ZOOM traces its roots as far back as 1983. The company was so named by a group of founding some engineers who chose "Zoom"for the simple reason that it would stand out in an alphabetical listing by starting with the letter "Z."Plus, the word is an often-used onomatopoeia in comic books to describe a speedy motion or ascent.

The company spent its first seven years helping other musical instrument manufacturers develop sound generator LSI, rhythm machines and MIDI synchronizer systems, amassing technical skills and financial resources in the process. In 1988, they got to work on the development of their first proprietary product, the "ZFx-1"Digital Signal Processing LSI, and paved the way for the introduction of their inaugural product the following year.

"The first six or seven years was, in a lot of ways, our apprenticeship period," recalls Michihito Nozokido CTO.

"We always intended to develop our own products since our inception, but for a long time, the timing just wasn't right, particularly for financial reasons. But it all turned out to be a blessing in disguise because we were able to acquire the skills and knowledge we needed to make ZOOM the company it is today. If we hadn't done that, we probably would've become a distant memory within our first year, like so many dot-com companies."(laughs)

In the fall of 1989, the hard work and waiting finally paid off - in spades _ when ZOOM attended the AES Convention in New York. There, they unveiled their first product, a prototype compact multi-effect processor dubbed the 9002 that could be attached to a guitar strap. In an age when the natural assumption was that multi-effect processors mounted on racks, ZOOM managed to break with conventional thinking and build a multi-effect processor the size of a stomp box style effector. This 9002 appeared on the music scene solidly loaded with all the standard multi-effects capabilities, and by the time the product was officially launched, it had already claimed worldwide attention and sent the company well on its way to stardom.
ZFx-1
   Orginal DSP LSI "ZFx-1"

9002
   ZOOM 9002

ZOOM wasted no time in producing a follow-up product. In the winter of that same year, ZOOM launched the 9010, a standard rack-mount device, but featuring the world first (at that time) 4-In/4-Out individual signal processing, and enough interior modifications to redefine the multi-effect concept, all to the delight and praises of semi-professional musicians/engineers, as well as amateurs.





History menu


The ZOOM History

The first 9002

The 9200 Expands

High-Performance and Low-Cost

Compact Multi 505

Opens up a new category

Desire to make "Musical Instruments"