After listening to various recordings made with this, and looking back fondly at recordings done on ADAT's with mackie boards, I just couldn't take it anymore.
Despite having an Apogee Ensemble, I bought this. I wanted to be more analog. I have outboard gear and I wanted to use it in real time.
This board is built well, and sounds great.
I could not be happier. It has exceeded my expectations.
I had some routing questions and called the tech support line, and within two minutes I'm talking to someone who is very helpful.
I got an Alesis microverb II, and put it on the Aux send on a vocal- Fecking breath taking.
I know this sounds like heresy coming from someone with good waves plugins, and Apogee Ensemble, etc..
ANALOG is what tickles me jumby's.
This board is so well thought out and useful, I can't believe it. The pre's are surprisingly good, and listening to my reference CD's is close to my Apogee.
I can't say enough good things about this. 16 inserts, 16 line ins
The EQ's alone are great-
I love listening, and not looking. Small EQ adjustments work well.
So I owned the non interface or ad/da version.
This mixer was touted as being a big step up from previous mackie gear , and for me was not! Now dont get me wrong it is a cool little mixer and worth the asking price, and summing through this can.give you a potentially more emotional and vibey sound then a sterile mix bus in a daw.
I recall that when came out people were calling it the first chinese mackie that previously they had been made here in washington state.
Well I dont know, maybe someone could clarify.
I think mackie is still a king of value.
You can get amazing results with this mixer
and for what it costs hard to beat.
My feeling is that if you learn a console and its sound and learn how to lean into it properly its like learning speakers.
Talent will always be king, and mackie definitely up'd the bar for anyone without.a big budget.
Now I love boutique hand made gear and the nuance and elegance of sound it can provide, but mackies stuff is still a great bang for the buck and a skilled and talented engineer could make great stuff on it.
I've had one of these for a while. It's a great little board. I'm working in a small university town with a lot of the typical indie scene bands that go along with that, and this console with a good laptop means that I'm able to pop into a venue, mix the show for the venue, and record a product that will be able to be mixed to make a sellable album. I started out the 1620i, and while I liked what it offered, it just wasn't enough. The preamps on this are really good for the price, and the perkins eqs are a nice addition. As for the previous comment about Chinese Mackie's, I'm not really sure what is meant by that either, all the information that came with my console made it seem as though it was made in the US.
The Mackie 1640i is a really cool piece of gear. For less than $1200 new, you get a board that has incredible versatility for live sound and home studio applications.
For example, a few months ago I was setting up live sound at a basement show for a national touring band (could have recorded it through the 1640i as well, but didn't). Right before the show the tape in their tape echo (big part of their sound) went out and there was no time and nowhere to get a new tape. No worries. Plug in the laptop, open up Logic, dial up a tape echo plug-in, and feed it into the aux on the board for live real-time effects. Awesome. Two weeks later, I was recording a live, full band using all 16-channels into Logic with no setup problems, glitches, etc. Just a solid interface.
For someone that does a mix of live recording, live sound, and home studio work, this thing is an incredible value that can't be beat. And even if you only use it for one of these purposes, it's a great, solid piece of gear which you can't beat for the price.
I used an 'old' Mackie 1640i for some time.
Never had a problem with it and the sound quality was excellent.
Recently I bought a second 1640i, but unfortunately they changed the firewire board in the meantime, so I could not daisy chain the two mixers to get 32 inputs. I had to change the firewire board in my 'old' 1640i to get this working.
I did the modification myself, it was an easy job and nothing could go wrong. (All connectors only fit one way.)
After the modification I am able to record and playback 32 channels/tracks simultaneously, without any problems together with my 8-core 3.4 GHz PC running Reaper.
The only strange thing is that what I get back from my DAW, is ca. 5 dB lower than what I have sent to my PC during recording. Of course it is possible to boost the levels in Reaper, but one would expect that with the output levels at 0 dB, you get out what you put in!
I have contacted Mackie about this (they are very helpful!), and they admit that there is a certain level drop. An 'advantage' may be that you have some extra headroom during recording...
The 1640i is a very well thought design, good EQ and lots of facilities.
I an a happy user, highly recommended!