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-   -   Zoom H4n Recorder and Pro Tools M-Powered--PLEASE HELP (http://duc.avid.com/showthread.php?t=316815)

pilipinokuno 02-03-2012 09:37 PM

Zoom H4n Recorder and Pro Tools M-Powered--PLEASE HELP
I am a total new-bie to the world of Pro Tools. It's my first-time opening up any DAW application, and I could be missing something really simple here. But, I have thoroughly looked through endless forums/blogs. If you're capable of answering any of this, then you're so far ahead of me and surely you've hit your fair share of brick walls. :eek: I so do appreciate the gesture. Please break it down for me as simple as you can. It would make a world of difference.
I have just bought Pro Tools MP9 (M-Powered).

My goal: Use my Zoom H4n Recorder to record live audio into Pro tools MP9. Since M-Powered still requires a physical piece of M-Audio hardware to operate, I ended up buying the Mobile Pre.

My Computer Set-Up: Toshiba Laptop Windows 7 64-bit
Hardware/Software: Pro Tools MP9 (M-Powered); M-Audio's MobilePre; and Zoom H4N

It seems several people have already been able to run their Zoom H4n with Pro Tools 9 successfully. Normally, the Zoom H4n is used as an interface by connecting the USB cable that is accompanied with the H4n. But, I haven't found anyone yet discuss how to set up the Zoom H4n while using the M-powered Pro Tools with an attached Mobile Pre.

Is this even possible? I have successfully set up my Zoom H4n as an interface with the PC via the USB cable. (page 33 of Zoom's instruction manual). The Zoom's screen shows that it's reading the levels.

I understand that in a normal set-up, you have a microphone attached first to your Mobile Pre, but it seems most use the Zoom H4n "as an Audio interface." The manual has said it is compatible and claims it can "record and playback signals directly to and from your DAW software..". And again, I've seen several Pro Tools 9/10 users love it.

Main Problem: When I click in Hardware under the Setup tab, I get a warning message that says: "Hardware controls for this peripheral are handled in its Set-up application". I have no idea where to go with this. It says Mobile Pre in the upper left hand corner, but thats it.

When I click on Playback Engine under the Setup tab, it acknowledges that my current engine is MobilePre. I am not certain, but it seems like with Pro Tools 9 gives you the option to select the Zoom interface instead of the MobilePre. In this case, it doesn't give the option to change the selected MobilePre

Additional Problem: When I open up the Control Panel of the MobilePre, none of the setting are adjustable. They're all just frozen.

My own Brain-stormed Possible Solutions:

* I need to connect my Zoom H4n first into the Mobile Pre via XLR cables? As of now, it's connected thru the USB cable included in the packaging of the Zoom. This was recommended in the manual. If I do need to buy XLR cables, it seems I need to buy a male to male XLR, does that make sense? I am only guessing based on the fact that both sockets look like female. I really don't know what I'm doing there.

*Is Asio4All a possible solution to this problem? As far as I can tell, it's primary purpose is to lessen latency in cheaper-end soundcards that would come in a laptop like mine. But it does this by controlling input/output? So, I vaugely am guessing I could resolve all this just by adjusting the I/O connections in Asio4all.
I have it already installed, but only the Off-line control panel opens up, and I haven't yet figured out what to do with it. Any help there is immensely appreciated.

*As of now, I haven't even bought speakers or a compatible set of headphones. Is this necessary just for a recording?? Would connecting a headphone or pair of monitors solve the problem by itself?

Help! Please! :eek: In this case, a little goes a long way.

fireberd 02-06-2012 07:03 AM

Re: Zoom H4n Recorder and Pro Tools M-Powered--PLEASE HELP
I have PT MP9. I am no Pro Tools expert (I use Sonar as my production DAW and I'm learning Pro Tools) but I don't think you will ever get a non Avid/MAudio device to directly work with the MP9 version. If you had the full verion of Pro Tools 9 (or the current 10) it MAY work since they will work with SOME non-proprietary devices but you would still have to have an ASIO driver for the Zoom.

The only way I can see the Zoom recorder working is if you run the Analog (headphone) output from the Zoom to the analog input on the MAudio device. You then record using the MAudio device in Pro Tools. Actually, this is the way I would have to do it with Sonar if I had one of the small "digital" recorders such as the Zoom - the analog output to an analog channel input on my recording interface unit.

If you want to try it with Pro Tools 10, you can download a 30 day trial version, from the Avid web site. I had done this to check Pro Tools compatibility with a Focusrite Saffire Pro 40 recording interface unit. The only issue, you would have to uninstall PT MP9 to install the PT10, unless you have a different PC you can install it to for testing.

pilipinokuno 02-06-2012 09:41 AM

Re: Zoom H4n Recorder and Pro Tools M-Powered--PLEASE HELP
Thank you, for taking the time to answer. I have tried that, but it seems now, I have a completely un-related problem.

THe only message I get when I open the Hardware window (under the set up tab) is "Hardware controls of this peripheral are handled in its set up application."

I've already taken my entire set up to Guitar center, and some long-time pro tool users took a look. I managed to forget my iLok, so there wasn't much they could do just yet. But they did say that they were absolutely sure my connections should work, which were exactly as you described.

So, I'm still figuring this out.

At this point after several days of not getting past this seemingly simple problem, I'm thinking about just spending 40$ to talk with an Avid rep and have him walk me through a solution..

I haven't yet utilized an ASIO. I downloaded Asio4all near the beginning, but I may have simply not been using it correctly. Unfortunately, I dont think an Avid rep will even offer to help with that.

I totally appreciate a reply. Anything else you can think of? Asio4all didn't seem to straightforward. What would I do after I download it again. I'm a total newbie. Any directions would help. :)

fireberd 02-06-2012 10:57 AM

Re: Zoom H4n Recorder and Pro Tools M-Powered--PLEASE HELP
Avoid ASIO4ALL unless you absolutely must have it. I, several others I know, have had problems with other PC devices after ASIO4ALL was installed and it took some extra PC work to get the PC back to working properly after ASIO4ALL was uninstalled.

As I noted, the Zoom is not an Avid device and will not be detected by the MP9 version.

The Maudio mobile pre has two combination XLR-1/4" analog inputs. When you start PT MP9, you must have the Maudio mobile pre connected to the PC and operational. After PT starts, click on "Setup" then "Hardware". It show Your Mobile Pre as the Peripherals Window. If the Mobile Pre is not shown there, you have a setup problem with the Mobile Pre and Windows and you need to go back over that before you can use it with PT MP9.

If it is shown OK, then click on Setup/Playback Engine and your Mobile Pre should be shown along with the buffers and other parameters. Finally click on Setup then I/O and it should again show the analog input channels on your Mobile Pre. If you have all this then you can record with the Mobile Pre and you can connect the Zoom's Analog output (single channel or stereo) to the Mobile Pre and record it.

I know of no other way to get the Zoom to work with the Proprietary MP9 version. As I noted if you had the non proprietary full PT9 or PT10 then there is a possibility. I am a PC tech and I've tried circumventing the proprietary restrictions and there is no way to hack into it to us a non Avid/MAudio device for recording. You can spend the $$ talking to Avid but they are going to bascially tell you the same thing.

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