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Overview: The Zoom H6 is a portable 6-track digital audio
recorder with four main inputs and two additional inputs from a unique plug-in
capsule. The H6 can record in either WAV or MP3 onto SD memory cards. A 2"
full-color LCD screen (320 x 240 pixels) shows the input levels of all six
tracks, and lets you maneuver through the menu with ease. The unit comes with
two plug-in mic capsules, wind screen, music production software, batteries, a 2
GB SD memory card, and a USB cable. The entire kit stores safely in the supplied
hard plastic carrying case.
Main Inputs: The H6 has four main inputs (numbered 1-4) with
combo connectors that can accept either XLR or 1/4" balanced or unbalanced phone
cables (or TRS--Tip-Ring-Sleeve). All of the connectors use the industry
standard "Pin 2 hot" protocol on the XLR, and "Tip hot" protocol on the TRS
connectors. The inputs can handle both mic-level and line-level signals with
ease, with internal switching contacts automatically detecting the signal type.
Each of the main inputs has a dedicated gain control knob, and feature a -20dB
pad to prevent distortion from high-level signals. If you are using high-quality
condenser (powered) microphones, a simple menu option provides Phantom Power
(+12, +24 or +48 volts) to any or all of the main inputs.
Input Capsules: The rear panel of the H6 contains a
proprietary connector for one of the two supplied plug-in mic capsules, or other
optional capsules. These capsules provide a two-channel input to the recorder
(marked L and R) and have a single rotary level control. The supplied capsules
- XYH-6: The XYH-6 capsule adds two matched high-quality
unidirectional microphones to the H6, mounted in the X/Y miking
configuration. This configuration covers a wide area but still captures
sound sources in the center, making it very useful for live stereo
recording. The microphones on the XYH-6 can be rotated to change the angle
from 90 degrees to 120 degrees for a wider stereo image.
- MSH-6: The MSH-6 capsule has a large single microphone
screen with two mic elements inside, positioned directly on top of one
another in a Mid-Side configuration. One of the mics is unidirectional,
while the other is bi-directional. The unidirectional mic (Mid) is most
sensitive to signals coming from directly in front and less sensitive to
signals coming from behind or from the sides. The bi-directional mic (Side),
placed perpendicular to the Mid mic, is mostly sensitive to signals directly
in front and behind, and less sensitive to signals coming from the sides.
The Mid microphone picks up signals from the center while the Side
microphone creates ambience and directionality by adding or subtracting
information from either side. In post-production, you can adjust the width
of the stereo image. The MSH-6 is a good microphone for studio recording, as
well as rehearsal and live concert recording.
- Optional Capsules: The optional SGH-6 shotgun capsule
adds a professional-quality highly-directional microphone to the H6. The
SGH-6 is ideal for recording audio for film, video, live theater, or
electronic news gathering (ENG) applications. The EXH-6 adds two more XLR/TRS
Combo inputs to the H6. Each input on the EXH-6 has a rotary level control
and -20dB pad switch, but does not support phantom power.
Outputs: The H6 features a 3.5mm unbalanced line output,
located beneath the LCD display. It allows you to send a stereo signal to a
camcorder or other device. A 3.5mm headphone jack with a dedicated volume
control on the left side lets you monitor your recordings in real time, or
privately listen to playback. A Mini-B USB port (2.0 Full Speed compatible) on
the right side provides a digital output of either a stereo mix or the six
individual input signals.
File Types: The Zoom H6 can record in two different basic
file types: WAV and MP3:
- WAV: WAV files are uncompressed. The H6 can record up
to six monophonic WAV files, or up to 3 stereo files in any of six formats:
44.1kHz/16-bit, 44.1kHz/24-bit, 48kHz/16-bit, 48kHz/24-bit, 96kHz/
16-bit, or 96kHz/24-bit. WAV files are automatically time-stamped, making
them compliant with the Broadcast Wave Format (BWF). This allows you to
precisely synchronize the audio with on-screen action in video post
- MP3: MP3 files are compressed to reduce file size,
making them easier to store, upload and download. You can record only stereo
files in MP3. Available bit rates for recording MP3 include: 48k, 56k, 64k,
80k, 96k, 112k, 128k, 160k, 192k, 224k, 256k, and 320k bits per second.
Recording Media: The H6 records audio directly to SD, SDHC,
and SDXC memory cards up to 128 GB. A 2 GB microSD (with a full-size adapter) is
included. You can record approximately 3 hours 8 minutes of audio at
44.1kHz/16-bit WAV or 34 hours 43 minutes at 128kbps MP3 with a 2 GB card.
Recording Features: Three special recording features of the
H6 can help prevent bad quality or missed recordings:
- Pre-Record: When Pre-Record is engaged, the H6 will
continuously record in the background while you wait for an event to begin.
When you hit the Record button, the recorder keeps the previous two seconds
and adds it to the beginning of the file.
- Backup-Record: The Backup-Record feature automatically
records a duplicate set of L/R tracks but at an input level 12dB less. If
the original L/R tracks are distorted, it is likely the backup recording is
- Auto-Record: The Auto-Record feature allows the H6 to
automatically start recording when a certain level of sound is detected.
When the Record button is pressed, the unit goes into Standby mode. As soon
as the incoming signal exceeds the set Start Level, the unit begins
recording. An equivalent Autorecord Stop function stops recording when the
input signal level drops below the set Stop level.
Effects: The unit has built-in effects, including low-cut
filtering, compression, and limiting. The low-cut filter reduces the effect of
wind noise and vocal pops. The compressor/limiter can be used to raise low-level
input signals and lower high-level input signals.
Playback Features: The H6 offers the following special
- Playback Speed: You can adjust the playback speed in a
range from 50% to 150% of normal.
- Changing the Pitch: The pitch can be changed in
semitones for each track separately while keeping the same playback speed.
Power Requirements: The H6 is powered by 4 "AA" batteries,
and can use either alkaline or rechargeable Nickel-Metal Hydride (Ni-MH).
Battery life with alkaline batteries is more than 20 hours. The optional AD-17
AC adapter allows you to power the H6 from ordinary household current.