ASMR Gear • Recorder Microphones


The Best of Recorder Microphones

This guide will tell you what they are, who the major players are, and all about my top 3 recommendations. There’s a wealth of information and entertainment below, including some hands-on videos. Lead on!

What is a Recorder Microphone anyway?

Firstly, a recorder microphone can typically double as a USB microphone, so there’s that. Then they can do so much more.

Recorder microphones can record anywhere without a computer, eliminating computer noise, if you have that problem, and doing so in high quality.

Recorders can be more than just a mic. Many act as an audio interface, taking input from other mics into the mix. They are highly versatile devices loved by professionals.

The most common brands in ASMR are Tascam and Zoom. Zoom is currently stealing the show, with upgrades to familiar models such as the H4n that push it ahead of the competition.

Zoom Recorder Microphones

Zoom is the behemoth for recorder microphones in the ASMR community, manufacturing the ubiquitous Zoom H4n (Pro) microphone that doubles as something to record a 3Dio or high quality microphone pair.

While the H4n Pro will hit the sweet spot for many artists, the other recorder microphones in the series worth looking at are the H2n, the H5 and the H6.

If you want a “tl;dr” version of the comparison, it goes something like this:

• The H2n is a fantastic microphone that, thanks to the H2n capsule system, is a better USB mic than the H4n (Pro). Unless you really must have XLR ports, the H2n is my first choice.

• The H4n Pro is the first model with XLR ports for those external, high power microphones.

• The H5 and H6 are more potent versions of the H4n Pro, with capsule options more like the H2n, plus they have XLR ports.

Since the Zoom H2n is such an excellent USB microphone and, in the end, it felt more comparable to those than the H4n Pro, etcetera, I dealt with it in the same category as the Blue Yeti.

See it my Top 3 USB Microphones Guide.

If you really must have those XLR ports however, keep reading!


My Top 3 Recorder Microphones

Zoom H4n ProZoom H5Zoom H6

Zoom H4n Pro (£175+)

Zoom H4n Pro Recorder Microphone

I mentioned earlier that the Zoom H4n Pro is a common piece of gear among growing ASMRtists. When I started following Pandora ASMR, it was right there being used as a microphone recorder for a 3Dio. Heather Feather (the legend herself) also uses the Zoom H4n. That seems to be a common use for it, not just for the 3Dio but for microphone matched pairs as well. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t use the Zoom H4n Pro as a microphone in it’s own right.

So, having just gushed over the excellent Zoom H2n previously, why would you use a Zoom H4n Pro as a microphone? Because it’s versatile. While you can plug microphones into its XLR ports, the H4n is also a good stereo mic in its own right. It gives you options. ASMRtists can use it as a main mic as ASMinotauR will show us. (He is also using a Canon 700D and Manfrotto tripod in this video.)

Thanks to ASMinotauR

Zoom have improved the mic over the years and the 2016 edition is especially silent. Clean, crisp audio for clear whispering without white noise in the background. The different wind guards are also fun to play with. Some like the fuzzy one to give you a kind of head massage, while others like touching and scratching the foam wind guard. Even without a guard, artists find ways to play with it with ear picks and other objects.

Now it’s also super important to go over the Zoom H4n Pro as a microphone recorder. The XLR ports on the bottom of the Zoom H4n Pro allow you to take your ASMR to the next level with professional condenser mics that require phantom power. That includes mics such as the popular 3Dio (the one with the ears). Massage ASMR can show us how he has his Zoom H4n set up with a Rode NT-5 microphone matched pair.

Thanks to Massage ASMR

Overall the Zoom H4n Pro is a beast of a device. Relatively inexpensive, it allows you to record audio out of the box anywhere without an additional microphone or even a computer. It also gives you a clear upgrade path to professional grade microphones that require XLR and phantom power. The Zoom H4n Pro is an investment in your future.

H4n Pro Description by Zoom

H4n Pro Description by Zoom

NEW. AND IMPROVED. Zoom H4n Pro.
Record cleaner, clearer, and closer than ever before.

Brilliant Four-Track Audio Recording for Music, Film, Podcasting, and Beyond
At Zoom we’re always developing new ideas to improve the performance and function of our Handy Recorders. With the H4n Pro, we’ve taken everything creators love about the H4n and brought it to the next level.

