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Best summing mixer for a high end DAW?
Old 5th June 2008
  #121
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by _rd View Post
I love my Neve 8816. The big but is: "Total recall" should be "Total recall", not "manual recall".
I am also hopeful the next version will have fader automation.
That would be doable, using the DAW.

But we really shouldn't be complaining.
Nothing comes close in features (desktop faders, analog panning, direct outs, etc.) except possibly the tonelux, and the price difference there is major.

So, I look on the + side.
Old 5th June 2008
  #122
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eskatonic's Avatar
 

Agreed... Fader automation would be key. I am on the fence with a few of these but none of them really address everything I need. It seems as though the new breed of summing mixers are incorporating all these components (pan, inserts, aux, fader automation, tasty output tx flavor option on 2 bus). I know this sounds just like a damn console but I ain't got the space. I guess it is just a waiting game. A custom Tonelux system is exactly what I want/need/drool but the pesky price tag keeps it just out of reach.
Old 6th June 2008
  #123
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eskatonic View Post
Agreed... Fader automation would be key. I am on the fence with a few of these but none of them really address everything I need.
Everything is a trade-off.
Nothing will have everything you want, except a large format top quality console.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eskatonic View Post
It seems as though the new breed of summing mixers are incorporating all these components (pan, inserts, aux, fader automation, tasty output tx flavor option on 2 bus).
Which are you referring to?


Quote:
Originally Posted by eskatonic View Post
I know this sounds just like a damn console but I ain't got the space. I guess it is just a waiting game.
Space, cooling system, console tech, $$.
It just doesn't make sense for a home studio.
And if you don't pick the one that you can live with long term.....

Just remember, you can wait forever on the promise of the next version.............just like computers.


Quote:
Originally Posted by eskatonic View Post
A custom Tonelux system is exactly what I want/need/drool but the pesky price tag keeps it just out of reach.
Well, if a tonelux is "just out of reach", then the cost of a 8816/8804 is trivial. heh
Old 6th June 2008
  #124
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It appears to be starting with the SSL Matrix (sans the tasty output tx ) I have a feeling there will be other companies following suit (and hopefully a ton cheaper).

I am not really waiting for the newer/better/different version of anything. Just one that fits my immediate needs. The Speck Xtramix pretty much does it but no inserts. I was really interested in the Mixdream but no adjustable panning.

The Tonelux really is the way I want to go. All stars point to Tonelux.
Old 6th June 2008
  #125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eskatonic View Post
It appears to be starting with the SSL Matrix (sans the tasty output tx ) I have a feeling there will be other companies following suit (and hopefully a ton cheaper).

I am not really waiting for the newer/better/different version of anything. Just one that fits my immediate needs. The Speck Xtramix pretty much does it but no inserts. I was really interested in the Mixdream but no adjustable panning.

The Tonelux really is the way I want to go. All stars point to Tonelux.
I'd urge you to demo them and listen to them before you buy (and maybe you already have).

The 8816/8804 setup is my 3rd summing/mixer.

They are all different.
Old 6th June 2008
  #126
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davidwilson's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by stuartdixon View Post
haha

In twenty years people are gonna look back at summing boxes and laugh.

I have in the past listend to various wave files posted here and other places comparing ITB and Summing mix's and never been impressed with the outboard summing.

BUT

I did recently build a passive mixer in the vain of the Fulcrum and did a mix the other day running it into a dual Manley Pre. I only built it originaly because I was using outboard compressors which made 1 less digital conversion by summing while still in the analog domain.

OMFG ....
Words cannot describe how happy I am with this.
I am assuming it's in the way you use it.
I am so happy that I guess I WILL still be laughing in 20 years time.
Old 6th June 2008
  #127
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h4nc0's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by davidwilson View Post
I have in the past listend to various wave files posted here and other places comparing ITB and Summing mix's and never been impressed with the outboard summing.

BUT

I did recently build a passive mixer in the vain of the Fulcrum and did a mix the other day running it into a dual Manley Pre. I only built it originaly because I was using outboard compressors which made 1 less digital conversion by summing while still in the analog domain.

