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Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 6:44 am
by nsfx
I recently acquired a Yamaha Rs7k and I am really enjoying this thing. Prior to this I'd worked mainly with software and MIDI controllers... only occasionally making use of an old Roland synth. Even if it's more limiting in some regards, I find myself making better music with the hardware sequencer than I ever did in software. I can't explain it.

Anyway, I've been giving serious thought to acquiring more hardware: another sequencer to run in parallel, maybe a desktop synth, and a mixer. In the case of the mixer, I have no idea what to look for as my experience has been limited to audio interfaces and software mixers. Ideally I'd have 4 to 6 1/4" line inputs, EQ on each input, faders, and maybe some fx sends. Someone on IRC suggested I look up "performance mixers" but when I google this term I only see one product -- a Rane TTM56. Someone else mentioned the Vestax PCV series. Looks like it is discontinued? Also looks like it has RCA inputs -- I guess I could I use 1/4" to RCA adapters?

I don't want to do anything stupid so I figured I'd post here and ask people who have real experience. What are some common hardware-only setups for live performance electro? Suggestions welcome.

Thanks!

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:04 am
by Stab Frenzy
These Mackies are aimed at exactly what you're talking about:

http://www.mackie.com/products/useries/

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 5:20 pm
by JBL
These small mackie look pretty versatile, but keep in mind that you might need more than 4 tracks. It really depends of what you have right now and what you possibly want later in your setup.

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:58 pm
by matia
The term 'Performance Mixer' to me suggests something closer to a dub board than a bite sized box. If that's the case I would seriously check out the Allen & Heath GL series. Big, punchy sound ... plenty of aux's ... live mutes ... great boards. In the lower range the Allen & Heath MixWizard series is also very capable, sounds great considering the target market and the sound of the competition and has enough ins and outs to handle the studio (small one) or a live set with plenty of instruments.

-matia

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 9:51 pm
by nsfx
Thank you for the suggestions! The Mackie u42d looks like a good fit and the Firewire I/O is a nice addition if I want to incorporate the laptop.

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 3:26 am
by blitzdj86
Hadn't seen those before.. interesting!
Are you sure a single effect send will be enough? (it looks like it is only on/off send too)

I'm planning on using a slightly larger mackie,
1202 or 1402 vlz3

Mackies are cheap, but decent quality and with a nice set of specs.
I need at least 8 channels, as I'm doing dub-esque things, need to be able to send separate drum parts to effects.

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 2:09 pm
by gosh
not cheap, but..I use a korg zero8. great mixer. combines 8 channel dj style mixer with inbuilt kaoss pad and loads of midi-control (for either computer software, or in my case - hardware synths etc, although I'm yet to set mine up :roll: )

check it out, might be just what you need! can be had second hand for a reasonable amount..also a 4 channel version, korg zero4.

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 5:44 pm
by Joey
http://pro-audio.musiciansfriend.com/pr ... sku=630181

this one looks good if you're not looking for anything near pro quality

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 4:17 am
by nsfx
Thanks for the suggestions. After letting the idea settle for a bit, I've decided the Mackie U probably isn't the best choice in terms of expandability. So I'm still in the market for a hardware mixer with a firewire port. The Zero8 looks cool but it's more than I wanted to spend, and I feel like I'm paying for certain features that I don't need like MIDI.

Any other suggestions welcome. Thank you.

@Matia: Nice avatar! Love that game.

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 4:58 am
by blitzdj86
What about the mackie 1202?

that's really the smallest/cheapest budget mixer that isnt aimed at DJs and isnt totally c**p (*cough behringer*)

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 4:24 pm
by Hair
Mackie 1202!

The coolest part about it (and the other VLZs) is that in addition to having 2 stereo aux send/returns, the mute button doubles as sending whatever channel you just muted to a seperate set of outputs, which of course you can run back into another channel if you want. It's great for momentarily sending different things to an effect, or you could use the second set of outputs to run yourself a cue mix to preview parts before you bring them in.

Re: Hardware performance-oriented mixer

Posted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 7:18 pm
by nsfx
Yeah, the 1202 looks great but it lacks a digital component. Maybe the best solution would be to get something like a 1202 + a new digital audio interface. Hmmmm.. introduces another point of failure but it's more flexible. A 1202 + an Echo Audiofire4 maybe?