The H4n Pro isn’t just improved, it’s superior in every way. With advanced X/Y microphones, incredibly natural-sounding preamps, and a super-low noise floor, you can record everything from the Indy 500 to the fluttering of a hummingbird with extraordinary realism.

Welcome to the new gold standard in field recording.

The Filmmaker’s Favorite
The H4n Pro is packed with features that make it perfect for capturing audio for film. The onboard X/Y microphones deliver spectacular stereo imaging, and two combo input jacks allow you to use your favorite microphones as well. It also includes a headphone/line out jack to easily send high-definition stereo directly to your camera.

Unmatched In Concert
The Pro is perfect for capturing live performances. Capable of handling up to 140 dB SPL, it can record everything from ear-splitting heavy metal to bass-heavy EDM. Take a line-level* stereo feed from your mixing console and capture room ambience with the X/Y microphones to put your listeners front row center.

Podcasters and Journalists
The H4n Pro provides the essential combination of mic’ing versatility, portability, and superior audio necessary for impactful storytelling. With support for plug-in power, you can use a lavalier to mic up your subject for podcasts or interviews. Record time-stamped WAV files to sync with video footage in post-production, or embed superior audio directly on your video in real-time through a ?” stereo feed.

Mobile Studio
With overdubbing and punch-in features, as well as studio-grade instrument effects and emulators, you can create songs from start to finish. The Pro also functions as a 2-input/2-output USB audio interface for PC or Mac. Launch your favorite recording/editing software or use the included Cubase LE to start creating.

High-Performance Mic Preamps
The Pro features the same high performance, low-noise mic preamps as our acclaimed Zoom H5 and H6 Handy Recorders, with recording and playback at resolutions up to 24-bit/96 kHz. The improved noise floor (-120 dBu EIN) captures audio at lower volumes with less noise and fewer artifacts.

Built-in Stereo Recording
X/Y stereo recording covers a wide area while capturing sound sources in the center with clarity and definition. The angle of its two unidirectional condenser mics can easily be changed from 90 degrees for a tightly focused stereo image to 120 degrees for a wider image simply by twisting the mic capsules.

The H4n Pro provides an onboard MS decoder for Mid-Side recording with external microphones. This allows you to adjust the width of the stereo image, making it especially useful for sound design and broadcasting.

Inputs and Outputs
Inputs
The two locking combo connectors accept either XLR or ¼” balanced/unbalanced phone cables, handling mic- and line-level signals as well as instrument-level signals. Phantom Power of +24 or +48 volts can be applied to both inputs. Plus, there’s a stereo 1/8” Mic jack for external audio sources, including lavalier microphones requiring 2.5 volts of plug-in power.

Outputs
A stereo ⅛” Line/Phone Out, with dedicated volume control, allows for headphone monitoring or connection to your DSLR, while the built-in monophonic speaker allows for quick playback reference. In addition, a USB port enables fast file transfer, firmware updates, and use as a 2-in/2-out audio interface for computers.

Form Factor
A new rubberized, ergonomic body is perfect for use in the field or with a camera, while new locking XLR/TRS connectors ensure your mic cables stay secure. Highly portable, the H4n Pro can travel anywhere for convenient mobile recording.

Three Ways to Record
STEREO MODE uses the built-in X/Y microphones (or external mics) and is convenient for recording live performances, acoustic instruments, dialogue, and more.

In 4CH MODE, you can record with the built-in X/Y mics and two external inputs simultaneously, great for getting live room sound and a stereo board feed at the same time.

MTR MODE (Multi-track Mode) turns your device into a four-track studio, with built-in effects, overdub functions, and the ability to work with previously recorded sound files.

Recording Functions
Pre-Record (for STEREO/4CH mode)
Pre-Record ensures that you’ll never miss the start of a great take. The device is continuously listening, keeping the previous two seconds* of audio whenever you hit RECORD.

*One second when recording at 96k or working 4CH mode.

Auto-Record (for STEREO/4CH mode)
Auto-Record automatically starts recording when a user-set sound level is detected. There’s also an Auto-Record Stop function, which ends the recording as soon as the incoming signal drops below the user-set stop level.

Remote Control
Use the optional RC4 remote to control the H4n Pro. The RC4 allows you to start and stop recording, fast forward and rewind through your files, switch the input source, and set recording/playback levels at a distance while eliminating handling noise.

Onboard Effects
The Pro offers studio-grade effects and emulators to enhance your recordings. Choose from a variety of effects, including compression, limiting, reverb, delay, echo, a low-cut filter, and more.