OMFG ....
Words cannot describe how happy I am with this.
I am assuming it's in the way you use it.
I am so happy that I guess I WILL still be laughing in 20 years time.

In what ways? How many outputs?

thx
Old 6th June 2008
  #128
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eskatonic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike H View Post
I'd urge you to demo them and listen to them before you buy (and maybe you already have).

The 8816/8804 setup is my 3rd summing/mixer.

They are all different.
8816:
No aux sends and no inserts on each line... only insert on the master and some weird "IMR" parallel processing blend feature designed for DJs. I did play around with one and thought it sounded great but I really need those features. I want to effective use my outboard gear without a crazy patchfest which can drive me bonkers when I am not in the right state of mind.
Old 6th June 2008
  #129
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by eskatonic View Post
8816:
No aux sends and no inserts on each line... only insert on the master and some weird "IMR" parallel processing blend feature designed for DJs. I did play around with one and thought it sounded great but I really need those features. I want to effective use my outboard gear without a crazy patchfest which can drive me bonkers when I am not in the right state of mind.
Just depends on how you want to work.

My patchbays work just fine for me.
I have lots of outboard gear, so I need patchbays for routing, regardless of the console/mixer/summer I use.

I simply have converters and Ins/Outs for all my gear on the patchbays, for routing tracks prior to going to the 8816's.

Then, I use the Direct Outs (i.e., sends) from the 8804's to go to reverbs/delays/effects.

And I have three 8816's, so I have 48 inputs.
That is adequate for what I do.

As I said earlier, the shortcomings of my setup versus (certain) consoles are:
(1) No automation on individual tracks AFTER outboard processing
(2) No built-in way to merge tracks/subs, and then further process.

Enough of a problem to force me to buy (and maintain and cool) a high end console?
No.

With your list of must-haves, you need a top quality console.
I'd suggest you consult with thethrillfactor.
I've found him to be a super resource regarding consoles, mixers, etc.

Many choices, just a matter of prioritizing needs.................and $$.
Old 24th June 2008
  #130
Gear Maniac
 
eskatonic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Lewis View Post
However, I envy the Neve box because it has all 16 channels with Pans, whereas the SPL has only 8 pairs of stereo outs, 1-6 can be switched to center Mono. This means if i want to pan something off center, and insert a single channel outboard EQ, i cant do it. On the NEVE i could. So, because the SPL has cascade ability, i bought an API 8200A (standalone 8 mono channel summing, rotary faders and pans), and i run an extra 8 outputs into the API then into the cascade input of the SPL, giving me 24 channels of analog summing, a nice convenience. Now i can use panned mono channels if i want.
I am not sure if Ken is available to answer this question but if anyone who has or has used the mixdream, here it goes:

Ken mentioned the lack of panning and using the API into the cascade input into the Mixdream. Couldn't someone simply bus their panned tracks to stereo stems in the DAW and send that to Mixdream's stereo inputs? I see the problem with off centered but not hard panned individual tracks requiring inserted external processing. I guess that could be handled with an extra set of DA/AD to get it back into the DAW before apply the pan and sending it back to the MixDream in a stereo stem of some sort. I have heard the Mixdream, like it, but want to be sure I can make it work before going down that road. I really want a small Tonelux rig but I just can't justify the price required for a simple signal routing configuration.
Old 24th June 2008
  #131
Gear Head
 

Maybe im crazy... but i had a mixdream here at the studio for about 4 months about two years ago...

I thought it was the BIGGEST waste of money in history. Id have more fun lighting $3500 bucks on fire and then pissing on it to put it out. I heard no difference in depth or width between that and the HD summing and i thought the stereo widener effect was a joke. I also personally dont feel like it felt to well built either, but hey, to each his own. I just cant justify why anyone would want to buy this box.

