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Author Topic: Reliability of smaller digital mixers  (Read 11276 times)

duane massey

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Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« on: December 26, 2017, 10:48:51 am »

I will be investing in a small (16ch) digital board early 2018. Personal use, not for rentals. Any specific brands/models to avoid based on reliability issues? Features are not that critical, as this will be used mostly from stage with few adjustments during the night.
Thanks.
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Duane Massey
Technician, musician, stubborn old guy
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Scott Bolt

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2017, 10:59:33 am »

I will be investing in a small (16ch) digital board early 2018. Personal use, not for rentals. Any specific brands/models to avoid based on reliability issues? Features are not that critical, as this will be used mostly from stage with few adjustments during the night.
Thanks.
If running from stage is your primary use case, I would recommend a rack unit with a tablet as your control surface.  I do this with my band and find that having the tablet on my mic stand with full metering present at all times has been a God-Send in making quick tweaks a few times a night.

My two favorites for this purpose would be the X32 Rack and Soundcraft Ui 24.

I would check out the features and UI on each and make your decision based on that.  Rumor has it that the Soundcraft has a slight advantage in sound quality while the X32 Rack has more features and expand ability.

The Soundcraft hasn't been out as long as the X32 Rack, but I would gauge both to be quite durable.  My X32 Rack has been rock solid for many years.
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Steve Crump

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2017, 12:57:47 pm »

I will be investing in a small (16ch) digital board early 2018. Personal use, not for rentals. Any specific brands/models to avoid based on reliability issues? Features are not that critical, as this will be used mostly from stage with few adjustments during the night.
Thanks.


Haven't really read that many reliability issues with the standard gigging digital mixers, QSC, QU, X32, Midas M, etc. I use the QU PAC, QU-16, QSC Touchmix, and a Midas M series and have had no serious issues with any of these. Which really surprises me considering the price range and features of these mixers. I have a friend who uses the Mackie Rack and he really likes it also. Of course anything can be abused into failure. If you do consider rack, look at QU PAC, I like having the touch screen as opposed to no surface at all, just personal preference. 
« Last Edit: December 26, 2017, 01:00:05 pm by Steve Crump »
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Keith Broughton

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2017, 01:59:40 pm »

I will be investing in a small (16ch) digital board early 2018. Personal use, not for rentals. Any specific brands/models to avoid based on reliability issues? Features are not that critical, as this will be used mostly from stage with few adjustments during the night.
Thanks.
My "go to" 16 ch is an A&H QU16.
No problems for 3 years and works well with iPad remote.
Also used the X32 Compact but like the QU (for corporate) as it has 16chs of auto mix.
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Luke Geis

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2017, 03:48:37 pm »

I had and still have an X32R that has been bullet proof for as long as I have used them. I bought one unit 5 years ago and it never once hiccuped, I sold it to a venue and bought another to replace it and they are still rocking and rolling. Love the X32R needless to say.

I have not seen any failures from any other units in the wild that was indicative of a specific issue with that model. Most seem to lose power supplies, or have fader issues as would be expected from years of use. The beauty of a rack mounted unit that does not have a control surface ( such as the X32R ) is that there is no moving parts, it is nothing more than a box with inputs and outputs. This makes it very difficult for it to fail. The only two things can go wrong that will effect performance is for the power supply to fail, or for the software to crash.
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Don T. Williams

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2017, 04:22:22 pm »

I have used and sold QSC Touch Mix 16's (and Mackie, Midas, PreSonus, and Behringer digital mixers of all sizes).  With the exception of earlier PreSonus in units, all have been surprisingly reliable, more so than equal analog consoles IMO. 

I bring attention to the QSC TM16 because of one customer caused issue.  If you unplug the external PSU from the mixer while it is live and WITHOUT using the power down sequence, you may get a mixer failure.  As always, QSC service is very fast and outstanding.  This doesn't happen if you accidently unplug the PSU from the wall, only the 6 pin connector from PSU into the back of the mixer.

Earlier Presonus mixers have had more problems that average, but the latter units have held up well.
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Thomas Le

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2017, 06:00:16 pm »

From what I read, the UI series has noisy preamps and the TM has too many quirks to be usable (like Don stated above) in addition to being slooow.
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Mac Kerr

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #7 on: December 26, 2017, 06:05:59 pm »

From what I read, the UI series has noisy preamps and the TM has too many quirks to be usable (like Don stated above) in addition to being slooow.

What has your experience been?

Mac
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William Schnake

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #8 on: December 26, 2017, 06:23:47 pm »

I will be investing in a small (16ch) digital board early 2018. Personal use, not for rentals. Any specific brands/models to avoid based on reliability issues? Features are not that critical, as this will be used mostly from stage with few adjustments during the night.
Thanks.
Duane, we purchase the X32r about 4 years ago and have never had a problem.  We use it for  Corporate meetings and small shows.  It goes out 30 times or so a year and always works. We use both an iPad Mini and a Samsung tablet with no problems with either.

Bill
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Douglas R. Allen

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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #9 on: December 26, 2017, 06:27:14 pm »

I will be investing in a small (16ch) digital board early 2018. Personal use, not for rentals. Any specific brands/models to avoid based on reliability issues? Features are not that critical, as this will be used mostly from stage with few adjustments during the night.
Thanks.

I purchased a Yamaha 01v96 when they came out in 2003 and its still going strong today. ( I did replace 3 sticky faders last year but more my choice than needed ) I now have a Midas M32r with over 8 months on it. Really nice board. I hope it continues to be as reliable for 12 more years! 

What have you been using before and what basic feature set are you looking for including size/weight?

Douglas R. Allen
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Re: Reliability of smaller digital mixers
« Reply #9 on: December 26, 2017, 06:27:14 pm »


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