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C24 and ICON, what's the major difference Control Surfaces
Old 12th September 2011
  #1
Gear Nut
 

C24 and ICON, what's the major difference

I'm looking into getting a controller and would like to know if anyone here has used both and what the major differences are between the 2 (besides the Icon being more expensive)
Old 12th September 2011
  #2
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LeMauce's Avatar
Work with bought. Have the c24 @ home and icon @ the studio.
Well the intergation of send/outputs and the plugins are way more "quickly" to acces. The faders feel to me the same. The monitor section is "beter" and have more cue output possibilities.
But one's your learn to work on a c24 (take a month of learning) its a great tool and I stoped working looking @ the screen and touching my mouse when mixing.
BTW be prepared for some cable "mess" when you want to fully use those controllers.

I would go for a C24 with a Argosy desk and some nice outboard stuff for hybrid mixing then a Icon...
Old 12th September 2011
  #3
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Joram's Avatar
 

It's obvious to me...

Avid | C|24
and
Avid | ICON

I wouldn't buy a 16-channel Icon because I think one of the advantages of having a big board is overview during recording and mixing (larger projects). Working with an Icon almost everyday I can tell you that (after a day or 2 practice) the workflow is comparable with a major analogue desk.
The C24 is more of a hybrid desk, with 16 channels analog in and more than enough channels for mixing. So better fit for lower budget project studio's or people who like to use their computermouse more often.

So for a more pro approach: go for the Icon. If you have could be happy with a much cheaper C24 go for that.
Old 12th September 2011
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeMauce View Post
The faders feel to me the same.
I am pretty certain they're not...

I had a C24 and a Dcommand in my shop for about a week before buying the latter. I tried REALLY hard to prefer the C24, but to me the differences were not subtle. A few distinctions:

1. The dedicated EQ and DYN sections on the icon desks make mixing an entirely different experience than with a C24. Once you enjoy having most of your plugins mapped to these encoders, it's hard to imagine not having that luxury.

2. The monitor section of the C24 sounds like crap IMO. (not that you have to use it though...)

3. The extra row of rotary encoders (5 extra on the D-control) are a big plus, especially when setting up multiple cue mixes.

4. This one is subjective for sure, but ergonomically and build quality wise, the ICON series is a big step up. C24 feels more "plasticky" for lack of a better term and the layout does not seem as intuitive. Working on a C24 would have me doing far more mousing.

5. You can get a used 24 fader D-command for about the same price as a new C24.
Old 12th September 2011
  #5
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LeMauce's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by zakco View Post
I am pretty certain they're not...

I had a C24 and a Dcommand in my shop for about a week before buying the latter. I tried REALLY hard to prefer the C24, but to me the differences were not subtle. A few distinctions:

1. The dedicated EQ and DYN sections on the icon desks make mixing an entirely different experience than with a C24. Once you enjoy having most of your plugins mapped to these encoders, it's hard to imagine not having that luxury.

2. The monitor section of the C24 sounds like crap IMO. (not that you have to use it though...)

3. The extra row of rotary encoders (5 extra on the D-control) are a big plus, especially when setting up multiple cue mixes.

4. This one is subjective for sure, but ergonomically and build quality wise, the ICON series is a big step up. C24 feels more "plasticky" for lack of a better term and the layout does not seem as intuitive. Working on a C24 would have me doing far more mousing.

5. You can get a used 24 fader D-command for about the same price as a new C24.
For me the faders feel the same... in the sense of that it aint ever getting near the same feel as the ssl9000k faders. They just feel like decent controllers. Thats it for me.

1. +1 completely agree on this
2. It aint THAT crap... in the sense of not usable... the old control24 ok.. that was just listen to a amradio station...still I replaced it with a SPL one
3. Yup... thats a great plus. PLUS they are touch sensitive... but watch out when these breakdown... Expensive...
4. Indeed on build quality aldo the white Icon's... my god the rubberparts, the keyboard (noisy and clunky). And be prepared to clean it.
5. Well in that case... my have your phonenumber then becoz I will sell the Icon 2x the price you will find over here in Paris

But If you have the budget... Icon ES dcommand all the way.
Old 12th September 2011
  #6
Lives for gear
 

I actually found the faders quite different in regards to feel and even more-so when it came to noise. The C24 had loads of "clickety clack" and the Dcommand didn't. I agree they aren't world class, but a noticeable step up IMO.