There’s an onboard metronome and tuner, along with dozens of amp models and effects crafted for guitar and bass. Additionally, you can loop playback and adjust pitch and speed independently, making the H4n Pro a perfect tool for phrase training.

Supported File Types
The Pro records audio in both WAV and MP3 formats. It supports 16- and 24-bit WAV audio at sampling rates of 44.1, 48, or 96 kHz. The WAV files are automatically time-stamped, making them Broadcast Wave Format (BWF) compliant, allowing precise synchronization in post-production.

Battery Life and Recording Times
The H4n Pro runs on 2 AA batteries, providing up to 6 hours in normal operation, or up to 10 hours when operating in STAMINA mode. An optional AD-14 AC adapter allows the H4n Pro to be powered from any standard wall outlet.

The H4n Pro accepts SD and SDHC cards up to 32 gigabytes. The charts below show maximum recording times for different file types and card sizes. (Charts)

Edit and Record Software Included

The H4n Pro comes with free download licenses for Steinberg’s Cubase LE music production software and WaveLab LE audio editing software, representing a complete audio production toolkit. Create your own music utilizing the Pro’s USB audio interface function or expand your capabilities with Steinberg’s renowned audio software.

Currently shipping with:
Cubase LE 9.5 for Mac OS X 10.11/MacOS10.12/MacOS 10.13 and Windows 7/8.x/10
Wavelab LE 9.5 for Mac OS X 10.11/MacOS10.12/MacOS 10.13 and Windows 7/8.x/10

For information on license activation and upgrades, visit our Steinberg Software support page.

Features at a Glance
• Four-track simultaneous recording
• High-fidelity mic preamps
• Built-in X/Y stereo microphones, adjustable between 90˚ and 120˚
• Record up to 140 dB SPL with X/Y microphones
• Two mic/line level inputs with XLR/TRS combo connectors
• Stereo 1/8″ Mic In mini phone jack
• +24 or +48V phantom power for main inputs and Plug-in power (2.5V) via Mic/Line In mini phone jack
• Output/headphone jack with dedicated volume control
• New rubberized and ergonomic body with improved 1.9 inch backlit LCD display
• Built-in reference speaker for fast playback
• Records directly to SD and SDHC cards up to 32 GB
• Supports up to 24-bit/96 kHz audio in BWF-compliant WAV or a variety of MP3 formats
• Onboard Mid-Side decoding
• Internal mixdown: four-track to stereo and stereo to dual mono
• Up to 99 marks per recording
• Built-in effects, including compression/limiting, low-cut filtering, modulation, reverb/delay and amp models
• Normalize (maximum gain) and Divide (file splitting) functions
• Chromatic tuner and metronome
• Loop playback with user-defined start and stop points
• Variable playback speed, from 50% to 150%, without affecting pitch
• Variable pitch without affecting playback speed
• USB port for file transfer to and from computer
• 2-in/2-out USB audio interface for PC/Mac computers
• Mounts to mic stand or tripod, or directly to DSLR with optional Hot Shoe adapter
• Runs on 2 standard AA alkaline or NiMH rechargeable batteries with up to 6 hours of operation (up to 10 hours in Stamina mode)

Accessories
What’s included with the H4n Pro:
• H4n Pro Handy Recorder
• Protective case
• 2 x AA batteries
• Operation manual
• Download license for Steinberg Cubase LE and WaveLab LE software


Music, film, something random like ASMR, whatever you like to do, this device has you covered. All this, at a great price. It’s obvious why the Zoom H4n is popular for ASMRtists. The reviews confirm it. You’ll love owning the Zoom H4n Pro.

There’s an official fuzzy windscreen too. Adorable.

Zoom H5 (£183+)

Zoom H5 Recorder Microphone

So far the Zoom H2n has offered us a versatile microphone recorder and the Zoom H4n Pro has added XLR capability as the headline features. The upgrades to the Zoom H4n Pro in 2016 brought it very close to matching the H5. With the H6 still to come, what could the Zoom H5 possibly offer?

There are numerous improvements on the H5 over the H4n Pro, the most obvious being the capsule system that it shares with the H6.

H5 Description by Zoom

H5 Description by Zoom

The Zoom H5
Evolved recording in more ways than one.

