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    #11
    Senior Member Peter C.'s Avatar
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    Digital recorder/mixers have gotten more complicated especially the Zoom. In a traditional mixer you have separate dials for Trim/Gain and Fader. But this isn't the case with Zoom, depending on what mode the dial can be set to control either. Normally you set the gain to a safe level that will not clip and then ride your faders during the recording to obtain the optimal levels you want. In addition if you're recording iso tracks, the faders will only effect the mix that is often sent to the camera. This provides a safety track , if you set your faders too high and clipped you could go back to the unfaded recorded iso track.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9b5w_JJQP0

    32bit is a seperate issue but related. So in 32bit you don't have to worry about setting the levels or riding the faders in regards to clipping but the problem is if you need/want to ride your faders while recording and you don't do it then you will have to do it then in post. So I prefer to not use 32bit unless I'm unable to monitor and adjust my levels during recording. But if you're simply going to normalize your recording in 32bit there is no problems if the levels are low.

    To use a video analogy if they built a camera with unlimited dynamic range and it was impossible over or under expose, you could film anyway you want and disregard the exposure, but you'd have to re watch all your footage again and fix in post. This is why I find it best to get as much as you can right while filming because it will mean less work later on. This goes double for audio.
    Last edited by Peter C.; 11-23-2020 at 11:10 AM.


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    #12
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    Great, short and sweet link/video.


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    #13
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    What was confusing to me about the F6 is that the Zoom rep said the output levels act as a reference level for the inputs. And wherever the output levels are set, that would act as your input level when you start recording. So one gets the opportunity to roughly set input levels before recording. Once the button is pressed, the input levels are locked but the outputs can be changed dynamically.


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    #14
    Senior Member Peter C.'s Avatar
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    Zoom is ok but not what I would consider industry standard and will operate according to how they setup the device. So sounds like what they're saying is gain is set and locked once recording has begun and you use your faders to make adjustments. Which should be fine. I find it helpful to understand the accepted principals and practices and then see how your device decides to implement them. Then do a test to practice your understand with real use.


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    #15
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    The technology has a lot of headroom so no issues but I find the setup results in low levels for multitrack recordings. I send a safety feed to one camera and set the outputs to a rough final mix. Given this scenario, one tends to go low on all six tracks so the mix does not add up and overmodulate to the camera. I would prefer to still have the input level settings be separate from the output so you could track a little stronger but still send out a separate mix. Maybe I can bring this up as a firmware request.


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    #16
    Senior Member Peter C.'s Avatar
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    The Zoom F8n is a more full feature mixer that might have what you want. There also break out boxes that help if you want a larger interface to work with while recording. I think of the F6 as a lower end, designed to mix multiple sources and send to your camera, not as a truly pro level mixer. This doesn't mean the audio quality is bad, just that higher end equipment have more features and their interface is better. You might just be exceeding the intended use of this device.
    Last edited by Peter C.; 11-23-2020 at 12:47 PM.


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    #17
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    I would disagree to some extent as the F6 is a recording device before it is a mixer in my view. Its only output is a 1/8" jack. I am not looking for more than unit has to offer, just an implementation tweak. If the input levels need to be locked, fine, just do not tie them to output levels. Do you own an F6?


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    #18
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    There is an option in the menu to unlock/adjust the way you control the levels.

    I don't remember exactly anymore as I sold it months ago, but maybe page 84: I believe the default is 'PFL' and you'd change it to 'SOLO'.

    If that's not it, it's something else as I had the same thoughts and wanted to independently control the levels during recording to adjust for soft-spoken individuals and louder speakers after recording had begun, and I was able to after tweaking some menu settings.

    https://zoomcorp.com/media/documents/E_F6_3.pdf


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    #19
    Senior Member Peter C.'s Avatar
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    I don't own the F6 but at one point I was looking at mixers that have internal recording. If I was going to buy one I would get Sound Devices MixPre. I like how they work better than Zoom. You might want to look at the MixPre. What you're describing isn't a bug its how they've designed it to work, so I can't see them changing it in a firmware update.
    Last edited by Peter C.; 11-23-2020 at 01:15 PM.


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    #20
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    Thanks. I will dive in deeper. It is pretty complex with the operational differences between 24bit and 32bit modes. BTW, I never said it was a bug...


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