I can imagine you are right about the built in keyboards on Dcontrol. I never considered the cleaning aspect of those. I'm a little less jealous about that feature now...

A studio in my area recently bought a 24 fader "demo stock" dcommand with full warranty for $12k. Not QUITE the same price as C24, but close enough to make the purchase a no-brainer. I agree the new prices are steep for sure. I've seen several of these go for similar prices on ebay and elsewhere in the past year. I'm talking the older blue ones by the way. Functionally they are identical to the new ones though. AFAIK, other than different faders, the changes to ES models are purely cosmetic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LeMauce View Post
For me the faders feel the same... in the sense of that it aint ever getting near the same feel as the ssl9000k faders. They just feel like decent controllers. Thats it for me.

1. +1 completely agree on this
2. It aint THAT crap... in the sense of not usable... the old control24 ok.. that was just listen to a amradio station...still I replaced it with a SPL one
3. Yup... thats a great plus. PLUS they are touch sensitive... but watch out when these breakdown... Expensive...
4. Indeed on build quality aldo the white Icon's... my god the rubberparts, the keyboard (noisy and clunky). And be prepared to clean it.
5. Well in that case... my have your phonenumber then becoz I will sell the Icon 2x the price you will find over here in Paris

But If you have the budget... Icon ES dcommand all the way.
Old 12th September 2011
  #7
Gear Nut
 

Waaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh, now you got me looking at a D-Command which is way more expensive and I'll never be happy buying a c24
Old 12th September 2011
  #8
Gear Nut
 

Is there a big upgrade from the regular D-Command to the ES?
Old 13th September 2011
  #9
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Iglesias View Post
I'll never be happy buying a c24
Maybe you will. Don't take my word for it...
Old 14th September 2011
  #10
Gear Head
 

I own both. Icon faders/build quality for me. Either way probably wont make a **** song a hit.
Old 14th September 2011
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zakco View Post
5. You can get a used 24 fader D-command for about the same price as a new C24.
Better doublecheck it - especially faders and encoders -
at this pricepoint there´s probably something wrong
Old 14th September 2011
  #12
Moderator
 
narcoman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaman View Post
Better doublecheck it - especially faders and encoders -
at this pricepoint there´s probably something wrong
One of the Dcommands here was £6k. 24 channels. NOthying wrong with it AND AVID replaced all of the faders as it was serial numbered as a "bad one".

Digital Village are lovely

Have to agree about the monitor section. The C24 is okay but XMON is Avocet level with a LOT more functionality (although no DA).
Old 14th September 2011
  #13
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BB Bill's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by narcoman View Post
One of the Dcommands here was £6k. 24 channels. NOthying wrong with it AND AVID replaced all of the faders as it was serial numbered as a "bad one".

Digital Village are lovely

Have to agree about the monitor section. The C24 is okay but XMON is Avocet level with a LOT more functionality (although no DA).
£6K for a 24 ch Dcommand is a KILLER deal!

I own a D-command, Procontrol and C24. I much prefer the D-command to the C24.
Old 14th September 2011
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaman View Post
Better doublecheck it - especially faders and encoders -
at this pricepoint there´s probably something wrong
The one that a friend bought was $12k with a full factory warranty.
Old 14th September 2011
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BB Bill View Post
I much prefer the D-command to the C24.
The C24 seems like a big 003 to me.
Old 14th September 2011
  #16
Moderator
 
narcoman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BB Bill View Post
£6K for a 24 ch Dcommand is a KILLER deal!

I own a D-command, Procontrol and C24. I much prefer the D-command to the C24.
yup. It certainly was a killer deal. KMR had a used one for £4k per module - so £8k got the whole thing. (the one I got from DV was second hand - or rather ex demo).
Old 14th September 2011
  #17
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Mind-Over-Midi's Avatar
 

Deals on a D-Command can be found, and I too like mine much better than a C24. I brought mine (24 fader, previously owned) a couple of years ago from Vintage King for $13k. It was a great deal as I'm very happy with my D-Command. I must say that unless it's a killer deal like the like the one above I'll NEVER but anything from VK again, I was treated like a stepchild from beginning to end on that deal.





