Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Zoom H1 and XLR Thoughts

In writing about the Zoom H1 earlier, I said that because it lacks XLR inputs the recorder was less appealing to me. Which is not to say that it's not going to be a good and useful product, it's just not something I see using for most video applications.

But it's been pointed out that you could use an XLR to 1/8" stereo adapter, and then use the H1 with good external mics. This is true, but it's not something I'd personally recommend. Generally, the more cables and adapters you have, the more likely you are to have trouble; you can't find the adapter, it's not as secure a connection, it's two connections instead of one. It all seems like trivial stuff, but it does impact what you're doing.

I've used 1/8" adapter's prior to getting both a camera and a recording deck with XLR inputs, and there really is a noticeable difference in the way things just seem to work better. In fact, I now shy away from using anything but the XLR inputs whenever I can.

If you're going to the trouble of carting along some good mics, then I'd get a larger recorder with XLR inputs, rather than get the H1 and an XLR adapter.

But if you just want a small, compact recorder, and you're going to use the on-board mics on the recorder rather than other mics, then the H1 may be the thing for you.

But that's just me.

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