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Analog Mixer: Worth it? Spatial Processor Plugins
Old 3rd May 2018
  #1
Gear Head
 

Analog Mixer: Worth it?

Hey slutz.

So I've been on the fence about getting a mixer. As of right now, I'm 100% ITB using Pro Tools 12 and the Apollo Twin. I use mainly UAD and Slate plugins, but I was thinking of running my tracks through the mixer, picking up some analog taste, then sending the tracks back into the box.

Here's some of my mixing. Feedback would be appreciated!

Mixes - Google Drive

Basically, I'm stuck between 3 options:

Mix ITB, send channels to the mixer, then back to the box.
Send channels to the mixer, back to box, mix ITB
Not get a mixer at all

Also, I'm currently building an SSL 2Bus compressor, so maybe that'll get the sound I'm looking for?

Any input is extremely appreciated. Thanks guys.
Old 3rd May 2018
  #2
If the mixer has quality EQs and direct outs then I would say it is very much worth it. I would put quality outboard processing (eqs comps) as a priority, used in a hybrid situation, before getting a console strictly for summing purposes (if you have a DAW).
Old 3rd May 2018
  #3
Lives for gear
 
zvukofor's Avatar
Problem is all modern consoles are as clean as possible, so using them in hybrid setup without any outboard just gives you some more noise and one AD-DA loop, that's all. Low noise levels indeed can make you experience of "more detail" or "wider soundstage", due to psychoacoustics effects of random noise, but this can be acheved ITB easily.

Good idea is to get a console which has musically useful EQs and has some musically nice distortions when pushed a little. They're either expensive (API, Aurora...), or old ones that needs maintanance.

Working with live music i like to use old consoles, but it is really hard to find one that sounds good clipping peaks on, say, drums and percussion. Maybe it is even better to find a multichannel device for soft-clipping. But again - you can make it ITB.
Old 3rd May 2018
  #4
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 88Keys444 View Post
Hey slutz.

So I've been on the fence about getting a mixer. As of right now, I'm 100% ITB using Pro Tools 12 and the Apollo Twin. I use mainly UAD and Slate plugins, but I was thinking of running my tracks through the mixer, picking up some analog taste, then sending the tracks back into the box.

Here's some of my mixing. Feedback would be appreciated!

Mixes - Google Drive

Basically, I'm stuck between 3 options:

Mix ITB, send channels to the mixer, then back to the box.
Send channels to the mixer, back to box, mix ITB
Not get a mixer at all

Also, I'm currently building an SSL 2Bus compressor, so maybe that'll get the sound I'm looking for?

Any input is extremely appreciated. Thanks guys.
I think your mixes sound pretty good, nice job.

Instead of a mixer, maybe look at building a vocal chain with some quality outboard: look at a better mic, LA2A style compressor, EQ, preamp, etc.

It sounds like you're mostly in the box as far as instrumentation goes, so I don't know how much a mixer is going to add. Summing is very subtle, and as others have stated, you can achieve some width/depth with harmonic distortion, haas effect, etc.
Old 3rd May 2018
  #5
The "analogue taste" that a "mixer" is reported to add really refers to high end mixers with lots of transformers and so on involved - not your average budget mackie or soundcraft.

you also only have a 4 output interface, so you'd need a quality interface (16 channels?) to get any benefit out of an external mixer.

you might find some benefit in a hardware compressor. However no gear is a simple solution - the simple thing is to practice and get better at mixing.
Old 4th May 2018
  #6
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanEldred View Post
If the mixer has quality EQs and direct outs then I would say it is very much worth it. I would put quality outboard processing (eqs comps) as a priority, used in a hybrid situation, before getting a console strictly for summing purposes (if you have a DAW).

Yeah, that's probably a better idea. Thanks for your input.
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