Looking for simple 2-source stereo mixer...

Discussion in 'Location Recording' started by vttom, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. vttom

    vttom Active Member

    For Christmas I got a powered monitoring system for my Yamaha Electronic drum kit (MS50DR - Monitor Amps - Electronic Drum Accessories - Drums - Musical Instruments - Products - Yamaha United States)

    Works great for monitoring myself when playing drums.

    I have this thought... For live performances with the band, I would like to take the line-level monitor mix from our PA and mix it with the drum signal so I can hear both through the MS50DR. That way I can have my own personal mix of myself and the rest of the group.

    All I really need is a basic line-level, 2-source (4 channel) stereo mixer. Thing is, I'm having trouble finding something that basic. Does anyone have a suggestion?

    P.S. Ideally I'd like just 2 sliders - 1 for each stereo channel. Or, better yet, just 1 fader that goes from just me at one extreme to just the monitor at the other, and then blends the 2 in-between. Dunno... My expectations are pretty specific. Maybe I'm best off just building something.
  2. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    I'm assuming that you have tried asking the PA engineer if he can provide you with a separate foldback mix of your chosen sources and that the answer is that he can't.

    If you need a local stereo mix but don't need to change the stereo imaging (positioning), then something like the SM Pro Audio M-Patch 2 would work to give you a headphone output. You would have independent level controls of the feed from the mixer and the local drum set.

    Otherwise, there are cheap 1U rack line mixers such as MAM SLM82 that would do the job, but the headphone amp on those may not have enough poke to be useful in a live session.
  3. Kapt.Krunch

    Kapt.Krunch Well-Known Member

    May want to consider a few things, first. They sound good by themselves? Good. How well will the tiny little 4" 20 Watt speakers compete with the volume of a live band...even with them only arm's length from your head? How well will they be able to handle your drum sounds PLUS the rest of the mix? What do you all run into the rest of the monitor mix? Just vocals? Keyboards, guitars and a little bass? Will those tiny little 20W speakers blast all that out loud enough and cleanly enough to be of any real use on stage, with possibly, guitar amps, a loud bass amp and maybe a keyboard amp also blasting away? Will they be better used as just your own personal practice speakers, and/or MAYBE a little added personal drums-only monitor help, while your drums are sent to the mixer, and the drums and all the other sent back through proper powerful enough stage monitors? I'd be questioning whether they'd compete even with just your drums...let alone running other stuff through them. But, I have no idea just how loud the little 50W sub/20W satellites are. And, I have no idea how loud your band is, and what is being played through amps and/or direct to the PA. Setting up a separate personalized monitor signal might be able to happen, but it depends on your main mixer, its capabilities and if there is enough flexibility left to set it up. What IS the mixer (or mixer/amp)? What are you mic'ing, and running direct? Are any Auxilliaries, etc. available and not being used on the mixer? Just some things to think about that I wondered about. Kapt.Krunch
  4. vttom

    vttom Active Member

    Ha ha. The PA engineer is me. Although, you do bring up a good point... I need to do a send and a return from/to the drums to/from the PA mixer. I can send the drums and return the PA monitor minus the drums and mix them "locally" into my personal monitor ..OR.. I can send the drums and return the PA monitor with drums mixed in and send that to my personal monitor (this is a possibility I hadn't considered). The problem with the latter is that we only have 1 monitor mix that we all share. I'd probably want more drums in the mix than everyone else in the band would care to hear. Also, since we don't have anyone riding the mixer when we play, we have to "set it and forget it". If I have my own drum/monitor mixer, I can tweak my personal monitor mix as we go without having to get up from behind the kit to walk over and tweak the PA mixer.
  5. vttom

    vttom Active Member

    Our setup is something like this...

    The PA is a Yamaha EMX312SC powered mixer. I run it in a mono main/monitor configuration.

    We have 2 guitars (mix of straight electric and acoustic-electric), electric bass, keyboard, and myself on e-drums. The guitars and keys all have their own amp + speaker(s) for on-stage self-monitoring (we basically do a "loop through" into the PA mixer). So, the PA monitor was basically vocals + drums. This was unsatisfying for me because I had to set the balance to what everyone else wanted to hear rather than what I would've liked (meaning the drums were too low for me to hear myself as well as I would like). Now, with my own monitor, I'm miles ahead of where I had been regardless. With this thread, I was wondering out loud if I could come up with a way to give myself my own personal mix of drums + PA monitor. I think it's just something I'm going to have to play with and see how it goes...
  6. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    The picture's becoming clearer.

    A simple mixer with at least two stereo inputs and a headphone output would do what you want, providing it has enough power in the headphone drive for live use. The M-Patch 2 I mentioned before is worth investigating, or you could try something like the ART PowerMixIII.
  7. vttom

    vttom Active Member

    BTW - In case anyone is curious, I wound up getting this:

    Rolls Corporation - Real Sound - Products MX44s Mini-Mix IV
  8. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    That unit will do the mixing OK, but you may need to run the output into a headphone amplifier to get any useful volume from headphones.
  9. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Now Bos, that's a NINE-volt battery powering that mixer, not some whimpy little AA !!!
  10. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Yeah, but that mixer has a single 4560 op amp inside. Those are specified for driving loads down to 400 Ohm, and even with a 400 Ohm load would only give somewhere around 500mV output from a 9V power rail. Plug in a 30 Ohm headphone and it would be rather quiet.
  11. vttom

    vttom Active Member

    I don't intend to use it with headphones. Line-level in, line-level out.

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