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#2221204 - 08/16/10 08:22 PM Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer?
bhodaway10 Offline
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Registered: 08/04/06
Posts: 1146
Loc: San Francisco, CA
I'm deciding between these four (five) mini mixers to use with my EV360's :

Behringer xenyx 802
http://www.behringer.com/EN/Products/802.aspx

Mackie 402-VLZ3
http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/402VLZ3/

Soundcraft Notepad 102
http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/Notepad102/

Peavy PV6
http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/PV6/

I want it small but I don't want to skimp on sound. I tried the rane mini mixer and I didn't like it. When I touched the top, there would be a buzz and I want something w/ some xlr inputs.

If you haven't tried the specific models....recommendations on the brands would be great!

Thanks!

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#2221205 - 08/16/10 08:28 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: bhodaway10]
AnotherScott Offline
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Registered: 10/19/09
Posts: 7254
I'm one of the (few?) people here who doesn't have a knee-jerk reaction against Behringer, but I wouldn't get one of their mixers, I've seen too many failures of various sorts. My theory is that one out of every 50 moving parts (knobs, faders, etc.) on a Behringer won't work right. So if you get one of their devices with only a few knobs, it's probably okay, but if you get one of their devices with tons of knobs, like a mixer, odds are that something on it won't work right!

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#2221208 - 08/16/10 08:55 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: AnotherScott]
WWW Offline
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#2221209 - 08/16/10 09:15 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: WWW]
Cygnus64 Offline
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Registered: 02/18/07
Posts: 4019
Loc: Cleveland
Originally Posted By: wdl

I had a Soundcraft mixer several years back and it served me well. I think it was the Folio line, similiar to your link. Pretty quiet, better than my Yamaha MG 12/4 I currently have.

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#2221213 - 08/16/10 09:34 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Cygnus64]
Ian Benhamou Offline
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Based purely on reputation and personal experience with other mixers from those brands my vote would go for the Soundcraft hands down.

The Mackie will come in a fairly distant second.

Behringer and Peavey is garbage imo.
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#2221227 - 08/16/10 11:20 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixe [Re: Ian Benhamou]
Dave Ferris Offline
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Brian, maybe you missed this a few weeks back:
http://forums.musicplayer.com/ubbthreads.php/topics/2214242/A_H_ZED_10FX_mixer#Post2214242

I got it from the guy up in Napa, Mike Pyle. Same guy I bought the RCF speakers from. Give him a call and tell him I referred you.
http://www.audiopyle.com/sales.html

My former EVs deserve the best ! smile
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#2221233 - 08/17/10 01:01 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixe [Re: Dave Ferris]
Aidan Offline
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I'd go for either the Soundcraft 124FX (I have a larger EFX8, which is excellent but probably a bit too much for your purposes) or the Allen & Heath Dave mentions.
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#2221242 - 08/17/10 04:00 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixe [Re: bhodaway10]
johnchop Offline
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Registered: 10/29/09
Posts: 1566
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I would say SoundCraft 124, A&H, and Mackie 802 (not 402) should be on your list.

I have the Mackie and like it very much. For me, it's super quiet and built tough. It has a lot of handy signal routing options (including XLR OUTs which you may also like).
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#2221245 - 08/17/10 04:21 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Ian Benhamou]
Sparky2 Offline
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Registered: 02/24/08
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Loc: B'more, MD
Originally Posted By: Ian Benhamou
Based purely on reputation and personal experience with other mixers from those brands my vote would go for the Soundcraft hands down.

The Mackie will come in a fairly distant second.

Behringer and Peavey is garbage imo.


+1 Have used the Behringers, 1 eventually became erratic and I can't trust it. Worked fine until then but when I put it next to others it just didn't sound as good. Never liked Mackie's sound, but that's very subjective. I use Soundcraft 24 and 32 in contract sound situations and they are workhorses. But still a compromise sound-wise. I've only used the Peavey 12 and it didn't feel very solid to me.

