New Zoom Q8 recorder - any thoughts?

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Sal, Feb 9, 2015.

  1. Sal

    Sal Member

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    Has anyone seen the new Zoom Q8 audio video recorder coming out in March? It looks like a nice option for recording gigs, I'm wondering if anyone has had a chance to check it out.
     
  2. Badside

    Badside Member

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    I haven't been impressed by the video quality of any Zoom product so far, I'd be more tempted to go H5/H6 + dedicated video camera.

    If you want everything in one package, or you don't want to have to sync audio + video in post, then I guess it's a useful product. But wait until we get demos of the product, and not official ones which are made in a controlled environment with ideal lighting, etc.
     
  3. griggsterr

    griggsterr Member

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    The cheapest way to get good video and Audio. Get a used DSLR camera that supports video recording, then get one of the new Tascam ones
    http://tascam.com/product/dr-70d/
     
  4. -alex

    -alex Silver Supporting Member

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    At that price point i'd be worried about video quality especially a low light levels.

    You can hardly buy a good lens for that price.
     
  5. Rod

    Rod Tone is Paramount Silver Supporting Member

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    That's a great idea.. Thank you!
     
  6. Fran Guidry

    Fran Guidry Member

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    There are plenty of issues to consider when thinking video DSLRs. For those of us self-shooting gigs, the first point to watch for is max recording time. For true DSLRs (Canon or Nikon et al) shot length is nearly always limited to 30 minutes or less. If there's no one at the camera to restart the shot ...

    Panasonic Lumix G series cams have come out with kick butt video performance and will shoot video until the card fills up or the battery runs out, and it's not that hard to rig external power.

    But comparing a DSLR/ILC to the Q8, let alone the Sony MV1 or Zoom Q4, we're talking a pretty good cost bump, and that will only get you the kit lens for the camera, with a slow aperture. For low light shooting you'll need a faster lens, probably a zoom, one of these can run more than the cost of the camera. Even an inexpensive but fast prime lens will cost more than the Zoom Q8.

    Then there's the degree of complexity - how much time and energy do you want to spend on learning to shoot video? Extracting the potential performance of a DSLR/ILC camera requires technical understanding and practice, while shooting in full auto is going to give results a lot closer to the Q8 type of shooter.

    Size and weight? Where will the camera be placed? Need a tripod? Have room for one? The little music cameras and action cams have a very wide field of view, so you can cover a lot of the stage shooting from the lip, and they weigh ounces and take up inches. You can mount them on gorillapods or stick them on a mic stand with gaffer tape!

    Here's a Hawaiian music show I shot last year. I carried a G camera around and shot the audience and the beauty shots, but all the audio and the performers were captured with a Zoom Q4, fastened to a speaker stand with a Gorillapod.



    Fran
     
  7. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

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    This video is all Q4. I may have even forgot to raise up the built in stereo mics. Overall, video quality is OK, audio is great (IMHO). The camera is TINY and I have the mic connector so I can dedicate a mic stand and put it anywhere. I use it at every gig...
     
  8. dougb415

    dougb415 Member

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    I would to know the maximum recording time for the various recording options. If I can get over an hour on a 64GB card using the hi-def options, I'll pre-order one of these. It says it will take up to 128GB cards, but their compatibility chart only goes up to 64GB.
     
  9. Fran Guidry

    Fran Guidry Member

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    I got a little over 2 hours on a 64GB card at 1080p/30 on a Q4 if that info helps any. There was still some room on the card although I don't know how much at this point.

    Fran
     
  10. 78deluxe

    78deluxe Member

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    At 1080P with their specs given the .H264 compression it uses....and assuming WAv audio you should have no problem expecting over an hour record time on a 64gig card.
     
