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Rating and Reviews: Zoom Q8 Video Recorder

Capture your shows, rehearsals and more with high-definition video and 96 kHz/24-bit audio. With XY stereo mics, the Zoom Q8 is a camera made for musicians.

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"Nice unit for the price!" submitted August 14, 2019

By Reginald H. M. in Culver City, CA
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Musical Background: Playing since 1963- play professionally- piano/keyboards, vocalist
Music Style: A little bit of everything.
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Overall: If your looking for an excellent audio recorder and a good attached video camera, this is well worth the money. Yes there are better video cameras and better audio recorders, BUT this fills a niche. I'm a solo artist, so weight and size become a big issue. This device fits in the palm of your hand, is easy to set up and does it's job well. BUT, you must be aware of several factors! First, using maximum video and audio modes you will get "about" 2.5 hours out of the lithium ion battery. Second, Zoom makes it very clear that you should charge the battery only using a USB (computer) port OR the Zoom AD-17A/D adapter (sold separately)! Yeah I know, other devices should and probably will work. BUT, are you going to risk your warranty or device? Third, Zoom says it takes about 4.5 hours to fully recharge using USB, and about 2.5 using the AD-17. Guys it took me 6 hours to fully charge the battery using USB! USB charging is slooow! Get the AD-17 adapter AND a second battery when you buy the unit! BUT LISTEN UP- you cannot charge the battery and use the unit, using USB OR the AD-17! BUT- YOU CAN REMOVE THE BATTERY AND RUN THE UNIT ON THE AD-!7 ADAPTER ALONE!!! You will need an extension cord. Sooo, if battery operation is required take the above to heart- not some BS on U-Tube by someone who hasn't used the unit NOR read the instructions! One of the best features is that you can use XLR's from your mixer (mains UNPOWERED OF COURSE) and run them to the unit and record exactly what sound is going "downrange"! Just set the pad to -20DB.The instructions are OK C+, but are printed on a small 3'' format, so some lettering is so small you almost need a magnifier to read! But they are coherent and well written. Read them before you do anything! zZounds also sells an the correct SD card for this unit (it doesn't come with one) or check the instructions for recommended units. I also suggest you purchase the stand adapter that Zoom makes. It works well on a mic stand, and is totally adjustable (what musician/ vocalist doesn't have an extra mic stand around).I am very pleased with the device, adequate video, great sound, and easy to use and setup, well worth the money. JUST remember the battery/power options I mentioned!
17 of 17 people (100%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Great Video, AWESOME Audio!" submitted August 2, 2015

By Ivan P. in Keokuk, IA
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Musical Background: Guitar for 37 years
Music Style: Hard Rock/Metal
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Overall: I bought the zoom Q8 for face-to-face interviews with music artist. This done for Inside Heavy( www.insideheavy.net ) It does a fabulous job capturing video, but it it's strong suit is the audio quality.The audio quality is just like real life. You could hear a pin drop in the background. I accessorized with the shotgun mic for interview situations. I like it so well I plan on buying more of these cameras for more angles during interviews. I will only buy through Zzounds… Love the easy payment plans! Only drawback is it doesn't have a powerful zoom, but I only use it for face-to-face interview situations so that is not a drawback for what I personally am looking for.
42 of 43 people (97.67%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Really fun camera" submitted December 1, 2015

By John R. in Austin, TX
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Musical Background: electric guitar, synth/keys, vocalist
Music Style: Rock and Roll, metal, alternative,
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Overall: I use this, primarily, for shooting live bands. I'll generally have three angles or so going, but I collect the music with the mic from this camera. I could get a stereo feed from the board too, if it was available. However, simply adding some EQ and compression really bring the tracks to life. Then I just sync the other two cameras and cut away! Good times!
10 of 10 people (100%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Another AWESOME product from Zoom" submitted January 27, 2016

