Zoom R20 Multitrack Digital Recorder

Zoom R20 Multitrack Digital Recorder

This standalone recorder has it all: a 4.3" touchscreen, 8 mic preamps, 16 tracks, onboard editing, effects, drum loops, MIDI synths, and an 8x4 interface.

Zoom R16 Multitrack SD Recorder Interface and Controller

No longer available at zZounds
Record your full band with 8 simultaneous tracks on the powerful, portable Zoom R16 -- then plug it into your DAW as a USB interface and control surface.

At first glance, the under-3-pound Zoom R16 is pretty impressive in its own right: a truly portable digital 16-tracker, capable of recording and mixing eight simultaneous XLR inputs -- no computer required. Fully stocked with onboard metronome, tuner, 135 effects, and even built-in stereo microphones, the R16 makes a killer songwriting scratchpad and portable demo studio. But plug in a USB cable and the R16 becomes a seamless front end for your Mac or PC recording rig, complete with an 8-in/2-out USB audio interface and 9-fader control surface.

The Zoom R16 puts true portability in your hands. Want to multitrack your band rehearsal or live show? Grab your R16 and go. Running on six AA batteries, this under-3-pound wonder records onto rock-solid, low-cost SD card media. Each track in your project is saved as an industry-standard 44.1 kHz, 24-bit WAV file, ready to be imported into any DAW. And if you need DAW software, Zoom even bundles Cubase LE 5 to help you get started.

Plug in 8 XLRs -- Or Record The Built-In Mics

Whether you're tracking a full band, or a drum kit with multiple mics, the R16 allows eight channels of simultaneous recording from its eight combination XLR-1/4" inputs. One input accepts Hi-Z sources like a guitar or bass, and two can supply phantom power to condenser microphones or active DI boxes. All eight inputs can accept line-level sources, such as synths or external mic preamps. And because the R16 has no hard drive or noisy fans, operation is read more completely silent. That means you can make clean recordings with the built-in pair of microphones on the unit's left and right sides -- perfect for scratch vocals, hand percussion, or acoustic guitar. The R16 makes it easy to capture your song ideas anytime inspiration strikes -- and with the onboard tuner and metronome, you'll be making quick demos that you're not embarrassed to show the rest of the band!

Flexible Multitracking and Onboard Effects

Lay down your tracks one by one, or record eight at a time. However you like to roll, the R16's audio recorder has helpful functions like manual and auto punch-in/out, A-B repeat, bounce, divide, undo, and up to 100 markers to help you find your way around. Press a button to switch banks to tracks 9-16, and keep rolling with up to 16 tracks of simultaneous playback. Use the R16's faders to adjust each track's volume, pan, EQ, and nine types of onboard effects, with 135 editable presets from guitar amp simulations to rich reverbs. Don't want to commit to your effects just yet? You can record while listening to yourself through a reverb or delay in the monitor path, while the R16 captures your clean, dry signal for later re-amping in your DAW.

Easy File Transfer Over USB

The R16 is great for tracking on-the-go, but it's likely you'll want to transfer your multitrack projects to your Mac or PC for further editing and mixing. That's why the R16 saves individual tracks as industry-standard 44.1 kHz, 16- or 24-bit WAV files, on solid-state SD or SDHC card media. The R16's SD card slot supports up to 32GB cards. Just plug in the included USB cable to drag and drop your WAV files to your computer, and import them into the bundled Cubase LE 5 software. Even tracks that were started halfway into an R16's project are automatically extended to the project start, so everything lines up exactly in sync. And when your computer's not around, you can use any USB thumb drive (or bus-powered USB hard drive) to back up your R16 when your computer's not around.

Serious DAW Integration

Once you've transferred your audio to your computer, keep that USB cable plugged in: the R16 now functions as a control surface for your DAW, using standard Mackie Control architecture. And if you want to track some overdubs into your DAW, go ahead and plug your mics or instruments into the R16: it's now an 8-in/2-out bus-powered USB 2.0 audio interface, with 1/4" outputs to feed your studio monitor speakers. Switch to a 2-in/2-out setup for higher-definition 96 kHz/24-bit audio. The R16 ships with Cubase LE 5, so you can immediately start using its nine faders and transport buttons as a control surface and front end for Cubase, Sonar, Logic, and more -- just add a computer. And that arcane three-fingered keyboard shortcut you can never remember? Just map it to one of the R16's five function keys and never forget again.

Have Tracks; Will Travel

Say you don't have a laptop to run a DAW on -- or maybe you just don't want to lug around your computer, interface, power adapters and all the cables to shows or rehearsals. You're in luck: the R16 is made to travel. It runs for about 4.5 hours on six AA batteries, or you can power it from the included AC adapter. The "guard rails" on the sides of your R16 protect its knobs and buttons from damage when you slide it into your backpack or laptop bag, and they make great carrying handles when you go mobile. With the Zoom R16, you get all the portability of Zoom's famous handheld recorders, plus the flexibility of a multitrack recorder, interface, and controller.