Our products are constantly evolving to meet the needs of the creators who use them. With the H5 Handy Recorder, the tradition continues. The H5 provides four tracks of simultaneous recording and, like our flagship H6, it can use all Zoom interchangeable input capsules, allowing you to choose the best microphone for every recording situation. The flexible and powerful H5 provides everything you need to create multitrack recordings, audio for video, and state-of-the-art podcasting, broadcasting and electronic newsgathering.

Louder. Closer. Cleaner.
X/Y recording allows you to cover a wide area yet still capture sound sources in the center with clarity and definition, making it ideal for all types of live stereo recording. The XYH-5 X/Y microphone capsule included with the H5 provides two matched unidirectional condenser microphones set at a 90 degree angle. These are housed within an advanced shockmount that employs rugged external mic wires and rubberized material to isolate the unit from the H5 body and thus minimize vibration and handling noise. The design of the XYH-5 also allows the H5 to handle louder sounds than any other Handy Recorder model: 140 dB SPL, to be precise—equivalent to the sound of a jet aircraft from less than 200 feet away—enabling you to capture sounds louder, closer, and cleaner than you ever could before.

Six interchangeable mic capsules that can be swapped out as easily as the lenses of a camera

XYH-5 X/Y CAPSULE
LOUDER. CLOSER. XLEANER.
The XYH-5 X/Y microphone capsule provides two matched unidirectional condenser microphones set at a 90 degree angle. These mics are housed within an advanced shockmount that employs rugged external mic wires and rubberized material to minimize vibration and handling noise, making the XYH-5 ideal for location videography and live broadcast/podcast applications. The design of the XYH-5 also allows it to handle extremely loud sounds—140 dB SPL, to be precise (equivalent to the sound of a jet aircraft from less than 200 feet away)—making it perfect for capturing the sound of live rock concerts and for electronic news gathering.

MSH-6 MS CAPSULE
THE ULTIMATE IN IMAGE CONTROL
Welcome to “mid side” recording, a whole new level of precision in your ability to shape sound. The MSH-6 Capsule contains dual mic elements — a forward-facing, unidirectional mic (the “Mid”) and a side-facing, bi-directional mic (the “Side”). Together with the H5’s onboard MS decoder, they capture a fully mono-compatible stereo image that can actually be adjusted after recording — ideal for film, video, and television projects.

XYH-6 X/Y CAPSULE
LIVE RECORDING PERSONIFIED
The XYH-6 capsule employs two angled high-quality unidirectional mics which are sensitive to signals coming from the front but less to signals coming from the sides and rear. X/Y recording is optimum when you want to cover a wide area yet still capture a strong center image, making it the perfect choice for all types of live stereo recording.

SGH-6 SHOTGUN CAPSULE
ALL THE PICKUP, HALF THE LENGTH
The optional SGH-6 Shotgun Capsule adds a professional-quality, highly directional microphone to the H5, creating an ideal audio setup for film, video, live theater, and ENG (electronic newsgathering) applications. Three elements combined with digital signal processing inside the SGH-6 give you the highly directional pickup power of a conventional shotgun mic in a unit only half the size — ideal for recording dialogue and narration with no intrusive mic in the scene.

EXH-6 DUAL XLR/TRS COMBO CAPSULE
EXPANDED CONNECTIVITY
Plugging in the optional EXH-6 Dual XLR/TRS Combo Capsule gives you two more inputs. This allows you to connect up to four discrete signals from external microphones, instruments, mixers, or portable music players to fully realize your audio vision. It’s all the power of a professional recording studio, right in the palm of your hand.

SSH-6 STEREO SHOTGUN CAPSULE
THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
The SSH-6 Stereo Shotgun capsule adds a super-directional mic for capturing sounds directly in front, plus a bi-directional one for capturing ambient sounds. It’s ideal for location recording, allowing videographers and content creators to capture dialogue or narration with the center microphone and mixing in the desired amount of environmental sound captured by the side microphone.

The Hardware

Ins & Outs
In addition to standard transport controls (stop, play/pause, record, rewind, and fast-forward), the front panel of the H5 offers dedicated record arming buttons for each track, which double as mute switches during playback. A Hold switch disables all front panel buttons to prevent accidental operation during recording. The H5 can be attached to a camera strap or, with the use of our optional Hot Shoe mount, mounted directly to a DSLR or camcorder.

