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Zoom F3 2-Input / 2-Track Portable Field Recorder

BH #ZOF3 • MFR #ZF3
Zoom F3 2-Input / 2-Track Portable Field Recorder
Key Features
  • For Videographers & Sound Recordists
  • 2 Ultralow-Noise Mic Pres via XLR Jacks
  • No Gain Adjustment Needed
  • 32-Bit Float Recording Avoids Clipping
Forget about clipping, forget about gain, and forget about hassle; just power on the Zoom F3 portable 2-track field recorder and press record to capture clear, distortion-free sound from your external XLR mics in an instant for your next video shoot, interview, or sound design excursion. With two premium mic preamps and 32-bit float technology, the F3 handles the softest and loudest sounds you can throw at it while avoiding distortion, maintaining low-noise performance, and freeing you from the responsibility of adjusting gain. Recordings ruined by clipped converters and poorly set preamps are things of the past.
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$349.99
$59/mo. suggested payments for 6 Mos.
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Zoom F3 Overview

  • 1Description
  • 2Automatic Distortion-Free Audio
  • 3Dual XLR Mic/Line Inputs
  • 4High-Quality Recording Settings
  • 5Record Direct to microSD Cards
  • 6Headphone and Line Outputs
  • 7Power for Hours
  • 8USB Audio and File Transfers
  • 9Precision Timecode and Synchronization
  • 10App-Based Remote Control
  • 11Intuitive Controls and Built-In Display
  • 12Hold Function Inhibits Accidental Interruptions
  • 13Low Profile and Lightweight

Forget about clipping, forget about gain, and forget about hassle; just power on the Zoom F3 portable 2-track field recorder and press record to capture clear, distortion-free sound from your external XLR mics in an instant for your next video shoot, interview, or sound design excursion. With two premium mic preamps and 32-bit float technology, the F3 handles the softest and loudest sounds you can throw at it while avoiding distortion, maintaining low-noise performance, and freeing you from the responsibility of adjusting gain. Recordings ruined by clipped converters and poorly set preamps are things of the past.

From the real-time waveform display and one-touch controls to the flexible powering options and precision timecode functionality, the F3 is properly equipped to please novices and demanding veterans alike. Whether you need long-duration stereo recording for an interview, redundant capture of dual-mic setups for a video shoot, or failure-proof recording on location, the F3 has the modes, resolutions, and media support to handle your crucial audio tasks. Plus, its operational versatility ensures that the F3 will always enhance your workflow, be it simple, complex, or always changing. You can feel confident using it as your main recorder, a USB audio interface for your dedicated computer rig, or a backup unit for added safety.

Automatic Distortion-Free Audio

The F3 utilizes dual A/D converters and 32-bit float recording technology to capture intensely loud signals without clipping the converters and bring in extremely quiet sounds without overwhelming noise, all without requiring any gain adjustment from you. Record with confidence, knowing that you can just connect your microphones and start recording to attain crisp, clear audio.

Dual XLR Mic/Line Inputs

Two balanced mic/line inputs with locking XLR jacks and switchable +48V phantom power make the F3 an ideal match for professional microphones such as handheld dynamics and shotgun condensers as well as line-level feeds from a dedicated field mixer.

High-Quality Recording Settings

The F3 supports high-quality sample rates between 44.1 and 192 kHz, in mono or stereo uncompressed BWF (Broadcast Wave File) format. No data compression means that no quality is lost in the creation of the audio files.

Record Direct to microSD Cards

Maximize portability by recording directly to a microSDHC/microSDXC card (available separately) for up to 1TB of storage space.

Headphone and Line Outputs

While the line output enables straightforward routing to your camera, DSLR, or secondary recorder, a 3.5mm stereo headphone jack with dedicated volume control offers convenient audio monitoring.

Power for Hours

To keep up with the pace of on-location production, the F3 can be powered via two AA alkaline, Lithium, or NiMH rechargeable batteries (alkaline included), a Zoom AD-17 power adapter (available separately), or a USB Type-C battery pack (available separately). With up to eight hours of run time on AA batteries, all-day shoots are no problem for the F3.

USB Audio and File Transfers

Since the F3 has a USB Type-C port, simply connect it to your computer via a USB cable (available separately) to transfer files to your computer or use the F3 as a 2x2 USB audio interface capable of 24-bit / 96 kHz resolution. USB audio interface functionality will be supported by a firmware update scheduled to be released in March 2022.

