Japanese audio specialist Zoom has unveiled - in Japan only for now - its new F3 professional mini field recorder. The F3 measures only 7.5 x 7.3 x 4.7 cm and has two balanced XLR inputs, making it the bigger brother - both in terms of size and features - of the smaller one introduced about 2 years ago (Zoom F2 Field Recorder), which is only equipped with a mini jack. www.slashcam.de/news/single/Zoom-F2-Field-Recorder---Audio-Zwerg-mit-32-Bit-Fl-16175.html. Like the F2, the F3 records in WAV format using 32-bit float with a wide dynamic range.
Zoom F3 Field Recorder
The F3 Field Recorder is equipped with two AD converters (dual AD converters) for low gain and high gain and, according to Zoom, achieves a high signal-to-noise ratio without cracking even at high volumes in particularly or noisy environments. Since the input signal is recorded in a 32-bit float WAV format, recordings remain usable even with sudden changes in volume. Recordings are made on up to 1 TB microSDHC / microSDXC memory cards.
About the size of a hand and weighing 242 grams, the F3 has a compact and robust housing and can also be attached directly to a boom microphone with a Velcro strap for recording. Its interfaces include XLR inputs, a headphone and LINE output with dedicated volume control, and USB-C. Power comes from either two AA batteries (said to be enough for 8 hours of operation), an optional AC adapter, or via USB-C (from a powerbank, for example).
Zoom F3 Field Recorder
For control, the F3 has several control buttons - status is displayed via a 96 x 64 pixel resolution backlit LCD. Using the optional Bluetooth adapter "BTA-1", the F3 can also be controlled remotely via app - however, the associated iOS/Android app F3 Control will not be released until March.
Zoom F3 Field Recorder on boom mic.
Main features of ZOOM F3 Field Recorders.
- 32-bit float recording compatible -field recorder with 2 inputs / 2 tracks.
- No gain adjustment required, records without audio crackle
- Two independent balanced XLR inputs (with locking mechanism)
- Up to 192 kHz sampling / 32-bit fixed float, recorded in mono or stereo WAV format
- High-quality microphone preamplifier that achieves an extremely low noise floor of ON -127 dBu or less
- REC hold function to prevent misoperation during recording
- Real-time input signal monitoring with waveform display
- Compact and robust housing that can be attached to the boom microphone with Velcro fasteners
- Headphone and LINE output with dedicated volume control for 3.5 mm plugs
- Direct recording to microSDHC / microSDXC (supports up to 1 TB)
- High precision time code realizing accurate synchronization with video (Bluetooth adapter "BTA-1" and time code systems "UltraSync Blue" are required separately)
- Remote control via Android/iOS app "F3 Control" via Bluetooth connection (Android / iOS app "F3 Control" will be released in March 2022. Bluetooth adapter "BTA-1" is required separately).
- 2 inputs / 2 outputs, up to 96 kHz / 32 bit float compatible.
- USB audio interface function (but only through a firmware update to be released in March 2022).
- Operates for at least 8 hours on 2 AA alkaline batteries
- Powered by 2 AA batteries, AC adapter (sold separately AD-17) or portable USB battery pack
As of yet Zoom has only introduced the F3 in Japan, when it will be announced and launched here and at what price is not yet known.