Zoom R24 Reviews4.2/5.0 based on 25 customer reviews
Sort By Date Sort By Rating
from Sault Ste.Marie MI. U.S.A.
October 30, 2012Music Background:
Recording, Production, Live Entertainment, Live Original Showcasing...
The Zoom R24Cannot believe everything that this thing does!
More like what doesn't it do!!!???!!!
24-track Portable SD Recorder, USB Audio Interface, Pad Sampler, and DAW Control Surface with 8 Microphone Inputs, Built-in Stereo Condenser Microphones, Built-in Effects, and USB - Mac/PC
......Oh that's all?????.................lol
Can't believe all it does for it's size...
Best Recorder I've seen for the price!
from worcester ma. usa
December 13, 2011Music Background:
prroducer/arranger acoustic writers.
A whole lot of fun!I have a tascam neo 2488 which I love and I had a little extra cash( rare) so I decided to see what all the great reviews this gets and got one. Wow!! what a fun and very useful unit, it records great, the sampler is a blast, the interface and controller work great with the included cubase 5 le. what i found amazing is the 2 built in mics, alot of reviews say they are ok, but I find them more than ok, you have to place the unit just right for what your recording I fooled around recording my taylor acoustic guitar and I got some takes that were good enough to keep as songs! added a little reverb from the effects bank which as tons of very useful choices including guitar effects, vocal etc. overall this is a whole lot of fun im glad I got it.
from Boston, MA
August 24, 2011Music Background:
Singer/Songwriter, Pro Musician, Recording Engineer
FantasticWe have only scratched the surface of all the features, but so far so good. It's really fast and easy, light, dead quiet, and sounds great. We haven't even hooked it up to the computer yet. My son and I each have our own SD cards so we can share it with no reservations.
If this unit was double the price I might have some minor issues like dealing with menus, more accurate metering, and not being able to reassign the drum pad buttons for other functions, but it's only $500 so I will not complain at all. What an affordable alternative to buying an interface, control surface, and a new computer that can handle it all! Use the money you save to buy a great mic and an outboard preamp! I swear to God that I will release an awesome sounding CD using this recorder.
from Kent, WA
July 20, 2011
This is a must have!!!!!!!!Wow this is the best purchase I've made in a long time. Sweetwater your the best and your tech support is amazing. They were very helpful. The Zoom R24; simply put, great product great price!!
from Simpsonville, SC
April 30, 2011Music Background:
Just Buy It And See For Yourself!Amazing piece of equipment! I still haven't mastered all of the R24's capabilities, but what little I have learned so far has exceeded my expectations by far! I do recommend that you read the manual. It may be a little underwhelming, but it is informative.
Like many, I can't say enough to show my thanks or appreciation of Sweetwater. Nick Shenkel has been a great help on numerous occasions. As a matter of fact, he recommended Zoom to me when I was thinking of purchasing a different product of higher cost. He explained the R24 would serve me better for my purposes. Thanks Nick!
Go ahead and buy the R24, if portable high quality recording is what you're looking for. Of course it's not a fully packed recording studio, but it's much more than it looks to be.
from Auburn, ME
March 10, 2011Music Background:
HOLY S***, Batman!!!This is a 1st for me. I've never given any product the highest rating. This unit is intuitive, LOADED, & has plenty of warmth (believe it or not). As with anything, if you start with crap, you end up with crap. I've done recordings with a decent acoustic/electric (Yamaha APX400) and played the distortion from the onboard Effects and I was amazed at the sound I was able to get from this in just a half hour! Super portable, too! I'm sure it doesn't last long on batteries but at least it can be used with them, right? And for so little Benjamins, comparatively!
February 20, 2011Music Background:
Ridiculous bargain revisionI mentioned in an earlier review that my only missgiving was that the monitor pre-amp was somewhat noisy, but I was wrong. It was only when I use it as an interface via USB that monitoring got a bit noisy, but that turned out to be caused by the PC. After having used this machine to produce a couple of CD's I feel compelled to increase the rating to five stars. I is, as I stated earlier, an amazing bargain. If you are reading these reviews you are probably considering buying one. Stop reading, and just buy it!
