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Poll

Which sounds better to you?

Sample A
Sample B
They both sound the same to me

Author Topic: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8  (Read 5752 times)

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Offline wforwumbo

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #30 on: June 18, 2018, 09:56:26 AM »
The difference is subtle, but there for me.

To my ear:
-A doesn't have as much treble accuracy but the mids are a hair more pleasant. Low-mids have this odd honk, they sound warm but phased. 
-B has more treble info, the mids aren't as forward but they're also cleaner and more accurate; overall it just "sounds cleaner" to me.

I mildly prefer B for its overall accuracy and honesty. Given I own a MP6 I have a vested interest in which is which... who should I contact about getting a PM with the answers?

Edit: reading through these responses, I want to thank the creators of this comparison. I know it's a lot of work, and it's definitely appreciated - thank you!
« Last Edit: June 18, 2018, 09:59:03 AM by wforwumbo »
2x Schoeps mk21 (matched pair) -> nbob KCY -> Naiant PFA -> Sound Devices Mixpre 6

Offline heathen

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #31 on: June 18, 2018, 10:45:51 AM »
who should I contact about getting a PM with the answers?
I just sent you a PM  :coolguy:
Mics: Core Sound TetraMic | AT4031s | AT AE5100s | AT853s (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3s | DPA 4061s | CA-14 omnis | Studio Projects CS5
Pre: CA9200
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #32 on: June 18, 2018, 06:15:00 PM »
Listening this time through my good Senn HD700 'phones (plugged directly into the same work computer) I now prefer B.  Better 3-dimensionality, tonal balance, less congestion in the dense portions (mids mostly), less fatiguing overall upon extended listening.

This is the opposite of my initial impression listening though the Samsung in-ear 'phones (where I prefered A).  I suspect the brighter tonal balance of the Samsungs makes the presentation of B sound somewhat over sibilant, and that tonality balance is a bigger transgression than the other various sins of omission.  Going back to the cheap Sams I can now hear the things I prefer in B as well, but the brightness overshadows.

Yes it's subtle, but my conclusions are the same after a number of blind listens, of both short and long comparative segments.

The main takeaways for me have nothing to do with the two recorders being compared:
1) Accurate monitoring matters! (always and a lot, more than any of us would probably like to admit to ourselves)
2) Tone and frequency response variations can easily overshadow other very real but more subtle auditory aspects.

If pressed, I'd go with the preference I reach through the Senns (not just because they are "better" but because after identifying exactly what I prefer through them, I can now also identify the same through the cheapo Sams) but I don't actually trust either of these listening experiences.  This mostly serves to make me more suspicious of critical listening decisions reached through any non-calibrated monitoring system, regardless of pedigree.  Especially when it comes to comparing subtleties.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #33 on: June 18, 2018, 06:17:34 PM »
^I already voted previously, and am unable to change my vote in the poll.

But consider this my official retraction and change of vote to B.  As is currently stands that makes for a 5-5 tie.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<<

Offline pohaku

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #34 on: June 18, 2018, 06:22:09 PM »
With a majority of respondents unable to tell the difference.
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Offline heathen

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #35 on: June 18, 2018, 06:54:59 PM »
But consider this my official retraction and change of vote to B.  As is currently stands that makes for a 5-5 tie.
Wouldn't that make it 3-7 in favor of B?
Mics: Core Sound TetraMic | AT4031s | AT AE5100s | AT853s (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3s | DPA 4061s | CA-14 omnis | Studio Projects CS5
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Offline heathen

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #36 on: June 18, 2018, 06:56:37 PM »
Is there anyone out there who still wants to do the comp and hasn't had a chance to yet?  I guess if I don't see any objection in the next 24 hours I'll publicly post the answer to which is which.

Wouldn't it be funny if they're both the same sample after all?   ;)
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Offline audBall

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #37 on: June 18, 2018, 07:42:06 PM »
Perhaps a link in the OP to an image / small text revealing which is which?

That way people can voluntarily reveal the recordings to themselves without accidentally reading which is which.

Offline Walstib62

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #38 on: June 18, 2018, 08:14:58 PM »
Does this mean the "Zoomies" finally have street cred? :zoomie1:

Offline heathen

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #39 on: June 18, 2018, 09:55:29 PM »
Perhaps a link in the OP to an image / small text revealing which is which?

That way people can voluntarily reveal the recordings to themselves without accidentally reading which is which.

Great idea!  I've updated the OP...
Mics: Core Sound TetraMic | AT4031s | AT AE5100s | AT853s (C/SC) | Line Audio CM3s | DPA 4061s | CA-14 omnis | Studio Projects CS5
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Offline IronFilm

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #40 on: June 19, 2018, 08:26:46 AM »
With a majority of respondents unable to tell the difference.

And even those who do have a preference, it is by a rather narrow margin they prefer one over the other.

Which only makes the conclusion even more clear: both recorders are very good, and basically are just as good machines as each other!

Does this mean the "Zoomies" finally have street cred? :zoomie1:

I feel it has been that way for a long time now.

As the Zoom F8 has been out for three whole years now. And it was pretty quickly clear within the first year of the F8 being released that Zoom had delivered something special and completely different to what Zoom normally produces for sale.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2018, 08:28:37 AM by IronFilm »

Offline aaronji

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #41 on: June 19, 2018, 09:13:50 AM »
1) Accurate monitoring matters! (always and a lot, more than any of us would probably like to admit to ourselves)

I had the same experience; on my inexpensive IEMs, it was a toss-up, but I could hear a difference with my Sennheisers through a decent DAC/headphone amp.

I would love to hear some similar comps in different settings, although I know that is probably a pipe-dream!

Offline gewwang

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #42 on: June 19, 2018, 09:47:00 AM »
With a majority of respondents unable to tell the difference.

And even those who do have a preference, it is by a rather narrow margin they prefer one over the other.

Which only makes the conclusion even more clear: both recorders are very good, and basically are just as good machines as each other!


If you read Gutbucket and aaronji's comments, there was a noticeable difference between the results of the two sources when listened thru better playback equipment.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2018, 09:49:22 AM by gewwang »

Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #43 on: June 19, 2018, 04:36:27 PM »
I'm not quibbling with the test methodology since it's probably what would be of interest to most members here. 

One of the most difficult instruments to record is a good grand piano.  The Line Audio CM3s are unusually good piano mics.  If you really want to put these recorders to the test, do comparison recordings of a good grand piano and then listen for whether the notes sound natural or have digital harshness.   When you can focus on each of the piano notes, it's possible to notice things that otherwise blend in unnoticed in a band recording. 

This whole thread caught my interest when I saw that the F8 was priced at $629 lately by Adorama.  This is a particularly timely thread when they start blowing F8's out the door for the F8n.     


Offline Nick's Picks

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Re: COMP: MixPre-6 vs. Zoom F8
« Reply #44 on: June 20, 2018, 06:30:29 AM »
I prefer A over B.
B sounds a a shade darker to me.   

 

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