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Author Topic: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?  (Read 2026 times)

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Offline Oper

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Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« on: February 12, 2020, 06:03:51 AM »
I am interested in a comparison between the MixPre II and the Zoom F6. Has anyone seen such a comparison anywhere?
I know the "comparison" of Curtis Judd. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byMZkEvYRKw&feature=emb_logo

 But no soundfiles are compared under the same conditions (same sound source, same time, same mic).

Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2020, 06:08:17 AM »
‘serious’ comps?

i’m not aware of ANY comps but hopefully that will change by summer
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Offline IronFilm

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2020, 08:05:03 PM »
MixPre Gen1 and Gen2 have the same pre amps (the main big benefits of Gen2 is 32bits / USB recording / internal Timecode)

Likewise the Zoom F6 has the same pre amps as the F8/F8n/F4

Thus any comparison you can find between any MixPre with any F series should be very informative as to what the audio quality of a MixPre II vs F6 should be like.

Think it was on this forum (or was it gearslutz?) where a while ago someone posted samples from an F8 vs MixPre without labeling them and got people to vote and guess on which they liked the most. Was basically random the split between the two, I'd say with Blind A/B testing that nobody can tell the difference between well recorded recordings from either.

Offline heathen

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2020, 11:02:40 PM »
MixPre Gen1 and Gen2 have the same pre amps (the main big benefits of Gen2 is 32bits / USB recording / internal Timecode)

Likewise the Zoom F6 has the same pre amps as the F8/F8n/F4

Thus any comparison you can find between any MixPre with any F series should be very informative as to what the audio quality of a MixPre II vs F6 should be like.

Think it was on this forum (or was it gearslutz?) where a while ago someone posted samples from an F8 vs MixPre without labeling them and got people to vote and guess on which they liked the most. Was basically random the split between the two, I'd say with Blind A/B testing that nobody can tell the difference between well recorded recordings from either.

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Offline Oper

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2020, 07:16:15 PM »
MixPre Gen1 and Gen2 have the same pre amps (the main big benefits of Gen2 is 32bits / USB recording / internal Timecode)

Likewise the Zoom F6 has the same pre amps as the F8/F8n/F4

Thus any comparison you can find between any MixPre with any F series should be very informative as to what the audio quality of a MixPre II vs F6 should be like.

Think it was on this forum (or was it gearslutz?) where a while ago someone posted samples from an F8 vs MixPre without labeling them and got people to vote and guess on which they liked the most. Was basically random the split between the two, I'd say with Blind A/B testing that nobody can tell the difference between well recorded recordings from either.

https://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=186654.0

Thank you Guys - yes I know this great comparison!
I Downloaded these files and I can't find any diferences.
But ist the F6 really sounding like the F8n or the F8? Hmmm...

Offline IronFilm

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2020, 02:41:10 AM »
MixPre Gen1 and Gen2 have the same pre amps (the main big benefits of Gen2 is 32bits / USB recording / internal Timecode)

Likewise the Zoom F6 has the same pre amps as the F8/F8n/F4

Thus any comparison you can find between any MixPre with any F series should be very informative as to what the audio quality of a MixPre II vs F6 should be like.

Think it was on this forum (or was it gearslutz?) where a while ago someone posted samples from an F8 vs MixPre without labeling them and got people to vote and guess on which they liked the most. Was basically random the split between the two, I'd say with Blind A/B testing that nobody can tell the difference between well recorded recordings from either.

https://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=186654.0

Thank you Guys - yes I know this great comparison!
I Downloaded these files and I can't find any diferences.
But ist the F6 really sounding like the F8n or the F8? Hmmm...

All the F series (F8/F8n/F4/F6) have "the same" pre amps as each other.

All the MixPre series (3/6/10, Gen1 or Gen2) have "the same" pre amps as each other.

And under real world conditions, nobody is going to ever be able to tell the difference between the final result out of a MixPre or a F series.

So pick your field recorder based on what features / design you prefer.

