Recently, I've been looking alot into the Digi 002R. My remaining question is, what are the pros/cons of a control surface such as the Digi Command or the Mackie Universal? I finally convinced myself to get away from purchasing a mixer, and using something such as the Octapre, 8pre, Octane, or similar to use for preamps and i/o. So I'm trying to see what is the most logical purchase for me. BUT, would it hurt to go with an 12-16 XLR input mixer (Mackie CFX or VLZ3, Soundcraft MPM or MFX, Allan & Heath ZED, Yamaha MG?) instead, just to use it for its preamp? What would have a better quality? Keeping in mind I'm trying to stay in the $600 range, while adding 8 QUALITY XLR inputs! I'm sure this has been covered, but after using the search feature I was unable to uncover anything of help, but, if you dont want to repeat yourself and know of a proper thread, please link me. Also, off topic (for a friend)....he is looking into a budget/beginner PT setup with a Digi 001 and Mac G4, what are the suggested minimal requirements for the G4? TIA!