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Behringer Eurodesk MX3282

8-buss Mixer By Derek Johnson
Published January 1998

Behringer Eurodesk MX3282

You might think you can't afford 32 inputs and eight busses — but a look at this cost‑effective console might just change your mind. Derek Johnson goes on the busses...

There are many candidates for "most important component" in your studio: it could be the mic, that first point of contact between real‑world sound and your recording medium, or it could be the monitor speakers, which have such an effect on how you perceive your finished work. You could also choose the mixing desk, which sits firmly in the middle of everything, routing your sounds to tape or hard disk and back again to the real world, as you mix. (Many might vote for the recorder itself, but that would spoil the flow of my intro!)

In any case, few could disagree that the mixing desk is central to the modern multitrack studio, whether bijou back‑bedroom or multi‑room complex. The suitability, or otherwise, of your mixer to your circumstances can make the difference between a smooth‑running session and a disastrous waste of time; a desk's audio quality is also critical to the finished result. This is one case (to paraphrase part one of our 'Into Gear' series last month) where you really should buy the best you can afford.

Luckily, you may now be able to afford rather more than you at first thought. How does a 32 input, 8‑buss desk with a wealth of features, for under £1600, grab you? Read on...

What It Is

The connector‑stuffed rear panel (also featuring the name of the desk, in case you've forgotten what it's called).The connector‑stuffed rear panel (also featuring the name of the desk, in case you've forgotten what it's called).

What we're discussing is Behringer's Eurodesk MX3282, a straight‑ahead, no‑nonsense, 32‑input desk with a clear and stylish layout. Not only is the desk capable of 8‑track recording — or more, given a flexible patchbay — but it's also pretty compact for the facilities on offer. Behringer are aiming the MX3282 at both live and studio markets, and although there are only a few dedicated live features — up to four pre‑fade aux sends are available, and a handy 75Hz low‑cut filter can help cut out stage rumble, for example — the desk should prove suitable for a wide range of applications. It might also be just about compact enough for a group to use both in the studio and on the road, especially if said band is interested in getting flexible multitrack recordings of their live work. In the studio, you'll welcome the low‑noise balanced mic preamps (with a claimed bandwidth of 5‑100Hz), the flexible solo system (Pre‑Fade Listen or Solo‑In‑Place are available), the built‑in talkback and the generous eight auxiliary sends.

When it comes to giving compact mixers the maximum number of inputs, the in‑line design rules; channel strips provide both input and monitor signal paths, with the monitor section magically providing extra inputs at mixdown, effectively doubling the total. Surprisingly, the MX3282 doesn't take this approach, being more of a traditional split console, with the inputs and outputs (subgroups, monitor and master fader) fully separate. And though an in‑line console design wins out in the number of inputs at mixdown, the split MX3282 still manages a creditable 32 inputs (plus four stereo aux returns). Where in‑line desks often compromise by sharing EQ and aux sends between input and monitor signal paths, each input on a split desk such as the MX3282 has the advantage of access to all EQ and aux sends.

A split desk also offers simplicity of monitoring, since the signal path is easily...

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Published January 1998