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#2926664 - 05/12/18 11:34 AM Looking for a Small Studio Mixer
HammondDave Offline
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Registered: 01/20/08
Posts: 7180
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Well, my Mackie finally gave up the farm. For some reason the right channel is kaput. Tried everything. Must be internal to the mixer.

Any suggestions for a small studio mixer? Only need 6 inputs Motif (2),Mojo (1), Mellotron (1), Vox (1), Gibson (1), and iPhone.

Should I stay with Mackie or go with a cheaper alternative? Or should I get real fancy?


Edited by HammondDave (05/12/18 11:35 AM)
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#2926666 - 05/12/18 11:45 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: HammondDave]
timwat Offline
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Should I presume when you say studio mixer, you're not necessarily talking about a rack mount line mixer?

Obviously lots of choices out there, and I haven't heard them all. I can tell you there are audible differences between the mixers I own - which in theory there shouldn't be. A mixer is supposed to be as transparent and colorless as possible...but the output of my old Yamaha MG 10/2 (the old first generation) is far less colored than my (much more expensive) Allen & Heath Zed 10fx. The Alesis 8 channel line mixer is surprisingly clean to me, but the Ashley 308 is head and shoulders above that. In my recording rig, the iConnectAudio + seems very good (and has lots of innies & outies), but I don't know if anything they make suits your needs...I just saw the iPhone reference. And for the past year my live rig is always the Key Largo - Radial makes really great stuff.

But I don't know if any of this helps you at all. I never A/B'd different mixers in a controlled environment - these are all anecdotal findings after I already bought the stupid thing.

If there's a way to demo side-by-side prior to purchase, I guess I'd recommend that, as there are audible differences between mixers that I hadn't really presumed there would be...until I heard them.

Tim
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#2926669 - 05/12/18 12:11 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: timwat]
J. Dan Offline
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I don't think you can go wrong with Ashley. I have similarly good results to timwat with my Yamaha MG (PRO's: cheap). The A&H mixwizzard is a good mixer but I don't think they make one small enough for your application (in fact I don't know if they make them at all anymore). While I have not tried one, timwat' assessment is not the first I've heard of the ZED suggesting it is subpar compared to my experience with the mixwizzard. I had a Behringer that seemed ok but started exhibiting issues. Mackie and Alesis both decent but ere are better choices depending in picky you want to get. Don't get Rolls.

Edit: speaking solely analog above. There are digital options as well. Since you're talking studio, does it have to be a mixer? What about an audio interface that can accomodate your I/O and mix on the computer? Some can save settings and work offline (static mix).


Edited by J. Dan (05/12/18 12:15 PM)
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#2926679 - 05/12/18 01:28 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: J. Dan]
Delaware Dave Offline
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Yamaha 10/2.
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#2926684 - 05/12/18 02:16 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: HammondDave]
Al Coda Offline
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Registered: 08/31/08
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Loc: out in the sticks
Studiomixer ... to me that means recording, monitoring, connecting mono- and stereo- instruments, other playback devices, microphones etc..

What about Presonus ?

When you need just only a keyboard submixer, thatīs a different story.
But Iīd never use a 200 bucks mixer for studio-(recording/mix).

A.C.

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#2926691 - 05/12/18 02:58 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: HammondDave]
MojoGuyPan Offline
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Registered: 07/30/08
Posts: 427
Loc: Mainland Florida
Behringer Xenyx 1202 would be perfect. No need to spend more money. The only reason to spend big bucks on a mixer is the preamp but with nothing but line level stuff going in there is no reason to spend more. $80 and you're done. You're welcome.




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#2926705 - 05/12/18 04:42 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: MojoGuyPan]
Al Coda Offline
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Registered: 08/31/08
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Originally Posted By: MojoGuyPan

The only reason to spend big bucks on a mixer is the preamp but with nothing but line level stuff going in there is no reason to spend more.


Thatīs BS !!!

Itīs not only the preamps,- itīs also the summing of the input channels into a bus/ main outs !

Those cheap mixers are pretty well known for not doing a great summing job.
And that was already the case w/ the larger Mackies like VLZ 1624 and such.
I owned analog 8-bus consoles in the past and that Mackie (which I still have), so I know the difference and it had been confirmed by studio gear service techs long ago.

Also the Presonus I mentioned above isnīt the holy grail,- but somewhat "better" than those 100 -200 bucks "small mixers".

