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  #1  
Old 09-17-2012, 11:38 AM
AllTheCoolNamesAreTaken AllTheCoolNamesAreTaken is offline
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Default Mixer question

Hello, I got a chance to play with a 16-channel mixer and it got me thinking.

I need to buy a mixer for my drum mics. Currently I have 4, I will probably have 6 eventually. And I'm not sure if it's better to:
- Buy a firewire or stereo-out mixer
- Buy a mixer with a ton of inputs, or just enough for my drums and then 'out' my drum mixer to any other band mixer as necessary

I realize a lot of this comes down to personal choice and use. And right now I'm mainly looking to record my drums live. But I'd like to minimize my investment by buying something that works live and will work in a home studio.

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 09-17-2012, 11:47 AM
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Bo Eder Bo Eder is offline
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Default Re: Mixer question

I have a Mackie 1604VLZ and I love it. Basically it gives me enough routing options for the money. Combined with my Zoom R16 recorder, I can plug in 8-channels and send those 8 channels out of my Mackie's 8 direct outs and into the Zoom (still being able to do a live mix as well). As a live board, it can't be beat for flexibility, although if I had my druthers I'd be using the Yamaha O1v96 for everything, but that costs alot more.
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  #3  
Old 09-17-2012, 02:54 PM
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BacteriumFendYoke BacteriumFendYoke is offline
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Default Re: Mixer question

Bo, I like that Yamaha board too. I used it a lot at University.

I love Yamaha's way of releasing a product and then thinking about the user interface though! What an absolute pig of a board to approach! I always laughed when I used it for the first couple of weeks because I could never get anything to work without thinking about it. The same was true of a Yamaha HDD recorder that I used extensively for recording live shows. I never quite worked it out but remembered which buttons to mash to get what I wanted. Needless to say I was just about the only person in the Uni that actually knew how to use that thing!

For the original poster.

I would be looking at a decent FireWire console that can accept all the inputs that you need. That will give you the ability to use it as a straight-up analogue board but when you want you can interface it with a laptop with no extra mess.
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  #4  
Old 09-17-2012, 08:57 PM
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Default Re: Mixer question

Yeah, the Yamaha boards you definitely have to get your head around. But I did learn that once you learned how to run one, then you can pretty much run all of them (up to the PM1D) because the interface is about the same, except for maybe the M7, which has a touch screen. But I've resigned myself to it being the digital way ;)
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Old 09-17-2012, 09:13 PM
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Default Re: Mixer question

I picked up a Tascam-1800.

8 XLR imputs + 8 1/4 channels (16 total), and you can record direct to your DAW, which records each mic as a separate track. This is the way to go if you're looking to record your drums.

Much better than a mixer ( which you can only record stereo)
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  #6  
Old 09-17-2012, 10:07 PM
AllTheCoolNamesAreTaken AllTheCoolNamesAreTaken is offline
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Default Re: Mixer question

Yeah (re: the Tascam) while browsing MF I was wondering if it was smarter to get a multi-track recorder or a mixer. I'm looking at the recorders now ... I notice the Tascam is USB/Midi, is the USB interface fast enough? And does the USB interface send separate channels to your computer/DAW, or is that only possible with Firewire?
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  #7  
Old 09-17-2012, 11:04 PM
Embalmer Embalmer is offline
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Default Re: Mixer question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xero Talent View Post
I picked up a Tascam-1800.

8 XLR imputs + 8 1/4 channels (16 total), and you can record direct to your DAW, which records each mic as a separate track. This is the way to go if you're looking to record your drums.

