Which Pro Mixer Choice is better ?

Discussion in 'Consoles / Control Surfaces' started by On Time Recording, Apr 16, 2014.

  1. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    Ya, this is how you want it .
    8836-3_full.jpg
     
  2. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Well-Known Member

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    i agree with Dave re the Audient or the Harrison 950.

    again if Dave is happy then i'm happy for him too. rock on.

    as hard as i look i can't find anythnig regarding a fix on the TOFT regarding the weak 2-bus and isn't this exactly what we need? something with a beefy 2-bus? hey, i would like it if the TOFT was a solution. but even Hyatt says it's bedroom mixer. an expensive one at that. and you never get around the exploitation of labor issue as long as they are manufactured in China or any other far east nation. I guess if you don't care about pay and working conditions for people who live in totalitarian countries that's not an issue.
     
  3. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    true enough.
    price comparison, back in the day there were a bunch like this with nice knobs maxing out at 80db and noise.
    I would put this between the DAW and the Dangerous Master - (could leave the DM out, and Jam it up at the end with a comp and EQ in line. I'd use something like the STC-8 and the pultecs right out the door to DAW2. Capture that with a smile.
    I need one to try.

    The magic happens between the console and DAW2. I normalize the master from -18 up so there is plenty of room to use daw(2) where it counts. The idea is to take DAW one OTB, add space around it and capture it swinging again. No clock quantizing nonsense. Know what I mean?

    eg: wave swinging like a piano tuned by a tech, not some electronic tuner perfectly boring.
    To me, analog vs DAW and coupling and uncoupling the analog matrix arriving at the capture is the another way of explaining what goes on between DAW1 and DAW2 with the waves and phase.

    Lately I've stopped linking stereo and transients together. I'm obsessed with keeping it real. Just have to watch the phase and that's easy if you hear it starting.

    Thus, always comes back to monitoring. Hearing is believing. Hearing is knowledge, empowerment.
     
  4. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Well-Known Member

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    For about the same as an equivalent toft we got a trident 24 series, and rebuilt the power supply too, I guess it's a common upgrade w those consoles. I guess the under powered stock supply limits headroom in the console. It sounded pretty sweet before the upgrade, looking forward to hearing it. its gonna be a nice tracking console, prob not the first choice for a hybrid system but the trident stuff does sound nice in general
     
  5. Davedog

    Davedog Well-Known Member

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    I guess I just don't need someone else's proof to confirm what I hear in person and daily use. What AM I thinking?

    I also don't buy gear based on political or any other value system not related to equipping my business in a decent way in order to record at some level of expertise.

    I have never personally visited the supposed 'sweatshops' nor have I seen the exploitation of some labor pool. I also have never seen a Yeti, and while they may exist, I find it difficult to believe that to the point of trying to convince others of their existence. I only believe half of what I see and none of what I read on the internet.

    But each to his own.
     
  6. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Well-Known Member

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    Dave,
    i find it hard to believe you would equate slave and forced child labor issues in the far east to the existence of bigfoot let alone question or deny the conditions exsist. if labor isn't significantly less expensive (at who can guess at what price) then why would guys like Hyatt move their production offshore? it isn't because the quality is better ....

    add to the price of manufacture the shipping expense and it's still cheaper. you know why? because they have children or slave / forced labor working 12 hours a day for .20 cents an hour. but i guess it's ok ?

    People can bury their head in the sand or plug their ears and say "la la la la, i'm not listening", but there is no doubt there are unfair labor practices in place in China. i'm not making this stuff up.

    i myself try as hard as i can to not buy Chinese products when ever possible and i think people who exploit the savings the use of child / union busting / slave labor affords are the lowest of the low. if the boss's rolled back your wage from $40 an hour plus beni's to $2.50 for a 12 hour day, you would not be such a happy camper. well if it's ok in one sector of a market place, it won't be long until it permeates the whole labor market. workers need to hold the line somewhere. we vote with our dollars. we have debated this issue since manufacturers sent work offshore to China in the early 2000's. what happens in China does affect the Western work force. that is a fact.

    notochina.jpg

    after all, i too wonder why it is such a big deal to you as to what i think? i have said over and over if you like it, good for you. bottom line, it's a table top mixer, that is admittedly by the CEO / owner of the parent company, made to a price point and intended for the "bedroom studio" market.
     