The H5 also provides everything you need to connect with the outside world. Dual combo XLR/TRS inputs that can handle both mic- and line-level signals allow you to connect external microphones and line-level devices like mixers, portable music players, effects processors, and electronic keyboards—even electric guitars or basses equipped with active electronics. Each H5 input has its own dedicated gain control knob, located beneath a protective bar that prevents accidental movement during handling. The supplied XYH-5 X/Y capsule also provides a secondary input for connecting stereo mic- or line-level signal via a ⅛” mini phone jack. The H5 supports a +4 dB (professional) input level and utilizes the same high-quality preamps as our flagship H6, ensuring great-sounding recordings in all sonic environments.

There are lots of output options as well. A dedicated Line Out with adjustable volume allows you to send a stereo audio output from the H5 to the mic input of a video camera or other device without the need for an attenuator cable. In addition, there’s a separate headphone output with a dedicated volume control. You can use both outputs simultaneously to route audio to your DSLR while monitoring over headphones. There’s also a built-in speaker for fast access playback, and a USB port which allows the H5 to be used as an audio interface for your computer or iPad.

Power and Storage
Just 2 AA batteries—either alkaline or rechargeable NiMH—are required for power. When using alkaline batteries, the H5 will operate for more than 15 hours, even while recording continuously. You can also use an optional AC adapter to power the H5 without batteries. The H5 records directly to SD and SDHC cards up to 32 gigabytes. Maximum recording time is dependent upon the card size and file type; for example, a 2GB SD card can hold approximately fourteen hours of stereo 320 kbps MP3 files, three hours of stereo 16-bit / 44.1 kHz WAV files, or an hour of stereo 24-bit / 96 kHz WAV files.

The Software

File types
The H5 can operate in two different modes—choose stereo for two-track stereo recording, or multitrack for four-track recording (in either stereo pairs or individual mono tracks)—and it captures audio in the two most commonly used file formats: WAV and MP3.

The WAV files recorded by the H5 can be 16- or 24-bit, with sampling rates of 44.1, 48, or 96 kHz*. They are automatically time-stamped and thus Broadcast Wave Format (BWF) compliant, allowing for precise synchronization in video post-production. MP3 files, while slightly lower in fidelity, are much smaller than WAV files and are thus easier to email and post on social networking sites—allowing you to quickly and easily share your creations around the world.
* 96 kHz sampling rate available in stereo mode only

Signal Processing
The H5’s onboard effects allow you to add polish to your recordings. Compression and limiting compensate for fluctuations in input level, while a low-cut filter helps eliminate wind noise, blowing, and other kinds of low frequency rumble. There’s even an onboard metronome and chromatic/guitar/bass tuner.

Other features
But the list of H5 features doesn’t end there. There’s playback looping, pitch change, and variable playback speed (without pitch change) to help with phrase training, as well as a pre-record function that keeps the H5 continuously recording in the background, keeping the previous two seconds before you hit RECORD.

There’s an Auto-Record function that allows recording to begin automatically when a certain level of sound is detected and an equivalent Auto-Stop function that ends recording when the sound drops below a user-designated level, either immediately or up to 5 seconds later. And then there’s Backup-Record—the ultimate safety net.* It enables the H5 to automatically record a duplicate set of stereo tracks with 12dB less input gain. Even if your original track is distorted, chances are the Backup version will be fine!
* 44.1 and 48 kHz WAV files only.

You can even use your H5 as an audio interface, complete with a Loop Back function that makes it easy to add narration to music playback. Simply connect the H5 to your computer or iPad** via USB, launch your favorite DAW or use the included Wavelab LE software, and start creating a masterpiece.
** Apple Camera Connection Kit required.

State of the art editing with every recorder
The Zoom H5 comes with free download licenses for Steinberg’s Cubase LE music production software and WaveLab LE audio editing software, providing not just the ability to capture superior audio in every box, but to do spectacular things with it.

Whether you wish to create your own music utilizing the Handy Recorder’s USB audio interface function or take your recordings to a more professional level, Steinberg’s powerful and state-of-the-art audio software used by creators around the world now comes with every Zoom Handy Recorder purchase.

Currently shipping with:
Cubase LE8 for Mac OS X 10.9/10.10 and Windows 7/8/8.1
WaveLab LE9 for Mac OS X 10.10/10.11 and Windows 7/8/8.1/10

For information on license activation and upgrades, visit our Steinberg Software support page.