Old 15th September 2011
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeMauce View Post
For me the faders feel the same... in the sense of that it aint ever getting near the same feel as the ssl9000k faders. They just feel like decent controllers. Thats it for me.
Just a head's up. As far as I know(Someone correct me if I'm wrong), the faders in the DCONTROL are the same P&G faders used in mos SSL and newer Neve consoles. The faders in the DCOMMAND are not P&G faders (I forget the manufacturer).

So if you want the "feel" of an SSL's faders, mix on a DCONTROL instead of a DCOMMAND.
Old 15th September 2011
  #19
Moderator
 
narcoman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Etch-A-Sketch View Post
Just a head's up. As far as I know(Someone correct me if I'm wrong), the faders in the DCONTROL are the same P&G faders used in mos SSL and newer Neve consoles. The faders in the DCOMMAND are not P&G faders (I forget the manufacturer).

So if you want the "feel" of an SSL's faders, mix on a DCONTROL instead of a DCOMMAND.
That's on the older ones. When the faders were replaced here they were replaced for P&G faders. Feel very solid and very responsive.
Old 12th January 2012
  #20
Gear Nut
 

I just got my C24 a week ago and I love it! Doesn't feel plastik to me. I love having faders and knobs to turn instead of just the mouse. The D-Command was just way out of my budget. But no regrets at all so far.
Old 13th January 2012
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iglesias View Post
Doesn't feel plastik to me.
Just make sure you never compare side by side with something better...
Old 13th January 2012
  #22
Gear Nut
 

Well, there's always gonna be something better no matter what you get. It's just finding the best thing for yourself within your budget...
Old 14th January 2012
  #23
Gear Nut
 

Correct me if I'm wrong, I believe the Mai difference between these is that the control is what it's called, a controller and that's it. Basically a large mouse with no audio running through the board itself. While the command has inputs and built in pres and audio actually runs through the board as well as being a controller. This seems to warrant the price difference in my mind
Old 14th January 2012
  #24
Lives for gear
 

No, that's not right. Neither has audio that runs through the board. The C24 does have sixteen microphone preamps built in, but to use them you need to connect them to an interface of some sort...they don't run "through" the board at all. And that happens to be the cheaper controller.
Old 14th January 2012
  #25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duardo View Post
No, that's not right. Neither has audio that runs through the board. The C24 does have sixteen microphone preamps built in, but to use them you need to connect them to an interface of some sort...they don't run "through" the board at all. And that happens to be the cheaper controller.
Yup. It has basically two built in Octopres right?

The preamps that get so much love round here.

Personally they ain't that bad. They are quiet, wide bandwidth, and predictable. Maybe a bit boring, maybe a little "flat".

If given the choice I would use something else though.

I like the looks of the eucon stuff.

Drbill told me to check them out....looks real nice.

j
Old 14th January 2012
  #26
Moderator
 
narcoman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terce View Post
Correct me if I'm wrong, I believe the Mai difference between these is that the control is what it's called, a controller and that's it. Basically a large mouse with no audio running through the board itself. While the command has inputs and built in pres and audio actually runs through the board as well as being a controller. This seems to warrant the price difference in my mind
No audio. You pay for the excellent routing for the monitor section and the in depth integration with PT. It also has many automation/grouping features not found in PT. There are many other subtle advantages that won't strike you until you sit behind one for a day or two. Couldn't face my job without it.

Even at full price - the level of work flow DCommand brings to PT is much cheaper than a fader automation package for a decent console.
Old 16th January 2012
  #27
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Quote:
Yup. It has basically two built in Octopres right?
That was the older Control 24...the newer C24 has preamps of Digidesign's (Avid's) own design. I guess whether they're "better" or "worse" is subjective...I've never used them on the few occasions I have used the C24, but most with whom I've spoken seem to think that they're a bit better.
Old 16th January 2012
  #28
Gear Nut
 

Yeah, the pres are good to have, but I just tried them on acoustic guitar and I did not like them at all. The sounded very flat with no airy highs. But fortunatly I don't need the pres, they are just there in case I run out, something else breaks, or for demo recordings.
But they are still nice to have.
Old 1st April 2018
  #29
Lives for gear
some info for future reference even though it's an old thread.