The best keyboard submixer is still the Speck XtraMix.
Unfortunately itīs out of production.

APB Dynasonics Prospec 1U and 2U are very good rackmout mixer units.
The 2U6M2S would be ideal for the OP.

Even expensive Midas consoles are still PA mixers.
A real good studio mixer is definitely a different league,- Neve, Amek Big by Langley, SSL, MCI, Harrison and so on.

Small Behringer mixers are jokes.

For only 8 channels max. Iīm using an Ashly MX508.

A.C.

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#2926717 - 05/12/18 07:23 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: HammondDave]
davedoerfler Offline
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Originally Posted By: HammondDave

Should I stay with Mackie or go with a cheaper alternative? Or should I get real fancy?


I am not currently a fan of Mackie, although I was 25 years ago.
Never have been a fan of knockoff Mackie mixers, marketed under the Behringer brand. As always, YMMV.
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#2926745 - 05/13/18 04:42 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: davedoerfler]
stoken6 Offline
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Registered: 05/12/12
Posts: 1944
@HammondDave sorry for the obvious question - can you be more precise with your requirements?
- You seem to need two stereo and four mono inputs, is that right?
- Any additional inputs? Mic pres?
- Is the "Gibson" input for a guitar (so hi-Z input?). Or will it be taking a line-level feed from a modeler/amp simulator or similar?
- What outputs do you need - just a stereo pair?
- Any auxes? Pre/post fade?
- Built-in effects?
- Other requirements? (Internal PSU? USB connectivity to act as an audio interface?)
- Preference for analog(ue) vs digital?

Cheers, Mike.
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#2926746 - 05/13/18 04:44 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: davedoerfler]
RudyS Offline
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I bought a Mackie Profx8v2 about two years ago. I returned it because some hiss issues. Got another one. Same problem. Also, somehow I did not like the preamps in it (and I am definitely no audiophile..). I got a Yamaha mixer (mg series) instead and am very happy with it.
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#2926749 - 05/13/18 05:04 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: J. Dan]
RABid Offline
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Registered: 11/01/01
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Originally Posted By: J. Dan
I don't think you can go wrong with Ashley. ...


This. If you don't want to pay the new price find a good used one on Ebay. They are built solid and last forever if you take care of them. I have a couple Ashly LX-308B's. Great 1U mixer for a stereo keyboard setup.
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#2926754 - 05/13/18 07:17 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: RABid]
konaboy Offline
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Registered: 09/23/02
Posts: 967
Slightly hijacking the thread but what's a good mixer for a rack of stereo synths? Most mixers seem to have majority of channels as mono with mic preamps, phantom power etc which is completely useless for modern synths. Seems to me a typical 8 channel mixer might only have two channels with stereo line-ins.
cheers
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#2926762 - 05/13/18 07:52 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: konaboy]
zukskywalker Offline
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Registered: 10/05/04
Posts: 501
Loc: Washington DC
Tascam LM-8ST did the trick for me. It's a traightforward single rack unit that takes phone inputs for each side of each stereo input.


http://tascam.com/product/lm-8st/

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#2926765 - 05/13/18 08:12 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: stoken6]
HammondDave Offline
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Registered: 01/20/08
Posts: 7180
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
Originally Posted By: stoken6
@HammondDave sorry for the obvious question - can you be more precise with your requirements?
- You seem to need two stereo and four mono inputs, is that right? CORRECT
- Any additional inputs? Mic NO NEED FOR MICS
- Is the "Gibson" input for a guitar (so hi-Z input?). Or will it be taking a line-level feed from a modeler/amp simulator or similar? THE GIBSON IS A G101 COMBO ORGAN
- What outputs do you need - just a stereo pair? YES
- Any auxes? Pre/post fade? NOPE
- Built-in effects?
- Other requirements? (Internal PSU? USB connectivity to act as an audio interface?) NOPE
- Preference for analog(ue) vs digital? NOPE

Cheers, Mike.
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#2926779 - 05/13/18 10:16 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: konaboy]
RABid Offline
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Registered: 11/01/01
Posts: 12527
Originally Posted By: konaboy
Slightly hijacking the thread but what's a good mixer for a rack of stereo synths? Most mixers seem to have majority of channels as mono with mic preamps, phantom power etc which is completely useless for modern synths. Seems to me a typical 8 channel mixer might only have two channels with stereo line-ins.
cheers


