Zoom F4 Multitrack Field Recorder with Timecode - 6 Inputs / 8 Tracks

Zoom F4 Multitrack Field Recorder with Timecode - 6 Inputs / 8 Tracks

Zoom F4 Multitrack Field Recorder with Timecode - 6 Inputs / 8 Tracks

B&H # ZOF4 MFR # ZF4

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Product Highlights

  • Integrated Mixer
  • Compatible with Optional Zoom Mics
  • Resolution: 24-Bit/192 kHz
  • Four Combo XLR-1/4" Inputs
  • High-Quality Preamps with Phantom Power
  • Built-In Limiters on Every Input/Output
  • Easy-to-Read LCD Display
  • Temperature-Controlled Crystal Oscillator
  • Temperature-Compensated Crystal Oscillator
  • Includes Cubase LE and Wavelab LE
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Zoom F4 overview

  • 1Description

Designed to provide big Hollywood sound on an affordable indie budget, Zoom F4 is a 6-input / 8-track professional field recorder featuring super-low-noise preamps and timecode with pinpoint accuracy. The unit provides recording and playback resolutions up to 24-bit/192 kHz with impressive audio specs including an extremely low noise floor (-127 dBu EIN) and high gain (up to +75 dB), with +4 dB line-level inputs. The on-board temperature-compensated crystal oscillator (TCXO) generates timecode at 0.2 ppm accuracy and supports all standard drop-frame and non-drop formats, as well as jam sync for external devices.

The advanced on-board limiters provide overload protection for all inputs and outputs, which lets you capture audio in a wide range of environments. Limiting can be applied simultaneously at full resolution with 10 dB of headroom and features controls for setting threshold, attack, and release.

The F4 offers four combo XLR-1/4" inputs, a 1/8" stereo input, and includes a Zoom mic-capsule input for recording six discrete tracks with an additional stereo mix, all at full 24-bit/192 kHz resolution. Additionally, inputs 5/6 can function as a camera return for audio-monitoring only for confidence checks. The dual-SD card slot features simultaneous recording to both cards allowing you to make a backup or split recording with all eight tracks on one card and a stereo mix on the other.

Each of the four XLR-1/4" inputs offers a dedicated preamp with gain control, phantom power, a six-segment LED level meter, plus a Record Ready and PFL switch. In addition to the 1/4" headphone output with a dedicated volume control, the F4 provides two main balanced XLR outputs, as well as two sub outs on a single unbalanced 1/8" stereo mini-jack, enabling easy connection to a camera. All timecode I/O is provided on BNC connectors and the unit includes a variable-frequency slate-tone generator to confirm levels.

The front panel offers an output button, which provides quick access to the unit's outputs, while the option button offers quick access to TC Jam, Trim Link, Clear Clip and other important shortcuts. An easy-to-read 1.9" LCD display is suitable for use in all lighting environments including dark low-light sets to bright sunlight. The on-board mixer not only provides user-adjustable level, pan, and input/output delay, but also offers high-pass filtering for noise and wind reduction, phase inversion, and Mid-Side decoding. The F4 ships with a camera-mount adapter, AC power adapter, and download codes for Cubase LE and Wavelab LE.

  • Six-input/ eight-track multitrack field recorder with integrated mixer 
  • Six discrete inputs, including with 4 locking Neutrik XLR/TRS combo connectors, a stereo 3.5mm input, and Zoom mic-capsule input
  • Input 5/6 can be used as a camera return for monitoring only
  • Compact and lightweight metal chassis, weighing just 2 pounds (without batteries)
  • High-quality mic preamps with up to 75 dB gain, less than -127 dBu EIN, and +4 dB line inputs
  • Support for up to 24-bit/192 kHz recording as well as 96, 88.2 , 48, and 44.1 kHz, plus 47.952/48.048 kHz for HD-video compatibility; 16-/24-bit resolution
  • Accurate timecode (0.2 ppm) I/O on standard BNC connectors; drop-frame/non-drop formats with Jam Sync
  • Three different power supply options: 8x AA batteries, external DC battery pack with 4-pin HIROSE connector, and Zoom AD-19 12 VAC Adapter with DC-HIROSE cable (included)
  • Dedicated gain-control knob, 6-segment LED level meter, and PFL/Solo switch for each channel
  • Phantom power (+48/+24V) on every preamp 
  • High-pass filter, phase invert, and Mid-Side decoder
  • Advanced onboard limiters for input and output
  • Input delay of up to 30 ms per channel / output delay of up to 10 frames per output
  • Compatible with all Zoom mic capsules; optional ECM extender cable enables remote positioning
  • Dedicated headphone output (100mW) with front-panel volume control
  • Dual XLR-balanced Main Outs plus 1/8" stereo mini-jack Sub Out
  • Front-panel OPTION button gives quick access to important shortcuts
  • 1.9” white, backlit monochrome LCD
  • Dual SD/SDHC/SDXC card slots, up to 512GB each 
  • Support for extensive metadata (BWF and iXML); input time, date, project, scene number, etc.
  • Built-in tripod mount; camera-mount adapter also included
  • Use as a 6-in/4-out USB audio interface (@ 96 kHz)