Victor Calise Blanchard
from Houston, TX USA
February 8, 2011Music Background:
Padwan Learner, Sound Engineer, Singer/Songwriter, Hobbyist
I'm In LoveBeing new to music-making and on a rather tight budget (I'm cheap and broke), I was hard-pressed to locate an item that could accomplish some of the tasks I had planned for my entry into music and audio production. I could not have hoped for a more brilliant piece of equipment. I am very much appreciative of the R24's many features and capacities that I most surely could not have found for this price anywhere else.
I use the crap out of the Cubase software that was included - employing it for all of my vocal tracking and mixing projects. The interface does exactly what it is supposed to and can be relied upon to streamline my production. I was slightly confused at first regarding its range of function, but as I spend more time using the R24, it is becoming much more valuable to me and my projects.
I have not had extensive exposure to the included USB drive and it's many drum loops, but you can never have too many thumb drives (free ones), or drum loops I suppose. But trust me when I say, “There’s A Lot”
I have managed to get great use of the onboard stereo mics and have done some very creative things with them, which include making personal notes and recording ideas before they have a chance to fly away. And with those in mind if you look at the R24 you notice the darker grey pieces on the side. Those not only contain the stereo mics but the elevate the unit when turned on it’s face, completely eliminating the risk of damaging you knobs or sliders when replacing batteries or performing maintenance. F’n genius.
Running the R24 on batteries is as easy as it sounds. I was quite surprised at the efficiency the unit is capable of, even when, and especially when using the onboard mics.
About the only thing lacking is the drum machine capabilities (simply from a lack of onboard kits), but hey, if it could do any more somebody would probably go out of business. That said the pads are responsive and can be programmed to your preferred sensitivity. Sampling into the pads is easy as hell too!
Speaking of easy, nothing beats being able to record straight into an SD card. The R24 also functions as an SD card reader.
All in all, my rig is sooooooooooooo much better off because of this unit. Thanks ZOOM!
I could write forever in the spirit of praising this small, inexpensive, wonder of a machine. Do yourself a favour and scope it out.
January 6, 2011Music Background:
Must have for home studioI have been using the R24 for about a week now and I was compelled to write a review on it. Let me first dispell a few things you may have seen in other reviews.
Some have said that the unit looks cheaply made but the fact of the matter is that the unit is so well designed that it comes off looking too "clean". When compared to another recorder like the Tascam 2488 you can really see how well defined each function is established. I realize the the 2488 has features that the R24 doesn"t, I'm simply dispelling the rumor of the visual aspect of the unit.
Some have said that the screen could be better. In part I agree, the screen could be a little larger with better definition. But I have used other recorders that have far worse screens than this unit does. The screen on the R24 may lack some definition but you can clearly read all aspects of what is being displayed.
I did a little test with this unit to get a real understanding of how easy Zoom made recording with the R24. I handed the unit to my Bassist (who has no prior experience with recording of any kind) to see exactly how difficult it is for the first time home recording artist to get their first track layed down, even if it is a scratch track. I was simply amazed to find that within one hour he not only had the basics of setting up a new project tracks, but he had one recorded as well. After listening to what he had recorded I was further amazed to find that the track sounded good, I mean real good. Sure it was lacking effects and subtle dynamics which take a little more time and experience to figure out but he could have easily fixed all of that with edditing software even if he couldn't figure it out on the R24 which I highly doubt.
In my opinion Zoom has made the perfect tool for the DIY home recording artist. To get better sound quality or functionality you will have to spend tons more money and have real training as a recording engineer to surpass what you can do at home in a few hours with this unit.
Green Death Productions
from Ocean County,N.J.
August 13, 2010Music Background:
Keyboard workstation & DAW composer
Software-grade audio quality in a neat package!I was in dire need of a serious hardware upgrade...one that could preserve the clarity & depth of my source material.
Since my Tascam 2488neo was murdering the audio quality of my Reason 4 & Korg M3 imports,I was extremely pleased that Zoom finally stepped up to 24 tracks of 24 bit,48kHz recording quality!