  7. Davedog

    Davedog Well-Known Member

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    Alan Hyatt's opinion means nothing to me nor apparently to the engineer and developer, Malcom Toft, according to the video interview with him. His take on it is a bit different. As for my wages, I'm retired and I'm the boss so I really do only make $2.50 an hour! But I do things I love. I'm glad you are passionate about the child labor problems of the world and its always good to remind people about these conditions of our fellow humans and to be diligent in our help towards making these things disappear from the earth. Good on Ya!

    The wages in China are coming in line with others in the international community. The manufacturing is China has become heads above most industrialized nations with their building of these new plants. The automation and efficiency of these places are a marvel. There are sites on the net where they propagandize these innovative and creative places. Most of them are electronics plants. Most of them were developed in conjunction with German and American engineering. I'm not sure that any offshore electronics manufacturing is done in the traditional sweatshop scenarios any longer. It would not make sense physically or efficiency wise. Yes, the wages of the workers at these plants isn't the same as a German plant, a Swedish plant, or an American or English plant. Its probably higher than a Mexican plant but a lot of these things are relative to the cost of living as well as the social structure of the country involved. The Chinese people have a whole different socio-eco way of living than we do. These differences are built in to their lives from the cradle. I have friends who have visited there recently and they all have said that they expected this pall of repression to be over everyone and found it to be quite the opposite.

    I don't mean this as a defense of their practices as a whole. I'm sure that other parts of their industrial rise is placed squarely on the backs and blood of peasants and children to the point of applying the whip on a daily basis. I do not condone these things in any way. My point is, the old days of hundreds of people chained to a long desk hand dropping components into PC boards and then solder-bathing them together is long gone. Its way more efficient to simply have a trained worker pushing a button at the top of the line of machinery and then inspecting every 20th piece coming out the other end. Those companies who go to market directly from this point are the ones with the lesser quality control and have the inherent problems found in their products. Most higher end companies that employ offshore manufacturers generally only have certain parts of their products manufactured in this way and assemble and inspect in their own on-shore assembly plants.

    As to my continued interest in these kinds of posts....it has nothing to do with own choices of gear and everything to do with answers posted on this website. (see:moderator)

    Glad to have you here!
     
  8. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Well-Known Member

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    Lest we forget - there's still plenty of "slave labor" right here in the free world. The U.S. is by no means innocent in this regard. There are plenty of menial jobs right here that pay next to nothing at which immigrants work every day.
    (And I'm not even speaking of those terrible sitiuations of forced sex workers, girls as young as 7 who are forced into the underground sex trade).

    You can see them everywhere - Mexicans working landscaping jobs or produce/crop picking, immigrants from Eastern Europe working on cleaning crews at big department stores at night after the stores have closed; Koreans, Vietnamese and Chinese immigrants working in the dead of July heat on litter pick-up crews and roofing jobs, and all of these jobs pay an average of around $15 per day...and in most cases, cash under the table.

    Perhaps not quite as bad as China, but not all that much better either, certainly not what one would expect to earn or how to live in "the Land Of The Free".

    The difference, I suppose, is that no one is forcing them to do it. But, they are forced into it by the conditions that surround them, and the fact that most of these people are sending half (if not more) of what they make back to relatives in their countries of origin. Plenty of people holler about these people taking jobs from Americans, yet, none of the Americans who are hollering would even consider doing any of those jobs and making that low level of pay anyway.