The Ashly LX308B has 8 channels and all 8 feature L and R 1/4" inputs. That is why it is a great mixer for a rack/keyboard setup.
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#2926791 - 05/13/18 10:57 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: RABid]
dglcomp Offline
Member

Registered: 05/06/18
Posts: 18
another option for stereo synths is the Roland M-480, from the 90's and has 24 stereo or dual mono inputs, an extra stereo input on the front, 6 stereo effect returns + bus inputs for the main, sub, monitor, and efx/aux sends. no EQ but 6 sends/returns for effects. Fits in 6U of rack space so relatively compact, does make much use of stacked potentiometers if that matters.

http://medias.audiofanzine.com/images/normal/roland-m-480-217310.jpg
https://www.manualslib.com/manual/683669/Roland-M-480.html


Edited by dglcomp (05/13/18 11:14 AM)
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#2926807 - 05/13/18 12:09 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: HammondDave]
stoken6 Offline
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Registered: 05/12/12
Posts: 1944
Originally Posted By: HammondDave
THE GIBSON IS A G101 COMBO ORGAN
Understood - I should have studied your sig more closely.

For a "conventional"/"mainstream" chanalogue oice, Yamaha MG10 fits the bill. Four mono + three stereo channels, good reputation. I've used one for a little PA mixer, and it's fine. There are more upmarket choices of course.

If you want rackmount (and the ergonomics may not be as good) then Ashly is obviously a great brand. But I'm guessing that in a studio context, you'd prefer more room/better ergonomics than a 1U rackmount. (By the way, if you want your Yamaha with a side of faders, move up to the MG12 or over to the MG10XUF).

Good luck,

Cheers, Mike.
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#2926811 - 05/13/18 12:55 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: dglcomp]
dongna Offline
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Registered: 12/21/05
Posts: 391
Originally Posted By: dglcomp
another option for stereo synths is the Roland M-480, from the 90's and has 24 stereo or dual mono inputs, ...

There were also smaller versions-- M-160 and M-120 maybe?-- that were fewer channels as I recall. More in line with what was requested.

They are quite old at this point, though. I think I agree with the suggestion of using an audio interface with the appropriate number of inputs.

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#2926813 - 05/13/18 01:07 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: dongna]
Theo Verelst Offline
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Registered: 02/27/10
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I got a deal on the MG16XU which is a very good mixer. There are specifics that can be found in the specs though distortion is sometimes hard to understand, and for instance noise specs need to be interpreted correctly for the situation and purpose at hand.

T

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#2926819 - 05/13/18 02:43 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: dongna]
dglcomp Offline
Member

Registered: 05/06/18
Posts: 18
Originally Posted By: dongna
Originally Posted By: dglcomp
another option for stereo synths is the Roland M-480, from the 90's and has 24 stereo or dual mono inputs, ...

There were also smaller versions-- M-160 and M-120 maybe?-- that were fewer channels as I recall. More in line with what was requested.

They are quite old at this point, though. I think I agree with the suggestion of using an audio interface with the appropriate number of inputs.


The reason for not recommending the smaller ones is that the M-480 is more suited to stereo instruments as it allows for two inputs per channel meaning you then only have 1 volume knob that controls both the left and right channel (although the input gain controls are still separate) making it better for stereo sources, also, when compared to the M16/160 and above it is not much larger but you get much more inputs, primarily as some of the smaller range use sliders for volume rather than knobs.

Plus I was aiming this more to another poset other than the OP who was asking for a rack mixer for a rack of synths.

As for the others in the range there is the, M-120, M-12E, M-160, M16E, M240(R), M-480 with 12/16/24/48 inputs respectively. E versions add EQ, the M-16E adds XLR microphone inputs and phantom power, and the M-240 is a desktop mixer with a rack mount 'R' version.

Another option would be one of the new low end midas mixers, a sort of Behringer XENYX meets Midas, not used one myself but the reviews seem very favourable and being part of Musics' higher end range will get the 10 year warranty.

http://www.musictri.be/Categories/Midas/Mixers/Analog/DM12/p/P0BGA

Of course the modern option would be something like an X32 rack or XR18, the x32 rack having up to 24 inputs in 3u.