Unlike my Tascam,the Zoom R24 preserves all of the sonic attributes of the source material,every step of the way,due to it's exceptional internal processing & clean & quiet audio inputs!
By the way,SamsonTeach's technical support has been fantastic,as they are eager to help you in any way they can and it's extremely easy to get a hold of them over the phone.
Although I did rate this product as a 5,it was due to the tremendous sound quality,but there is a serious issue with the effects,however.
I've always liked the quality of Zoom's effects in their products,but unfortunately-in the 48kHz recording mode,ALL of the effects are disengaged.
Trust me,this is not a case of operator error,as if you try to click on the effects button in the 48kHz mode,a message will pop up that reads; "only in 44.1 ! "
My whole purpose in buying this product,was to upgrade,& not to downgrade,just to be able to utilize the effects!
There's 100 effects to play with on this unit,& I cannot use a single one!
I was so upset by this,that I contacted SamsonTech & complained....and what's really interesting,is that the tech guy I spoke to,was not aware of this issue at all!
There is absolutely no way to rashionalize what Zoom as done...as there's no logic to it whatsoever.
What's even worse,is that the purchaser has utterly no idea of this until he sits down with it and records(not something that Zoom would advertise on the box,as it just wouldn't sell to well).
Being that my main purpose was to incorporate my Korg M3 & Reason 4 sounds to my Presonus DAW,I already have plenty of effects to work with,but I thought that Zoom might have some unique effects to sweeten my songs,so for that reason,I am deeply disappointed.
As for other folks who are dependant of the Zoom built in effects,but don't want to downgrade their recording quality either,well....they're in for a real disaster!
The tech guy I spoke with,speculated that Zoom may correct this issue with a firmware update,but I am not hopeful of this....since this unit also functions as a DAW controller & perhaps Zoom just expects people to use Cubase,for using effects in a higher quality recording mode-which begs the question; WHY EVEN BOTHER INCLUDING THE EFFECTS TO BEGIN WITH??!!
It's still a great product though,as it gets the essentials done for my particular situation and does them well and all for a surprisingly low price.
One of the nicest functions of media card-based recorders,is that unlike hard drive-based ones,the conversion process of audio to WAV files is lightening fast.
Yet another one of my favorite features,is the ability to stereo link all of the 24 tracks into 12 stereo tracks,making it extremely convenient to import stereo audio files from my Reason 4 recordings!
from Ormond Beach, Fl
April 25, 2013Music Background:
semi-pro muscian, been at it too long to be called Hobbyist any more.
Zoom R24This is the simplest way to record a live band on individual tracks at once. I had tried the latest versions using my Mac but the latency and complexity was killing me. This is by far the easiest way and it records exactly what you put in it...CLEAN. I don't use any of the effect as I use my favorite DAW to mix so I can't say for anything else. The only disappointment was that it is plastic, but so far no RF bleed over. Best of all, Jon, my salesperson at Sweetwater was very helpful and a great guy. If you want to keep it simple and clean.. .this is it.
December 1, 2012Music Background:
Semi pro guitarist and bassist for 30+ years
Rocking my socks off!Just to put this in context, I'm an audio pro in my day job and prefer Garage Band to Logic or ProTools for recording my music at home, so when I say this is the best home studio I've ever used, that's a pretty hot recommendation. As a recorder, it has great preamps, the effects are phenomenal, as an audio interface it's as easy as it gets and it aggregates, unlike some in its price range, as a control surface (while tricky to set up with Garage Band, where it loses the final half star, but easy with the included Cubase) it's so nice to have a human interface, mousing truly sucks, push faders, seriously, stop mousing audio on your computer and push faders for about as cheap as you're ever going to. It even works as a live 8x2 audio mixer with a built in 16 track playback deck, so your solo career can go truly solo (although you'll need to setup a separate foldback mix split from your live mics.)
from Stockbridge, GA 30281
September 3, 2012Music Background:
Weekend gigger and home-recording engineer.
