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Rating and Reviews: Zoom R8 Recorder

Record 2 simultaneous tracks and play back 8 on the Zoom R8. Plug it into your computer, and you've got a 2x2 USB audio interface and DAW control surface.

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"Everything you need in a portable digital recorder - the Zoom R8" submitted July 26, 2011

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: Musician
Music Style: Blues Rock
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Sound: The Zoom R8 Digital Recorder is great for recording directly into the unit. Its modeled amps are excellent sounding for guitar rhythms and bass parts. The R8 allows you to choose your frequencies for all channels, so you can really push some low-end frequencies on bass guitar if you want. You can also pan your instruments at any degree right or left. The drum loops are very good, too. The loops allow you to change your beats per minute without effecting the drum set's pitch. For guitar solos, however, I mic my guitar amp, which sounds much less compressed than the R8's modeled amps. Once you get your ideas down, you can either master your tunes in the R8, or you can download into a computer program via USB for final mixing. For playback, I am using 25-watt Tascam reference speakers. You might need to purchase an 1/8" to 1/4" jack to attach to your speakers (Radio Shack has them). Once you get the hang of the R8 (you will need to read the manual), it is fast and easy to get your songs recorded. I got my money's worth! Very happy with this recording tool. Ease of Use: It is very easy to get a great sounding product from R8, assuming you have good reference speakers for playback. I am using 25-watt Tascam stereo speakers. The R8 offers great sounding modeled amps for guitar and bass. The drum loops in it sound very good for the money. And, the R8 offers a very wide range of great sounding reverbs, digital delays, etc. for the modeled amps and vocals. Quality: I have only had this product for a month, so I cannot tell you how durable it is at this point. I would replace it in a heart beat if it broke @ only $300. Great value for the money. Value: You get everything you need to make great recordings for your $300. All you will need in addition to the Zoom R8 are powered reference speakers, an 1/8" to 1/4", and a low-impedence XLR mic cable. Manufacturer Support: I sent an email to Zoom's tech support asking them a question about the drum loops. I still have not heard back from them, but I was able to figure out what I needed. This is my only concern at this point.
71 of 74 people (95.95%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"The Zoom R8 is a good unit to consider if you want to do some "On-The-Spot" recording or song creation. The R8 packs plenty of" submitted December 8, 2011

By a customer from sbcglobal.net
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Musical Background: 32yrs. I play Guitar & Keyboards for my church & personal pleasures
Music Style: Christian, blues, R&B
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Sound: The Zoom R8 has very good sound quality when it comes to recording and playing the on-board drums. I haven't spent a lot of time with the R8 since I just got it a few weeks ago so I'm being conservative with the rating. Feature: The features in the R8 seem to be very useful. The on-board reverb, EQ and other effects seem to work with my music flow. The multi-input jacks for XLR and 1/4 inch connections (along with Phantom Power) prove very useful as well. Ease of Use: It was very easy to get up & going with the R8. I was able to create a project & lay down a few tracks without reading the owners manual. If you're use to traditional analog recorders like Tascam and others, getting around on the R8 should be a breeze. Now when you get into the sequencer and other functions, you will have to consult the owners manual (at least I did). Quality: The R8 seems to be pretty reliable in its hardware. The unit feels pretty solid although don't expect the faders to feel like anything that's on a studio console. Value: I was pretty close to purchasing the Tascam DP-008 but I came across the R8 at the last moment. When I started to compare the features & functionality between the Tascam DP-008 & the Zoom R8, The Zoom R8 won hands down. The R8 seems to give you more features in the unit and the price was pretty close to the other Tascam unit I was considering. Manufacturer Support: I'm not rating the company yet because I have not had any reason to contact them. The Wow Factor: Well I own the unit already. The Zoom R8 fits my needs that I have for it. I could continue to make decent quality music without this unit, but the R8 gives me the ability to take advantage of it's abilities Overall: I think this unit will continue to get use in the upcoming days & month's, although as a musician who loves "Stuff", this unit will share room with many other gadgets & toys.
21 of 23 people (91.3%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Dont get for programing drums" submitted October 24, 2012

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: playing 35 years
Music Style: rock
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Overall: I was happy with the ease of just recording straight into the inputs but the drum programing was not explained well in the manual and had a hard time programing for an entire song, I didnt like having to make loops then record them when you should just be able to insert a loop or drum roll like the ZOOM MRS_802 which was so ez to program and you didnt have to fill up tracks with different drum loops because it had a dedicated stereo drum track . For some reason I would record my loops into the sequencer and when I would try and record a guitar part I couldn't get the sequencer to not play every part and drum rolls at once. Maybe its me cause Im kinda dumb. But like I said I had no prob with the older MRS_802 by zoom. So Ive ordered a external drum machine and Im happy with the recording quality on inputs and the effects are killer if you just spend a few minutes to tweak. So i took 1 star away because the manual was really not much help at all and had to learn by just playin with it or watching vids on you tube. Even if u could program these drums they sound really cheap and are obviously elctronic and will be noticed. Drums sounded way better on the older zoom MRS-802 I wish they could have just followed the mrs series. Any ways its a great buy for what u get and if you are savy with recording already you may like a lil better as far as loops and pasteing and trimming go.
9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Great for beginer or pro!" submitted September 11, 2011

