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Author Topic: Zoom PodTrak P4  (Read 1080 times)

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Offline ol' dirty taper

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Zoom PodTrak P4
« on: August 06, 2020, 12:25:00 AM »
Announced earlier today, this looks like an interesting recorder for those on a budget and who do not need 48-192kHz or 24 bit, but still achieve 4 inputs. Price is $199.99 and ships in September. Will also run from a USB C power bank.

Measures 4.4" W x 6.1" H x 1.8" D, could fit in a large pocket, however the gain controls would be protruding a bit, not sure if you can lock them or not.

I could see some uses for it, but overall a lot of features not needed for our taping purposes.

https://zoomcorp.com/en/us/podtrak-recorders/podcast-recorders/podtrak-p4/

PODTRAK P4 FEATURES
  • Four mic inputs with XLR connectors
    Four headphone outputs with individual volume control
    Gain control knobs and mute buttons for each input
    Phantom power for all XLR inputs
    Automatically prevent feedback from call audio using the Mix-Minus function
    Easily connect your phone using the TRRS connection
    Trigger sound effects using four assignable Sound Pads with 11preset sounds
    All input sources can be recorded on separate tracks
    16-bit /44.1kHz audio WAV
    Records directly to SD, SDHC and SDXC cards up to 512 GB
    2-input, 2-output USB audio interface
    Class-compliant mode for iOS compatibility
    Up to four hours of use with just two AA batteries or a USB power supply
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Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Zoom PodTrak P4
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2020, 09:45:28 PM »
4x phantom inputs @ $199 is certainly a deal

crippling it to 16/44 is a bit puzzling as all modern ADC chips handle higher bit/sample rates, but whatever
16/44 is not a limitation with decent preamps in front of it
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Offline IronFilm

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Re: Zoom PodTrak P4
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2021, 12:29:50 AM »
4x phantom inputs @ $199 is certainly a deal

crippling it to 16/44 is a bit puzzling as all modern ADC chips handle higher bit/sample rates, but whatever
16/44 is not a limitation with decent preamps in front of it

It's a great deal! EXCEPT for that 16/44 crippling.... definitely feels like Zoom is "protecting" their (relatively speaking) "higher end" gear. Sad to see Zoom doing that, as they really didn't have to.

Offline Ozpeter

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Re: Zoom PodTrak P4
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2021, 05:57:05 AM »
I suspect the specs are more than enough for the low budget podcasters it is aimed at, whose creations would probably be disseminated at specs somewhat below the optimum.

Offline voltronic

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Re: Zoom PodTrak P4
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2021, 07:35:37 PM »
I suspect the specs are more than enough for the low budget podcasters it is aimed at, whose creations would probably be disseminated at specs somewhat below the optimum.

You may be right, but I wouldn't expect any kind of decent preamps here, especially since they are not citing any kind of EIN, dynamic range, max level, etc. I suppose the target market for this won't know to look at such things anyway.

Agree with jerryfreak about crippling. Even if it is "good enough", it makes no sense. Even the H1n does 24/96.
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Offline Twenty8

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Re: Zoom PodTrak P4
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2021, 05:28:56 AM »
As a former (and future) podcaster, I see no problem with that "crippling" as far as podcast audio goes.
Audio uploaded to media servers is pay-to-play.  Most podcasts you hear are mp3 or similar files.  I don't even think I could upload my FLAC files, but its been almost two years.
16/44 is a really good option for the audience the device is marketed to.  Sure, I rendered 24/48 down, but I never thought it was worth it to record at 24/96 considering I was re-airing underrated aud copy Phish shows with brief factual commentary.  The concert itself was already rendered down and paying for media server space can get pricey.
This looks like a great device for my next project... to the point where I might actually pull the trigger eventually.

edit: the only feature I feel is restrictive is recording directly to SD card.  I recorded via interface using Reaper.  Recording to SD cards seems like another step in the process as far as podcasting goes, but not a deal breaker.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2021, 05:35:42 AM by Twenty8 »
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