Angeles

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Great Sound
          • Light Device

          Cons

          • None

          Best Uses

          • Class Lectures

          Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

          I use the H1 to record my classes and it is more than great. The audio is clear and easy to import.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          4.0

          Off to a good start

          By Dan the Documenter

          from Latin America

          Verified Buyer

          Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

          I use this recorder for capturing audio for use with video and it works pretty good. It is not quite the same quality as my older Sony PCM recorder, but that one cost me 6 times as much ten years ago. I was at first put off by the light weight all plastic construction of this little recorder, but the size and shape are also a big asset in many instances, especially as much as I travel. And given the cost of the H1 Zoom, I could afford to have several strategically placed for environments that involve more than one sound source. In the end, I think being close to your subject is at least as important as the quality of your recorder.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Great Product

          By James Fallas Photography

          from Costa Rica

          Verified Buyer

          Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

          Great to record audio separately from a DSLR, great sound quality!

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Good buy for the price

          By PJ

          from Burbank

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy To Use
          • Small And Handy

          Cons

            Best Uses

              Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Black):

              I wanted to buy a recorder for a small stage interview type of shoot and ended up getting this. The recorded sound quality was good for the price I paid. Very easy to use. The only drawback is that if I connect an external microphone then, the Zoom mic doesn't work. Either external or the zoom mic can be used. That was a bummer.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              Great 1st step to better audio for DSLR video

              By Still shooter

              from Greenvile SC

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Great Sound For Price
              • Simple To Use

              Cons

              • Construction

              Best Uses

                Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

                With very limited DSLR video in my past, I picked up the H1 to use as a stereo mic to record throughout a yoga class so the instructor would not have to mess with a body pack or headset. I did not know how bad the DSLR's onboard mic was until comparing results with the H1. A simple extension cable and splitter let me get appropriate mic placement in the studio, and monitor the sound. Setting sound level into the H1 is easy with its' meter, and the sound meter in the Canon 6D (attenuator enabled) let me easily set the output level on the H1. Having the H1 also record gave me a more secure feeling by having the ability to use it in post if necessary. While I have no other off camera stereo mic for comparison, I was very pleased with its' sensitivity yet lack of noise.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Works like a champ. Best price in town.

                By mchava

                from Santa Ana, Ca

                Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

                Got this to improve my audio for films. Was impressed with how well it works and how easy it was to use and transfer audio files to computer.

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                (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Best Audio Recorder EVER

                By Tan

                from Melbourne AU

                Verified Buyer

                Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

                Just go for it if you are within tight budget. This will not fail you. Very easy to use, very cheap to run and solid build.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Muy bueno

                By Tincho

                from Uruguay

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Práctico

                Cons

                • Material

                Best Uses

                • Bodas

                Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

                Fácil de usar. Buena calidad de sonido.

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Fantastic

                By Mike

                from Texas

                Comments about H1 Ultra-Portable Digital Audio Recorder (Silver):

                Saw that this little recorder was on sale so decided to try it out. I couldn't be happier with it. I used it in a video where I interviewed my daughter and just used the mics on the device and they work great. I would gladly pay full price for this.

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