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Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby seriousnewbie » Wed Sep 16, 2020 5:36 pm

Arpangel wrote:
seriousnewbie wrote:
Arpangel wrote:
seriousnewbie wrote:
Sam Spoons wrote:Beheringer X32 Producer... Simples...
Due to what another user said about the auxes, this is looking like a genuine option. Although it is beyond my pricepoint, it looks like their are multiple used options that are. Thank you.

The X32 issue of not having combi XLR's may seem trivial, but it would really get on my nerves, be careful.
Thanks for the tip! still choosing between the X32 and the Soundcraft Signature MTK22, they both are so different, but bottom line, they are multitrack, it is going to take awhile of setting my priorities straight :headbang: :crazy: :D

I know it’s a long shot, but Midas used to make some great desks, I’m thinking again about getting one myself, a Venice 16R.
They aren’t really designed as studio desks, but there are workarounds, they have FireWire multitrack, and the facilities are real old school, 10 aux sends, inserts direct outputs and routing up the yin-yang.
But the sound is fabulous, these are "real" desks, used by a lot of top people even these days.
I have been looking at some firewire desks as well, thanks for the idea. Although my computer does not have firewire, is there a card or something like that I could buy to make it work?
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby James Perrett » Wed Sep 16, 2020 7:21 pm

seriousnewbie wrote:I have been looking at some firewire desks as well, thanks for the idea. Although my computer does not have firewire, is there a card or something like that I could buy to make it work?

Audio over Firewire is a bit fussy when it comes to which interface cards work. The normal advice is to look for one with a Texas Instruments chipset but nowadays you need to be very careful to find one that is still supported by a current version of your computer operating system. I'm keeping my old Windows XP machine around because it all works with my Firewire audio interface.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Sep 16, 2020 8:05 pm

Stick to USB2, it's undoubtedly the most future proof of all the options. Anything with firewire will be dead and buried in a couple of years.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby seriousnewbie » Wed Sep 16, 2020 8:06 pm

Sam Spoons wrote:Stick to USB2, it's undoubtedly the most future proof of all the options. Anything with firewire will be dead and buried in a couple of years.
Ya I figured, that has been a concern of mine as well. Thx for the tip
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby nathanscribe » Wed Sep 16, 2020 8:10 pm

Nobody's mentioned it yet so I will: Allen & Heath Zed R16. I've been using mine since about 2011, you've got a 16-channel mixer with 4-band EQ (2 parametric), 4 sends, inserts, decent preamps, and flexible routing over Firewire (which records and plays back up to 26 channels) and it also has 16 ADAT channels in and out for expansion. If you're using the mixer's 16 channels (EDIT: ie. over FW), you can use 8 of the ADAT channels to expand, and the stereo mix bus (hence 26). If you're not using the FW, you can use the R16 as a 16-channel ADAT expander for some other interface.

They've been discontinued for a while but are around 2nd hand. I've always found it a very good blend of old-school analogue mixer and digital routing for recording and mixing.

EDIT: I should add I'm using an old enough Mac to still be using FW, but I've added a Focusrite Clarett Octopre for 8 more channels and it all works very well. The digital routing is per-track, not global, so you can set each track to be fed from analogue source, digital source pre-insert or post-EQ, and to send back to digital from the channel top or post-EQ. So you can use it as an 'analogue plug-in' or treat your analogue gear with digital processing before bringing it back to the analogue channel fader and mix.

Quite a nice bit of kit I think.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby seriousnewbie » Wed Sep 16, 2020 8:13 pm

nathanscribe wrote:Nobody's mentioned it yet so I will: Allen & Heath Zed R16. I've been using mine since about 2011, you've got a 16-channel mixer with 4-band EQ (2 parametric), 4 sends, inserts, decent preamps, and flexible routing over Firewire (which records and plays back up to 26 channels) and it also has 16 ADAT channels in and out for expansion. If you're using the mixer's 16 channels, you can use 8 of the ADAT channels to expand, and the stereo mix bus (hence 26). If you're not using the FW, you can use the R16 as a 16-channel ADAT expander for some other interface.

They've been discontinued for a while but are around 2nd hand. I've always found it a very good blend of old-school analogue mixer and digital routing for recording and mixing.
Thanks for the suggestion, is there any models with more channels? I might not NEED it, just wondering.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby nathanscribe » Wed Sep 16, 2020 8:16 pm

seriousnewbie wrote:Thanks for the suggestion, is there any models with more channels? I might not NEED it, just wondering.

