Zoom H6 Handy Recorder - Handheld (Pre 2020 Model - Discontinued)


95 out of 100. Incorporating 2100+ ratings and reviews.

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Zoom H6 Handy Recorder - Handheld

NB: This was superseded by the Zoom H6 All Black - 2020 Model.

The Zoom H6 comes with two interchangeable microphone capsules, XY and Mid-Side as standard and there are a range of other optional capsule types available from Zoom as well.

It also comes with 4 XLR/TRS combo input jacks allowing you to record up to 6 tracks simultaneously and has its own dB pad for recording loud sources.

The recorder can also be used as a class compliant 6-in/2-out USB audio interface.

It has some interesting features: Pre-record takes the previously recorded two seconds and adds it to the beginning of the new recording. Backup makes two simultaneous recordings with the second recording using 12dB less gain in case the main recording distorts or clips.


  • Inputs: 4 XLR / TRS combo jacks , Stereo Mic/Line 1/8" jack with plug-in power
  • Outputs: 1 Line out 1/8" stereo mini jack, 1 Headphone out 1/8" stereo mini jack
  • Built-in Mic: XY Stereo and Mid-Side capsules included
  • Recording / Playback Format: WAV, MP3
  • Simultaneous Recording / Playback 6 channels (3 stereo)
  • Storage capacity: Comes with 2GB microSD; Expandable to 128GB)
  • Power Requirements: 4 AA batteries (Alkaline or NiMH), USB (Optional AC adapter)
  • Battery Life: 20 hours
  • Weight:Main unit: 9.88 oz, XYH-6: 4.59 oz, MSH-6: 3 oz
  • Dimensions: Main unit: 3.06" (W) x 6.01" (H) x 1.88" (D), XYH-6: 3.1" (W) x 2.37"(H) x 1.78" (D), MSH-6: 2.28" (W) x 2.66" (H) x 1.66"(D)


Despite having multiple features, this recorder isn't too overwhelming to use. Many reviewers are impressed by its 6 track simultaneous recording feature and the fact that it can be used as a USB audio interface. A lot of them mention the X/Y mic capsule and the Mid-Side mic capsule provide excellent quality recordings. It boots up fast while turning it on. Many users point out it has a more professional feel and is easier to use compared to its predecessors. It is very reliable when recording both in indoor and outdoor settings. It's also very handy for recording a whole band using separate microphone inputs.

Former Electronic Musician senior editor Geary Yelton said in his review, "Simply put, the H6 is a remarkable piece of machinery. If you’ve ever wished for a 6-track recorder you could slip into your coat pocket, especially one as versatile as the H6, technology has finally caught up with your desires."


On the downside, the inability of the rotary gain knobs to lock in place means you have to be careful not to change the settings accidentally. Some users say they wish it had a better file management system.


This recorder is an excellent choice for anyone who needs the extended multi-tracking facilities. It is highly recommended for professional use.

NB: This was superseded by the Zoom H6 All Black - 2020 Model.