Zoom R24 = bang 4 buckFits in a laptop case with room to spare for all of the accessories. Runs for 4 hours on 4 AA batteries or indefinitely on the included AC adaptor. 8 in at once, 24 playback. EZ interface with most DAW's. Intuitive and as easy to use as the old-school analog port-a-studios. Records to SD cards or thumb-drives (no moving parts - awesomeness). 2 built-in condenser mics and phantom power on most inputs. Excellent on-board effects and amp simulators, as well as a very use-able drum machine and groove-builder, not to mention the bonus 1Gig thumb-drive that's included with some excellent groove and drum samples recorded by a top studio drummer.. Now....what else would you like in a unit about 1 1/2 times larger than an iPad?
July 6, 2011
wav edits fixedI've had a really good experience with zoom support regarding my previous review, of having problems with wav editing. The beta firmware I received seems to fix this glitch and I am a completely satisfied customer. I wish there was a way to "edit" previous posts or I'd do that to update this latest information. This is one fun and versatile piece of equipment. I gave it 4.5 for the simple fact I don't believe anything is ever "perfect", but I can find no faults so far with this unit after receiving beta firmware.
from AZ USA
February 14, 2011Music Background:
A Ridiculous Bargain !Control surface, interface, and 24...YES .24 TRACK RECORDER!!! Everything worked perfectly right out of the box! No problems whatsoever. Effects, mic pre-amps (with fanthom power on six imputs?!) are all OK. My only complain is that the monitor pre-amp is rather noisy (only affects the monitoring though, not the recording). Don't turn it up more than 65-75% and you can probably live with it. $500.00 for the whole thing though..you got to be joking! I spend that on Starbucks in a month! Ten years ago this functionality would have set you back $25-50,000.00!!! If you want to get in to multi-track recording, and produce great sounding tracks on the cheap, this is the way to do it.
from Austin, TX
October 15, 2010Music Background:
A little bit of everything.
Portable jack of almost all trades.I purchased the R24 as a replacement to my trusty Zoom 1608CD mostly to lighten my load when remote recording which takes place fairly regularly. I also thought the smaller footprint might help tidy up my workspace. To those ends the R24 has fulfilled my requirements. For anyone wondering about sound quality, it is very clear and natural, at least to my ears. I record at 44.1/16bit and it sounds fine. In many ways it is an improvement on my older Zoom since it records direct to .wav files. I also appreciate the option to run on batteries as well as the ease of replacing the storage or using multiple SD cards.
As a sound card it performs as expected and does a fairly good job of being a control surface with FL Studio and Ableton Live 8 by emulating a Mackie control surface. I haven't bothered with the included Cubase software. I'm not really big on control surfaces in general so if it did not perform well I probably wouldn't care.
Using the R24 to record a 3 piece rock band live is very straightforward especially if you have prior Zoom experience. Setting up projects relatively easy. The portability to various locations is great but the downside is that the weight of the mic cables connected to it can easily pull if off a table especially if you connect 8 mics at once. Consider some better rubber feet from your local hardware store.
When recording LOUD sources you may want to avoid using really hot mics. A deep snare played by an enthusiastic drummer with a neodymium mic will probably clip on every hit regardless of how little gain you use. I suspect the R24 soft clips some transients because the resulting recording from the clipping snare sounded just fine (and the .wav looked ok too)
Why 4.5 stars? The one thing the R24 does not do that my 1608 does is let me change drum patterns while listening to previously recorded tracks. I got a lot of creative mileage out of laying down parts to one drum beat and then scrolling through various other beats later in real time to help jump start the creative process. Stopping the audio to change to a different pattern takes the life out of the process. I suppose it is a small price to pay in order to no longer have to convert audio files to .wav or lug a heavy recorder across town. Plus I get an additional computer interface out of the deal. Still, I have decided to keep my 1608 around for writing, at least for now. If you don't need the on-board drums, then I would say go for the R16 instead. Overall, this is a very useful recorder with a lot of applications.