Features at a Glance
• Uses a system of interchangeable input capsules that can be swapped out as easily as the lens of a camera
• Includes detachable X/Y capsule (XYH-5) with extended signal capacity and shockmounted mics for reduced handling noise
• Compatible with all Zoom input capsules
• Four-track simultaneous recording
• Large backlit LCD display
• Records directly to SD and SDHC cards up to 32 GB
• Up to 24-bit/96 kHz audio in BWF-compliant WAV or a variety of MP3 formats
• Two mic/line inputs with XLR/TRS combo connectors, each with selectable phantom power and -20 dB pad
• Analog-style gain controls for each input
• Protective “roll-bar” type covers prevent accidental movement of gain controls
• Plug-in power (2.5 volts)
• Built-in effects, including low-cut filtering, compression, and limiting
• Chromatic tuner and metronome
• Auto-record, Pre-record, and Backup-record functions mean that you’ll never miss that perfect take
• MS decoding
• Multitrack to stereo internal mixdown
• Normalize, Divide, and Trim editing
• Voice memo and up to 99 marks per recording
• A/B loop playback
• Variable playback speed and variable pitch without affecting playback speed
• Multichannel and stereo USB audio interface for PC/Mac/iPad with loop back function
• Mountable to DSLR or camcorder with optional HS-01 Hot Shoe Mount adapter
• Uses two standard AA alkaline or NiMH rechargeable batteries
• Over 15 hours of operation with alkaline batteries

Accessories
Here’s what comes included with the H5.
• Operation manual
• XYH-5 X/Y mic capsule
• AA size (LR6) battery x 2
• USB cable
• Foam windscreen
• Case
• ​Steinberg WaveLab LE software download
• Steinberg Cubase LE software download


There are so many features in the Zoom H5’s wall of text that for the extra money over the H4n Pro there’s bound to be something that’s indispensable to each owner.

Of all the reviews, videos and forums I looked through searching for a killing blow that the H5 was going to land on the H4n Pro, I didn’t honestly find one. The 2016 version of the H4n Pro provides the same quality as the H5, yet the H5 has numerous extended abilities over the basic H4n Pro. In the end it boils down to whether you’re going to find value in the extra versatility of the H5. Both recorders are excellent whichever one you go for.

Overall we have something that is much the same as the H4n Pro, with additional features for a little extra money. On Amazon the Zoom H5 is a highly rated device that buyers love, so perhaps the easiest way to decide between them is to check the price.

Zoom H6 (£259+)

Zoom H6 Recorder Microphone

The H6 is Zoom’s flagship model of microphone recorder. As such it’s probably overkill for the vast majority of ASMRtists, which is why so many buy the H4n Pro. But let’s say for a moment that you might be interested in overkill, because that’s just who you are. The Zoom H6 is a beast and you will love it.

H6 Description by Zoom

H6 Description by Zoom

THE GROUNDBREAKING
ZOOM H6
It will change the way you think about recording forever.

Here at Zoom we’ve been building innovative products for the past thirty years. But with the revolutionary H6 six-track recorder, the bar is raised further still. Four interchangeable input capsules – X/Y, MS, Shotgun, and Dual XLR/TRS Combo – make the H6 the ultimate chameleon of the audio world, and its advanced preamps make it the best-sounding one too. Whatever your application – live recording, professional film/video work, live broadcast or electronic news gathering – the H6 can handle it with ease.

The most versatile portable recorder ever.

Six interchangeable mic capsules that can be swapped out as easily as the lenses of a camera

XYH-6 X/Y CAPSULE
LIVE RECORDING PERSONIFIED
The H6’s included XY capsule employs two angled high-quality unidirectional mics which are sensitive to signals coming from the front but less to signals coming from the sides and rear. X/Y recording is optimum when you want to cover a wide area yet still capture a strong center image, making it the perfect choice for all types of live stereo recording.

MSH-6 MS CAPSULE
THE ULTIMATE IN IMAGE CONTROL
Welcome to “mid side” recording, a whole new level of precision in your ability to shape sound. The MSH-6 Capsule contains dual mic elements — a forward-facing, unidirectional mic (the “Mid”) and a side-facing, bi-directional mic (the “Side”). Together with the H5’s onboard MS decoder, they capture a fully mono-compatible stereo image that can actually be adjusted after recording — ideal for film, video, and television projects.

