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Author Topic: Any suggestions on a mixer for a upcoming producer/engineer that just started a recording facility?  (Read 3239 times)

"E"

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I just recently opened up my own project studio facility which has 3 rooms my control room which is about 12x16, my live room which is 16x20, and my vocal room which is 4x8. My equipment is a dual core pc 4gigs ram, 160 gig harddrive for programs, 500 gig for protools audio, and a 320 gig external for storage backup. My interface is a profire 2626 with a digimax lt by presonus for adat which is 16 channels of audio along with 2 channels of spidf. I have a presonus studio channel mic pre, and a cad 7 drum mic set 2 proco snakes, a behringer b1 which i'm upgrading to a neumann tlm 102m next week, and a behringer sx2442 for monitoring. I record R&b, Rap, Heavy metal, and rock and pop music. My question is i really want to know from anybodys expertise would me purchasing a mackie 32-8 be a benefit or would it take away from the quality i have now or save up and get something like a toft audio desk console? I had a technician from sweetwater pro gear tell me that me purchasing a mackie 32 would be a downgrade because the preamp converters would take away from the sound quality i have now with the octane preamps in the profire 2626 and the presonus tube studio channel mic pre? So are there any honest suggestions out there from a engineer or producer who doesn't hate mackie products or just trying to get me to spend money with there company. I'm really trying to find the route i need to go because i have a nice facility and have a good sound now but just want to upgrade for better routing options and better preamp quality to go along with my neumann mic and so forth.
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Mohog

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Hey there,
  Congrats on opening the new facility. In my opinion, the pre's in say the mackie onyx, are probably as good if not better then whats in the m-audio. I think you should focus on upgrading your converters. If that is not doable right now or you just don't want to, you can get a good used soundcraft, 800 or even 1600 24 track for a good price. They have good usable pre's for a project and indie album studio. I don't think the mackie would be a downgrade from what you have but you don't want to go from one preamp into another. The nice thing about having a console, even a small one is the routing and monitoring options it will give you. Recording bands, having even one extra cue is indispensable. Good Luck with everything.

Brandon  
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Brnadon,
Mohog Audio
mohogaudio.com

"E"

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Hey Brandon,

Thanks for the reply man. As far as converters i believe the only option i have bro is to go from m-audio to HD which are the protools accel pci cards, and those cards are the best converters out there but they run about $7k-$16k depending upon how many channels you want. But with the profire 2626 the preamps on it can be bypassed as long as you plug in with a xlr on the channel but if you go in with a 1/4 inch trs then you will be using the preamps on the interface so that is a plus with the interface if i do get a mixer such as the onyx 24 or 32 i could come straight out of the direct outs 1/4's and go in on the profire 2626 xlr and it won't be passing thru 2 preamps. I just have heard of a lot of industry hits and albums and projects tracked and mixed on mackie 32-8's and 32-4's and i got a guy up in michigan that has one for $800 but guy at Sweetwater pro gear said the converters in it and the eqs are not good as the converters in the m-audio profire 2626. i'm trying to get the best sound coming in as close to HD going into protools i know you've got plenty other interfaces out there that kill the profire 2626 such as apogee, motu, and a few more but they can't run into protools unless i buy something like the motu or a apogee or something close and then come out of the adats which i have 2 sets of adat ins on the profire 2626 for a total of 16 ch's of adat. So in your opinion what you think because i would love to have that flexibility of routing and so forth with the mixer console with bands and being able to have different mixes going to each band member headphones if needed and so on, but based on the progear salesman he said its a waste of money with having the converters in the profire 2626 and buying a mackie 32-8 he said the only way i would really notice a difference in sound would be if i stepped up to a toft audio mixing console which start at about $5k for a 24 channel. But he did try to shoot me towards the mackie i-onyx series which are now compatible with m-powered protools 8 and brings 16 channels in but i want 24 or better i like to have more than not enough. so that leaves me with the mackie onyx 24 or 32 which are $1,600 & $2,400 ballpark. so your opinion seriously man it would help me greatly because i'm getting ready to spend some money within the next 3 weeks on more equipment and don't want it to be a waste. I just recently bought the akg c414 and the neumann tlm 103 which is a big upgrade from the behringer b1 i was using but it had a real nice sound to it to but now these mics really shine thru. So do i just buy converters and run thru the profire or get a mackie because with the profire 2626 like i said the preamps can be bypassed by going in xlr?
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Tomas Danko

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"E" wrote on Thu, 31 December 2009 03:14