September 9, 2010Music Background:
Drummer, songwriter, producer, engineer, filmscore composer
Incredible Tool!I was a recording engineer in the 70 and 80’s and built my own recording studio using a Fostex B16 ˝” 16 channel recorder. I was a studio drummer for many years in Los Angeles. I also have been a song writer for many years and am now getting back into it. I just purchased the Zoom R24 and have used it now for a week. I was looking for a replacement sound card for my computer and stumbled across the Zoom. I did weeks of research, read all I could find on the R16 and saw most all of the videos offered online. Let me say that I am very pleased with my decision to own this incredible tool.
After loading the software drivers and making sure the R24 was working with Sonar Cakewalk 8.5, I created my first song.
I first selected a drum pattern to play to. I plugged in my 30 year-old Fender Strat and started laying down some chords. Next, I plugged in my Behringer B1 mic, cranked up the phantom power and recorded several tracks of vocals. I used onboard effects such a reverb to monitor by and used limiting and amp sims for the guitars. I used a pair of Koss headphones that did not demand a lot of power. After a couple hours of playing, I hooked up the R24 to my computer via USB and uploaded all the audio files from the R24 (now in USB mode) to my desktop. I launched Cakewalk Sonar 8.5, created a new project and imported all the audio files which only took a minute. I set the tempo to match the R24 and hit play. Everything was in perfect sync! I then used the R24 as a DAW interface to control Sonar. I recorded through the R24 more vocal and guitar tracks while running Sonar. No problems. I then added a drum part using Sonar’s Session Drummer 3. The sound was excellent and I was totally blown away with the functionality of this unit. The next day, I recorded a new song and this time, while I was on my porch watching the sun set, I had my R24 running on batteries while I played around with adding effects and listening to work.
A few days ago, I purchased an HP laptop from Wal-Mart and am now using it for Sonar and the R24. I had to strip a lot of misc. software from the HP but finally got it to play back my tracks through Sonar without pops and clicks. The sound blows away many 24 track recorders from 20-30 years ago costing many tens of thousands of dollars more. I realize that what is most important is to have the ability to turn on a recorder in the field or at home and capture your ideas and then know that you have many possibilities for using the wave forms either to mix and master within the R24 or export effortlessly into a DAW program with professional results.
By the way, I did not notice any sync issues when building up tracks as you might read online. This is not to say it doesn’t happen but just that I did not notice it. Also, I would like to see more headroom in the mic pres even though they sound very good. I would also like to see more headphone power for driving larger headphones.
After many years in the music business, this product is so unique and functional that I had to have it. Thank you Zoom.
Andrew Van Es
from Melbourne, Australia
July 27, 2010Music Background:
two thumbs upI did a bit of research on portable and digital recorders, hand held devices and decided to spend that extra bit of cash on the Zoom R24.
I got my pre-order in and the minute the product came in my sales engineer Dennis Konicki had it shipped within hours.
For my needs this unit was mainly purchased to use as a sketch pad to work out a few melodies with my hardware synths and to flesh out some lyric ideas. Sound is crystal clear with the front panel logically laid out. The built in mics sound fine and pick up everything.
On the weekend I'll try out my channel strip/eq/compressor and I get a chance to warm up my vocalizer.
USB/ batteries/ power/SD card. Now were really spoiled for chance.
Use of a good quality set of headphones will enhance your listening experience.
Highly recommended. Two thumbs up!!!
Manual is well written and easy to understand.
from Brentwood, CA
October 25, 2011Music Background:
Pro Musician, Pro Studio Owner
About what I expected....Good little unit. Very simple to operate and easy to figure out. I used it to record a High School Choir concert (6 Mics). The preamps are pretty good but a little noisy. Would work great for louder situations.
from Boston, MA
June 17, 2011Music Background:
Musician and home recordist
Nice little interface/recorderI've only had this about a month and have not used it heavily yet. I think that the main thing with this machine is that you get a lot for your money. I've had Zoom stuff break on me before, so I have no illusions about that but after a month it's still intact, so that's something... The recording sound is good and the process of recording is quick, easy and relatively intuitive.
