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Digital mixer beckons...

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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby cyrano.mac » Sat Jun 08, 2019 12:29 am

The Red Bladder wrote:
cyrano.mac wrote:You'll need to take some time to learn TotalMix.

And that's the problem with nearly all these budget-priced nonsense boxes - the manufacturers honestly imagine that I have the time and the patience to learn their system because it's cheaper to produce a half-baked system that requires the user to fathom out how it functions than to design the damn thing properly.

From this, I presume you haven't ever seen it up close?

I am sitting in a studio with a large and rather complex 60-frame mixer, seven synths, a Radar and a DAW and a video machine running DaVince-Resolve and you want me to learn something else on top of all that???

No. I couldn't care less what you learn or not.

I'm working alongside someone who is working against the clock (in Premier) on some TV programme that has to be ready by yesterday - THERE'S NO TIME FOR LEARNING QUIRKY STUFF.

But there is time to vent your frustration on a forum?

A mixer starts at the top with input select, then gain, followed by EQ, volume-out and routing. Period. Add maybe some 'Recall' and some FX and that's all I expect to see. A nice GUI that looks like a conventional mixer and I would be a happy bunny.

Again, you haven't even taken a look. That's more or less what it looks like. A row of faders. Only, with your attitude, you would never find out what it can do.

In an ideal world, I could choose between GUIs modelled on conventional mixers, say an SSL G+ or one of the Ameks, maybe a Neve or even a Soundcraft 'Goat'. Or just a very basic no-name mixer, nothing fancy.

In other words, it has to work MY WAY and not the other way about!

So have it your way. I'm out.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Arpangel » Sat Jun 08, 2019 7:28 am

I think we sometimes have to agree to disagree, what's interesting about music and recording for me is that we are all different. I'm not dismissing anything discussed in this thread, simply because I'm very fickle, I'm likely to change my mind about anything at the drop of a hat! I may not be in the mood to go ITB right now, but who knows? Also, I too like to see a big mixer in a studio, it still makes me excited like when I was a boy getting a new train set. I think audio and recording, music, is very much an alchemical process, it all works together in some sort of magical soup, the equipment, how it looks and sounds, if we bond with it, all sorts of things. If I try and apply logic and a one size fits all solution to any of it, which I try and do sometimes, it's always doomed to failure.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby blinddrew » Sat Jun 08, 2019 9:54 am

The feeling of being in a studio is not something to underestimate for sure. I know a couple of places round here who keep a big desk in the control room because that's what potential customers want to see.
It hardly ever gets used but it contributes to the vibe. :)
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Sat Jun 08, 2019 10:54 am

The Red Bladder wrote:THERE'S NO TIME FOR LEARNING QUIRKY STUFF.

There's always time for learning -- it's a daily essential in any high-tech environment as you very well know.

TotalMix is no more 'quirky' than Reaper, and in my experience it actually takes much less time to learn how to use it effectively. You obviously managed to find the time to learn how to use that 'quirky' DAW -- and to keep learning its continual stream of new features and facilities...

I'm amused by the shouty showboating, of course, but the reality is that TotalMix is a phenomenal facility that helps to make RME's interfaces amongst the best and most versatile on the market. It is no more complicated to understand and operate than a large format analogue console, or any digital console come to that. And it's entirely logical once you understand its operating paradigm...

Big fan of TotalMix here too...
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby James Perrett » Sat Jun 08, 2019 1:49 pm

blinddrew wrote:The feeling of being in a studio is not something to underestimate for sure. I know a couple of places round here who keep a big desk in the control room because that's what potential customers want to see.
It hardly ever gets used but it contributes to the vibe. :)

Nearly everyone who comes into my studio seems impressed by the mixing desk although nowadays I use it mainly as a glorified monitor controller with a few mic inputs. Once every few months I'll use it properly when playing back multitrack tapes - it feels far more organic to create a mix on the desk rather than in the box - especially when I'm using 2" tape.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby The Red Bladder » Sat Jun 08, 2019 4:38 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:TotalMix is no more 'quirky' than Reaper, and in my experience it actually takes much less time to learn how to use it effectively. You obviously managed to find the time to learn how to use that 'quirky' DAW -- and to keep learning its continual stream of new features and facilities....

I do not work in a vacuum - there are others here and also customers. That's the great thing about so-called 'standard' software like ProTools and Premier and bog-standard analogue desks. People already know how to use these things. DaVinci-Resolve and Reaper are fast going that way as well.

I remember when a Studio-N in Germany replaced their perfectly good two SSL G+ desks and replaced them with Sony Oxfords. Visiting engineers just said that they couldn't use them and had no intention of learning. Period! The busiest studio in Germany was out of business in months!

