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Mackie 1604-VLZ3 vs. Allen & Heath MixWizard3 16:2

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  • Mackie 1604-VLZ3 vs. Allen & Heath MixWizard3 16:2

    Hello,

    I am thinking of buying a new mixer and have finalized my options to these two:

    Mackie 1604-VLZ3 vs. Allen & Heath MixWizard3 16:2

    Could anyone with experience give me some advice. The extra money is not an issue. We play Latin, Jazz and World Music.

    What about rackmounting? Which one has better access? I saw the picture of the Mixwizard's rear and looks a bit odd. But I do not.

    What about quality of sound. I found a review that says:

    "I have gone through Midas Venice (bland, opaque, in your face), Onyx (grainy, onfucused, vintage?), VLZ (flat. not bad), Yamaha( shrill), and now A&H. A&H is by far the best mixer for live sound, although the Onyx is also a pretty nice board...There is nothing better in this price range the the MixWiz3."

    http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/MixWizard316/reviews/#anchor

    Your input is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Brian

  • #2
    That's quite an extreme characterization for a group of boards that are generally quite similar if design and construction. In fact your whole post sounds extreme enough that maybe you are missing something awfully important in your testing of mixers IMO.

    From experience with all of those boards, I wouldn't characterize the sound of any of them to be any more than pretty subtle differences. Reliability issues that I have delt with on Mackie products that I had sold to my customers would steer me clear of that brand.

    You might rethink why the boards all sounded so dramaticlly different and see if maybe there was something else you were doing (eq maybe) that accounts for the extreme differences that I'll bet nobody else here has experienced either.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Former product development engineer: Genz Benz, a KMC Music/Fender Musical Instruments Company, continuing factory level product support and service for Genz Benz

    Currently product development engineer: Mesa Boogie

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    • #3
      Mackie supposedly has reliability issues. I own an older 1402VLZ and it does have some issues with a noisy bus and volume drops.

      A&H does appear to be better quality-wise.
      Band site: www.thebiglewinsky.com
      Gear: PRS 24, Axe-Fx, Mesa 4x12

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      • #4
        Mackie 1604-VLZ3 vs. Allen & Heath MixWizard3 16:2
        I'm tempted to just go:

        but in case you are serious I'll say I own a 1604 because I'm a cheap bastard and perhaps a bit stoopid. If that description fits you definitely go for the 1604 !

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        • #5
          i have both a mixwiz v3 and a mackie 1604. no contest win to mixwiz; the mackie is a peice of crap.
          band status - "its complicated"

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          • #6
            Hi,

            Thanks for the info, I would just like to clarify that I have not tested either one. The paragraph about the difference in sounds are from another guy who did a review, and wanted more opinions on them.

            Thanks,

            Brian

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            • #7
              i disagree with his opinion of the venice, i find that to be a very nice sounding board.
              band status - "its complicated"

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              • #8
                I disagree with all of the opinions, but like ****************************s, everybody has one.
                -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                Former product development engineer: Genz Benz, a KMC Music/Fender Musical Instruments Company, continuing factory level product support and service for Genz Benz

                Currently product development engineer: Mesa Boogie

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                • #9
                  Yeah, I think I would pick the Mix Wiz out of those. I would also consider Soundcraft, but I am not sure they have something in that size with 16 mic inputs, although I do know the EPM 12 has 12. The EPM boards aren't bad little boards at all. Of the two you listed though I would pick the Allen and Heath. I would also say that Agedhorse is probably right about the reviewer's opinions being a good bit off base. I (like him) would doubt that if all those consoles were set flat that you would hear that much difference between them. And the Venice is usually a pretty well liked board, so I don't know where that reviewer got his information from on that.... Do you not have a local dealer for either of the two brands where you can go check them out in person before you buy?
                  SupportMusic.com - Help keep music education in your local schools!

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                  • #10
                    I've used both boards and would go with the Mixwiz, If for no other reason than you get 6 real aux sends. The Mackie board has 6 auxes, but it only lets you route to auxes 3&4 or 5&6.
                    "A performer without techs is standing naked, on a dark stage, and no one can hear them. A tech without a performer... has marketable skills."

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                    • #11

                      "I have gone through Midas Venice (bland, opaque, in your face)"


                      Ummmm.... is it just me or are the 1st 2 adjectives the opposite of "in your face"?
                      PA: JBL PRX712, PRX718XLF, RCF 745-A, 522-A, 310A, A&H Qu-16
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                      • #12
                        The A&H's channel EQ is MUCH better, and the A&H is a lot easier and cheaper to repair. I'd take even an original issue MixWiz over a 1604, no question at all.

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                        • #13
                          + 1 on the MixWiz.

                          6 Auxes, mono XLR main out and dedicated fader, the ability to do a stereo mix but also the ability to turn the L and R faders into subgroups, inserts on everything including the L and R, direct outs, the feature list goes on. A&H 16:2 is a great board.

                          We're a 6 or 7 member band depending on the night and we're using 5 of the Auxes as individual monitor mixes with powered monitors. Aux 1 goes into channel 16 to create a subgroup of the backing vocals. We aren't using the onboard fx but what little I've heard isn't bad. From there, we create a L subgroup with all vocals and a R subgroup with all instruments. That is all summed in the mono (M) output. Meets all our mixing needs and then some.

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                          • #14
                            MixWiz hands down!

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                            • #15
                              Can anyone comment on the effects the board has? Does it create noise like in many of the other board with effects?

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