Now the chandler mini rack mixer... i cant even describe how incredibly different and to my ears how much better this box sounds than the SPL. Huge bottom end, sweet highs more present and aggressive midrange and an overall glue that just makes everything great.

Im eager to hear the shadow hills and neve, im sure they are both great.

As you can see, im not into clean summing at all, i def prefer colored boxes.
Old 24th June 2008
  #132
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by axeman720 View Post
Now the chandler mini rack mixer...

As you can see, im not into clean summing at all, i def prefer colored boxes.
Definitely the most colored summer/mixer I've tested...............thanks to the individual transformers on each channel.

Too much color for me...............but if you love really heavy coloration, this is the box.
Old 24th June 2008
  #133
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidwilson View Post
I have in the past listend to various wave files posted here and other places comparing ITB and Summing mix's and never been impressed with the outboard summing.

BUT

I did recently build a passive mixer in the vain of the Fulcrum and did a mix the other day running it into a dual Manley Pre. I only built it originaly because I was using outboard compressors which made 1 less digital conversion by summing while still in the analog domain.

OMFG ....
Words cannot describe how happy I am with this.
I am assuming it's in the way you use it.
I am so happy that I guess I WILL still be laughing in 20 years time.
was it the summing or the fact that u ran it thru the manley pre's?
Old 24th June 2008
  #134
Equinox

another thumbsup for the Equinox.

I wont go through all of its features in detail as you can find it elsewhere here on GS.

But if you can live without separate volume and panning for each channel, just consider what you are getting:

2 top of the line preamps with three different sound options
32 channel summing with three different sound options
a great master section with;
4 stereo speaker outputs, talkback, 2 Tr in etc
and most importantly, a great sound with huge headroom

if you are into getting a summing box you should at least give this baby a chance.
I don´t think you will be disappointed.
Old 10th January 2009
  #135
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DanRock101's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike H View Post
Be that as it may...............

If you
(1) Use a DAW for tracking/editing/storing
(2) Process essentially 100% OTB
(3) Are in a home studio situation where you will never buy a console,
then a summer/mixer makes all the sense in the world.

I go out of the DAW with 16 basic tracks. After outboard processing, I send direct outs from the main summing unit to outboard effects. I end up summing up to 48 tracks (including effects). Then I outboard process the mix and I usually go to tape before finally going back into the DAW.

The summing units allow me to stay OTB throughout the processing until the final step.

And BTW, I happen to like the sound I get.

So, I'm not sure what a conversation 20 years from now has to do with what gear works for me today. If you don't like summing units, don't use 'em, no problem. But for some of us, they are a blessing.
Old 10th January 2009
  #136
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ulysses's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by eskatonic View Post
8816:
No aux sends and no inserts on each line...
Now I'm starting to wonder. Should companies start putting inserts after their line inputs just to satisfy those users who fail to grasp how utterly unnecessary and silly that is?

This is exactly the same as walking up to the last person in line and asking if you can cut behind them.
Old 10th January 2009
  #137
Quote:
Originally Posted by ulysses View Post
Now I'm starting to wonder. Should companies start putting inserts after their line inputs just to satisfy those users who fail to grasp how utterly unnecessary and silly that is?
I completely understand your point.

For me, an ideal channel strip would have dual inputs (for mic and line inputs) and dual outputs (for monitor and record). You would have an insert point where you can choose which input goes to the insert and outputs.

I would like to see something like this as an independent unit then it could be in conjunction with any of the summing units that are already available.
Old 10th January 2009
  #138
Gear Addict
 
Bob Amirian's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by thethrillfactor View Post
If it doesn't sound like this before it hits your summing mixer you are in for a big disappointment.
thumbsup EXACTLY!!!

I use Neve 8816 here and it doesn't have a button called "mix doctor", "Bob Clearmountain mix ", "Trevor Horn mix" nor "mix improvement circuit".

And trust me, I searched the whole faceplate and manual looking for at least one of these buttons

There's nothing like a good, carefully drawn mix before you feed it to a summing box.

Summing box doesn't work miracles.