Henry Ford was asked what the secret to success in business is and he said, "Find out what the customer wants and then give it to them!"

As soon as paying customers start clamoring for Total Mix, I'll get it!
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Sat Jun 08, 2019 5:57 pm

The Red Bladder wrote:I do not work in a vacuum - there are others here and also customers. That's the great thing about so-called 'standard' software like ProTools and Premier and bog-standard analogue desks. People already know how to use these things.

Yes, that's a very fair point well made... Familiarity is an important consideration in a business indulging 'occasional' users.

And I'd agree that TotalMix is still building in familiarity in the wider semi-pro market. However, the vast majority of the Pros I know are already familiar with TotalMix, primarily because most are longstanding RME users anyway.

I remember when a Studio-N in Germany replaced their perfectly good two SSL G+ desks and replaced them with Sony Oxfords. Visiting engineers just said that they couldn't use them and had no intention of learning.

That's odd because the Oxford was actually a very straightforward desk, with a control surface designed by ex-SSL engineers. I found it a very easy desk to navigate and use. But that was back in the very early days of digital studio consoles and there was a lot of antipathy towards the idea amongst old-school engineers who possibly feared their expertise being exposed. :o

And it was certainly a brave studio that made the leap back then! Most that did were multi-room places that could afford to take the risk (with some major financial support from the manufacturers).
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Urthlupe » Sat Jun 08, 2019 11:29 pm

Oh dear fellas.....

Am I allowed to love Totalmix and my analogue desk and outboard?

Loopy
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby blinddrew » Sun Jun 09, 2019 10:35 am

Don't cross the streams!
;)
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Arpangel » Sun Jun 09, 2019 10:51 am

Urthlupe wrote:Oh dear fellas.....

Am I allowed to love Totalmix and my analogue desk and outboard?

Loopy

Ha Ha! I regularly use my Tascam 424 Portastudio for recording, strange how it sounds very "interesting" now, but back when we didn't have any alternative it sounded crap!
Time works wonders, and so does a short memory.
But it is good, it's got varispeed, and cassettes sound wonderful, ad to this my Tascam DR100 and I don't even need a computer, let alone Total Mix.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby The Red Bladder » Sun Jun 09, 2019 1:39 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote: the Oxford was actually a very straightforward desk, with a control surface designed by ex-SSL engineers. I found it a very easy desk to navigate and use.
I was there when it was launched at IBC and if I remember rightly, along with their pointless DASH recorder. The launch was so important, the real Sony people from Japan were there and not just their UK and German front-men. I was with Barry Fox and other EMAP 'glitterati' and we cornered one of these and started asking questions.

"What, for example, does this button do?" I asked.

"Button do what you ah what it do!" I was told.

Barry always had a thing for Sony and their overweening arrogance and laid into them. It was brilliant! He asked them what steps they are making in non-linear editing using computers. He was told that this was a very long way off.

That was in 1998 or thereabouts, when DigiDesign were the only game in town for smaller production houses doing audio and video. Even giant broadcasters like RTL and Sat1/Pro-7 had already given up on tape in all its forms for audio and were soon to go the same way for video. But Sony knew better!

At the time I had done some market research for Sony Broadcast in Cologne and came to the obvious conclusion that the future lay with NLE. That was pretty much the same conclusion as the Cologne people had come to, but the bosses were furious.

Maybe that box was simple and maybe it was designed people who knew what they were doing - but being Sony, they were going to tell us how to work.

The trouble was, engineers looked at it and didn't like it. Conventional desks were a perfect fit for ProTools and all you had to do was push the 2" to the back of the machine room and plonk down a rack full of PT and plug it in! Swapping a desk out is a giant operation.

After the launch, we were all invited to some Sony binge and I was sat next to some Sony marketing manager who never said one word during dinner. After the nosebags were removed he turned to me and said "You ah come Tokio, yes!"