By James T. in Cabot, AR
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Musical Background: Been playing banjo 40 years
Music Style: Bluegrass
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Overall: I bought the zoom Q8 to record live bluegrass festival jams and indoor events. This like all the Zoom products I have used starting with the zoom H2n handheld recorder has outstanding audio capabilities. The audio quality is just as stated in another review, like real life. The video is outstanding and beyond what I expected. I originally purchased a Zoom Q4 but wanted the capability of the XLR inputs along with the ability to record separate audio tracks. I would recommend this product to any of my friends. I have purchased lots of equipment from zZounds and have always used the payment plan. Works out perfect for me. I am fortunate enough to live in a state next to the Mississippi warehouse and all my orders arrive the next day. I can’t say enough about zZounds customer service. They set the standards for online shopping in my opinion
23 of 24 people (95.83%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Awesome Camera " submitted October 30, 2015

By Tommy B. in Dry Prong, LA
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Musical Background: Do karaoke and do band promotion dvd
Music Style: Country old rock blues gospel
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Overall: I am still learning all the different settings it has but the video is crisp clear on each setting the sound adjustments are great to work with looking to buy a couple more in near future
15 of 16 people (93.75%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Great technology" submitted March 1, 2017

By Anthony V. in Smithfield, NC
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Musical Background: Precussion, non professional DJ, Public address
Music Style: r&b,rock,blues,jazz,electronic,hip-hop,gospel,contemporary,reggae
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Overall: Purchase the zoom q8 for small venues as an alternative for a more expensive video camcorder. Very pleased with the video and audio features. However not so happy with the zoom in and out feature. It is very limited and rough. I feel that if this feature is improved to make zooming in and out smoother and improve limitation boundaries. This product will be the go to product for all professional and non professional musicians and public address people.
3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Zoom Q8" submitted June 20, 2015

By Jody U. in Plano, IL
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Musical Background: 50 years
Music Style: Country, Americana, Singer/Songwriter
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Overall: I'm still learning to use this to it's full potential, but I can already say it's just what I needed for posting my songs on YouTube etc. I've already bought a lot of gear from ZZounds, great people to deal with. I'll be looking for my next purchase here!
12 of 13 people (92.31%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Good cameral with great sound" submitted July 10, 2017

By a customer from yahoo.com in Athens, GA
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Overall: Great camera. It's handy for capturing wide angle shot for my studio dance classes. Not alot of video controll options though.
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"Much better cameras in 2020" submitted May 14, 2020

By Aaron R. in Denver, CO
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Musical Background: Keyboardist and electronic musician semi-pro
Music Style: Electronic, Jam, Rock, Funk
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Overall: Bought for livestreaming and out of the box its livestreaming capability SUCKS. Doesn't look like true 720p at all. Blocky and full of artifacts. Purchased an HDMI cable and HDMI capture card ($85 black HDMI to USB-C dongle from Amazon) to run the monitor signal into OBS which works MUCH better in 720p but can't seem to get higher resolutions to work. Not sure if it's the camera or the capture card. One good thing is that the HDMI output is clean, no on-screen display elements are passed via HDMI. Waiting for my SD card to arrive so I can test out higher-resolution recordings. I won't comment on the audio recording capabilities because I have no doubts about those whatsoever. Zoom knows what they're doing with audio.
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"Poor video quality" submitted November 28, 2018

By Phil S. in Phoenix, AZ
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Musical Background: 20 yrs experience, 3 studio albums (2 award-winning)
Music Style: ambient, electronica, zen
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Overall: I can’t express how disappointed I am with this camera. It's been on my wishlist for over a year and I finally purchased it with a few other items using one of zZounds amazing payment plans. The first thing I noticed when I started filming was how grainy and soft the video was. It totally lacked detail and sharpness. I thought I was doing something wrong with my lighting or choice of preset until I read more reviews online and noticed this was a common theme. I should’ve read those reviews before I bought the camera but it's Zoom so I figured it had to be as good as their Handy Recorders. On a positive note, with the right lighting, it has captured some pretty cool close-ups of my gear so I'll use it for B roll. But I'm back to filming my main shot with a cell phone for now, which has better video quality.Hands down, the best feature is the superb audio quality. So there is another plus. Overall, I would not recommend this camera.
4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Great Sound, Great Video, Bad Manufacturing" submitted March 13, 2020

