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Hewesy



Joined: 19/10/04
Posts: 1724
Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording
      #428206 - 01/03/07 12:54 PM
Hi all,

I have read the other posts on here regarding the Zoom H4, and it's uses and issues but have one specific question which doesn't appear to have been answered fully.

I am interested in using one almost exclusively for capturing wildlife/wild bird song.

Has anyone got experiance of using the H4 in this manner? How does it work (I'm expecting some low noise), how long do the batteries last etc. And would you recommend one?

The recordings are not for commercial use, but I'm looking for something halfway decent to create snippets of song for identifying species later etc. At the moment I have an MD recorder, with FEL preamp and mic, for comparison.

Thanks all,

Hewesy


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John Willett
Sound-Link ProAudio


Joined: 07/03/00
Posts: 12454
Loc: Oxfordshire UK
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: Hewesy]
      #428214 - 01/03/07 01:05 PM
For the best advice for a recorder for this use - talk to the WSRS (Wildlife Sound Recording Association) who will be able to let you know the best things to do.

--------------------
John - Sound-Link ProAudio
President - Federation Internationale des Chasseurs de Sons


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mcguirk



Joined: 08/09/04
Posts: 619
Loc: Wendover, Bucks
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: Hewesy]
      #428221 - 01/03/07 01:21 PM
What kind of mic are you using currently?

If you hadn't specified that you are already using an external pre and mic, I wouldn't have hesitated to recommend the H4 (although I don't record birdsong, I've recorded general outdoor ambience and the results have been great). Can't tell you how the batteries last though, as most of my use has been on the mains.


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John Willett
Sound-Link ProAudio


Joined: 07/03/00
Posts: 12454
Loc: Oxfordshire UK
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: mcguirk]
      #428226 - 01/03/07 01:30 PM
For wildlife recording you need exceptionally good kit - you need the quietest mics and a recorder with the quietest mic. pres.

You are normally recording at a distance with everything whacked up to almost maximum and you don't want mic. or pre-amp. noise to make things worse.

--------------------
John - Sound-Link ProAudio
President - Federation Internationale des Chasseurs de Sons


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Hewesy



Joined: 19/10/04
Posts: 1724
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: Hewesy]
      #428237 - 01/03/07 01:44 PM
Thanks for the replies all.

John, I have tried to contact the wildlife chaps before (on your recommendation) and found it was probably easier to try and talk to Opus Dei...! I will try and contact them again though.

I agree with top kit - however budget restraints and being completely non-pro use it is hard to justify it. I then need your skills as well...

Mcguirk, the mic is def the weak link in my current system, however given the price of a "decent" mic or stereo pair, versus the cost of the H4 makes it a very tempting option.

I see your also in Bucks, do you mind if I asked where you bought your H4 from?

Hewesy

Edited by Hewesy (01/03/07 01:48 PM)


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ibliss
member


Joined: 02/10/00
Posts: 326
Loc: UK
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: John Willett]
      #428238 - 01/03/07 01:46 PM
Have not used the H4, but have read one report that says the handling noise is quite bad (when using the internal mics, obviously). I can't imagine you would be holding the thing while recording anyway, unless this is to be used as an on-the-fly point and grab recorder.


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Hewesy



Joined: 19/10/04
Posts: 1724
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: Hewesy]
      #428242 - 01/03/07 01:49 PM
I get bad handling noise at the moment, so this would be a sit and record device for me. Either hides or other quiet(ish) locations.

Thanks for the post,

Hewesy


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John Willett
Sound-Link ProAudio


Joined: 07/03/00
Posts: 12454
Loc: Oxfordshire UK
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: Hewesy]
      #428275 - 01/03/07 02:36 PM
Quote Hewesy:

John, I have tried to contact the wildlife chaps before (on your recommendation) and found it was probably easier to try and talk to Opus Dei...!




You have mail.

I have just sent you a PM with the direct contact numbers of some useful members.

--------------------
John - Sound-Link ProAudio
President - Federation Internationale des Chasseurs de Sons


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mcguirk



Joined: 08/09/04
Posts: 619
Loc: Wendover, Bucks
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: Hewesy]
      #428284 - 01/03/07 02:58 PM
Quote Hewesy:


I see your also in Bucks, do you mind if I asked where you bought your H4 from?




Unhelpfully, I got it from Sound Control in Newcastle. I was in the NE visiting family, and they happened to have one in stock.

Not sure which end of Bucks you're in, but I guess Sound Control in Milton Keynes would have one. I don't really know of any other shops around the area (unless you start heading into London) that would stock it.


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Hewesy



Joined: 19/10/04
Posts: 1724
Re: Zoom H4 for wildlife/ambient recording new [Re: Hewesy]
      #428323 - 01/03/07 04:02 PM
Many thanks John. They seem to have a very good beginner's guide on their website now, which is pretty useful.

Mcguirk, I think Sound Control is the way to go, perhaps I can wangle a visit before Ikea...!

Cheers all,

Hewesy

Edited by Hewesy (01/03/07 04:02 PM)


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