UPC: 884354016890
In the Box
Zoom F4 Multitrack Field Recorder with Timecode - 6 Inputs / 8 Tracks
  • Camera-Mount Adapter
  • Zoom AD-19 12 VAC Adapter
  • Cubase LE Download Code
  • Wavelab LE Download Code
  • Limited 1-Year Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    Zoom F4 specs

    Recording Media 16 MB to 2 GB SD cards 4 to 32 GB SDHC cards 64 to 512 GB SDXC cards
    Input Connectors Input 1-4: XLR-1/4" / 6.35 mm combo jacks
    Input 5-6: 1/8" / 3.5 mm stereo mini jack
    Input Gain XLR (Mic): +10 to +75 dB
    TRS (Line): -10 to +55 dB
    Mini Jack Input: -10 dBV (Level: -10 dBV setting), +4 dBu (Level: +4 dBu setting)
    Input Impedance XLR (Mic): 3.0 kOhms
    TRS (Line): 22 kOhms
    Mini Jack Input: 10 kOhms or more
    Maximum Input Level XLR (Mic): +14 dBu (at 0 dBFS, limiter ON)
    TRS (Line): +24 dBu (at 0 dBFS, limiter ON)
    Mini Jack Input: -10 dBV (Level: -10 dBV setting), +24 dBu (Level: +4 dBu setting)
    Phantom Power +24 / +48 V 10 mA maximum for each channel
    THD XLR (Mic): 0.009% max (1 kHz, 22 Hz - 22 kHz BW, Input Gain min, -10 dBu input)
    TRS (Line): 0.010% max (1 kHz, 22 Hz - 22 kHz BW, Input Gain min +10 dBu input)
    EIN −127 dBu or less (A-weighted, +75 dB input gain, 150 Ohms input)
    Frequency Characteristics 10 Hz - 80 kHz +0.5/−1 dB (192 kHz sampling rate)
    Dynamic Range ADC 120 dB typical (−60 dBFS input, A-weighted)
    Crosstalk −90 dB or less (between adjacent channels, 1 kHz)
    Mic Input ZOOM mic-capsule input (use disables Inputs 1/2)
    Output Connectors Main: Balanced XLR (2-pin hot)
    Sub Output: 1/8" / 3.5 mm
    Headphone: 1/4" / 6.35 mm unbalanced stereo jack
    Output Impedance Main: 150 Ohms or less
    Sub Output: 1 kOhms or less
    Headphone: 15 Ohms or less
    Reference Output Main: −10 dBV, 1 kHz, 600 Ohms load
    Sub: −10 dBV (Normal Output Type), −40 dBV (Mic Output Type), 1 kHz, 10 kOhms load
    Maximum Output Level Main: +10 dBV, 1 kHz, 600 Ohms load
    Sub Output: +10 dBV (Normal Output Type), −20 dBV (Mic Output Type), 1 kHz, 10 kOhms load
    Headphone: 100 + 100 mW (32 Ohms load)
    Dynamic Range DAC 106 dB typical (−60 dBFS input, A-weighted)
    Recording Formats WAV: 44.1, 47.952, 48, 48.048, 88.2, 96, 192kHz, 16/24-bit, mono/stereo/2-10 ch poly, BWF and iXML
    MP3: 128, 192, 320 kbps, 44.1/48 kHz, ID3v1 tags
    # Of Simultaneous Record Tracks WAV: 8 (6 inputs + stereo mix)
    MP3: 2
    Recording Time 32 GB: 30:51:00 (48 kHz/24-bit stereo WAV), 7:42:00 (192 kHz/24-bit stereo WAV)
    Timecode Connector: BNC
    Modes:Off, Int Free Run, Int Record Run, Int RTC Run, Ext, Ext Auto Rec (audio clock can be synchronized to timecode)
    Frame Rates: 23.976ND, 24ND, 25ND, 29.97ND, 29.97D, 30ND, 30D
    Precision: ±0.2 ppm
    Supported Input Levels:0.2 to 5.0 Vpp
    Input Impedance: 4.3 kOhms
    Output Level: 3.0 Vpp ±10%
    Output Impedance: 50 Ohms or less
    Power Batteries: 8 AA
    Zoom AD-19 12V AC Adapter
    DC-HIROSE Cable HIROSE HR10A-7R-4S 4-pin connector (1 pin: −, 4 pin: +), 9-16 V
    Battery Life (Recording) Continuous Recording Time: When recording 2 channels at 48 kHz/16-bit without headphones
    Alkaline Batteries: 9.5 hours or more
    NiMH (2450mAh): 11.5 hours or more
    Lithium Batteries: 17.5 hours or more