  11. mattball826

    mattball826 Member

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    canon hfr400, hfr500

    both have stereo mics, ext mic options and record full hd to 1920 60p.
    even the lower settings are very good and on a 64gb card give up to 21 hrs of recording/lowest fmps, and 5.5 hrs at highest (60p).

    low light performance beat s the q series zoom units. on board mic's are pretty close. i use a sony ext stereo mic most of the time.

    for best low light option find a use canon hfm 50,52 or 500. those have pro sumer sensors in them and are outstanding with low light lux to .1 before any grain.

    what bothered me most about the q series are the ways it sort of stutters/fluttering, typically with multiple things in view (dancers close in with stage and performers behind).
    it can get annoying as it seems the device either removes frames or uses a different compression scheme.

    canon hfr units go at around $200 new. not as small as the zoom, but better spec and better performance ime.

    my next camera will be the canon hfg20.

    if looking at the other hfr series with wifi, don't waste your time. not worth the extra money and they don't communicate well with tablets in real time which sucks. there is a good 5-7 sec lag. not a big deal if you are arming from a stage though.
     
  12. dougb415

    dougb415 Member

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    Using all 4 audio channels? I wouldn't worry if I could find compatible 128GB cards, but there aren't any listed as of yet.
     
  13. Seegs

    Seegs Member

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    Nikon D3100 video...10 minute recording length before you have to turn it off and on again...

    Originally I recorded it on a Q3 and the camera's internal mic and thought wow this is really cool...

    Later found out that the sound company (also a studio) had made a board recording which they mixed and mastered for 75€ so I took a shot...

    This is the recording I got back from the studio mixed in with a little camera mic which really added some space and ambience to the overall sound...

    The difference is huge...when I look back all of those little all in one devices sound small to me and there is no real separation or mix happening...the bottom end is woefully inadequate in comparison and without this to compare it to I would have never known!!

    My bass player just picked up a QSC Touchmix and we will be taking our recordings from that and sending them off to this same studio for mixing and mastering from now on...I'll let the guys who know how to do this take care of it so I can represent my musical endeavors in the best possible light...


     
  14. 78deluxe

    78deluxe Member

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    Yes. Remember 4 mono channels is just 2 stereo Wav files.

    Think about it. A CD is ~700megs and is over an hour long.

    so less than 1.4gigs for 4 mono channels of audio at 16bit 44.1 K

    Audio space is much smaller than video.
     
  15. 78deluxe

    78deluxe Member

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    This was using an all in one audio recorder (direct 2 channel feed - compressed no less + the built in room mics). And virtually no set up time. No real mastering done, and certainly not multi-tracked as yours seems to be.

    I'm sure this is comparable to what you would get with the Zoom Q8.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJ6f2-IKlPg

    The cam was cheap (like $150 new) in the back of the room.

    Even just using $2000 room mics, let alone the built in zoom mics will not sound like this. The combination of the board and the room is where the magic happens.
     
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  16. Seegs

    Seegs Member

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    I'm sorry but I'm missing your point?

    What I was trying to say was that I miss punch and separation and balance from most recordings made with the all in one solutions...sorry but the recording you posted is not really any different...

    The difference between my all in one recording and this were worth paying the 75€ to me...

    I did nothing except give the guy 75€...
     
  17. 78deluxe

    78deluxe Member

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    By punchy in your example I'm guessing you equate that with heavy compression.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KMZk0dPGD3E

    This was also recorded with the same little all in one.

    You want to tell me you don't hear the separation, balance, and quite frankly a more natural capture here?

    (and in my previous youtube post, it was a guy playing an upright bass and a drummer playing with brushes....not exactly what you want "punch" in a recording)
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2015
  18. dougb415

    dougb415 Member

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    That's why the Q8 looks so darn appealing... use the Zoom mics for audience noise / ambience, use the XLR ins for a soundboard feed, mix to taste afterwards.

    That QSC TouchMix-16 looks like it would be ideal for this. I am going to have to do some research on this thing!
     
  19. dougb415

    dougb415 Member

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    I wonder when it's going to be available in the US?
     
  20. dougb415

    dougb415 Member

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    I just got one. Pretty cool so far. Ordered a PNY 128GB card and a mic stand attachment.
     

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