Edited by dglcomp (05/13/18 02:51 PM)
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#2926832 - 05/13/18 04:20 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: HammondDave]
Mighty Motif Max Offline
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Well Dave, I know that you don't need a bunch of inputs. But I myself have been considering one of these mixers, and this one has multitrack USB recording, sort of like an audio interface. It's a 12-channel. https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/...ce-with-effects
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#2926836 - 05/13/18 04:56 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: konaboy]
DMAC Offline
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Registered: 02/01/14
Posts: 71
Loc: Nova Scotia Canada
Hi, I know where you are coming from Konaboy, I am faced with the same problem, so, I just ordered yesterday a Behringer X1832 USB 18 Input 3/2 Bus Mixer with EFX & USB. It has 4 stereo Line In Inputs which suited my needs now. It also has 6 inputs for Mics etc.& other good features. The price was right at $375.00 Canadian. I did a lot of searching and this Behringer model was the best I could come up with for my needs. I don't think there are any Keyboard Mixers on the market that could run 4 or more keyboards in stereo, out there. Would be interesting to know.

Cheers
Donnie
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#2926838 - 05/13/18 05:08 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: DMAC]
DMAC Offline
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Registered: 02/01/14
Posts: 71
Loc: Nova Scotia Canada
Originally Posted By: DMAC
H I don't think there are any Keyboard Mixers on the market that could run 4 or more keyboards in stereo, out there. Would be interesting to know.

Cheers
Donnie


Woops, I stand corrected, There are some out there,,, read the posts after I submitted mine.
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#2926844 - 05/13/18 05:33 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: timwat]
CowboyNQ Offline
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Registered: 06/14/15
Posts: 895
Loc: Adelaide, Australia
Originally Posted By: timwat
The Alesis 8 channel line mixer is surprisingly clean to me, but the Ashley 308 is head and shoulders above that.

As it happens I also own both of these, and support Tim's commentary. I like the Alesis a lot and it was good value for money but my unit was a little noisy. The Ashly, which I purchased a couple of years ago after doing a lot of research (including in this forum), is just excellent.

That said, I use it live, not in studio, so it would depend if the rack configuration is convenient for your purposes Dave.

I'm running a maximum of four keyboards, an iPad and an iPhone through it - all in stereo.

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#2926847 - 05/13/18 06:03 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: CowboyNQ]
HammondDave Offline
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Registered: 01/20/08
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Actually I prefer a non-rack unit as I like to have it close to my boards and the faders plainly visible.
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#2926902 - 05/14/18 05:54 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: HammondDave]
Toano88 Offline
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I'm using a Yamaha MG10XU, works great for me. Small form factor, quiet, effects if I choose, and didn't cost much ($199).
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#2926921 - 05/14/18 07:27 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: Toano88]
SteinwayB Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 11/06/13
Posts: 111
Anyone have experience with the Samson SM10? I like the flexible headphone routing. I'm thinking if I want to go ITE monitoring, I could feed the FOH outputs to this mixer and send that mix to my headphone output and send the keyboards alone to the main outputs which would go to FOH. My concern is the sound quality and durability of this unit since it is only $200. Doesn't look like any of the higher end 1 RU units like the Ashley have this routing flexibility.

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#2926970 - 05/14/18 11:17 AM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: SteinwayB]
rickp Offline
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Registered: 11/17/14
Posts: 304
If I had your requirements, I'd go with this digital Soundcraft; I use the 24 channel version for our bands with my boards running first through a Key Largo, and have often thought the small version would be handy for solo use.

You could control it with the iPhone you mentioned, and easily set up and then recall scenes with one click with no worries about having to readjust gains, EQ and channel knobs after transport. You would need a couple 1/4>XLR adapters (although if you don't mind the extra size and $100, there is a 16 channel version with 8 1/4-XLR combis).

Would also be great for IEM use if you want to use one or two inputs for a monitor mix from FOH and season to taste using the solo function and mixing the various channels into the headphone jack as desired.

The effects and extra outputs could come in handy too if you ever wanted to use it as a small FOH board with a monitor or two.
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#2926999 - 05/14/18 02:52 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: MojoGuyPan]
The Real MC Offline
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Originally Posted By: MojoGuyPan
The only reason to spend big bucks on a mixer is the preamp but with nothing but line level stuff going in there is no reason to spend more.


I'm an EE with 30+ years experience and this is the biggest pile of bovine excrement I have ever read.

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#2927003 - 05/14/18 03:22 PM Re: Looking for a Small Studio Mixer [Re: The Real MC]
jeffinpghpa Offline
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Registered: 05/22/07
Posts: 485
Loc: Charlotte, NC
I like my Allen & Heath Zed 10
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