Once upon a time, cassette-tape porta-studios roamed the Earth. Next came the era of stand-alone hard disk multitrack recorders -- followed by the rise of computer-based DAWs. So what's the next step? It just might be the Zoom R16 -- one box that can do it all, and integrate with your DAW too.


- 8 tracks simultaneous recording, 16 tracks playback
- 8 line/mic inputs -- 1 with Hi-Z input, 2 with phantom power
- Onboard pair of omnidirectional condenser microphones
- 9 faders with 4-segment LED level meters
- 135 effects patches, plus onboard tuner -- great for guitarists
- 8-in/2-out USB audio interface, up to 96 kHz at 24-bit resolution
- Control surface for many DAW software packages
- Cubase LE 5 included
- Supports SD cards up to 32 GB
- Synchronize two R16s via USB for 16 simultaneous recording tracks
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- Digital recorder with 16-track playback and 8-track simultaneous recording utilizing Secure Digital (SD) memory
- 24-bit/44.1kHz linear PCM recording in WAV format
- Built-in stereo condenser microphones
- Includes power supply and USB cable
- Allows simultaneous recording on up to 8 tracks
- Battery operation for remote recording
- USB power for studio operation
- 8 mic inputs / 2 outputs (8 x 2)
- 8 combination XLR-1/4-inch inputs
- High-definition 24-bit/96kHz recording capability using digital audio software
- Built-in effects can be used as outboard effects as well
- Hi-Z input for direct connection of guitar or bass
- Includes preamp with phantom power on two channels
- Mackie control emulation via USB for popular DAW software including Cubase, Logic, Digital Performer and more
- Over 100 built-in studio effects coming from advanced DSP
- Amazing guitar amp and effects models
- Professional quality mastering effects including multi-band compressor, normalizer and more
- Operates as USB storage device for quick data transfer
- Connect two R16s via USB for synchronized operation and 16 tracks of simultaneous recording
- Undo/Redo functions
- Comes with Steinberg Cubase LE 5
- Supports 64-bit versions of Mac OS X v10.6 Snow Leopard, Windows Vista and Windows 7.

For support or warranty questions, please contact the manufacturer:
Phone: 631-542-5270
Email: info@zoom-na.com
Web: https://zoomcorp.com/en/us/contact/

Zoom R16 Multitrack Recorder Controller

Zoom has revolutionized digital recording again with the first digital recorder with 16-track playback and 8-track simultaneous recording that utilizes Secure Digital (SD) memory. The R16 recorder is three production tools in one incredibly versatile device. It's a digital multi-track recorder, an audio interface and a control surface, providing you with all the tools necessary to create studio-quality recordings anywhere.

The R16 combines a remarkable level of functionality with exceptionally intuitive design. For recording purposes, the unit supports up to 32GB SD cards, allowing over 100 track hours of recording. The flexibility of SD recording not only makes the R16 lighter and more portable, it also ensures increased reliability with no concern for a crashing hard drive. You can even have respective SD cards dedicated to specific recording sessions. Back up your project on a USB memory stick.

With the ability to record up to 8 tracks simultaneously, it's easy to capture a live band or even a complete drum kit. The R16 features built-in stereo condenser microphones for field recording or quick, convenient "sketch-pad" capturing of ideas and rehearsals. It also provides 8 combination XLR-1/4-inch inputs along with one Hi-Z input for direct connection of guitar or bass. And the R16 also runs on 6 AA batteries for the ultimate in multi-track portability.

USB operation means you can control each function of your favorite DAW software from the R16 for easy mixing with fine-tuned control. Incorporate any of the 100+ built-in studio effects to enhance your recording and use the pro-quality mastering effects to complete that studio sound. You can even connect two R16s via USB for synchronized operation and 16 tracks of simultaneous recording.

With the Zoom R16, versatility, control and comprehensive features come together in a single device that puts the power to produce professional recordings right at your fingertips.

Using the R16 for Music

It's a Recorder...
With the ability to record up to 8 tracks simultaneously, the R16 is perfect for recording everything: from music production and rehearsals to field recording and live performances. The R16 also features the same built-in stereo condenser microphones found on an H4 for convenient "sketch-pad" capturing of ideas or rehearsals.

Use the Hi-Z inputs for direct connection of guitar or bass, and get rocking with built-in guitar and bass amp and effects models. When your masterwork is ready, you can use over 100 built-in studio effects to enhance your tracks and use the pro-quality mastering effects to complete that studio sound.

It's an Interface.
The R16 is more than a multi-track recorder. It's also a powerful workstation when using USB power for studio operation. Connect the R16 to your laptop or desktop computer via USB, launch your favorite DAW or use the included Cubase LE 5, and start laying down your production tracks. With the 8 balanced, combination XLR-1/4-inch inputs 2 outputs (8 x 2), you can record high-definition, 24-bit/96kHz audio (2 x 2). Use the R16's built-in effects as you lay down tracks on your computer.

