Zoom F8n

Zoom F8n Review

The Zoom F8n is the latest F-series audio recorders from Zoom aimed at filmmakers. The F8n is an evolutionary upgrade from the original F8 with some useful hardware and software upgrades including advanced hybrid limiters, AutoMix, simultaneous recording to a computer as an audio interface and internally to the F8n, timecode generator that keeps time while the recorder is powered off for up to 2 hours, mic/line selectable inputs, pro line-level balanced outputs, and many more features that pros demand. And this is available at a groundbreaking price that makes it accessible to many independent filmmakers - $1000 USD at the time of this review. Let’s run through a few of the highlights in this video.

If you’d like to learn how to get the most out of the Zoom F8 or F8n, please consider my course over at our school.

Links to gear used in this video:

Zoom F8n Audio Field Recorder

Orca OR-28 Sound Bag - I have the slightly larger OR-30. Great, sturdy bag. The OR-28 was made specifically for recorders the size of the F8/F8n

TA3F to XLRM Adapter - to adapt the outputs from mini to standard XLR. This allows you to run sound to pro-level cameras, wireless headsets for directors, producers, or script supervisors, or any other audio device with balanced XLR inputs.

JuiceBox V-mount Battery - 95 Watt Hour

Aputure COB120t - Key light for the talking head portions of this video

Aputure Light Dome II - Newer version of the big soft box with faster setup and gel holder

Lupo Superpanel Full Color 30 - RGBW 1x1 panel light for the funky background colors

LED GO E268C Bi-color Edge-lit LED Pad - super thin and light, making it a great soft light source for tight spaces

Vistek Canada (also ship to USA)

Holdan UK

Sennheiser MKH 8050 - This is the boom mic used to record this episode

Panasonic GH5 Camera - Used for all of the product shots

Panasonic 12-35mm f/2.8 OIS Lens - this is the the lens I use more than any other on the GH5s

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Music Copyright 2018 by Cary Judd. Used with permission.

Sound for Video Session: Zoom F8/F8n Basic Settings

What are the basic things you need to setup to get recording quickly with the Zoom F8 or F8n? We cover them here!

This is an excerpt from my upcoming course, Getting the Most From Your Zoom F8/F8n. Please consider my sound for film classes available over at the school.

Gear and links discussed/used to record this episode: 

Zoom F8n Audio Field Recorder

Sennheiser MKH 8050 Supercardioid Boom Microphone (used to record this segment)

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Zoom F8n iPad/iPhone App

If you use a Zoom F8 or F8n to record audio, there’s an iPad/iPhone app that allows you to wirelessly control your audio recorder. In this episode, we run through the features and settings available on the app to make setting up and operating your Zoom F8 and F8n easier and more convenient.

This is an segment from my upcoming course on the Zoom F8 & F8n which will be released in the next few weeks. If you’d like to learn how to make great dialogue audio for your film and video projects, please have a look at my courses at the school, including one that focuses on processing dialogue audio!

Links to gear discussed and used to shoot this episode:

Zoom F8n Audio Field Recorder

Zoom F8 The older version released in 2015. Still great! (While supplies last) - This episode was recorded with the Zoom F8

Panasonic GH5s Camera - my favorite small camera for video

Panasonic 12-35mm f/2.8 OIS Lens - this is the the lens I use more than any other on the GH5s

Sennheiser MKH 8050 Boom Microphone

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd 

Music - MzA - Copyright 2017 by Cary Judd, used with permission

Sound for Video Session: Zoom F8/F8n Setting Gain Trim

In this week’s session, we share an excerpt from the upcoming online course, “Getting the Most From Your Zoom F8/F8n Recorder.” In this particular segment, we cover how to set the gain trim, the various track knob modes, and demonstrate how to optimize your gain in relation to the limiters. Lots of fun!

Gear and links discussed/used to record this episode: 

Zoom F8n Audio Field Recorder (2018)

Zoom F8 Audio Field Recorder (2015):

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd

Outro music licensed from Artlist: Keep an Eye by Back to Dream. Artlist provides high quality music tracks for your film and video projects. You can receive two months off an Artlist account by using our link.

Zoom F8n Audio Recorder: Initial Impressions

At the National Association of Broadcasters meeting earlier this year, Zoom announced their update to the F8 audio field recorder - the F8n. The focus of this update was to address many of the things that users complained about on the original - hybrid limiters that were ok, but not perfect, line inputs only on 1/4”, mediocre headphone amp, and consumer line level output among others. I had a chance to work with the F8n for a few hours. Let’s see how they did addressing these items. From my point of view, it looks like the F8n is a very nice step up from the original F8.

Links to gear discussed and used to shoot this episode:

Zoom F8n Audio Field Recorder

Zoom F4 Audio Field Recorder (similar but with 4 microphone inputs, monochrome screen, no app control)

Zoom F-Control surface with linear faders - my favorite way to mix when working from a table or cart.

Juicebox V-Mount Cine Battery - good way to power the F8n, F4, F8 all day long

D-tap to 4 pin Hirose Cable - to feed power from cine battery to F8n, F8, F4

Remote Audio BDS V4 Battery Distribution System

Remote Audio Hi-Q Battery (98 watt-hours) - this is a battery that is better suited for use in a sound bag, smaller than most cine batteries but still lots of capacity

Sennheiser MKH8050 Boom Microphone - this is the microphone I used

Schoeps CMC641 - this is the microphone my daughter used

Aputure COB 120t - This is the light I used as a key in the talking head clips

Aputure Light Dome Soft Box - Used to soften the key light

Lupo DayLED Fresnel Light with Barn Doors - Used for the “rim/hair” light

Blackmagic design Ursa Mini Pro Cinema Camera - used for the talking head clips and some of the product shots

Sigma ART 24-70mm f/2.8 OS Lens (Canon EF Mount)

Panasonic GH5 - Used for some of the product shots, the crispier shots

Panasonic 12-35mm f/2.8 OIS Lens - incredibly versatile lens that is on the GH5 most of the time

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd 

Music - MzA by Cary Judd, used with permission

Zoom F8n: First Look

The Zoom F8 audio recorder and mixer changed the location audio world two years ago when it was released. Zoom showed that they could make some very good preamps and most of the features pros expect in their recorders including timecode, dual card recording, and an incredibly robust build all for a price that sits under $1000 USD. 

Of course the F8 wasn’t perfect. The hybrid limiters weren’t perfect, the inputs were only line level when using a TRS cable, and the headphone amp was a little rough to listen to all day. It appears that Zoom heard the customer feedback and starting summer/fall, the F8n will address many of the few remaining hardware issues.

Gear used to shoot this episode:

RODE Reporter Microphone

RODE iXLR Adapter (Record a dynamic XLR microphone to iPhone or iPad)

Panasonic GH5 - My favorite, small camera for handheld use with a great image stabilizer

Panasonic 12-35mm f/2.8 OIS Lens - incredibly versatile lens that is on the GH5S most of the time

Copyright 2018 by Curtis Judd 

Music - MzA by Cary Judd, used with permission.