Then he threw up over his plate and passed out.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Arpangel » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:29 am

Sony Oxford? The BBC bought a lot of those, I remember seeing one for the first time in the BBC control room of the Wigmore Hall, we used it to rest our home-made mixer on! We could have used it if we had wanted, but it was way too daunting, if it was a conventional desk, say, a Neve or some other brilliant analogue desk we definitly would have used it, and it would have been instantly familiar.
But......big analogue desks are redundant these days, I always end up using a fraction of the things, most of it may as well not be there, IMO it's a terribly inefficient use of hardware, and waste of space. I say this about "small" analogue desks, same thing.
I'm still thinking of getting a small digital desk, I can't really think of a reason not to, I have problems, and it addresses those problems, an analogue desk does not. It will save me tons of real estate, give me more effects than I can shake a stick at, automation, and most importantly "templates" which will save me even more "tons" time and hair tearing, plus it's an interface, and it still looks like a friendly mixer in the flesh, I still have something to look at and refer to if I get confused, which is very often!
It's a very efficient use of hardware, one set of knobs for a global EQ etc not 300 to sit there gathering dust and getting crackly.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Mike Stranks » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:34 am

^ ^ ^

Nail... head...
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Arpangel » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:41 am

Mike Stranks wrote:^ ^ ^

Nail... head...

Decided on a Behringer X32 Producer. Ordering it today.

:thumbup:
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby CS70 » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:50 am

The Red Bladder wrote:
Henry Ford was asked what the secret to success in business is and he said, "Find out what the customer wants and then give it to them!"

If only..
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby The Elf » Mon Jun 10, 2019 8:59 am

Arpangel wrote:Decided on a Behringer X32 Producer. Ordering it today.
I was warned off the Producer, since it has no scribble strip. The warning was good!

The Compact is an easier desk to live with.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby forumuser840717 » Mon Jun 10, 2019 9:15 am

Arpangel wrote:Sony Oxford? The BBC bought a lot of those, I remember seeing one for the first time in the BBC control room of the Wigmore Hall, we used it to rest our home-made mixer on! We could have used it if we had wanted, but it was way too daunting,.....

Having worked there many times, I don't remember there ever being an Oxford in the Wigmore control room. In fact before they knocked the room about a bit and made a bit more space, an Oxford wouldn't have fitted into the room. Nor would the aircon plant needed to keep it happy.

Do you mean the DMX-R100?

Image

There used to be one of those at the Wigmore. It's sometimes referred to as the baby Oxford or poor man's Oxford. Lovely little thing. Sounds good, was solidly built like a proper piece of pro-audio gear - no random rattles or loose/cheap feeling switches or faders, and was really easy to use. Most of the learning curve was in the setup pages but those took all of about 10mins to master; once it was up and running I found it quicker to use than any analogue console with similar capabilities.

Not one of these though:

Image

(There was a smaller version available which lost the three bays to the right of the master section but even that would've been a squeeze at the Wigmore.)

This was another really easy console to learn. Obviously it's more complex than the DMX-R100 so takes longer to get around but for anyone who's used a large format console it shouldn't take more than about 30mins to get a mix going (allow another 30-60mins to get around the setup pages). That said, some people who'd only ever used similar sized analogue consoles did seem to find the freedom that the control surface offered a bit confusing. One engineer I worked with hated it until he worked out that he could store his preferred setup and just recall that and have it work the same way every time. Great sounding bit of kit though. If I had money to burn I'd buy one just to play with and snuggle up to in the winter!

That or a Neve Capricorn.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Arpangel » Mon Jun 10, 2019 9:17 am

The Elf wrote:
Arpangel wrote:Decided on a Behringer X32 Producer. Ordering it today.
I was warned off the Producer, since it has no scribble strip. The warning was good!

The Compact is an easier desk to live with.

Yes, good point, I was thinking about that, but wasn't sure if it would be a major issue.
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Arpangel » Mon Jun 10, 2019 9:28 am

forumuser840717 wrote:
Arpangel wrote:Sony Oxford? The BBC bought a lot of those, I remember seeing one for the first time in the BBC control room of the Wigmore Hall, we used it to rest our home-made mixer on! We could have used it if we had wanted, but it was way too daunting,.....

Having worked there many times, I don't remember there ever being an Oxford in the Wigmore control room. In fact before they knocked the room about a bit and made a bit more space, an Oxford wouldn't have fitted into the room. Nor would the aircon plant needed to keep it happy.

Do you mean the DMX-R100?

Image

There used to be one of those at the Wigmore. It's sometimes referred to as the baby Oxford or poor man's Oxford.

Not one of these though:

Image

(There was a smaller version available which lost the three bays to the right of the master section but even that would've been a squeeze at the Wigmore.)

Apologies, you're right, it was a DMX-R100.
I like that control room, the acoustic treatment worked really well, things sounded very realistic in there. I can remember one session, a producer was standing outside the door, he asked if there was a cellist "in" the control room!
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Re: Digital mixer beckons...

Postby Sam Spoons » Mon Jun 10, 2019 9:32 am

I have the Compact, I had the same choice to make (between the Producer, Compact and Qu16 actually) and scribble strips were what swung it. If you have multiple layers they are invaluable.
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