It's a Controller!
Computers bring incredible control and power to the recording process, but they're not very intuitive when it comes to mixing. And mixing makes the music. So, when you're ready to mix, the R16 is right there with you. With its USB operation, you can control the functions of your DAW software from the R16 for easy mixing with fine-tuned control. No more mixing with a mouse! The R16's intuitive, mixing console feel, and LED meter bridge makes mixing your tracks a pleasure.

Using the R16 for Video Applications

For media and filmmakers, the R16 makes it easy to record audio with booms, handheld mics or up to 8 lavaliers with wireless setups. Great for sound effects recording or anyone looking for multiple audio feeds in a remote environment, the R16 is lightweight, portable solution to your location video shoot needs.

Location shoots
Perfect for shooting on location, the R16 is well-suited for corporate event shoots where there are multiple speakers, industrials, education settings, talk shows or panel discussions where you don't want to compromise audio quality even with budget limitations that pervade today's media environment.

Of course, the R16 includes a stereo headphone output for continuous monitoring and with the LED meter bridge, its easy to be sure all your levels are set appropriately for the source.

Good to Go...
Best of all, the R16 will operate for almost 5 hours on 6 standard AA batteries, making it convenient to run on location without the added complication of charging battery packs. Use the R16 as a battery powered mixer, even when you're not recording!

Transfer large amounts of audio in no time with the USB 2.0 interface that makes the R16 a drag and drop time saver and a pleasure to use. That means less time in post is spent building up your project, especially when you're using the R16 to gather natural sound on a shoot.

Because the R16 is also a control surface, it becomes a convenient audio editing tool using a variety of video editing software packages such as Final Cut Pro. Or use the onboard mixer to create a mix on the fly and bounce to a stereo master using the built-in mastering effects to sweeten the tracks.

Ready for V/O
Sometimes a project calls for additional voiceover tracks, either on location as a "scratch track" or in the editing studio. And with phantom power, high-quality mic preamps and vocal effects onboard, the R16 is ready to roll in any situation.

Expand your horizons.
Expandability is often a big part of using a piece of gear on location. With the R16, you can connect two R16 units via USB, one can be designated to function as the USB master and the other as the USB slave, allowing synchronized transport operation and recording on 16 tracks simultaneously.

Built-in high-sensitivity stereo microphones
When you want to quickly record natural sound or room audio from the location, the R16's built-in set of stereo mics will come in handy. Sound effects, speeches or dialog can be captured with excellent clarity.

With the R16, versatility, control and portability come together in one recorder that lets you produce professional results everywhere you go.


- Over 100 studio-quality effects including guitar amp models and mastering effects
- Records on up to 32GB SDHC cards for maximum recording time
- 8 balanced XLR-1/4-inch combination inputs
- Records in WAV 48kHz/44.1kHz at 16-bit or 24-bit
- Easily viewable 4-segment LED meter bridge
- 6-channel simultaneous 48V phantom power supply capability
- Over 4 hours of operation using 6 AA alkaline batteries (AC adaptor included)
- Sync two R16s or an R16 to an 24 via USB for 16 tracks of simultaneous recording
- Audio Interface: High-definition 24-bit/96kHz recording capability using digital audio software
- 8 in / 2 out (8 x 2) via USB
- Control Surface - Full mixing and transport controls for Cubase, Logic, Sonar and more!
- USB Control Surface uses Mackie Control emulation
- Tuner and onboard metronome for convenient performance and recording aid.

Reviewers gave this product an overall rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. (66 ratings)
Submitted October 11, 2011 by a customer from charter.net
"A Beast of a Recorder."
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars
(see rating details)
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I have had alot of recording experiences. It is very easy to tell when something is non-studio quality. Out of the box, this thing is very nice, and is ready to record with the built in mics. You have 8 XLR/1/4" combo jacks, a very nice touch. A ton of effects...guitar effects, mastering effects, mic effects. You have your normal reverb, chorus, pan, and eq's. Most of the effects actually sound nice. Some are just ok. In my experience and opinion, this is about as close as you can get to pro studio without going to a pro studio. I am confident that you will be able to produce a sound that you are looking for, once you have worked with and made yourself familiar with the recorder.

Ease of Use
It is quiet simple to get a good sound from the ZOOMR16 recorder using a very user-friendly interface. The manual will be of help. The only thing that is a little tricky is learning to navigate the menus and submenus. For some you will use the directional buttons up, down, left, right, and for some you will have to use the jog-wheel. But once you get that down...very simple.

This aspect is kind of difficult to review. I gave it an 8 on this mainly because the chassis is made mostly of hard plastic. However, it seems durable, and all of the components within the chassis seem well made and durable as well. The sliders are smooth and all of the buttons feel very secure. You obviously read more would not want to drop it, but I don't know of any electronic product I own that I would want to drop. It is very mobile/transport friendly...not heavy. Just get you a case to transport it in. If taken care of properly this should last a long time.

Very much worth the $399 I paid for it.

Musical Background:
Active Musician

Musical Style:
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