Much better than a mixer ( which you can only record stereo)
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllTheCoolNamesAreTaken View Post
Yeah (re: the Tascam) while browsing MF I was wondering if it was smarter to get a multi-track recorder or a mixer. I'm looking at the recorders now ... I notice the Tascam is USB/Midi, is the USB interface fast enough? And does the USB interface send separate channels to your computer/DAW, or is that only possible with Firewire?
I also have the TASCAM 1800 and it allows me to mic my entire kit, and has phantom power for my 2 condenser overheads. It uses USB not FireWire and my 10 year old computer has no latency issues running this unit into Reaper to record the tracks with the ASIO codecs. I have had no issues with it at all, and my sons both plug into it with their guitars and jam with dad using headphones.
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Old 09-18-2012, 12:06 AM
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Default Re: Mixer question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Embalmer View Post
I also have the TASCAM 1800 and it allows me to mic my entire kit, and has phantom power for my 2 condenser overheads. It uses USB not FireWire and my 10 year old computer has no latency issues running this unit into Reaper to record the tracks with the ASIO codecs. I have had no issues with it at all, and my sons both plug into it with their guitars and jam with dad using headphones.
Same. I literally have the same setup (10 year old laptop, Tascam 1800, 9 mics on the drums, 2 guitar tracks, bass plus percussion, and also using Reaper).

No lag, works flawlessly. Best non-drum purchase.
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  #9  
Old 09-18-2012, 12:57 AM
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Default Re: Mixer question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xero Talent View Post

Much better than a mixer ( which you can only record stereo)
That all depends on the mixer.

Dennis
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  #10  
Old 09-18-2012, 01:32 AM
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Default Re: Mixer question

I like using my mixer but I work differently. I can do 8-tracks simultaneously but I'm going into my Zoom R16 instead. Then I can take those tracks (I can do up to 16 in the Zoom), and then dump them into my Mac using either GarageBand or Studio Logic for further tweaking and mastering. This saves me from having to transport a computer with me if I want to do a live recording, and the mic pre's in the Mackie can handle much more than the mic pre's in an interface since that's what the Mackie is designed for. I had the FirePod years ago and just couldn't get into working straight into the computer, especially if I was doing live demo recordings of an entire band. People do great work with an interface and a laptop, I just couldn't. I'm too old skool ;)
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  #11  
Old 10-17-2012, 09:08 AM
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canada_rokzz canada_rokzz is offline
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Default Re: Mixer question

This can turn into a spendy habit really quick. I got a 16 channel board and two 8 channel recording interfaces.

We use the interfaces (Presonus Firestudio Projects into CuBase 4LE) to record the whole band at once. 7 drum mics, 2 guitars, bass, and 4 vocals and we still have room for keys, harp, whatever...

Then for live situations I have a Allen & Heath MixWiz3 16:2. Nearly the same spread for channels. 5 Drum (no overheads, the cymbals bleed into the tom mics, so I just roll on a little highs and it sounds good out front), 2 electric guitars, one acoustic, 1 bass and 4 vocals.

To record a live show I would use the direct outs on the A&H into the Firestudios, but I have yet to try this. I am still buying outboard gear, and a 16 channel TRS to TRS snake has not made it onto my shopping list. It is getting closer.

I recorded a jam like that once, and just run 4 vocals from a Mackie 1402 VLZ3 I had and it worked OK, but I didn't care for the sound of the Mackie mic preamp's.
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  #12  
Old 10-17-2012, 09:10 AM
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canada_rokzz canada_rokzz is offline
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Default Re: Mixer question

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Allen---...86-i1153551.gc
http://www.guitarcenter.com/PreSonus...08-i1371793.gc

And don't cheap out on cables either. The connectors and solder joints on cheap cables will keep you chasing problems.
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  #13  
Old 10-24-2012, 04:11 AM
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Default Re: Mixer question

I have a tascam 1800 but found that the headphone amp in it was horrible so I connected my 20 year old fostex 812 mixer to it so that I could monitor (basically using it as a headphone amp).

I recently discovered that with Mackie mixers you can use the insert jacks as a direct out which sends the pre-fader signal to the tascam 1800. With this setup I can use a Mackie to EQ and add effects to my monitored signal (using outboard processors) before sending it to the tascam.

If you're considering a mixer, the Mackie 1402 VLZ3 or 1202 are solid, fantastic sounding boards and can't be beat for the price ($250-400 new respectively).
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