Just edited my post while you were quoting, so see that also :)

There was a 24 channel version which also had busses and cost a lot more! GS-R24 and GS-R24M. No idea what you'd pay for one these days.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Sep 16, 2020 10:21 pm

The Zed R16 did cross my mind, A&H make nice kit and the Zed series are superb value for money. Definitely worth considering. Not as flexible as a full digital mixer though and you can achieve virtually the same facility with an analogue mixer and a suitably endowed audio interface. All assuming you are planning on using a computer to record to (you have implied that you'd prefer not to)?
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby seriousnewbie » Thu Sep 17, 2020 3:02 am

Sam Spoons wrote:The Zed R16 did cross my mind, A&H make nice kit and the Zed series are superb value for money. Definitely worth considering. Not as flexible as a full digital mixer though and you can achieve virtually the same facility with an analogue mixer and a suitably endowed audio interface. All assuming you are planning on using a computer to record to (you have implied that you'd prefer not to)?
No I will be using my computer to record. Man this is giving me a headache, I have constantly been researching this. The ONLY reason that I haven't already gotten the Soundcraft Signature MTK 22 is because I want inserts, how f#cking hard is it to find an analog mixer with a built in digital multi channel interface that has inserts!? I am a gear geek, it's eating me alive.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby Arpangel » Thu Sep 17, 2020 8:04 am

seriousnewbie wrote:
Sam Spoons wrote:The Zed R16 did cross my mind, A&H make nice kit and the Zed series are superb value for money. Definitely worth considering. Not as flexible as a full digital mixer though and you can achieve virtually the same facility with an analogue mixer and a suitably endowed audio interface. All assuming you are planning on using a computer to record to (you have implied that you'd prefer not to)?
No I will be using my computer to record. Man this is giving me a headache, I have constantly been researching this. The ONLY reason that I haven't already gotten the Soundcraft Signature MTK 22 is because I want inserts, how f#cking hard is it to find an analog mixer with a built in digital multi channel interface that has inserts!? I am a gear geek, it's eating me alive.

You could solve your insert issue at a stroke, and it would expand your market choices, get a patch bay! It’ll add insert functionality to any mixer, and a make your whole system much more flexible, I did this and it works really well, can’t imagine being without them.
It’s extra wiring, but with careful planning you can make it as hassle free as possible.
Regarding the MTK22, I wouldn’t go for it, someone described it as a "flawed jewel" and I think they’re right, the analogue routing/IO is limited, effects are so-so.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby Kwackman » Thu Sep 17, 2020 8:52 am

Arpangel wrote:You could solve your insert issue at a stroke, and it would expand your market choices, get a patch bay! It’ll add insert functionality to any mixer.

I'm confused - not for the first time!
How does a patch bay add insert points to a mixer that doesn't already have insert points?
e.g. A microphone gets plugged into mic i/p 1 of a mixer without insert points, how do you insert a compressor into that channel using a jack field?
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Sep 17, 2020 9:35 am

seriousnewbie wrote:
Sam Spoons wrote:The Zed R16 did cross my mind, A&H make nice kit and the Zed series are superb value for money. Definitely worth considering. Not as flexible as a full digital mixer though and you can achieve virtually the same facility with an analogue mixer and a suitably endowed audio interface. All assuming you are planning on using a computer to record to (you have implied that you'd prefer not to)?
No I will be using my computer to record. Man this is giving me a headache, I have constantly been researching this. The ONLY reason that I haven't already gotten the Soundcraft Signature MTK 22 is because I want inserts, how f#cking hard is it to find an analog mixer with a built in digital multi channel interface that has inserts!? I am a gear geek, it's eating me alive.

I refer you to my previous answer then, buy an X32 of some flavour, you'll probably find a decent used example of the full sized version around £1k* or the Producer version is under £1k new.

* The full sized X32 has 38/22 analogue I/O onboard, the X32 Compact/Producer/Rack all have 22/14 I/O. All allow up to 32/32 I/O to a computer via USB using the bundled expansion card.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby James Perrett » Thu Sep 17, 2020 12:53 pm

Kwackman wrote:I'm confused - not for the first time!
How does a patch bay add insert points to a mixer that doesn't already have insert points?
e.g. A microphone gets plugged into mic i/p 1 of a mixer without insert points, how do you insert a compressor into that channel using a jack field?

I think we're talking about line level sources here. You are right, a patchbay wouldn't help for microphones but would be a possible solution for keyboards which I think is what we are talking about here.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby Arpangel » Thu Sep 17, 2020 1:37 pm

Kwackman wrote:
Arpangel wrote:You could solve your insert issue at a stroke, and it would expand your market choices, get a patch bay! It’ll add insert functionality to any mixer.

I'm confused - not for the first time!
How does a patch bay add insert points to a mixer that doesn't already have insert points?
e.g. A microphone gets plugged into mic i/p 1 of a mixer without insert points, how do you insert a compressor into that channel using a jack field?

If the mixer has direct outputs you could wire those to the patch bay, as they would be after the gain stage, and line level, or, have your sub-groups on the patch bay and go that way, if you want to ad effects etc to individual mic's.
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Re: Great multitrack mixers for under $1k?

Postby nathanscribe » Fri Sep 18, 2020 7:41 pm

seriousnewbie wrote:an analog mixer with a built in digital multi channel interface that has inserts

The Zed R16 definitely ticks those boxes: analogue mixer, inserts, full digital i/o as well.

Mackie made a similar unit around the same time, Onyx 1640i. I considered both that and the A&H Zed R16, but didn't like the previous Mackie I'd had much. The A&H has never disappointed.

Review of 1640i here: https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/mackie-onyx-1640i

Review of Zed R16 here: https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/al ... th-zed-r16

Not sure how much the Mackie is on the used market, but I've seen the A&H at £900 or so.
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