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front end?

i currently have a Mackie onyx 1620 firewire but am about to upgrade to the MOTU 896HD aes/ebu out to a benchmark dac1 to monitors. Question is can i keep my Mackie in play. Take the 25 pin out to the MOTU which is only 12 chan and all xlr? the other option is scraping it all and going to a Tascam dm-3200 firewire to the dac1. The reason I'm trying to get past the Mackie is the firewire does not record eq or inserts. anything you can suggest would help.

Oh I'm a small post production studio who records 1-16 tracks max in nuendo but mainly work on post.

Thanks.
x