Question about Zoom H4 Handy Recorder

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Creates a file but no playback, nothing on vue meter

I use the simplest recording for interviews...I've always just pushed record and I get beautiful mp3 files. Today I didn't check the meter, just pushed record, saw the red light and let people talk. When I tried to play the files back, no sound, nothing on the meter. The file menu says I have files and that they have a "size" and length. Is something there? Now I try to record myself, same thing. Nothing on vue meter, no playback. Help. This is a relatively new and important tool!

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  • smarions Jun 15, 2008

    I have the exact same problem. I press record and it sometimes will record a file and sometimes not. This is very frustrating and getting worse. It used to do it occassionally, but now it seems to be increasing in frequency. I've had the zoom for over a year and use it all the time- but this problem is not good.

  • jofridurg Nov 06, 2008

    Same problem here. It starts recording, creates a file, but the file is 0 MB and nothing to listen to when played ofcourse.

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Go to the music store where you bought this thing, or go to any music store that sells this product, and ask the young boy (I guess it'll be a young boy) to help you out with this. Difficult to now what's the problem without messing up with the buttons.

Posted on May 20, 2008

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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I have a number of files on my digital recorder where I have recorded interviews. When I press play, it shows up the length of each interview and the countdown starts, but there is no sound, just a qu


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Try to do another short recording. If you are using a microphone pull the jack out during recording and put it back in again. Then listen to the recording. If there is sound when the microphone is in and it goes when it is out, then there is a possibility that somehow you recorded the other stuff with no connection and that's why there is no sound. If there is no sound on the new recording at all, then you might have a faulty playback amplifier inside the device.

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The ERR indicator is only active if the DVR detects errors related to decoding of video/audio. These errors are due to discontinuities in the received or recorded file data.

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Err format while recording - 1 hour lost!


I have almost the exact same problem.

I did not interrupt my recording. I stopped recording, turned off the recorder, unplugged all the mics, turned on the recorder, listened to the first 10 seconds of the recorded track, turned off the recorder, plugged it into my mac, turned it on in USB mode, attempted to transfer the track file, and the track size is "zero kb." I ejected the recorder, turned it off and back on, and now the track says "err format" and skips to the next track.

This seems like a unique problem, as any "data recovery" software will search for deleted files instead of corrupted files. And even if the file is corrupted I have software that can read the raw wav data. However, the filesize is incorrect and obviously doesn't contain any wav data. Shouldn't it be the actual file size? How can I fix this???

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Can I save a WAV file to MP3 format


There is a free program called Media Monkey - it will convert WAV format to Mp3 (actually, it will convert any non-protected music file type - it's very dynamic). It may take a while to figure out how to do the first one, but it will get easier after that.

First, you have to plug the Thomson in to your computer, double-click "My Computer," and then double-click the icon of the Thomson. There should be a folder called "Voice or "REC". If it doesn't show up, select in the window: Tools --> Folder Options --> View --> select Show Hidden Files and folders. Now the right folder should show up. Then, drag the WAV recording to your desktop (or your "My Music" fodler - whichever works best for you), and the computer should make a copy of the WAV recording onto your computer.

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When the recorder finishes the format procedure, all folders will be unlocked again.

The "Read-Only-Failure" will occur again at recorders with differend user profiles, when you put the switched-off recorder into the docking station first and switch the power button to "on". So avoid this constellation!

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Two things to try: make sure you have a big enough memory card for the intended format and recording time. I suspect you are trying to use the 16MB Compact Flash card that came in the box. A 1GB card will record much longer than the battery life in the Microtrack 24/96, even when recording 24-bit stereo in WAV format. If you have a smaller card, and want long recording times, use an MP3 format. Using the MP3 encoder, monophonic recording, 128K bits/sec, 44.1K samples/sec, you should be able to record over 16hrs of audio on a 1GB memory card. Same card, WAV encoder, 44.1K samples/sec, stereo, 24-bit audio will produce only a little over one hour of recording time. With the 64MB card that came with the recorder, the most you can record using WAV encoding, 24-bit audio, 44.1K samples/sec, is a little less than 4 minutes. With 16-bit audio about 6 min, and with mono and 16-bit audio about 12 min. With WAV, 24-bit audio, mono recording yields 7:52.

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