C|24 lacks a TON of excellent and heavily used features that the ICONs (D-Command and D-Control) have. From touch sensitive knobs for much handier encoder automation and functions, value readings, to the advanced automation/VCA spilling, Custom Faders, Custom Plug faders, custom soft keys (User menu on right) 4 pages of your most used features (for example coalesce trim and VCA automation down to group/track), better ergonomics/layout/readability (C24 has some issues with pots being in the way of LED screens), the entire dedicated EQ and COMP sections which are 1 of the stars of the show and one of the best reasons to even own any controller, XMON + monitor control section which sonically and functionally is up there with the best 'pure analog pass through' monitor controllers and is worth £2k of the used price alone), not bogged down or 'cursed' with poor preamps and bad monitoring sections like C24 and Control 24 which are a big part of the price you pay for those, while on ICON you are paying for much better 'real payoff' control, higher quality build, faders, materials etc.

Icon is all steel panels with lexan surfaces. Only plastic is on the end caps.

The faders on C24 are half the price of the D-Command (and Command's are half the price of D-Controls).

C|24 uses 'on surface' faders, by ALPS where the brush actually sits on top of the track and can drag, and wear, not as smooth. Gets dust in it etc.

D-Command uses ALPS Side layout faders, where the weight of the fader doesn't rest on anything at all, it 'floats' on two strong steel bars per fader (inside the assembly) and the brush is on the side and swipes along the track with zero pressure, less cleaning, much smoother and accurate operation.

D-Control uses P&G high quality faders, I guess similar style to D-Command but higher quality.

Blue D-Command's originally used conductive plastic faders, just means the resistive strip inside was extremely smooth and 'slippy', but overtime the tracks could wear or the contacts could (like any fader) not press on as hard. Often these can just be rejuvinated with a good clean, bend the contacts back and lube the steel bar guides, good as new, if not then you can pop in the new Carbon faders. Same physically except has a more 'raw' surface (carbon) that's less prone to getting glossy/lost contact over time. The Carbon faders are what AVID replaced some D-Commands with, not Penny and Giles (they were D-Control only UNLESS you got lucky or they messed up or you paid extra! THey cost twice as much as the ALPS).

You can mix and match carbon with plastic even though they say you shouldn't, this is likely more to do with the slightly different feel (the carbon ones being a little less slick but still much less draggy than C24/ Control 24 and cheap generic fader controllers).

As others said, ICON is amazing to work with. I think it's better than S6 in many ways still and definitely gives a 'real console' feel, you don't need the monitor on at all when mixing on ICON, nor do you need a mouse or keyboard (D-Control's keyboard would be wasted on me as you only "NEED" it for track naming or file save naming and I can easily reach over to my PC/Keyboard at a right angle to the ICON when I need to do that).

C24 is still light years ahead of the generic mackies, faderports , behringers etc with PT or other DAWS (StudioLive 3 on S1/Presonus is one of the better ones but still pales next to C24 and C24 pales next to ICON)

You can also expand D-Command to 40 faders (though 24 is great - even just 8 is great for D-Command as it's so useful and fast to work on I'd take the dedicated comp/eq/custom faders/vca spills and everything else on just an 8 fader D-Command over a 24 fader C24 or even an 80 fader S6.... ergonomically D-Command is a real sweet spot both width, depth and 'between monitors' wise.). D-Control is a beast, but I'd still use the dedicated sections more than the 4 extra per channel encoders, and you do need to stand up / reach far on a big D-control setup vs the smaller but still large enough to feel like a real console D-Command.

Vs ES?

Aside from the colour difference, made mainly so newbies could read all the text on the surface (trust me, after a month you will barely ever need to read any text on D-command, you build up muscle memory even in the dark. I often mix in the dark on it with screens off. I know what each button does by layout now. Inc advanced automation and (most of) the menu softkeys that I use most. I also prefer the lighter/blue versions a bit as they don't look as stark and never get dusty (Black ones always seem dusty?), that said, the black ones look cool, less 'happy' as some post houses said of the blue one and both work amazingly. Either is good. Don't let fader stories put you off. Very easy to service or fit new ones, not that expensive.

ES also had the updated comms board in some (if not all?) of them, which basically let you switch to another PT rig, not something many music mixers need, more for post I think so a non issue. That board can also be fitted to blues.

ES had a red tipped knob for the monitor controller, and changed the dark blue knob tops for black. Cosmetics. I like either but the blues are bargains.

