Dynamic Music | (02) 9939 1299 | www.dynamicmusic.com.au | RRP: $779

Zoom have come a long way since they first amazed us all with the original H4 Handy Recorder many years ago. The introduction of video recorders to their range a few years back took them even further in terms of what they can offer. Now, the Zoom Q8 brings both these worlds together and draws upon elements of both to deliver the ultimate portable recorder. It’s compact, lightweight and offers not only HD video recording, but also 4-track audio recording too.



What Zoom has very cleverly done with the Q8 is take the most valuable features from the H5 and added them to an HD camera. This makes it a very clever little combination for musicians who want both high quality audio and video in one. The interchangeable microphone capsule allows you to take other capsules used with the H5 or H6 and swap them out. The Q8 comes standard with the all too familiar XY condenser microphone pair that Zoom has become well known for, but you can change this around for a shotgun style or even an omni-directional microphone if you wanted to. Controlling the audio recording is really simple  with the use of the touch screen. You do not need to spend hours flipping pages of a manual to get it going, just power it up and you’ll have it worked out in no time.




What the Q8 offers on the video side of things is a ‘beyond HD’ video recording ability with 3M HD video capture delivering stunning results. It works especially well in low light situation, which is perfect for bands wanting to capture gigs and live performances. There are two HD options as well, which allow for more recording time on you SD card should you wish. My only issue was with the wide angle lens. As useful as this  is, allowing you to capture the entire band within the shot, it did tend to bow the image slightly, as is the case with any lens of this nature. That aside, it does give you the ability to fit an entire stage within the shot even at close range. In all, this is a standout product from Zoom and one that has set new levels in the world of portable recording. We have come a long way since the Dictaphone and zoom have taken us a lot further than we could have imagined.

Hits and Misses


Lightweight and extremely portable

High quality video and audio capture

XLR inputs for additional microphones

Interchangeable microphone capsules


Wide angle lens does bow the image slightly


• Recording media: SD/SDHC/SDXC cards (up to 128GB)
• Image sensor: 1/3-inch 3-megapixel CMOS sensor
• Lens:Fixed focus (36cm - ) F2.0, focal distance approx. 16.6 mm (35mm equivalent)
• Video format: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 (MOV)
• Video resolutions: 3M HD (2304 x 1296 pixels) 30fps, HD (1080 pixels) 30fps, HD (720 pixels) 60fps, HD (720 pixels) 30fps, WVGA 60fps, WVGA 30fps
• Audio formats:WAV (16/24-bit quantization, 44.1/48/96kHz sampling frequency)
• AAC (64-320kbps bit rate, 48kHz sampling
• Audio functions: Low-cut lter, Auto Gain (Concert/Solo/Meeting), compressor, limiter
• Image functions: Digital zoom (1.0x-4.0x)
• Display: 2.7” full-color LCD touchscreen
• Built-in speaker: 400mW 8 mono speaker
• L/R inputs: X/Y mic (XYQ-8): 120° X/Y stereo format
• Maximum sound pressure input: 140 dB SPL
• Phantom power: +12/+24/+48V
• Output connectors: Combined line/headphones stereo mini-jack
• Connector: USB Mini B type
• AC adapter: 2 hours, 45 minutes (approximate)
• Battery operation time: More than 2 hours (when recording 720p/30fps)
• Weight: Recorder: 260g