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  • Upgrade to a digital mixer?

    I currently have a MixWiz 16:2 DX (not MixWiz3) and a Zoom R16 for recording.  Along with this, my instrument rack contains:

    1. Furman power conditioner
    2. ART HQ stereo graphic equalizer
    3. Presonus ACP88 eight channel compressor/gate
    4. TC Electronics M-One XL reverb efx
    5. Furman wired IEM rack unit
    6. Old rack mount CD player

    The rack is a PIA since I have to swivel the inputs on the MixWiz down for it to fit in the rack.

    My band currently has need for only 7 inputs:

    1. Vocal 1
    2. Vocal 2
    3. Vocal 3
    4. Lead Guitar
    5. Guitar 2
    6. Bass
    7. vDrums

    I am seriously considering going digital for the following purposes:

    1. (number one) SMALLER LIGHTER RIG
    2. Remote mixing without a snake
    3. Ability to change mixer setup on-the-fly with a footswitch for different songs (only between songs)

    With that in mind, I am considering the StudioLive 16.0.2 for the following reasons:

    1. It is very small
    2. Integrates all my current instrument rack (except IEM)
    3. It has a MIDI interface to do scene changes with from stage
    4. It has a FireWire PC multi-track recording interface
    5. Stereo inputs for music playback or keyboard input

    Sadly, there are a few disadvantages:

    1. 60 mm faders vs 100mm faders on MixWiz
    2. 3 band eq vs 4 band eq on channel strips
    3. 4 vs 6 auxes (although I a using 2 of the MixWiz auxes for efx (internal and external) so this may be a wash.
    4. No direct outs (should no longer need them?)
    5. No Inserts

    I also have a concern about the recording interface.  I don't use Apple computers.  I do have a good (core i7) laptop with an SSD, but it doesn't have FireWire.  I am concerned that I may have issues getting an interface to my computer with the 16.0.2.

    Thoughts?

     

    With Greater Knowledge Comes Greater Understanding

  • #2
    I just checked the app. For remote mixing the fader length is the same for all the Studiolives. If someone is mixing with the Remote mixing app, it's like the faders are 100mm. The small size is nice. You'd even be able to split the v-drums into 4 channels. Kick, Snare, toms, cymbals for more mixing control. That would still leave 2 more XLR inputs, or 2 stereo pair inputs.

    You can't interface with a computer unless you have FireWire. I did it on the cheap with a Mac mini. ($350 these days used) I rack mounted it along with a monitor. It would be easy enough to combine a man mini, router and your in ears all into one smaller rack...
    NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

    Comment


    • OneEng
      OneEng commented
      Editing a comment

      StratGuy22 wrote:
      I just checked the app. For remote mixing the fader length is the same for all the Studiolives. If someone is mixing with the Remote mixing app, it's like the faders are 100mm. The small size is nice. You'd even be able to split the v-drums into 4 channels. Kick, Snare, toms, cymbals for more mixing control. That would still leave 2 more XLR inputs, or 2 stereo pair inputs.

      You can't interface with a computer unless you have FireWire. I did it on the cheap with a Mac mini. ($350 these days used) I rack mounted it along with a monitor. It would be easy enough to combine a man mini, router and your in ears all into one smaller rack...

      Yea, I hadn't thought of splitting the vDrums out.  That would be nice

      The only time we would be using the remote mixing app would be in setup since we mix from stage.  My wired in-ear setup also allows the mixing of 4 auxes and the stereo output of the mixer into an individual personal mix on stage.  We may go wireless on the IEM though which would eliminate this feature.  Most of us are just using the main mix now anyhow.

      Is there a PCMCIA card I could get to get me fire-wire that would work with the SL?


  • #3
    I believe there are PMCIA cards. It had to be a certain Texas Instruments chipset. I really don't know. I'm 3 hours from a major city and couldn't just pop to best buy and try 3 different cards.

    For me, it had to work. So that's why I went with the Mac mini. I didn't want to drop a grand or so on a laptop either the Mac mini has been a good fit, and I can run my lights from it as well.
    NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

    Comment


  • #4
    The Mac mini has to be an intel duocore, not PPC.

    Mine is an older thicker one.