For sub-mixing a few keyboards live I would go with the Soundcraft. It will sound fine and I would trust it. I would probably get the larger one because I always wish I had a few more channels!
Mark
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#2221258 - 08/17/10 05:31 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Sparky2]
Toano88 Offline
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Agreed, with price being nearly equal Soundcraft.
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#2221264 - 08/17/10 05:59 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Toano88]
davinwv Offline
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Registered: 07/17/01
Posts: 663
Loc: Bridgeport, WV, U.S.
I have a Soundcraft EFX8 and love it!

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#2221279 - 08/17/10 06:40 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: davinwv]
Bill H. Offline
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Registered: 05/24/04
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My rule of thumb for Behringer is the simpler the product, the more reliable it's going to be. That small format mixer, with only one circuit board inside with no ribbon connectors (seems to be a problem with Behringer), should be as reliable as the others on your list. I have a similar Behringer mixer that's been fine for over 10 years now.

Mackie is nothing like it used to be, and with all the problems they've had just getting their products on the shelves in the last couple of years I wouldn't even consider them.

After that, at this price point I'd shop for features over brand. A fader on the mains is nice.

I'd also look at what Yamaha has to offer. This is one company that seems to get their Chinese assembly plants to churn out very reliable products - moreso than their American and European counterparts.

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#2221283 - 08/17/10 06:44 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: davinwv]
frogmonkey Offline
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Registered: 01/12/09
Posts: 1385
Loc: Vermont, USA
I used a Behrninger Eurorack for 4 years, and though it never failed me outright, I discovered something flaky about the routing. I can't remember exactly what it was, but something was summing to mono that should have been stereo, and I lost all confidence in it. It did have a couple of nice features, though: (1) it only cost $80, and (2) it was very small. I still use it as part of my rehearsal PA.

I replaced it with a Mackie VLZ 1202 and it sounds noticeably better. It's bigger than the Behringer was, so I have to put it in its own case instead of packing it in with my cables.

But, damn, that A&H that Dave Ferris mentioned looks really good! I like the looks of the guitar DI setting because I often gig with Rhodes. Want to buy my mackie? smile


Edited by frogmonkey (08/17/10 06:45 AM)

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#2221415 - 08/17/10 12:39 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: frogmonkey]
bhodaway10 Offline
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Registered: 08/04/06
Posts: 1146
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Thanks guys!

@Dave - I did miss the A&H post. smile Wow - those mixers look like a SERIOUS piece of gear. I do like the guitar DI setting as well.

That being said...I wanted something really small. I already have a bigger DFX6 Mackie.

That being said, I'll probably go w/ the Soundcraft but will definitely call Mike Pyle.

Thanks guys!

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#2221423 - 08/17/10 12:51 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: bhodaway10]
KenElevenShadows Offline
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Loc: Los Angeles,CA,UNITED STATES
Another vote for the A&H. I think they sound considerably better than the Mackie mixers (I've used both). I don't know about Peavey mixers. I think Behringer mixers blow. This isn't a "knee-jerk reaction". I think they blow. If someone gave me one, I would immediately sell it. I know 3-4 people on extreme budgets who have purchased Behringer mixers, only to regret it not long afterwards when they started falling apart.


I also agree that Yamaha makes good reliable stuff as well, but I don't know very much about their mixers.

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#2221425 - 08/17/10 12:55 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: KenElevenShadows]
bhodaway10 Offline
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Registered: 08/04/06
Posts: 1146
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Oh, what are you guys carrying your mixers in?

I'm always weary of breaking the knobs, etc.

I'm thinking of buying one of these padded cases to protect the mixer :

http://www.eaglecreek.com/packing_solutions/packing_cubes/Pack-It-Protect-It-Cube-Medium-41093/

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#2221444 - 08/17/10 01:19 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: bhodaway10]
KenElevenShadows Offline
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I rarely carry mixers. If I do, they're usually wrapped in a packing blanket and placed in a sturdy cardboard box. grin

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#2221470 - 08/17/10 03:15 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: KenElevenShadows]
Eric VB Offline
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Registered: 02/02/05
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I admit having a "knee jerk reaction" to Behringer.

