10/30/2011

Zoom R16 : Anonymous 's user review

4

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Something about this is special. I believe it may have something to do with the fact that the Zoom R16 is sort of a hybrid device. It can in fact function fully as an audio interface, but it shines in its ability to do digital recordings anywhere with either its two built in microphones or up to 8 microphones plugged in. It bridges a gap that quite frankly needs to be bridged between the audio interface and the potable digital recorder. It is nothing that should be considered particularly interesting, but its very existence in the realm of options is certainly something to thank.

The best part about the Zoom R16 is the fact that despite the fact that it could be an interface, the latency can pretty much be a non issue since you can record straight to the device. Its integration with computers is a little finicky and latency is not the best when you use it as a straight up interface, but in truth, it is not the main draw of the device. Its ability for the faders to be used to mess with automation is a huge plug. It is a huge joy to have many many features consolidated into one small, inexpensive device.

There is not really a getting started issue to this. It is a digital recorder, and while Zoom's menu systems take a bit of getting used to, the operation becomes incredibly smooth once you have the hang of things.

My only hangup on this unit is that its preamps are not the most interesting things in the world. They do not drive a whole lot of gain to anything, so more esoteric microphones are not an option when it comes to the Zoom R16. However, it fills its role perfectly. It knows exactly what it is, and everything that Zoom sets out to do with the R16 it does very well, and very smoothly. The R16 is a fantastic option if you are looking for something that can act as an interface and still portably record large setups on the fly.