Precision Timecode and Synchronization

Add the separately available Zoom BTA-1 Bluetooth adapter and UltraSync Blue (from Timecode Systems or Atomos) to take advantage of high-precision timecode that realizes accurate synchronization with video.

App-Based Remote Control

For convenient wireless remote control from an iOS/Android mobile device, connect a Zoom BTA-1 Bluetooth adapter (available separately), then use the free F3 Control app (planned for March 2022) via Bluetooth.

Intuitive Controls and Built-In Display

Intuitive one-touch buttons—record, play, stop, and volume up/down—provide fast, hassle-free operations with no menus to wade through. The onboard screen shows real-time waveforms and clear indication of battery status, recording time, and more. Per-channel buttons let you quickly zoom in or out for a better view.

Hold Function Inhibits Accidental Interruptions

Flip the Record switch down to the Hold position to engage the Hold function, which prevents interruptions to the recording caused by accidental button presses.

Low Profile and Lightweight

With its minimalist profile, the lightweight F3 attaches to boompoles via hook-and-loop fastener (available separately) or slips into a pocket to be hidden from sight.
UPC: 884354026011

Zoom F3 Specs

Portable Recorder
Form FactorHandheld Recorder
Primary Use ApplicationsAudio-for-Video
Number of Tracks2
Number of Input Channels2
Maximum Sampling Rate192 kHz / 32-Bit
MicrophoneNone
Number of Microphone Preamps2 Preamps
Built-In SpeakerNo
Memory Card SupportmicroSDHC (4 GB to 32 GB)
microSDXC (64 GB to 1 TB)
Internal StorageNone
Special FeaturesRemote Control Capable (Remote Available Separately)
Recording
Audio File FormatsBWF, iXML
Sample Rates44.1 / 48 / 88.2 / 96 / 192 kHz
Bit Depth32-Bit
Signal Processing & FXNone
Timecode SupportYes
Included SoftwareNone
Connectivity
Analog I/O2 x XLR 3-Pin Female Balanced Line/Mic Input (Lockable)
1 x 1/8" / 3.5 mm TRS Female Unbalanced Line Output
1 x 1/8" / 3.5 mm TRS Female Unbalanced Headphone Output
Digital I/ONone
Phantom Power+24 / 48 V, Selectable On/Off
Phantom Power Current10 mA per Channel
Host Connection1 x USB Type-C (USB 2.0)
Audio Interface CapabilityStereo Only
Performance
Max Input LevelMic Inputs:
+4 dBu
Line Inputs:
+24 dBu
Max Output LevelLine Outputs:
+1 dBu
Headphone Output Power50 mW per Channel into 32 Ohms
ImpedanceMic/Line Inputs:
≥3 Kilohms
Line Outputs:
≤100 Ohms
Headphone Outputs:
≤15 Ohms
EIN≤-127 dBu
Power
Power OptionsBattery, USB Bus Power, or AC/DC Power Adapter
Battery Type2 x AA (Included)
Approximate Battery Life48 kHz/32-Bit:
8 Hours (AA Alkaline, 2 Channels, Recording)
8.5 Hours (AA NiMH, 2 Channels, Recording)
18 Hours (AA Lithium, 2 Channels, Recording)
AC/DC Power Adapter5 VDC at 1 A (Not Included)
Physical
Included AccessoriesBatteries
Mounting OptionsNone
Dimensions3 x 1.9 x 3" / 75 x 47.8 x 77.3 mm
Weight8.5 oz / 242 g (with Batteries)
Packaging Info
Package Weight1.12 lb
Box Dimensions (LxWxH)8.4 x 6.4 x 2.4"

Zoom F3 Reviews

Amazing recorder

By Nulalee
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-06-14

This recorder is amazing and super simple to use, I sold my zoom h6 to basically upgrade to this and I do not regret it. Nothing is perfect clearly but this is pretty dang close.

The value of simplicity.