The built in drums are handy but, as far as I can tell, making a whole drum track is probably more trouble than it's worth. I haven't done it yet and I may change my mind once I do it. However the drums sound good and it comes with a bunch of loops by Peter Erskine, so that's cool.
Using it as an interface for Cubase is pretty handy and is implemented well. My only complaint is that since it gets power from the USB cord, the thing is always on unless you unplug the cord.
I intend to mostly use it as a stand-alone recorder because I think it will make the recording process easier and more impulse-friendly.
from South Central PA
February 9, 2013Music Background:
Pro Musician, Live Recording Engineer, Home Studio
Nice Machine, but...Nice machine, lots of capability, great bang for the buck. Clean sounding preamps that add no noticeable color to the sound and represent the source material very well.
1. The input meters could use more segments. It's hard to tell when you're getting close to clipping.
2. No peak hold on the input meters. Would be nice if the clip indicator at least held.
3. While I've found it to be reliable overall, I recorded an hour long live event and the R24 hung while saving the take. Entire program lost! Thankfully, I use a redundant system on my laptop.
from Wichita, Ks.
September 7, 2010Music Background:
instructional manual is very poorI found the manual very hard to read. Very small print and errors in some instructions. Needs to be proof-read again by zoom. $500.00 and the most important part of the recorder is very poor, of course it is the display screen. Very hard color to read and very small in size. Should be at least twice the size. How about a bigger sd card, at least a 4 gb.
from Brooklyn, NY
May 26, 2011Music Background:
A WarningThe ZOOM R24 worked very well when I used it as a self contained multi-track recorder. When I tried to then import the data from the SD card onto my Mac, I had inexplicable problems with syncing between tracks, in other words, track one did not sync properly with track 2, and I had to slide the waveforms around in Logic in order to get them to correspond correctly with each other. This doesn't make any sense, as everything was imported at the same time at the same sample rate in the Logic session and the ZOOM files that were being imported.
Additionally, when using the unit as a control surface/audio interface, I also experienced inexplicable problems, noisy interference that shouldn't have been there which there was no way around after hours of troubleshooting. Investigating online turned up numerous posts on tech talk rooms of people having similar problems, and ZOOM's customer service being unresponsive and unhelpful.
It is easy to use, but for $500 the unit is pretty chinsy looking, the meters are very unimpressive, the tuner is practically useless, and it looks like the cheap plastic enclosure could be damaged very easily, although all of that was the least of my problems. It comes with a 1GB SD card and a 1GB flash drive, which are both essentially useless at this day in age; what the heck can you do with 1GB? The flash drive has some drum patterns on it, which were of no use to me personally.
So the unit works well on it's own, so if you just want to use it to make demos that no one else will hear and that even you can only plan on the unit itself, and if you're willing to pay $500 for that, it's perfect for you.
from Seattle, WA
May 3, 2011Music Background:
Everything but wav edits works for meI bought this unit and spent the first few months using it as an interface 99% of the time, and it worked great in the regard with pretty good sound quality. I didn't use the dedicated recorder mode much, including track trimming and splitting. I should have run it through it's paces much more thoroughly before the 30 day return window, as I've recently had a lot of problems with it's dedicated recorder functionality. I get white noise under some circumstances when recording, and I continually run into crashes when using the built in wav edit functions (trim/split). I mean it hangs on "please wait..." overnight, had to unplug to reset. This was on a simple project I had recorded 2 tracks on. So, while the audio quality, and it's functionality as an audio interface and controller are great, if you buy this unit I would recommend you use it heavily in dedicated record mode to try and flush out any issues. Since the main reason I bought it was to record song ideas and make simple backing tracks for later import into a daw, it's useless in this regard for me, I do not want to go through the continual wait issues which kills any musical inspiration.
from Cape Cod
February 19, 2011Music Background:
Professional microphone design / modification engineer
Zoom R24 - Defective, has constant tone generatorI love the idea of this box. But the one I got generates a 1kHz tone when in "record standby". Sent it back to Sweetwater who sent it to Zoom. Got it back and it still generates a tone with no mics or other sources connected.