Hey Brandon,

Thanks for the reply man. As far as converters i believe the only option i have bro is to go from m-audio to HD which are the protools accel pci cards, and those cards are the best converters out there but they run about $7k-$16k depending upon how many channels you want. But with the profire 2626 the preamps on it can be bypassed as long as you plug in with a xlr on the channel but if you go in with a 1/4 inch trs then you will be using the preamps on the interface so that is a plus with the interface if i do get a mixer such as the onyx 24 or 32 i could come straight out of the direct outs 1/4's and go in on the profire 2626 xlr and it won't be passing thru 2 preamps. I just have heard of a lot of industry hits and albums and projects tracked and mixed on mackie 32-8's and 32-4's and i got a guy up in michigan that has one for $800 but guy at Sweetwater pro gear said the converters in it and the eqs are not good as the converters in the m-audio profire 2626. i'm trying to get the best sound coming in as close to HD going into protools i know you've got plenty other interfaces out there that kill the profire 2626 such as apogee, motu, and a few more but they can't run into protools unless i buy something like the motu or a apogee or something close and then come out of the adats which i have 2 sets of adat ins on the profire 2626 for a total of 16 ch's of adat. So in your opinion what you think because i would love to have that flexibility of routing and so forth with the mixer console with bands and being able to have different mixes going to each band member headphones if needed and so on, but based on the progear salesman he said its a waste of money with having the converters in the profire 2626 and buying a mackie 32-8 he said the only way i would really notice a difference in sound would be if i stepped up to a toft audio mixing console which start at about $5k for a 24 channel. But he did try to shoot me towards the mackie i-onyx series which are now compatible with m-powered protools 8 and brings 16 channels in but i want 24 or better i like to have more than not enough. so that leaves me with the mackie onyx 24 or 32 which are $1,600 & $2,400 ballpark. so your opinion seriously man it would help me greatly because i'm getting ready to spend some money within the next 3 weeks on more equipment and don't want it to be a waste. I just recently bought the akg c414 and the neumann tlm 103 which is a big upgrade from the behringer b1 i was using but it had a real nice sound to it to but now these mics really shine thru. So do i just buy converters and run thru the profire or get a mackie because with the profire 2626 like i said the preamps can be bypassed by going in xlr?


Hi "E",

I don't know where to begin sorting out this wealth of false statements...

1. Pro Tools Accel PCI cards are not the converters, they are processing cards carrying DSP chips that takes care of the calculations.

2. Pro Tools HD is not "the best converters out there". They work, they don't totally suck. But they are in the middle between bad and awesome.

3. It's usually that the XLR input will got through the mic preamps, while the 1/4" (TRS) will go in on line level bypassing the mic preamps.

4. There are no mic preamps on the regular Pro Tools HD rig, unless you've added their separate rack with mic preamps.

5. There are no converters in the Mackie 32-8 or 32-4 analog consoles. Anyone stating this has immediately lost respect as a sales man.

On the whole, it sounds suspiciously like the output from a trollbot, but I'll honor this post with a proper response anyway.

FWIW, getting a second hand Mackie 8-bus would seriously put you in control as an engineer and producer. It will sound good enough initially, and the routing facilities will make you look good and fast as far as the band is concerned.

Good luck with the recording!

Cheers,

Danko
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"E"

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Hi Danko,

 Thanks man and no i'm not a trollbot whatever that is lol, i'm new here with this whole forum ordeal just tired of running into brickwalls with sales man and so forth. And yea i may have had a few things wrong in my previous statement i was in a recording session at the studio and typing from my blackberry so. I just don't wanna waste any money i know the mackie 32-8 doesn't have any converters just mic pre's i think the british style perkins eq's i believe but yes the salesmen was telling me it would be a downgrade because i would be going down the quality chain being he said that the preamps in the profire 2626 are better than the preamps in the mackie. i'm not really trying to get a protools hd rig i just want a mixing console setup. but don't wanna waste money on a mixer thats gone take my quality downhill.
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Tomas Danko

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"E" wrote on Thu, 31 December 2009 13:03

Hi Danko,

 Thanks man and no i'm not a trollbot whatever that is lol, i'm new here with this whole forum ordeal just tired of running into brickwalls with sales man and so forth. And yea i may have had a few things wrong in my previous statement i was in a recording session at the studio and typing from my blackberry so. I just don't wanna waste any money i know the mackie 32-8 doesn't have any converters just mic pre's i think the british style perkins eq's i believe but yes the salesmen was telling me it would be a downgrade because i would be going down the quality chain being he said that the preamps in the profire 2626 are better than the preamps in the mackie. i'm not really trying to get a protools hd rig i just want a mixing console setup. but don't wanna waste money on a mixer thats gone take my quality downhill.


Fair enough.

Look at it this way, if you're going to cater to a full band then the small difference in quality between two said mic preamps (because none of them are really great but they work) may not be making as much of a difference as opposed to having a proper mixing desk that allows you to group and send things around the way you want to.

The bottom line is that a real desk will make the session smoother and you'll please the band members which leads to a better recording.

You'll be able to upgrade later on and get much better mic preamps (i.e. API, Daking, Great River etc) and further down the line more and better microphones and finally a great A/D converter.

Cheers,

Danko
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"E"

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Thanks danko man that means a lot so are u saying get the mackie for now
Simply because between the pre's on the profire 2626 and the mackie are now
Significantly differing which is to say you really can't tell a great huge difference between
Both pre's. And later I can get a toft or a allen and heath but I mean
Honestly I'm not trying to go that big just trying to accomodate what's not in this area
Which is a studio that can record bands and other genres of music within one studio
And the pricing accommodates them to because if I go to spending thousands
Of dollars on equipment like avalon or great river and toft consoles and high dollar converters then my pricing would have to go up from being
$40 an hour on vocals as far as for rapppers and soloist rnb and $65 an hour on multitracking
People don't spend them big dollars like that here in mississippi dude lol

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