XMON is great, for what it is, and gives D-Command a complete feel, even if just using it to switch between sources and sets of speakers (or headphones) and not using all its features. Xmon works with all D-Commands/Controls and automatically goes to 7.1 surround for D-Control (limited to 5.1 on D-COmmand), I don't use surround so a non issue for me anyway.

I love the gain reduction meters on the compressor section, really feels like working with hardware when you see real LEDs kicking in as you increase the input/threshold or ratio. The EQ section is a joy, full hands on eyes off mixing. I've heard many say that ICON "IS" the workstation and Pro Tools just becomes the mere engine for it, like real hardware, while most controllers inc C24 feel more like extensions of Pro Tools (where you'll still probably need a mouse nearby at all times).

ICON is a real winner and I've seen at least two top mixers who said they still prefer them to S6, due to things like space/size (proper spacing around controls, no skimping/cramped faders, not overly busy/visual like S6 etc). Sure S6 looks nice and is colourful, but ICON gives you everything you need to mix and very little distraction. That is the point of getting away from the computer screen (and horrible touchscreen mixer panels like Raven) in the first place!

And for those that haven't ever use a real console or an ICON that feels very close to a real console, you can not beat the feeling of really playing the mix, a bunch of faders at once, or encoders, or solo/mutes, often 2-5 functions at once or very quickly, it makes mixing intuitive, musical and fun. A far cry from hitting a single function at a time with a finger on your mouse. Also you WILL listen more and look less, everything feels better and sounds better vs picking away and over thinking on a screen.

Worst move on S6 was removing the dedicated EQ/Comp knobs and putting in generic encoders around an horrible touchscreen (you may as well be staring at PT itself again with a simple midi knob box in that case!). They should never have stopped making the ICON, just upgraded/improved it's small issues and made it more modern looking (though I like the spacey looks just fine).

Oh one last thing, the metering on ICON is really quite good. Enough LEDs for simple a/b level checks and general activity, and love the automation status leds between each fader. Again, on S6 they ruined that by putting the meters between the faders and the automation lights up in a less obvious area. Space saving gone mad! C|24 thankfully doesn't have its meters between faders but DOES lack the intuative/useful automation lights there in the right place! Also the faders are cramped together on C|24 vs ICON, and I'm not a fan of faders being too close together (though hardly as bad as the Faderport 8 I tried out once - haha.. that was terrible there was no 'feel' to it as you fingers were all clumped together)

Sorry if this necro thread post bump annoys anyone but may be useful for future reference as a lot of ICONS may be getting dumped on the used market after august (Official cut off of support for ES) though they should work fine for years to come (unlike Control 24 they are in a ton of pro studios and post houses so won't be cut off fast).

Famous users of ICON, they may have moved to S6 now but unlikely...

Tony Maserati
Tchad Blake
Frank Fillipetti
Butch Vig
Tony Sheppard
Val Garay
Andy Bradfield who writes...

Quote:
These days I am very happy sitting in front of the ICON and I don’t feel I have to fight the technology any more! in fact quite the reverse. This brings benefits to the mixing process I could only dream about a few years ago.
And quite a few more I see on my travels (in reality and on the net)

To those that think these are just giant mouses, by all means continue to 'mix' with a mouse and leave these beauties alone on the 2nd hand market for those that love and understand them. They are, to all intents and purposes, as close to mixing on a real console as you can get while also deeply harnessing and empowering you with everything that is so great, flexible and useful with ITB mixing. I'd honestly never take an analog console over an ICON + PT with some nice tracking hardware for the analog 'sound' (on recording). I have no console fetish, no yearning for anything other than the physical control aspect of consoles + the rapid workflow and flexibility of ICON that many "real" consoles wished they could have. It's the best situation, the absolute sweetspot for modern ITB mixing with very few drawbacks. just stick whatever great analog pres/eqs/comps/front ends you want in a rack and track/print through them via ICON for the best of all worlds. No need for 32 SSL channels when you can have many more flavours + physical control of plug-ins (that get better each day) for a lot less.

Old 2nd April 2018
  #30
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Nowak's Avatar
I absolutely LOVE my ICON.

Owned an SSL, Euphonix CS, now the ICON. It's by far the most fun to use.

Stef.
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