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I understand this mixer was quite well regarded c1994 but bombed. One's up for sale in the UK for about $2800 . Any thoughts?
It's fully modular but I'm worried about maintenance as this will be my first proper desk. Can't afford any new comparable desks (Ghost, Mackie) and this does look nice!


AudioGaff Mon, 11/24/2003 - 19:13

This was a very decent console that had good quality, pro features and a very good price for what it offered. Alesis over estimated it's ability to sell and service them. They quickly became to expensive to make and still squeeze out profit. The Mackie 8-bus with it's much cheaper parts, PCB and surface mount components came in at a much lower price and won the 8-bus market share, thus killing off the X2.

The last X2's were made up to 1999 and had many minor upgrades. The biggest problems were with the preamp and 48V circuits having components go out. The X2 is of a modular design so each channel can be worked on without the whole mixer being down and unuseable. Most of the parts, are still available although you may to have to spend some time to hunt them down. All the channels can be fixed fairly easy by any good tech with a service manual.

I own one of the newer X2's from 1998 and have not had any of the problems other users have reported. I also very rarely use the mic preamps or the 48V, so that may be why I have not seen those problems. I do have an annoying issue where the LED meters on every channel will light up often showing 1/3 to 2/3 full level even when no signal is present, but a power down and then power up after 90 seconds mostly clears that up.

I like the fully parametric eq and both mids, which is much better sounding than the Mackie, 8-stereo effects returns assignable to both the master and the 8-bus faders, the flexable signal routing, MIDI/ADAT Sync Mute automation, and the very handy 24-channel additional line input mini-faders are features which you won't find in any budget mixer or even in some pro boards. It is not in the great mixer catagory, but is more than useable to get some great results and is more than good enough for most home or small project studios.

As for price, the average I've noted is about $2000. With some as low as $1200. $2800 is on the high side. For that money it should be a newer unit and in mint condition.

AudioGaff Tue, 11/25/2003 - 01:50

I don't suppose you could let me know your serial number?

Good question. I don't know where that would be. I don't remember ever seeing it. There was a QC sticker with the date on the back panel of some units. If you see the sticker or S/N of the one your looking at, let me know. That is not the real answer thou to it's age. Since it is modular, every module/channel cab be different. Check a few channel modules, the master and the group masters for a QC sticker with the date made. Most of the mods were implemented in the factory by early 1996.

anonymous Tue, 11/25/2003 - 02:18

I´ve heard very good results come out of these mixers. I´d say it´s as much mixer you can possibly get for that money. I almost bought one myself but went for a DDA console instead. I agree with Audiogaff that it´s on the expensive side, (maybe it´s the current exchange-rate of the US-dollar that makes it expensive compared to the price in UK-pounds ??) it should be around 2000 euro anyway. I´ve heard about the meter-bridge problem Audiogaff reported aswell and that some owners have had minor power-supply breakdowns. There´s one for sale here in sweden that is fully serviced, recapped, new faders etc. i think it´s about 2500 euro, can´t remember exactly. Nice eq they have !

anonymous Tue, 11/25/2003 - 04:23

Just had an e-mail from carpe-diem (thanks) begging me to reconsider as they are awful! Guess they may be a bit hit and miss so as I'm paranaoid about maintenance I think I'll give it a miss. I've seen a Soundtracs Solitaire at about £5K UK so I think I'll save up bit longer!
Thanks for all your feedback

anonymous Thu, 12/04/2003 - 21:40

The individual channel strips are becoming hard to find, and the Master sections, especially so.

I have one, and it's pretty good for the price. I also see the "on" meter issue...

Something not yet discussed is that it has MIDI muting, which is very handy to help reduce noise.

The FX returns are stereo with variable stereo width and panning.

There were two "types" of X2; one is called the "deep dish" version. You can tell by the height of the base. The DD version is over an inch. I don't remember the other one, but I had heard that the low profile made it hard to service channels in place.

anonymous Sat, 12/06/2003 - 05:47

My advice is to avoid this console like the plague.

The first one I had must have been the original design. It was an absolute nightmare. At one time I had more channels down than strips that worked. The phantom power would continually crap the board out. The FX sends and returns were too noisy for my liking. I bitched so much about this board to my dealer that they arranged a new one.

The second X2 must have been the deep dish as it had more space for the modules to sit in. It was better and I had less problems but by this stage I was sick to death of looking at it. I eventually traded it and I fear the day I see another one.

The sad thing is that it had potential but in true Alesis style they cut corners, had a poor design and used cheap parts. Never again will an Alesis product enter my studio.


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