It's just as if you took hundred small fragments of china, formed them into something resembling a mug and poured some glue on it. It won't become a Trevor Horn's mug

In fact I really doubt that spending so much money on a summing box is a clever decision.

I'd rather spend it for things like TC Powercore 6000 and UAD-2 Quad Nevana.

Just for the usefullness sake.
Old 10th January 2009
  #139
Gear Maniac
 
Guidotoons's Avatar
 

API DSM.

Love it. Sounds fat and punchy and contemporary.

Guido
Old 10th January 2009
  #140
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DanRock101's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike H View Post
Sounds like you are familiar with the setup you have, so it is easier not to change it. I can understand that.

But, IMHO, you really need to be using patchbays to handle your outboard gear, if you are using a summing unit.

You usually won't have a single outboard unit on a track. You'll probably have both a compressor and an EQ on many tracks. You certainly don't want to go out-and-back through converters for the compressor, then go out-and-back again for the EQ. There is definitely some degradation each time you make a conversion pass.

The best arrangement is to send your tracks out to the patchbays through the DAC's (you only need to have enough DAC's to match the max number of tracks you use), then patch to outboard gear. The outboard gear would be connected back to the patchbays, where they are half-normalled (or patched) to the summing unit(s).

You also have to consider how you will send to reverbs/delays/effects.
The advantage of the 8816/8804 combination is that the Direct Outs from the 8804 can be connected back to the patchbays and then patched to reverbs/delays/effects. This puts the effects downstream of the processing units. Without Direct Outs, you would need to (a) half-normal from outboard gear to summing unit and (b) mult to effects at the patchbays. Direct Outs are simpler, and don't interfere with patching through the outboard gear.

I'll be happy to email you a copy of my patchbay layout, if that would help. My patchbay setup is pretty large because I have lots of outboard gear, but it demonstrates the basic concepts. PM me.

I go through DAC's only once, outboard process, sum, go to tape (usually), then go through ADC's only once with the stereo mix. I have 32 DAC's and one pair of ADC's. Having only one pair of ADC's enables me to afford a high quality pair of ADC's (Lavry Gold) so I maintain the quality of the mix I hear on the monitors.

If I used the DAW for "patching" and had no patchbays at all, I'd need probably three times as many DAC's and the same number of ADC's...........completely out of the question.

I understand life is simpler using the DAW if you aren't accustomed to using patchbays. But patchbays are pretty easy to use. And if you are going to/from most outboard gear in analog (rather than digital), using your DAW as your console/patchbay will mean a lot of conversion steps for a complex setup. But yes, it can be done.
thumbsup
Old 10th November 2009
  #141
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tapehiss's Avatar
hhhmmmmm, summing.


some good units i think i might like to try:

nicerizer 8
ssl x desk
sumthang
d-box
Old 21st April 2011
  #142
Gear Nut
 

If you will allow me to distil the question... can I uses a fulcrom out of my PT9 003 and use my A-Pacifica pres? This sounds like a killer solution.Anyone doing it?
Old 14th August 2013
  #143
Here for the gear
 

spl mix dream gives superb saperation and depth to my mixes
Old 14th August 2013
  #144
Quote:
Originally Posted by over-man View Post
That does sound harsh, though I've never heard it. Is the Folcrom really that bad? Right now I don't have two channels worth sending a mix through, but I've been looking at either the Folcrom + pre or the x.sum
The Roll RMS216 Passive Summing Mixer is a great piece of gear,
It is VERY popular with clients,
Old 19th April 2015
  #145
SEA
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SEA's Avatar
 

Here's a thought ;-)

What about having 2 Mytek 8X192 for 16 ADC/DAC Mastering grade converters PLUS a 16 channels of a modern Neve type summing?

Then you would have a killer set up for less $$$

SEA
Old 3rd March 2018
  #146
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danworks's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tdoranpalmer View Post
Audient Sumo, only 8 channel though.
8 stereo channels with the option of mono 1-2, 3-4 plus a compressor-limiter at the end of the chain.
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