    1.8ghz
    2gb ram
    80gb HD
    Snow leopard OS (10.6.x)
    NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

    Comment


    • #5

      OneEng wrote:t

      Sadly, there are a few disadvantages:

      1. 60 mm faders vs 100mm faders on MixWiz
      2. 3 band eq vs 4 band eq on channel strips
      3. 4 vs 6 auxes (although I a using 2 of the MixWiz auxes for efx (internal and external) so this may be a wash.
      4. No direct outs (should no longer need them?)
      5. No Inserts

      OneEng,

      I have a 16.0.2 and am very happy with it for our needs -- supporting a talented high-school acoustic musician (and friends) -- but, in addition to what you have listed above I would point out another nontrivial disadvantage, no 31 band GEQ on the AUXs.  I asked Presonus whether omission of such was mainly a marketing stragegy decision as there are enought physical controls on the board to support it and they replied that it was more of a processing power issue.  Seems the 16.0.2 has substantially(?) less than its big sisters the 16.4.2 and the 24.4.2.  Moreover, the lack of processing power means the 16.0.2 cannot support the new SMAART "Shoot the room" acoustics analyser which sounds pretty amazing and has gotten great reviews from users:

        http://www.presonus.com/products/Virtual-StudioLive/Smaart-M

      So, just a thought -- maybe the 16.4.2 might be worth considering?

      Also, I'd agree with others here that a dedicated Mac mini is probably the way to go for remote control and recording.  There's even a way to run the Mac headless and use an iPad as a display and keyboard as well as for SLRemote mixing.  Pretty interesting stuff.

         ..dave

       

      ...dave

      Comment


      • OneEng
        OneEng commented
        Editing a comment

        dbMontana wrote:

        OneEng wrote:t

        Sadly, there are a few disadvantages:

        1. 60 mm faders vs 100mm faders on MixWiz
        2. 3 band eq vs 4 band eq on channel strips
        3. 4 vs 6 auxes (although I a using 2 of the MixWiz auxes for efx (internal and external) so this may be a wash.
        4. No direct outs (should no longer need them?)
        5. No Inserts

        OneEng,

        I have a 16.0.2 and am very happy with it for our needs -- supporting a talented high-school acoustic musician (and friends) -- but, in addition to what you have listed above I would point out another nontrivial disadvantage, no 31 band GEQ on the AUXs.  I asked Presonus whether omission of such was mainly a marketing stragegy decision as there are enough physical controls on the board to support it and they replied that it was more of a processing power issue.  Seems the 16.0.2 has substantially(?) less than its big sisters the 16.4.2 and the 24.4.2.  Moreover, the lack of processing power means the 16.0.2 cannot support the new SMAART "Shoot the room" acoustics analyzer which sounds pretty amazing and has gotten great reviews from users:

          http://www.presonus.com/products/Virtual-StudioLive/Smaart-M

        So, just a thought -- maybe the 16.4.2 might be worth considering?

        Also, I'd agree with others here that a dedicated Mac mini is probably the way to go for remote control and recording.  There's even a way to run the Mac headless and use an iPad as a display and keyboard as well as for SLRemote mixing.  Pretty interesting stuff.

           ..dave

         


        If I wasn't using IEM's, the lack of a GEQ on the aux outs might be more of an issue.  As it currently is, I don't really have monitor ring-out to do.  We are not doing anything with the aux 1-4 outputs going into the IEM's today, so there would be no difference.

        I am not looking to have a dedicated laptop just for doing music with, so if I go this way, the windows laptop I currently have is going to have to work.  After all, if you put a laptop and an iPAD/iPod Touch into the price picture, you could easily eclipse the cost of the 16.0.2!

        A couple of years ago I revamped my FOH speaker system and went all powered (thanks for all the help I got here deciding on a good setup).  I am starting to think about this move so I have an easier setup.  The features are certainly a bonus, but not the main purpose.

        I have been looking at the 16.4.2 as well.  This board would essentially give me everything I currently have without any sacrifices and several bonuses over the 16.0.2 ..... but it is a much bigger board, and more expensive (although I see they have reduced the MAP to $1800.00 to make room for the new 32 channel offering at the top of the food chain).  It also does not have the MIDI control so I couldn't just use my existing MIDI foot switch to change scenes.

        It looks like you can get a used 16.4.2 for ~$1200-$1400.  The 16.0.2 can be had used for $800-$900.