XYH-5 X/Y CAPSULE
LOUDER. CLOSER. XLEANER.
The XYH-5 X/Y microphone capsule provides two matched unidirectional condenser microphones set at a 90 degree angle. These mics are housed within an advanced shockmount that employs rugged external mic wires and rubberized material to minimize vibration and handling noise, making the XYH-5 ideal for location videography and live broadcast/podcast applications. The design of the XYH-5 also allows it to handle extremely loud sounds—140 dB SPL, to be precise (equivalent to the sound of a jet aircraft from less than 200 feet away)—making it perfect for capturing the sound of live rock concerts and for electronic news gathering.

SGH-6 SHOTGUN CAPSULE
ALL THE PICKUP, HALF THE LENGTH
The optional SGH-6 Shotgun Capsule adds a professional-quality, highly directional microphone to the H5, creating an ideal audio setup for film, video, live theater, and ENG (electronic newsgathering) applications. Three elements combined with digital signal processing inside the SGH-6 give you the highly directional pickup power of a conventional shotgun mic in a unit only half the size — ideal for recording dialogue and narration with no intrusive mic in the scene.

EXH-6 DUAL XLR/TRS COMBO CAPSULE
EXPANDED CONNECTIVITY
Plugging in the optional EXH-6 Dual XLR/TRS Combo Capsule gives you two more inputs. This allows you to connect up to four discrete signals from external microphones, instruments, mixers, or portable music players to fully realize your audio vision. It’s all the power of a professional recording studio, right in the palm of your hand.

SSH-6 STEREO SHOTGUN CAPSULE
THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
The SSH-6 Stereo Shotgun capsule adds a super-directional mic for capturing sounds directly in front, plus a bi-directional one for capturing ambient sounds. It’s ideal for location recording, allowing videographers and content creators to capture dialogue or narration with the center microphone and mixing in the desired amount of environmental sound captured by the side microphone.

Live Concert Recording
Capture the performance on a whole new level.
Do more than just record the show: Document the experience. Use the X/Y capsule to capture the overall sound in stereo, then use the other four inputs for a direct feed from the mixing board, or for external spot mics to pick up specific instruments and the room sound. With the H6, you can relive that great performance night after night.

Location Videography
Get the sound that completes the scene.
Whether you slide it onto your camera strap or attach it directly to your DSLR with our Hot Shoe mount, the H6 is the essential audio recorder for location videography. Its supplied MSH-6 mic capsule and onboard MS decoding, plus the ability to record up to 6 tracks simultaneously, gives you plenty of options in post-production.

Electronic Newsgathering
Deliver the full story, down to the last detail.
Extend your range with the optional SGH-6 Shotgun mic. Get every word of that headline-making interview. Capture breaking news with maximum impact, then mix and prepare the audio for broadcast while still in the field. With the H6, you can do onsite reporting that really resonates.

Making Music
Make every chord, every note, every riff really sing.
Plug in the optional EXH-6 Dual XLR/TRS capsule and your H6 becomes a personal 6-track studio with six discrete line- or mic-level inputs, each with its own volume control and pad. Record and overdub up to 99 takes in high-resolution audio, then mix down to a stereo MP3 for posting to your favorite website. With the H6, the road from great idea to perfect track just got a lot shorter.


It certainly is versatile and the Zoom H6 is aimed at a wide variety of users. For ASMRtists and YouTube creators it was the sections aimed at videographers and musicians that leapt out.

In particular it’s all that post-production and mixing potential that you’d find useful. You can record with up to six microphones. If you have a spacial audio setup in mind, this is your recorder. To give you an idea of what this magical box of tricks can do, I have the charismatic Ray Ortega here to give you a run down.

(The H4n Pro released in 2016 is much improved over the old H4n that Ray talks about in this video.)

Thanks to Ray Ortega

I went searching for intrepid ASMRtists making use of all this power at their fingertips, yet, so far all I’ve seen has been a lot of ASMR videos that use the Zoom H6 simply as a stereo microphone to tap on (and yes, it sounds great). What hasn’t been tapped is the full potential of the Zoom H6. Perhaps you are the ambitious ASMRtist who will change that.

Overall the Zoom H6 is probably the best microphone recorder there is on the market. Buyers agree. As I write this the H6 by itself is listed as an Amazon #1 Best Seller. It’s highly praised wherever you look. An incredible machine. You’ll love using it.



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