By Mike K. in Clayton, CA
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Musical Background: Drumming since 1983.
Music Style: Hard Rock
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Overall: The camera does what it is supposed to do which is awesome.When it comes to manufacturing of this thing, it's not that great.I've owned two of these now and the second one just met the garbage can.Zoom sent me a new one (my second one) because of the audio port breaking.So on my second one, the audio out port broke and then a few months later the charging port broke.That was it for me. I took off the accessories to give to a friend who also has a Zoom Q8 (recommended by me) and tossed the camera in to the garbage.I'm not buying a third Zoom camera. Not until I know that they design their components better.
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"It is an audio recorder with a camera! Nothing more!" submitted February 27, 2019

By Christopher R. in Omaha, NE
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Musical Background: Professional Audio Production
Music Style: Spoken Word, Movie Audio
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Overall: My title might be a bit click-bait-ish but what I mean is that don't expect this to be a movie camera with a great audio recorder, think of it as a great audio recorder with a mediocre camera on it.I originally got this camera to use as a B-roll camera for a horror film I was producing. It was underwhelming as a camera. The video was very picky about light and there are very few camera functions. Zoom-in/out is 100% digital and must be present in the menu, you can't smoothly transition a zoom. Most of the video I shot was zoomed in all the way and grainy. But zoomed out and wide the video is very clear and good quality.The Video seems to be always a wide angle, and there is no way I know of to change that. (Because it's for live performances.)Where the camera will shine is setting up as a static video camera for live music, dance recitals, and school plays. I think it will make an excellent vlogger's static camera or webcam since live streaming is a function on the camera.If you are familiar with the zoom products like the H-5, 4, 6 etc. then you will feel right at home with the audio side of it. I used it as a secondary backup field recorder on the set and it worked just as good as my other hand-held zooms.Don't buy this if you are looking for a camera to make movies on. Get this if you are picky about great audio and would like a camera second.
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"Q8 Handy video camera " submitted December 31, 2015

By Michael M. in Breaks, VA
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Musical Background: Songwriter, I play acoustic and electric guitar , bass ,vocals.
Music Style: Blues,Country, Rock,Alternative Country, Folk Rock.
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Overall: Best video camera I have ever owned. I would recommend this camera for everyone, musician or not.
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"It is what it is!" submitted November 5, 2018

By Christopher R. in Omaha, NE
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Musical Background: Sound engineer for years!
Music Style: I mostly do audio books, and sound for movies.
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Overall: If you are looking for a camera to shoot that blockbuster you will be greatly disappointed. If you want a great camera for vlogging in your bedroom or shooting that live concert with a high-quality mic attached, then it's perfect!It is a portable recording studio with a camcorder attached, it will always be an audio device first and foremost. If you want a movie camera for making movies, look elsewhere.
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"Q8 Handy video camera" submitted December 1, 2015

By Michael M. in Breaks, VA
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Musical Background: Songwriter, I play acoustic and electric guitar , bass ,vocals.
Music Style: Original Country/rock
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Overall: Absolutely great, have done seven videos since I received the Q8. Very happy with both Zzounds and the camera.
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"Its decent for sound quality" submitted March 27, 2020

By Austin H. in Columbia City, IN
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Musical Background: 16 years
Music Style: Country & Rock
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Overall: The fact they right HD all over this is a joke. There isnt anything High Def about it. The video quality looks like video from an old Nokia flip phone. The sound quality is decent. I tried and tried to like this but it's a terrible product. I ended up using my Note 9 with a Rode mic instead. Pass on this one.
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