    We are spoiled. We are fat and lazy. And it's all because we've never known hunger, or homelessness, or have been forced into living in conditions that would make most people cringe. We've had it too good for a very long time. The last generation to have actually known and lived through hunger - those who were living during the depression - are dying off at a rate of nearly a thousand per day now... leaving behind them a spoiled generation who's mantra is "entitlement".

    IMHO of course.
     
  9. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Well-Known Member

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    Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

    The thing that concerns me most about older consoles is the possibility of not being able to get parts, and, you have to know that with age, at some point, these desks are gonna develop issues.
    And it's not a question of "if", it's a question of "when".

    If you are planning on something older - "vintage" or not, you do need to take into account that something is gonna need to be fixed on them at some point... and you won't be able to fix it with a driver update or program patch, either. LOL

    All I'm saying is that if you are hell-bent on buying an older console, then good on ya! Nothing wrong with that whatsoever. But, you should be fairly adept at reading schematics and electronic repair, or, you should know someone who is. ;)

    d/
     
  10. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Well-Known Member

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    i would stay away from an old console unless i was opening a "real" facility ... that is a large studio with pro clients paying pro rates. big consoles require a full time maintenance staff. it was intended to have these behemoths serviced regularly from inception of design. as Donny put it, .... "you should be fairly adept at reading schematics and electronic repair, or, you should know someone who is."

    imo the answer for the "personal studio" owner is one of the summing solutions or the small desks offered by SSL / NEOS / Dangerous / Manley. .... the key is hi volt rails and a power supply capable of proving lots of high headroom joules.

    my last word in this thread re China, they are not only guilty as charged for exploitation of labor but they are also raping the planet for resources and polluting it with chemical waste. the fact that they are being overseen by "American and German Corporations" for the most part is of no comfort. these are the very same companies who collaborated with the Nazis forcing the Jews into slave labor. BASF /Farber made Zyklon gas for the death camps and i could go on for days about American companies who supported the Nazis.

    the problem with big corporations is they are run by entities who have short term scale of life who care not what sins are committed for the sake of profit.

    Hyatt is a exploiter of far east manufacturing. one of the basics of his business model is the profit to be extracted by exploiting cost differences in the labor and manufacturing in China. if Rupert can build them in Texas, why cant PMI?

    one of the reasons Hyatt and his cronies send production offshore is because it's cheaper and it's cheaper because they don't have to account for how they dispose of industrial waste among other things as in labor exploitation, price dumping, subsidies from the Communist Dictatorship .... there's just not enough lipstick in the world to put on that pig to make it appealing to me. still i understand it's next to impossible to not buy and use products from the far east. perhaps the cat is out of the bag. but i still try. done.
     
  11. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    I agree with Kurt.
    but hey hey, you forgot the SPL Neos or MixDream, they are high VRails, higher than the mentioned . Nothing bigger than the Neos rails to my knowledge. lol. :) but I do also think there is something special when I run a DAW through analog eq's that adds something right, so, maybe even a bedroom console might be pretty cool too.
     
  12. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    why do these consoles need so much maintenance or are you speaking only vintage?
    I've had my share of decent road consoles and they never had a problem. Worked right up to when I sold them.
    Are you guys saying, even something like a API 1608 would be continuous maintenance?
     
  13. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Well-Known Member

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    Chris;
    i did mention the Neos.

    yes at some point even a new API or a Neve or any other will need maintenance. it's the nature of the beast and the demands put upon a console .... constant use / wear, hi heat (because of the high volts) it just eats them up. these things were (are) designed that way. just like an esoteric race car they need love. some more than others. and not all consoles will need the same type of maintenance as others. it all depends on what you have.

    as far as buying a board just for the eq, why not just buy a summing network and the supplement it with outboard eq's? that way you can have a variety of choices when you work. plus they will be worth more, to a wider range of buyers, when you decide to sell .... lots of Tofts for sale but not so many API , Neve , Manley or other high end EQ's ... because when they do hit the market, people snatch them up quickly. mic pres, eq's and dynamics processors ... that's where to put the cash.

