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IronFilm

NAB 2018 sneak peak: Zoom F8n

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A Zoom rep is here in this video talking about the Zoom F8n, a "sneak peak":

 

 

The recorder is still a few months away ("July"), and details are not yet concrete (price is looking to be twelve hundred dollars). 

But some specs we can expect:
Updated GUI
Selectable line/mic input
New battery slot
Look ahead limiters
Better headphone Amp!
Improved voltage range for Hirose inputs
Anticipated July delivery with pricing around US$1200

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

Wellllll.....  heh, I never thought the MixPres were quite as appealing for value for money as the F4/F8 anyway. So this doesn't change that, it just further extends Zoom value for money dominance in the low end. 

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A little meh?? For 12 hundrends I would expect more, and happily paying even more (close to 2000) for a much better device with better insides. This is a FS5mkII kind of release.

What is the "look ahead limiters"?

I am still saving for the 10T..

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16 minutes ago, Kisaha said:

What is the "look ahead limiters"?

Splits the signal, delays one and uses the non-delayed one as the sidechain to the delayed one.

Hence, it allows it to effectively look into the future to know when the peaks are coming and be ready and waiting with the adjustment so its giving you a brick wall guarantee.

 

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1 hour ago, Kisaha said:

A little meh?? For 12 hundrends I would expect more, and happily paying even more (close to 2000) for a much better device with better insides. This is a FS5mkII kind of release.

Hold your horses, too early to call this a "FS5mk2" release! 

Welllll...  quite the opposite, we can say clearly this is *not* a FS5mk2 release! As there will be hardware improvements (while the FS5mk2 we can skeptical if there are any hardware changes....)

Remember, this F8n is only a couple of hundred dollars more than the launch price of the F8, is that worth it for a handful of improvements? (some which are very much wanted, such as line/mic switchable XLR inputs and headphone amp improvement) I reckon that is worth it for a couple of hundred dollars. 

 

 

38 minutes ago, BTM_Pix said:

Splits the signal, delays one and uses the non-delayed one as the sidechain to the delayed one.

Hence, it allows it to effectively look into the future to know when the peaks are coming and be ready and waiting with the adjustment so its giving you a brick wall guarantee.

 


This.

 

The F8n will probably have small cache, perhaps 10ms or less. So it can "look ahead". Some other recorders/software does that. 

 

 

1 hour ago, Kisaha said:

I am still saving for the 10T..


Six hundred dollars more than the F8n, will it be worth it? 

I'm very skeptical if it will be. We'll find out soon enough!

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2 hours ago, BTM_Pix said:

Splits the signal, delays one and uses the non-delayed one as the sidechain to the delayed one.

Hence, it allows it to effectively look into the future to know when the peaks are coming and be ready and waiting with the adjustment so its giving you a brick wall guarantee.

 

Thank you, I didn't know the terminology!

@IronFilm I was expecting a bit more for a new F series model, and I believe the SD worth the extra cash, hope it was closer to 1500money though, but you can't have everything! This F release doesn't put much pressure to the MixPre series.

Maybe I was too harsh, the FS5mkII is a league of its own!

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10 hours ago, Kisaha said:

Maybe I was too harsh, the FS5mkII is a league of its own!

haha, not in a good way!

I think you're a little too harsh on the F series, I reckon they hold their own (or beat) the MixPre series (with the possible exception of limiters, but depends on how hard your style of shooting is pushing them, and depends on how much of improvement this look ahead style limiters will be). 

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1 minute ago, IronFilm said:

haha, not in a good way!

I think you're a little too harsh on the F series, I reckon they hold their own (or beat) the MixPre series (with the possible exception of limiters, but depends on how hard your style of shooting is pushing them, and depends on how much of improvement this look ahead style limiters will be). 

I like them, and they are cheap (for what they are, and do), but the limiters are very important for documentary and live TV stuff we do, and I have the impression that the pre-amps are on another league, and they do not have to make a new version because their headphone's electronics sucked big time in the first place!

The F series seems more robust and straight forward too. I do not like the buttons and wheels very much though.

I haven't worked with any of the MixPre though, so I am not 100% sure. Have you?

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So long as the delay is only a few milliseconds and is consistent across all inputs, then it might not be a dealbreaker (although I could understand if it is for some people, for instance if you're using the AVX wireless which itself already has a substantial delay you might not want to add even further more on top of that). 

Anyway, let's wait and see how it is implemented. It is still early days and we know barely anything about the details of the new Zoom F8n. 

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1 hour ago, IronFilm said:

Have you used an F4/F8? Remind me again what you're using currently?

Dr680/dr100 and rent SoundDev occasionally. F4 is good, just doesn't have the extra oomph that Sound Devices devices seem to have.

Unfortunately I know noone with a MixPre to test, everyone bought an F4/F8 back in the day, they are the GH5 of sound!

Really dissapointing that Tascam do not compete in this category anymore.

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9 minutes ago, Kisaha said:

Unfortunately I know noone with a MixPre to test, everyone bought an F4/F8 back in the day, they are the GH5 of sound!


I'd argue it is bigger than that! They're like the 5Dmk2 of sound.

Actually, I'd argue it is even bigger than even that, it is like if a 5Dmk3/GH3 was the first HDSLR released! Imagine that world happening (rather than the GH1/5Dmk2/T2i/D90/etc instead that we got!).

 

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He says it is only a half millisecond delay, so practically speaking nobody will notice it. But will help further improve the existing hybrid limiters by adding another layer of clip protection. 

 

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1 hour ago, Kisaha said:

Really dissapointing that Tascam do not compete in this category anymore.

Ditto (as the DR680 and HS-P82 are looking rather outdated/overpriced now, but at least their DR60D/DR70D are still solid market leaders for their price points).

And I'm sad that Roland is also M.I.A. (R88 is looking just as outdated as say the HS-P82 is)
 

 

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2 hours ago, Kisaha said:

Dr680/dr100 and rent SoundDev occasionally. F4 is good, just doesn't have the extra oomph that Sound Devices devices seem to have.

Ah, so you haven't had a solid week+ with the F4/F8?

I'd highly recommend that, especially coming from a DR680 (like I did as well). 

And just not convinced on the MixPre series being an overall forwards improvement. 

The MixPre3 has too few channels, even the MixPre6 has too few channels. Once you subtract two to do timecode (plus remember the MixPre3/6 are each a lot more than the F4! And once you add on a few hundred more for a dedicated timecode box which the F4 doesn't need, then that further increase the price gap with the F4 even more): 


So that leaves only the MixPre10T as a realistic option (unless you're talking about niche usages or as a secondary recorder rather than your main one, in those cases I'd quite like to have a MixPre3 or MixPre6!). 

But the MixPre10T is over triple the price of the F4! 

Unless I'm doing very high channel count I don't think it is. Plus the MixPre10T doesn't seem to be designed perfectly either, with its own flaws such as awkward powering and awkward menu knob / headphone volume and a very very tiny touchscreen (I reckon that makes an iPad or similar with it an almost essential accessory? Even just for easy clear monitoring of levels).

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