Are you a videographer/vlogger/cameraman shooting with DSLRs/Mirrorless and occasionally doing your own audio? Easy, get yourself a MixPre3!

Are you a student/indie/semi-pro aspiring to have a career as a production sound mixer and want the best you can get on a very tight budget? Easy, get a MixPre10 Gen2 or a Zoom F8n! (got an even tighter budget than that? Go for a secondhand Zoom F4!)

etc etc etc

Look at your usages / needs / wants, and match it up with whichever MixPre / F series meets that the best.

Offline Charlie Miller

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2020, 09:48:27 PM »
I would be shocked if this zoom sounded better
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Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2020, 10:16:18 PM »
I would be shocked if this zoom sounded better

easy way to find out, take the comp

i find the two samples very difficult to discern. ABX confirms this. I thought one seemed to sound slightly brighter on the vocals, but my ABX guesses were only 4 out of 8 (on decent iems - ety ER4 fed by a benchmark DAC with its HPA2 headphone amp). might be different on monitors but it seems my impression is right there with most other people - there is really no clear winner

while SD does have a reputation for HQ pro gear, and zoom historically has served the lower end of the market, at the end of the day the zoom F series and the mixpre series are both designed for the the pro-sumer market. Its kinda irrelevant that 'zooms best' sounds as good as 'sound devices worst', when youre in the market to spend $400-$800 on an all-in-one multichannel recorder, those are what you are working with.

What i would be more interested in, is the following:
-does the zoom F6 input *really* sound the same as the older F series models?
-apart from the dual-ADCs, the F8n block diagram clearly shows analog trim before the ADC
-are we even sure that the same ADC chips are used in both designs?
-Zoom support has told me that "Since the device is constantly switching converters depending on the input level, low level signals are always recording with the best noise level possible on the device, which is comparable to a typical 24 bit recorder/preamp operating at the most optimal setting possible (which is often difficult to predict). " -does this mean that in many instances the older F-series is *not* offering the ideal signal level to its ADC to get the best performance?

conversely, on the mixpre side
-Sound Devices tout their 'Kashmir' preamps (and specifically state on the mix pre that the extra 'aux' channels do not employ the kashmir pres.
-Paul has told us that there is no user-adjustable analog gain on the mixpre-II, the trim is post-ADC
-Thus, is the kashmir preamp really an analog pre at all? or does all the heavy lifting get done in the digital realm?
-and if the gain is DSP-based, how does the Kashmir preamp differ from the ones on the aux line?

unfortuantely sound devices doesnt provide block diagrams in their manuals
« Last Edit: May 20, 2020, 10:44:46 PM by jerryfreak »
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Offline ol' dirty taper

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2020, 02:28:40 AM »
I found this video by Curtis Judd to be pretty helpful for comparing the sd mp6, the zoom f8, and sd 633

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hnvq-6M1adE
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Offline goodcooker

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2020, 10:32:17 AM »

is the kashmir preamp really an analog pre at all?

I don't have the quote handy but it seems like I remember that the preamps in the Mixpre series are a Class A transistor design - throws away some power but more linear if you believe the pundits.
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Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2020, 10:59:11 AM »
oh right, i remember discussing that

hopefully paul can shed some light on what the deal is in the current implementation

i assumed it was a conventional gain stage until the other day when he said there is no analog trim pre-adc in the mixpre-II

perhaps its just a fixed gain
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Offline justink

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2020, 07:39:15 PM »
i assumed it was a conventional gain stage until the other day when he said there is no analog trim pre-adc in the mixpre-II

perhaps its just a fixed gain

Sounds like it might be a fixed gain at all three ADC. So low gain, mid gain, high gain, then a seamless mix of the three. Idk.
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Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Any serious comparison MixPre II vs Zoom F6 out there?
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2020, 12:51:11 AM »
per Zoom support, the F6 does not share the same preamps as the earlier F-series

https://taperssection.com/index.php?topic=190161.msg2331432#msg2331432
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