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question about mixers

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Mice256, Mar 11, 2008.

  1. Mice256

    Mice256 Active Member

    hello all

    i believe i am confused when it comes to mixer configuration. At first i was under the impression that you can mix recorded tracks on all mixers( from what i know is not the case). now i have been using a Mackie onyx 1640 mixer and have been quite pleased with it. But my understanding is that you can't return the tracks back to the mixer for analog mixing like i have been doing at westlake and the mix room. then i thought maybe if i used the db-25 connectors it might work, but it is my understanding that they are only direct outs. now is it only the high-end mixers like SSL j,k,etc.., Neve 88rs,etc... or are there mixers available for home studios where one can record say into protools cubase, then return the recorded tracks for mixing on the board. Any suggestions of mixers and clarifications of informtaion are welcomed!

    thanks in advance!

  2. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    You are looking to mix to an external recorder? It doesn't matter the make of the mixer, the important thing is that the interface has to have multiple outputs or in the case of a mixer/interface, the mixer needs to double as a control surface. As far as the mixer is concerned, it all depends on the design. You either need a mixer with a return section or channels which can be wired in-line.

    As for now you can mix in the box. If you need faders, for that you can get a control surface.
  3. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    Doesn't the Onyx have separate line inputs per channel?

    If so, there's the solution - with the proper ADC, like Hueseph said.
  4. EricUndead

    EricUndead Guest

    Do you want to be able to control Pro Tools or Cubase from a "mixer"? If so you are looking for a controler. If you want it to also be an interface for a DAW then you are looking for a controler/interface combo.
  5. AnomalyAlecB

    AnomalyAlecB Active Member

    I just got a Digidesign 002. I think that's something up your alley. We got it used for $600.
  6. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Most mixers can be pressed into service to mix (analog) recorded tracks, despite what you have been told. The tracks are just sources, but at line level. If you can set the mixers inputs to accept line levels, you can mix recorded tracks.

    Now what an inline recording mixer has in addition is an extra line input per channel specifically for taking the tape returns, so you don't have to unplug or re-patch your studio sources (mics, keyboards etc) when mixing down. The switchover between record (from studio sources) and replay (from tape) is either via a global switch or via individual channel switches, which are useful for tracking. A split recording mixer has a separate desk section for receiving the tape returns.

    A further method of returning tape replay lines is via the insert returns of a standard mixer. I used to make up rack panels with 16 channels, each having an XLR connector, balanced-to-unbalanced amplifier, TRS jack and a toggle switch. The TRS jack could be plugged into an insert jack socket on the mixer using a standard balanced jack cable, and the tape replays came into the XLR. The switch selected the insert return to be either the insert send (for recording) or the output of the balun amplifier receiving the tape replay. The bottom dropped out of the market for those panels when digital mixers hit the scene.

    You are correct that the DB25 outs on the Mackie Onyx are for recording only, but the insert return trick works. The recording out is taken off before the EQ and inserts.
  7. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Cool. Never even thought about the inserts as Boswell pointed out. The only thing is, if you want to physically mix from the Onyx, you still need a Digital to Analogue converter with multiple outs. Which means you will need to switch between drivers during the mixdown to..(tape? Another hardware recorder a la Alesis Masterlink?)
  8. Mice256

    Mice256 Active Member

    thanks i appreciate it all the responses. i never thought about using theinserts but it makes sense. now can you guys recommend and A/D converters that serve this purpose. i know that using the protools HD is one option but are thre any less expensive routes? Also can you guys suggest any mixers that are ready for this task already as opposed to using inserts?

    thanks again i'm learning a lot.

  9. AwedOne

    AwedOne Guest

    Have you looked into the Yamaha N 12? It has firewire connectivity so tracks can go both ways. In addition, it has full integration with Cubase, so it acts as a digital controller to control the DAW.

    You might also be able to find a used Tascam FW-1082. it is firewire also, has 8 so-so preamps, but motorized faders and digital control of many DAWs. That's what I've got for now (until I can afford the N12) and it gets the job done.
  10. Mice256

    Mice256 Active Member

    i should probably make it a little more clear since i may have been misunderstood. i am not looking for a mixer as a DAW controller but i want to use it only to mix tracks together ans ay print back into cubase, or on to tape, or on a CD etc... i am really not looking to get a mixer to controller anything in cubase.

    thanks again

  11. Sheehan-J

    Sheehan-J Guest

    Hi guys, I've been lurking for about 8 months now and just made a username. I have a question concerning this also, if you'll allow me to thread jack for a moment... :)

    I have a mackie 1604 and a digidesign 882 with Pro Tools TDM 6.4.1. It isn't necessary to run the analog outs back to the mixer to mix, as I can do it in PT correct? If I do in fact take the 8 channels from the analog outs of the 882 and back into 8 channels on the mixer, would it be better to go to the inserts of the first 8 channels or could I go to channels 9-16?

    It sounds like Mice is trying to do something similar to this, so I figured the answer might be relevant to his question as well.

    thanks a lot!
  12. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Sheehan-J: you could definitely go into 9-16. It would save a lot of rerouting. So you'd be going from there back to two new tracks in ProTools or to Tape?
  13. Sheehan-J

    Sheehan-J Guest

    Hmm, well now that I think about this, the 882 only has one set of 8 analog inputs so how would that work without going back into the interface again?

    To answer your question, I'd be going back into PT.
  14. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Right. I totally overlooked that regarding the 882. I guess you would have no choice but to re patch. This is where a patchbay makes things a little easier. You're still re-patching but at least you won't have to reach around the back of your mixer.
  15. Sheehan-J

    Sheehan-J Guest

    Yeah, Well its ok, I can still mix in the box, and having my hands on a mixer for that portion isn't essential. Cool, yes, but not a big deal.

    Thanks for helping me out Hueseph!

    Now back to your regularly scheduled programming. :)

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