        SMAART isn't anything I am interested in doing for every gig.  I am pretty sure we sound good everywhere we go without it and I have been on a quest to simplify setup, not make it longer and more complicated.  I am sure that big name sound engineers do this stuff all the time and swear by it, but I have been getting more and more to a simple sound check and off you go.


    • #6

      I have a Dell laptop with no Firewire card and needed it for my DAW.  Assuming you have an EC slot you can buy a simple firewire port and plug into that.  I use it between my Presonus firepod and Reaper and it works just fine.  Google firewire express card and you will find several reasonable options.

       

       

      <div class="signaturecontainer"><b>Guitars - </b>Martin DC Aura 6 string acoustic, Fender Custom Shop 60's strat, Gibson Custom Shop '58 Les Paul, Parker Fly Deluxe, G&amp;L L2000 bass. <b>Amps -</b> Tone King Metropolitan<br />
      [/SIZE]</div>

      Comment


      • #7
        My old mixer was a Yorkville powermax16. Great board. I just found more and more I was outgrowing the 12XLR inputs. With my band we had to trigger the drums to save on channels.

        When it came time to upgrade, I considered the 16.4.2 but I didn't want 16 channels to be the new limit so I went for the 24.4.2. I'd rather have 6 channels I'm not using, than wishing I had 2 more.

        NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

        Comment


        • #8
          What sort of scene changes do you have in mind?
          NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

          Comment


          • dbMontana
            dbMontana commented
            Editing a comment
            +1 on the 16.0.2 for meeting my needs and expectations very well. I don't use MIDI but the thought of easily switching scenes does open up interesting possibilities. Of course the extra CPU power of the 16.4.2 allows other possibilities. Rest easy, I'd give you a 95+% chance of being happy with either model.
            ..dave

          • OneEng
            OneEng commented
            Editing a comment

            StratGuy22 wrote:
            What sort of scene changes do you have in mind?

            Mostly who does the lead vocal; however, I think I might tweak the volume on the drums and the other instruments for different songs as well.  I am not thinking anything silly like a scene per song, but perhaps one for me singing lead, and one for the other vocalist singing lead.... perhaps one for heavy drums and bass vs more classic drums and bass levels.

            Both guitars have patches to control their volume relative to the songs we are playing and the places in the songs we are playing them.  The bass doesn't, and the vDrums could, but doesn't


        • #9
          I'm not 100% sure that the different mixes can be saved as scenes. A different scene for each singer, with the lead singer being mixed higher. If you can't save the mix, you could use the makeup gain on the compressor for each lead singer for their scene.

          In my band we have 3 lead singers. We get right up on the mic when we sing lead, and back off a bit when we sing backup.

          Same with our guitars. We each set out lead volume, them back it off with a volume pedal, when not playing lead.
          NO SIGNATURE FOR YOU!!

          Comment


          • RoadRanger
            RoadRanger commented
            Editing a comment

            StratGuy22 wrote:

            In my band we have 3 lead singers. We get right up on the mic when we sing lead, and back off a bit when we sing backup.

            Same with our guitars. We each set out lead volume, them back it off with a volume pedal, when not playing lead.

            Yah but yous guys don't suck. The bands we have to deal with vary from that to (more usually) wanting to wash your ears out with battery acid after the gig .


          • OneEng
            OneEng commented
            Editing a comment

            StratGuy22 wrote:
            I'm not 100% sure that the different mixes can be saved as scenes. A different scene for each singer, with the lead singer being mixed higher. If you can't save the mix, you could use the makeup gain on the compressor for each lead singer for their scene.

            In my band we have 3 lead singers. We get right up on the mic when we sing lead, and back off a bit when we sing backup.

            Same with our guitars. We each set out lead volume, them back it off with a volume pedal, when not playing lead.

            Yea, I can do that too, but some people are better vocalist than others.... this is especially true with respect to doing a harmony that melts nicely into the melody.  If I leave the mic up to an acceptable level for lead vocal, the harmony is way too loud.  I agree that one should be able to "self regulate" their volume, but I think it is less common for people to be able to do this well in a live setting than say .... a decent lead guitar player is.

            It is much easier to get a good lead guitar player that sings OK lead and OK backup than a good lead player that is an outstanding vocalist



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