    Continuous Recording Time: When recording 8 channels at 48 kHz/24-bit with headphones
    Alkaline batteries: 9.0 hours or more
    NiMH (2450mAh): 10.5 hours or more
    Lithium Batteries: 16.5 hours or more

    Continuous Recording Time: When recording 8 channels at 192 kHz/24-bit with headphones, phantom power, and display backlighting
    Alkaline Batteries: 2 hour or more
    NiMH (2450mAh): 3.5 hours or more
    Lithium Batteries: 6 hours or more
    Display 1.9" / 48.3 mm Monochrome LCD: 128 x 64
    USB USB: Mass Storage Option
    Class:USB 2.0 high speed

    USB: Multitrack audio-interface operation (driver required for Windows, not required for Mac)
    Class:USB 2.0 High Speed
    Specifications: 44.1, 48, 96 kHz, 16/24-bit, 6-in/4-out

    USB: Stereo Mix audio-interface operation (no driver required)Class: USB 2.0 Full Speed Specifications: 44.1, 48 kHz, 16-bit, 2-in/2-out

    Note: iPad audio-interface operation supported (Stereo Mix mode only)
    Dimensions (W x D x H) 7.0 x 5.5 x 2.1" / 177.8 x 139.7 x 53.3 mm
    Weight 2.3 lb / 1.0 kg
    Packaging Info
    Package Weight 5.0 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 11.6 x 10.4 x 4.9"