My cheap Mackie has weird issues, like some mic/cables bypassing the mute button on the channel. I will never buy Mackie again.

I've used a Peavey PV20 USB before. It was very reliable. I would not hesitate to buy a PV-series mixer.

A friend who installs live sound swears by A&H. I never thought I could afford their gear, but that link looks interesting.

I've never used a Soundcraft. (From the looks of the responses here, maybe I should.)

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#2221472 - 08/17/10 03:25 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: bhodaway10]
Eric VB Offline
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Registered: 02/02/05
Posts: 5635
Originally Posted By: bhodaway10
Oh, what are you guys carrying your mixers in?
There are some models that fit in a rack. You just have to buy an expensive rack with a pop up top to mount it. (You may have to order "ears" or mounting brackets from the mixer manufacturer, too.)

Another option for these mixers (and smaller) is to mount them on a slide-out shelf. The shelf is expensive for what it is, and if you slide the mixer in while you're using it (to save room) you can't easily see it or make changes. For small mixers you will have to come up with your own mounting system (velcro, etc.).

I carry my mixer to gigs in the original box with packing. I looked at buying a case (SKB) but they cost as much or more than the mixer. freak Eventually I think I will get a padded gig bag and take my chances. (Or maybe instead I will put that money towards a new mixer that mounts in a rack case.)

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#2221477 - 08/17/10 04:17 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: bhodaway10]
mynameisdanno Offline
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Registered: 05/03/06
Posts: 334
Originally Posted By: bhodaway10
Oh, what are you guys carrying your mixers in?


I recently joined the Ventilator club, which necessitated a return to bringing out a mixer. I bought a Pedaltrain Jr and mounted a Mackie U.420 and the Ventilator to it, with power supplies zip-tied underneath and the Vent's outputs pre-connected to one of the U420's input channels. There's just enough room for both units side by side on the Pedaltrain Jr, and the whole thing sits neatly atop the 12" deep 4u rack case which contains my Speakeasy preamp and Furman, which brings it up high enough off the ground for easy tweaks to the mixer and the Ventilator's drive/balance/distance controls. I use the Ashby Solutions footswitch for speed switching.

The U.420 is discontinued (I got the last one Sweetwater had) - I suspect they designed it just to have an excuse to release a product called "U.420". I didn't want to spend a lot of money since I wasn't even sure the Ventilator was going to cut it for me vs. the 142 I had become accustomed to. I have had bad experiences with Mackies in the last 5-6 years - My 1402VLZsomethingorother has Eric's same issue of mute buttons being bypassed (a really bad failure mode!) as well as other bizarre behavior - this in a mixer that was NOT gigged hard by any stretch of the imagination. However, the U.420 has been fine so far, certainly sounds good enough for live work, and the built-in Firewire interface has proved handy for occasional experimentation with Mainstage (although the latency is not great). We'll see how it holds up. It is nice having independent control of my onstage volume (one or two EV SxA360's driven from headphone outs, whose volume control is pre-main-fader) without affecting what I'm sending to FOH.

For the Ventilator-curious - I still use the Speakeasy pre in front of the Ventilator - I run the "keyboard" rather than "clone" tone stack (not sure if that switchable tone stack is even an option anymore, my unit is at least six years old now and I bought it used). I haven't done much detailed A/B work to determine how important the Speakeasy is with the Ventilator, but I like having an extra gain stage in front of the Ventilator, and it's an easy hookup.

When the Mackie dies, I'll probably look at Ashly or the Tascam LM-8ST if they ever get around to releasing the thing.

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#2221514 - 08/17/10 08:10 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: bhodaway10]
frogmonkey Offline
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Registered: 01/12/09
Posts: 1385
Loc: Vermont, USA
Originally Posted By: bhodaway10
Oh, what are you guys carrying your mixers in?



