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Author Topic: Where will all the analog mixing consoles go?  (Read 1731 times)

James A. Griffin

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Re: Where will all the analog mixing consoles go?
« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2014, 04:48:50 pm »

Not to get all logical with you.....


We can use a little logic around here, JR.  Happy you're willing to provide as needed.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Where will all the analog mixing consoles go?
« Reply #21 on: April 01, 2014, 12:17:11 am »

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLzlfs7_lfU

Jay just doesn't look all broken hearted...

The object lesson is the use of the CAT D5G compressor.
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Ron Behro

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Re: Where will all the analog mixing consoles go?
« Reply #22 on: April 01, 2014, 02:16:35 am »

Yes, I totally agree with your comment here. It is sad to see a great console get parted out and left as an empty shell. It would be really great to see someone start an organization that could buy up older consoles and maybe donate them to worthy organizations, community groups, music schools, etc. The console could a have second lease on life.
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Ron Behro

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Re: Where will all the analog mixing consoles go?
« Reply #23 on: April 01, 2014, 02:18:32 am »

Not to get all logical with you, but keep in mind the high price of collectable old synths are to a very tiny number of people with too much money. If there was a real mass market for the old designs somebody would still be making them.

Analog mixing consoles are tragically flawed in comparison to modern digital mixers in a bang for the buck feature comparison. As the market becomes more reliant on features that are only available from digital technology that will be another nail in the analog console coffin.

This is life for any technology based product.

JR
Yes, I totally agree with your comment here. It is sad to see a great console get parted out and left as an empty shell. It would be really great to see someone start an organization that could buy up older consoles and maybe donate them to worthy organizations, community groups, music schools, etc. The console could a have second lease on life.
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Guy Graham

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Re: Where will all the analog mixing consoles go?
« Reply #24 on: April 01, 2014, 07:24:47 am »

Yes, I totally agree with your comment here. It is sad to see a great console get parted out and left as an empty shell. It would be really great to see someone start an organization that could buy up older consoles and maybe donate them to worthy organizations, community groups, music schools, etc. The console could a have second lease on life.
My experience of working with charities and similar organisations is that they will not necessarily be able to use a donated old large frame analogue console, even when one donated in good working order would be ideal to replace the existing equipment in various states of disrepair, and initially would be a nice change from the various existing consoles I find all patched together to achieve a higher channel count.

The main issue is simply maintenance and upkeep. The organisations I have worked with or volunteered at have enough problems keeping their doors open, to the point where any faulty equipment that cannot be easily fixed by a non-specialist goes unfixed as there is no budget available for repairs.

A youth project close to me that opened less than 10 years ago came close to closing recently. It cost a lot of money to start, which mostly went on a very expensive studio as well as live equipment and practice rooms fully kitted out.

Whilst there was plenty of money for the initial startup costs, the running costs (mainly bills and staff) were dependant on central government, local government and charity every year. Finally a change in government led to cuts all round and this much used and appreciated facility looked set to close, eventually getting a last minute reprive when they rationalized running costs.

Meanwhile inside the studio is a valuable and barely used medium sized digital recording console, which is used only for its head amps going straight into Logic. Since the mixing is all done in the box now, it could be sold and replaced by a couple of ADA8000s or similar, and that would free up enough money to fix and replace all the broken kit used for live events and practice rooms. However they are not allowed to utilize assets like this, even when it would produce a significant benefit to the whole place. I have encountered similarly restrictive rules elsewhere.

I could imagine other places with less technically knowledgeable staff accepting a donated large analogue console, not realising the potential upkeep requirements. Eventually the donated item would live in its flight case and serve as a desktop for the working equipment owned and brought along by a volunteer like me.

I'm sure there are some circumstances where your idea would work properly, but my experience of working with worthy organisations is that they cannot afford to fix broken equipment they already own, and that they struggle to afford the required PAT testing each year that's needed to use any electrical kit in public buildings.
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Doug Johnson

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Re: Where will all the analog mixing consoles go?
« Reply #25 on: April 01, 2014, 09:14:46 am »

While analogue consoles may continue to live on in small frames for awhile yet, I think their fate is sealed.  As the price of small format digital mixers continues to drop and as younger people who aren't biased against the technology move into the market place, small analogue will disappear.  The days of large frame analogue consoles are pretty much over except for the smaller/medium sized installs which choose to purchase used consoles of a quality that they could never have afforded in the past, and the few regionals that choose to keep one around either, just in case someone comes through who has the clout to insist on one or because the boss would rather see his Heritage rot in the case rather then sell it off at a basement price.  As far as back-ups, in the past it was common to carry a back-up analogue 32 channel Mackie, Venice, A-H in the truck.   Carrying analogue back-up no longer makes sense in a digital world.  Since so much processing is in the console now, to carry and analogue back up would also require carrying processor and EQ racks, and possibly a copper snake and take lots of extra time to re-patch.  Likewise, I don't think that anyone is going to stick a 6 to 8 foot long, 300 to 800 pound large frame console in the nose of the truck, "just in case".  I see this as the "pro-market" niche for an X-32 or the like.
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