    the problem with all these "bedroom mixers" isn't in the eq. in fact with the Toft you are getting the real deal as far as the eq's go ... it's just the rest of the console that is not up to snuff. the ones i've seen, the knobs and faders wiggled all over the place. they just felt cheap. also the mic pres are not x former balanced, the summing section (2-bus) is reported as weak and not capable of being pushed hard. this puts it in the catagory of the mic pres we were dicussing earler ... sound fine as long as they are not pushed too hard ... (i/e; cheap). i would guess the power supply is weak too but i am not sure of that. can you say what volts the internal rails run at? the design has sub bus's running at full tilt and adding noise regardless if the faders are up or not. that's a lot of issues for a board that costs 6 to 8 grand. yes, they are through the board construction, so you can buy one and send it to Jim Williams for improvement but $8k for a board that needs work? idk .... :rolleyes: if they sold for half of that, (especially considering the off shore labor issues), i would be more inclined to be a bit more receptive. (me thinks PMI is exploiting both cheap manufacturing and the legacy of the original Trident reputation as a licence to print money.)

    i'm not saying the Toft isn't heads above a lot of what has come before ... i'm sure they are far better than an old Tascam 3700 or a newer Allen Heath or lot of other mixers available but they are not the solution they are touted as. they are not as good as the namesake 80B or even a 65. you can find a gently used Midas Venice in vgc is listed on E Bay for under 2k "Buy It Now", have more features and save $6K... and it will be a better summing solution than the Tofts.
     
  14. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff

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    I'm going blind and dense lol.

    Can't agree more. Personally, I wouldn't change my workflow, I love it, modular is great. I could sell the whole works way easier than trying to find someone specifically looking for a console so that is indeed another reason I did go this route. Consoles are hard enough to sell at the best of times.
    I have a great front end for tracking and then it all lends itself as a mixing and serious mastering system.
    Not cheap doing it like this though, so, as a way to help others, if i ever do get the opportunity to test one of these consoles out, I'm keen on seeing what it would do going OTB to a second DAW.

    Thanks for updating me on the "heat factor".
     
  15. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Well-Known Member

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    I understand the allure to consoles. There's a part of me that's never been able to let go of the console era. Truthfully, I miss working on one almost everyday. It's not just the sound, it's the tactile thing too...and I suppose, to a large degree, it's because it's how I came up, what I learned on, so there's a soft spot in my heart for them. There are downsides too, of course. Space is a consideration, as is maintenance, heat, wiring/bays, etc., all of those things can be a bit overwhelming at times.

    But if I had the budget to do it right - and the room - I think I'd probably go back to a console pretty quickly.
     
  16. Davedog

    Davedog Well-Known Member

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    If your need these days is to push a consoles pres to get the sound you want then the Toft does have a collapsing limit to this. Anything below that will be fine for most things.

    I have been using mine now for almost two years. As in all things audio and electronic, hours of usage reveal many more aspects than reading specs or websites might.

    I don't advocate any purchases from anyone who might use children for slave labor. I have children and grandchildren and nothing would be less pleasing to me if their worlds were controlled or hurt by anything. But I'm not an expert of PMI/Toft manufacturing practices. Maybe asking Alan about this would clear it up. I'm sure he would respond.

    I bought mine at a time I was looking for channels for my little drum room. I HAD the money for something more and when I started looking I was going to spend 10K on a vintage short-frame console or high-end 4/8/2/1/channels mic pres. I pursued this. What I found was a console with very decent usable pres, quality EQ you could track with without a lot of phase shift, and a robust construction. Yeah, its heavy like a brick house and I haven't found any problems with it. Mine is a V.3 release and they are on V.4 by now. Most of the early reviews indicated deficiencies in the pilot release and these things have been resolved without a huge increase in costs. This was proof to me that Toft owner services pays attention to their owners/users. Plus the construction allows upgrades without a lot of trouble. If you know what you're doing or you're willing to pay for this.

    I will upgrade mine but not because it doesn't work well enough but simply because I want to.
     
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