Looking for Mixer

Discussion in 'Location Recording' started by Mortifix, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. Mortifix

    Mortifix Guest

    I am trying to find a nice 12 or 16 channel mixer, but I am not quite sure were to begin. I was looking on Musicians Friend at some Behringer mixers and some Mackie mixers, but I am not quite sure of the extra features I would need. I would prefer a table top mixer.
  2. jg49

    jg49 Well-Known Member

    It is awfully hard to give you any decent advice without some clue as to what you are mixing and its use.

    Sorta like saying I was thinking about a vehicle, maybe a car.
  3. Mortifix

    Mortifix Guest

    Guitar, 2 pianos, 4 mics, maybe drums in the future. I am going to want to hook it to a firepod and use Cubase SX. I am going to be running two Mackie SMR450 v2's.
  4. stealthy

    stealthy Guest

    Seeing as how this is in Live Sound....I'd recommend what I have and like alot....Yamaha MG166cx
  5. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    Anything but the B*#%rnger, it may look ok, but they are next to useless.

    Do you need subgroups?
    How many auxes do you need for monitor mixes and effects?
    Are internal effects important to you?
    Do you have a budget in mind?
  6. Guitarfreak

    Guitarfreak Well-Known Member

    I agree, Behringer products are crap. My first amp was Behringer, after a few months it unexpectedly crapped out. I sent it back to the factory and they sent me a brand new one. Few weeks later, the same thing happened. I have also heard the same thing about many of their other products. Steer clear unless you are on serious budget restrictions.
  7. Mortifix

    Mortifix Guest

    I am trying to keep it around $300. Internal effects aren't a big deal, but when I learn more will it be? Not sure how many auxes I need. I have 2 speakers and 1 monitor, I might add a monitor in the future. If there is a huge difference in price to have subgroups...then no. Thanks for the help so far.

    I am looking at the Yamaha MG166CX and I am not sure what 6-bus live mixer is. Whats the difference between the C and the CX? If I have a firepod, do I need USB connectivity?
  8. jg49

    jg49 Well-Known Member

    The difference between the C and CX is internal effects are a feature of the CX otherwise these two models at a glance appear to be the same. If you do not own seperate effects (like a rack mounted reverb unit/delay/chorus or whatever) you will probably want the effects at least at first. You can later add units like this with either board, it is just typical to add a least reverb to vocals, most guitar amps and keyboards have their own reverb or effects.

    If you are using a Firepod, USB is not necessary as the Firepod could be the interface between the mixer and a computer. The only issue there could be that you are preamped out of the mixer and preamped through the Firepod. There is no need or advantage to this.

    Is the Firepod unit eight channels? You might be able to send eight channels out through the inserts on 1-8 but this would not leave you enough channels to do 2 guitars, keys, 4 vocals and 3-4 mics for drums. The other way to go is you use a stereo bus (group) to send L/R stereo mix to your recorder. Or you could use a bus group to submix the drums into one or two channels. These are the reasons people are asking what you are trying to do and how many aux's do you need.

    The six bus mixer refers to the master outputs (three stereo faders) For example you might use stereo 1-2 to send to your main speakers, use stereo 3-4 to your firepod and the third group to monitors giving you control of the gains for each.
  9. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    We have two MG series boards. One for the mains and one for the drum sub-mix from the stage. Bullet proof through 4 seasons for gigs. Really solid sound for the money.
  10. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    This is all free advice and worth exactly what you paid for it.

    I concur with all of the brand recommendations so for. Yamaha good. Behringer bad. Mackie good.

    Try to expand your budget if possible. An OK cheap mixer without a lot of features can make itself useful for a surprisingly long time. The cheap crap (which is at least half as much as something solid and useful) goes in the trash after a few gigs.

    When starting out maximize the number of channels - minimize the number of buses, aux sends, etc. Especially if you have two keyboard players who want to use stereo effects you can use two channels per keyboard. Adds up pretty quick. Buy good instruments to plug into the front of the PA rather than cheap boxes to plug into the returns.

    If you get a good deal on a PA with effects - buy it. They will help you keep from buying a cheap box with effects that sound the way inboard effects do and save up for a good outboard effects box.

    Basically, buy as little equipment as you can of as high a quality as you can afford. This is harder advice to follow than it is to give...but...follow it.
  11. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    The Yamaha MG series is a really a whale of a mixer for the price ($429 new). 10 mic ins and 3 stereo channels is cool, but I'm not sure how they consider it a 6-bus - maybe Davedog can eloborate on how you can control the 6 buses independently. Mains L&R + 1&2 + 3+4 share 3 sliders *puzzled but eager to learn how that works.

    There are some Mackie's in that range that would be viable alternatives - but with any of them make sure you count the number of actual mic inputs to be sure it has what you need. A common practice these days is to overstate the number channels, by counting every possible line level input. Which is fine and dandy if that's what you need. The number of mono XLR mic inputs is what I would be looking for, but if you're using it for recording and have more stereo keyboards and drum machines etc. it may be a non-issue for you.

    At the $500 threshold you have several 12 channel Soundcraft to choose from that actually have 12 mic inputs + 2 stereo channels.

    I have 2 Yamaha mixers that I like a lot - one that's been trouble-free for about 20-years of pretty hard gigging and another digital model that has been generally confined to the house for 10 trouble-free years.
    I have a 15 year old Mackie that's never given me any trouble doing mobile recording and 3 Soundcrafts that have been using for live gigs over the last 5 years.

    I have preferences for specific applications, but I don't think you can go wrong with any of them.

    Happy hunting!
  12. ahavill

    ahavill Guest

    (dvdhawk): "I'm not sure how they consider it a 6-bus - ... *puzzled but eager to learn how that works."
    I think that they call it a 6-bus since you have "group 1/2", "group 3/4" & mains L/R. Each input ch can be sent to any or all of the 3 stereo buses. Technically 6 buses, but its a little limited since each ch's pan control would affect how it gets to all 3 buses. So panning a ch to group 1 would mean it couldn't be sent to group 4 or mains R for ex.
    I strongly recommend: find a used Mackie 1604 that hasn't been abused. Built like tanks, eBayable for under $300. 4 aux sends, so you can add FX or more mons when needed.
  13. ahavill

    ahavill Guest

    (Bob Rogers): "buy as little equipment as you can of as high a quality as you can afford."
    So true! I would add that you are usually better off buying used gear. Especially when dealing with "budget" gear, something that is new off-the-shelf can be more of a risk than something that has been in use for a few months or years. Think about it: if a mixing board rolls off the line in China, made for pennies, & shipped to the US, & shipped to the store... how reliable is it, compared to a mixer that's been in use without problems for a while? If electronic gear fails, its usually within the first few months of use, because of bad components or construction or getting beaten up in shipment.

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