I use an old laptop bag that I got at a junk shop for $3. It's perfect.

Another word about the Behringer (not a recommendation-- just sayin')... The Eurorack UB1202 is very small, and you can buy 5 of them for the price of the A&H. grin Just Sayin'

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#2221520 - 08/17/10 09:00 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: mynameisdanno]
mynameisdanno Offline
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Registered: 05/03/06
Posts: 334
Oh, and to actually answer your question, I got the Pedaltrain Jr with Soft Case. I am not a gig bag kinda guy so it makes me a little nervous, but I imagine it'll be fine.

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#2221544 - 08/17/10 11:52 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: mynameisdanno]
VegasGT3 Offline
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Registered: 12/31/08
Posts: 272
Loc: Las Vegas
I have the Mackie Onyx 8 channel with good results, it compares in sound quality to my Ashley rack mixer.
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#2221551 - 08/18/10 01:46 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: VegasGT3]
Mark Schmieder Offline
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Depending on the size, Gator makes really nice mixer gig bags. I use one for my Yamaha MG-series 16-track mixer. Not sure if they go large enough for the 24-track mixers, though. Best to check their website for a PDF catalog download, as most vendors don't carry the full line.
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#2221552 - 08/18/10 01:48 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Mark Schmieder]
Mark Schmieder Offline
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Oh, in terms of the mixer itself, unquestionably Soundcraft, given the list you're starting from. In terms of build quality, reputation, reliability, and sound quality. They probably have the best mic pre-amps of any in your list, if that matters.
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#2221662 - 08/18/10 10:40 AM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Mark Schmieder]
Mr. Nightime Offline
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I've got a Mackie 1202VLZ that I'll probably never replace. It sounds good, has been through hell and back, and works every time. There are even some bent jacks from where it took a spill, and it still works perfectly. Only thing is I can hear something rattling around inside, like a screw came loose after over 12 years of service. Time to open it up.

I bought a padded case designed specifically for it when I bought the mixer. I think it's a Rok Sak. The zipper broke years ago, but it still works to protect it.
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#2221715 - 08/18/10 12:04 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Mr. Nightime]
RABid Offline
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Get a decent mixer, even if it is small. Once you get one it will stay in your rig longer than any modern keyboard. I've had 3 keyboard mixers in the 30 years I've mixed synths. The first was an Ashley rack mount that I loved until it went up in flames during a fire. Second was a Boss half rack which was good enough for what I needed at the time. The lastest is a Tascam Keyboard Mixer that I bought in the 90's. It has a MIDI interface that I have never used and don't know what it is for, a 2 digit readout that must only work with MIDI, and a few L/R balance issues on some channels. But, it sounds good and I am sticking with it.
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#2221748 - 08/18/10 12:59 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: RABid]
Moonglow Offline
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Anyone recall that nifty little mixer Eric uses?
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#2221754 - 08/18/10 01:10 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: Moonglow]
ITGITC? Offline
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My Mackie 1402 VLZ is probably kinda old. I don't have firsthand knowledge of the current models and their build quality.

However, mine has been perfect ever since I bought it.

No problems.

None at all.

Even after a UNC coed threw up all over it at that party in the basement of a frat house a few years ago. (I think she could have been inebriated... spelled D R U N K.) It's OK. She reportedly felt much better after projecting the contents of her stomach in the general direction of my Mackie 1402-VLZ. rolleyes

Ooof.

Like I said...

No problems.

None at all.

Is There Gas in the Car? cool
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#2221759 - 08/18/10 01:23 PM Re: Soundcraft vs. Peavey vs. Behringer vs. Mackie mini mixer? [Re: ITGITC?]
KenElevenShadows Offline
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Registered: 12/20/00
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Ugh. In my first response, I meant to say Soundcraft, not A&H. But either would be excellent choices.

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