    Zoom F4 reviews

    F4 Multitrack Field Recorder with Timecode - 6 Inputs / 8 Tracks is rated 4.2 out of 5 by 18.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from This was a big step up for me and I am very impressed This recorder mixer is professional and is excellent for my use. I have had to crash course sound recording technology to use this unit correctly and professionally. I chose this unit over the F8 because I record live music videos solo and need to focus on video and sound simultaneously, adjusting the fader live. I am in awe of this little unit. I can easily see the sound levels and adjust according to each different performer. This unit makes me look like a professional and the sound is sounding more professional. I am excited about learning and experimenting with settings to achieve even better sound.
    Date published: 2016-12-17
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Field Recorder These days I am and amateur photo/video/audio guy. I've had the Zoom F4 for a couple of weeks now and have played with it a bit. 90% satisfied. The negatives mostly have to do with the electronically separate mic/line-in XLR/TRS jacks. Meaning the purchase of additional adapters or cables are necessary. Not to mention the need to store/carry them. But I did know that going in. Everything I've tried works as advertised. Some stuff is confusing. Others are in the Why would I want to do that? category. But the basics weren't too difficult to figure out. Preamp's are great. Battery life (NiMH) is okay. Look and feel is not cheap. Knobs are big enough for my fingers. Menu screen is great in bright sunlight. (Trying here to address some of the pre-release complaints I have read on the web) Yes, I recommend it.
    Date published: 2016-11-17
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Review Update After having and using the thing a while I am no longer bothered really that the rubber feet come off. . . it's kind of simply annoying that they DO fall off in the first place but other than that the thing is built pretty solid. . . feels good to get good quality recordings that this thing can provide. Headphone preamp a little distorted i'll have to say. . . as I've found the captured audio to SD card always sounds clearer and lower noise floor than the headphones. It's an over all good buy if you want to step up your audio game.
    Date published: 2017-01-22
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Lots to like but complicated and could be improved We bought this unit to replace two units that didn't work together well- a Sound Devices Mix Pre-D and a Tascam DR680- for video production. The F4 is our backup kit we use for small shoots. On the outside, it's pretty simple to operate for production with a backup recording. But the simple exterior hides a lot of software where you can really change things and screw things up. So it isn't something you can just pick up and flick a few well placed switches like on the Mix-Pre D. The slate/tone is strange- it outputs at a fixed level post fader so it isn't useful for setting up an input level on the camera if you're using anything other than 0DB out of the mixer to the camera set to line level and even then, you have to adjust the Slate/Tone output to -10 for some reason to equal the main output of 0. If you are using mic level in on your camera, you set the mixer output to up to -48 but the slate/tone only goes to -20 on a separate adjustment which blows out your camera input. Plus there's no mic slate to voice take your shots so I think this is intended as a 'pop' to use for manual sync later but a long press will keep the tone on. The 5-6 return is a fixed level and our Red Dragon doesn't output enough to hear the return as the same level going out and I don't believe it has a meter anyway which is normally how people monitor a camera. So you have to crank up the headphone volume to monitor a return then turn it down before you go back to program. I do like the metal case, the input on and off, prefade listen and the adjustment screen that comes up. I wish the meters were a bit bigger. The dual record feature with one channel lower for sudden loud voice will be useful. We bought an xlr style tone generator to go on input four to be able to set levels to the various cameras we own. I'm hoping Zoom changes some of the goofy parts like the slate/tone, 5-6 return, and maybe have an advanced and simple menu set so someone less skilled can't get it balled up.
    Date published: 2016-11-10
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Buy It's an affordable option for indie and professional filmmakers alike. Awesome pre-amps!
    Date published: 2016-11-10
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great mixer/recorder simple enough for DPs to use! I never wanted to be a DP that knows nothing about sound. Over the years I have picked up that skill (for interviews- never multi mic run and gun type situations) When it came time to buy a new mixer I chose the Zoom F4. The pre amps in this mixer are amazingly quiet- as good as any Sound Devices or Zaxcom that I’ve used previously. Using the mixer is pretty intuitive. I was able to sit down and figure the menus out without any confusion or excessively referring to the manual. The mixer came in the mail Thursday and used the following two days with no issues or any confusion on my part. I also have some cheaper mics that sounded “ok” on a PSC mixer but sound really good through this mixer. Again, awesome pre amps. I would recommend this especially for DPs who find themselves in need of a mixer/recorder for clients that don’t like to pay for audio op.
    Date published: 2017-12-07
    Rated 3 out of 5 by from Kind of Fragile First off. . . the mixer looks nice and is impressive in that regard. . . sounds good. . . but the very first time i open up the battery compartment and take out the tray and go to put batteries in. . . the slightest over touch sends the battery cover doors flying off on the floor. . . . the very first time I put the mixer in and out of my mixer bag. . . one of the rubber cushions under the mixer just came right off. . . seems like they just barely stick on. . . sounds good but be VERY CAREFUL handling this device. The main knob is not nearly as sturdy or satisfying to turn or click. . . all day long I was almost afraid to break this thing. I'm wondering if I made a mistake purchasing this over the F8. . . seems like this is more ENG friendly with some of the extra options and bigger pots. . . but i'm just worried how this thing will hold up to the rigors of professional use. I am a bit worried.
    Date published: 2016-11-15
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from High fidelity, versatile, affordable There's not much I can add that hasn't already been said about the F4. It's the field recorder I had been waiting for ever since I used the F8 for a corporate shoot. 4-channels is enough for my shooting, so the F4 is perfect. The same quality preamps as in the F8 really shine here. The headphone amp doesn't seem colored as some people mentioned in previous F8 reviews, but I never noticed any coloring in the F8 hp amp unit I used anyway. I use the F4 in conjunction with an Audio Technica BP4025 for stereo, and a Sennheiser MKE-600 for better directional capture. Shooting school concerts with dual recording ensures that sound is never clipped. And with 75dB clean gain I can make very clean and hiss-free nature recordings. One thing I wish Zoom or a third party would develop is a lithium battery pack to go in the battery compartment of the F4/F8. It seems like 6 cells of the same type used in our DSLR batteries (2 cells are used in Nikon EN-EL15 for example) could fit in there with room to spare. On a separate note, I wish there was a compact rod system accessory that would allow me to tilt the F4 up or down according to my shooting position, yet remain in the back of my rig. If no one makes it I will just have to come up with my own solution :-) Overall highly recommended!
    Date published: 2017-01-13
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