By a customer from aol.com
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Musical Background: active musician. recording artis, band director
Music Style: jazz,rock, classical
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Sound: The sound quality of the Zoom R8 is quite good. The guitar and mic effects could be a little better, but if you are using the R8 as an interface you won't need the internal effects. The build in factory effects are far but they are editable. And you can instal your own. There is little EQ on the unit, so be sure to EQ your sound before recording. Feature: From the built in effects to the writable drum loops this tool has everything you need for recording great sounding song. Programing loops, bouncing tracks, multi-layering voices. On board tuner and metronome make this a huge time saver in the home studio. Ease of Use: Very straight forward design. Quick and easy for the experienced, and fun to learn for the beginner. Direct recording is a snap. Using the interface with the included cubase may take a little time for a first timer. Quality: The light weight of the R8 and it's small size make it extremly portable. Fits well in a gig bag. But the lightweight also gives is a cheap feel too, like its fairly easy to break. Will more than likely stand up to a few drops, but I havn't had it long enough to know if it can stand up to regular gig use. The size makes this a very valuable product for the price, and it's built well for its purpose. Value: More than worth the price. This is a must have for any musician if you like to make things easier. You'll get 5 times the value. Manufacturer Support: I have had no issues with the Zoom R8, but I have dealt with zoom customer support before. Hard to get ahold of, but very helpful when you do. The Wow Factor: Great looking, easy to use, extremly mobile, and loaded with features. Just a great addition to the studio
7 of 8 people (87.5%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Great choice for my needs" submitted November 9, 2012

By Bryan J in San Francisco , CA
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Overall: This unit really gives great bang for the buck. I particularly need it as a computer interface and DAW controller, and it works well with Studio One.
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Zoom R8 recorder/interface...quite possibly the best for the home studio musician." submitted January 10, 2012

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Musical Background: Musician producer 30 years
Music Style: Rock, blues
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Sound: Listen to my podcast and decide for yourself https://rokspodcast.podbean.com Feature: The audio interface is exceptional! Ease of Use: So easy to use and the sound quality is great. I use it to produce my weekly podcast " Rockin Out with Kleetus and Sparky. No problems at all and it's totally noiseless. Quality: So far so good. Build is sturdy, I would travel with this unit. Value: It's so good they should charge more but don't tell Zoom! Manufacturer Support: No support used yet. Don't need it. The product is very intuitive. The Wow Factor: Cool looks, great sound, perfect size. Overall: Indefinitely
16 of 19 people (84.21%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"8 Track for the 2000's" submitted October 25, 2011

By a customer from partridgevideo.com
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Musical Background: Retired Musician
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Sound: Sounds Great. Easy to record a couple of tracks and play them back. Feature: I needed a small multi track to record backup tracks for my Ukulele. The rhythm track has me a little confused, but I'll figure it out. Ease of Use: Right out of the box I had it up and recording in minutes. The computer interface needs some tweaking. Quality: This is for home use, it's not what I would use at a gig. Value: Well made and it works! Manufacturer Support: Have not needed any support. The Wow Factor: It is kinda cute. Overall: At my age (60) the Zoom R8 could last my lifetime.
9 of 11 people (81.82%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Zoom R8 Recorder" submitted June 1, 2014

By Wayne K in Stockbridge, MI
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Musical Background: I have been playing for 40+ years. Guitar, Bass guitar, banjo.
Music Style: Blues rock.
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Overall: This unit has many functions I did not expect. Like punch in and out capabilities, stereo/mono switching, overdub, metronome. The built in mikes sound great, better than I expected. The only draw back is that now I have to read the manual to be able to take advantage of all of the features.
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"EASY TO USE, AMAZING" submitted April 19, 2012

By walt young in Southern California, CA
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Musical Background: Active musician.
Music Style: Country, blues, pop, acoustic and electric.
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Overall: I started with a cassette tape recorder years ago. Then a couple digital recorders after that. I have a Zoom H2 also. This small unit is amazing. I won't ditto everything everyone else has said here. It has tons of effects, drum loops, drum kits, and on and on. It is powered by AA batterys, plug in, or off an USB port on a computer. You could take it tent camping with your guitar and record away on the built in mics. It is lightweight and small. Some say a bit too light on the plastic but do we abuse recorders? . A small laptop bag fits it nicely for storing. Zoom engineers do their homework. This is an amazing recorder with endless features.
6 of 9 people (66.67%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Good recorder" submitted May 14, 2014

By Robert M in Raeford, NC
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Overall: The R8 records very well. The onboard mics are good. Things start to go downhill when you start to use it as an audio interface. The usb interface is noisy to me. I am very sound sensitive, must be this digital age or something. I was excited about the sampler only to find the ability to edit is limited. My badd!
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"Zoom R8" submitted April 6, 2014

By stephen arnold in Harrod's Creek, KY
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Musical Background: None. We use this for voice recordings.
Music Style: No music! We use this exclusively for voice recordings.
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Overall: The system works. Considerable work is required to obtain information to supplement and clarify the points in the documentation.
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