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Thunderbolt Audio Interface As A Mixer
Old 10th September 2019
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Thunderbolt Audio Interface As A Mixer

I'm looking to reduce my studio to as few pieces of gear as possible. I'm looking purchase and use a (thunderbolt 3) audio interface as both a mixer and playback device. I have a few devices such as old school hardware samplers that I would like to connect up to such a device but don't want to record straight off to disc/DAW. So basically I'd like to use the interface as a mixer for analog gear as well as record/playback audio simultaneously.


I'm looking for a device with at least 12 inputs - so far I've looked into the Antelope Orion, however I'm struggling to get any information regarding what I'm looking to do as I don't even know if it's possible.

Any help or suggestions would be most welcome.
Old 10th September 2019
  #2
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadowalka View Post
So basically I'd like to use the interface as a mixer for analog gear as well as record/playback audio simultaneously.
You can, but you will need to use the devices software for routing and mixing.
Old 10th September 2019
  #3
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microwave's Avatar
I still have a hardware mixer but I often use my audio interface in the same way. Metric Halo ULN-8 3D with Audient ASP 880 and Universal Audio 4-710D. 24 inputs, irrelevant latency, great dsp effects on every channel and of course total recall. On a smaller budget something like the Audient ID44 with an ASP 800 would give you 12 inputs - you wouldn’t get the huge flexibility and dsp effects of the MH Mio console software but it would still be a very nice setup, the Audient software console works very well.
Old 10th September 2019
  #4
Here for the gear
 

Thanks, guys....trying to get my head around the tech. Is it best to read all the tech specs of the various manufacturers in order to get grip on what each is capable of?

Anyway thanks Microwave, you've given me some ideas I can investigate.
Old 11th September 2019
  #5
Gear Addict
 

Get one of the newer MOTU thunderbolt boxes. You can set up various routings and control them with a phone or tablet, with no computer. 16A (which I have) has 16 inputs and outputs, all line, no preamps. There are several different configurations (different channel counts, preamps, etc) and they’re all highly versatile and flexible in what they can do, sound great and the price point is below anything else remotely comparable in quality/features.

I also own both the Audient asp boxes mentioned above but I would say they are not as versatile. They are primarily preamps with minimal routing options and I wouldn’t think to use them as a mixer. (They don’t have thunderbolt capability either.)
Old 12th September 2019
  #6
Quote:
I'm looking purchase and use a (thunderbolt 3) audio interface as both a mixer and playback device.
Most , if not all audio interfaces today act like a mixer and playback device. Its redundant to have an audio interface and a mixer in my opinion, as long as your audio interface gives you all the ins and outs you need.
Old 13th September 2019
  #7
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by CJ Mastering View Post
Most , if not all audio interfaces today act like a mixer and playback device. Its redundant to have an audio interface and a mixer in my opinion, as long as your audio interface gives you all the ins and outs you need.
But what if you use one for analog summing? Would it still be redundant?
Old 13th September 2019
  #8
Quote:
ut what if you use one for analog summing? Would it still be redundant?
Yes, its still redundant in my opinion. you can use the ins and outs of your audio interface to route your audio to any summing hardware, like the Solid State Logic Fusion.

If you have it in your mind that you want to sum your audio through any average analog mixer in the $200 to $1000 range, your wasting your time in my opinion. You can do way better in the box with plugins. A lot of new people get caught up in this 'analog' sound. Just record the sounds that are close to what you want.

If digital was before analog, and analog was the new technology, everyone would be after that 'Digital' sound.
Old 13th September 2019
  #9
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by CJ Mastering View Post
Yes, its still redundant in my opinion. you can use the ins and outs of your audio interface to route your audio to any summing hardware, like the Solid State Logic Fusion.

If you have it in your mind that you want to sum your audio through any average analog mixer in the $200 to $1000 range, your wasting your time in my opinion. You can do way better in the box with plugins. A lot of new people get caught up in this 'analog' sound. Just record the sounds that are close to what you want.

If digital was before analog, and analog was the new technology, everyone would be after that 'Digital' sound.
I see your point but for me my console serves multiple purposes. I really like the sound of my consoles mic pres, I do use outboard too. I also extensively use the master section of my board. If I want to mix itb I can and just use the board as a glorified monitor station. But I can also mix otb fully or sum only through it.

For me having more hands on control over things just feels better. Also I feel like routing is easier amd in some cases faster. If I am recording a band live and want to do multiple headphone mixes ita way faster for me to pull em up on the board as opposed to itb. So redundant by your standards yes but it still serves a functional purpose for me and my workflow so I would not consider it redundant for that reason.
Old 13th September 2019
  #10
Quote:
I'm looking to reduce my studio to as few pieces of gear as possible.
This is from the OP. For him, having an audio interface and a mixer is redundant, because his interface can act as a mixer as well
Old 13th September 2019
  #11
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by CJ Mastering View Post
This is from the OP. For him, having an audio interface and a mixer is redundant, because his interface can act as a mixer as well
Well yes in his case I get that. I was really talking to you because I completely disagree that it is a redundant piece of gear. But hey there is always more than one way to skin a cat.
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