By Zhiyi
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-06-05

I'm not a practising sound recordist, but as a filmmaker with several years of filmmaking training in film school, I occasionally make cameos as sound recordist for some of my friends' low-budget shorts. I used to use the Zoom F4 in general, a recorder for all the needs of a small production, it's a shame it was discontinued. But in fact, even F4 is a little too grand for many short films. I also bought the Tascam X8 before buying the F3, and to be honest it wasn't a satisfactory product, both in terms of build quality and sound quality, and its design concept didn't meet my expectations. I'm not looking for an F4 replacement, although I did use the F3 for a lot of work in the latest short film. But the F3 isn't a Swiss Army Knife, it's a specific tool. When you're only dealing with only boom and a plant mic or lav mic in most situations, when you don't need to route complex inputs to different listeners, when you want to write a better sound note for your director friend and you don't have an assistant. These are the times when you think having an F3 is a wonderful thing. In fact, using the F3 is a pleasure any time. Connect, power on, start recording, it's that simple. Zoom finds a rather satisfying answer in simplicity. And most importantly, the sound quality has not been compromised in any way. So when you really need to deal with some complex needs, F3 can always be a powerful supplement for you. My only complaint: 1. Timecode is only compatible with Ultrasync Blue, and the overall cost of this timecode system is higher than many competitors. 2. Under the overall excellent build quality, the memory card slot door is like a joke. And the transfer speed when connected to a computer via USB is also like a joke.

This is a must-have for recording events.

By Robert
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-05-31

Finally, a unit that I can just set and forget. I chose this over the Tascam X8 because of it's simplicity, battery life, and the ability to connect ur phone over BT (via BT addon). This does what it's supposed to and I love it. While the 5 stars is for the F3 itself, the Bluetooth function needs updating in order for it to be useful for me (I left a meh review on the BT addon). As an event shooter, I am constantly going in and out of its range. Once the F3 and your phone disconnects, you have to manually reconnect them on the F3. There needs to be an option for discovery mode to be on auto, even if keeping it on is more power-intensive. I can always replace batteries or attach a power bank but it completely defeats the purpose of having BT functionality when I have to go back to the unit just to reconnect my phone to it.

Most useful 2-track recorder I've come across

By Bernie
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-05-30

As for dynamic range, low noise, portability, practicability (if 2-trk is all one needs), this is probably the best recording value I've run across. I'm impressed with the dynamic range, very low noise, its compact size, weight, price, and, most of all the recording result.

So small and powerful!

By Peter
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-05-17

This little recorder is smaller than you think. SO far, I love it. Lithium battery lasting a long time with continuous use even with phantom power enabled.

Terrific gear

By Bernie
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-05-10

I've been recording in the field for over 50 years and have yet to find a piece of gear this responsive to my needs at almost every level. Mostly, I record MS. Altho, this device does not encode MS stereo at the output, its signal capture, with 32bit float, is quiet and dynamic as it comes. The unit is light and easy to pack. Battery life is reasonable, setting-dependent. The price-point at about $350 feels just right in terms of value. Go for this one! No regrets.

Great option to add pro audio for A7Siii

By Sean
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-06-08

Great sound recorder. Simple, easy to use. Good preamps. Since its hard to get an FX6, I've purchased this to add quality audio recording to my a7siii rig. Its nice to have the line out going into the camera which makes for easy syncing in post. The 32bit float is great when I'm solo operating. I thought about getting the Sony K3M attachment, but this was cheaper and allows me to do field recordings without the camera.

should have bluetooth

By Jonathan
Rated 4 out of 5
Date: 2022-06-08

should have bluetooth attached, not some accessory to buy apart

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Yes, the built-in gain control in the Sennheiser AVX series could pair well with the Zoom F3 2-Input / 2-Track Portable Field Recorder's 32-bit float recording capabilities to achieve excellent quality in recordings.
Answered by: Matt Z
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What straps work for wrist & boompole?

What straps work for wrist & boompole?
Asked by: Bill
A velcro utility strap such as the Pearstone 1 x 12" Touch Fastener Cinch Strap (BH #PECHS101202B) could be used to affix the Zoom F3 2-Input / 2-Track Portable Field Recorder to a wrist or boom pole: https://bhpho.to/3k8CyjN
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Any M/S support? It would be good if it could ...

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Asked by: Peter
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Answered by: Lisa
Date published: 2022-03-09

Does this recorder have timecode out via the line ...

Does this recorder have timecode out via the line out port to sync with other devices or do you have to use the bluetooth option?
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Does it have an internal mic to record alone ...

Does it have an internal mic to record alone without additional stuff?
Asked by: Mohammed
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Can I control the F3 from an iPhone and sync ...

Can I control the F3 from an iPhone and sync timecode with the Atomos UltraSync BLUE at the same time?
Asked by: Devin
No. With the Zoom BTA-1 Bluetooth adapter installed in the Zoom F3 Field Recorder, you can use the Zoom F3 Control app to wirelessly control the recorder from an iOS or Android device, and you can also use the BTA-1 to sync timecode with the Atomos UltraSync BLUE via Bluetooth, however, both functions cannot be performed at the same time.
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Date published: 2022-04-25
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