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Favorite Summing Buss - Based On Experience
View Poll Results: Please Choose Favorite Summing Buss - Based On Experience Only
API 8200a / 8200 + 7800
16 Votes - 7.34%
Audient Sumo
8 Votes - 3.67%
Dangerous 2-Bus / Mixer / 2-Bus LT
18 Votes - 8.26%
innerTube Audio Atomic Sumthang
5 Votes - 2.29%
Nautilus Commander
0 Votes - 0%
Neve 8816
6 Votes - 2.75%
Phoenix Nicerizer / Nicerizer 16
17 Votes - 7.80%
Roll Music RMS216 Folcrom (please post mic pre)
20 Votes - 9.17%
SPL MixDream / MixDream XP
20 Votes - 9.17%
Tube-Tech SSA 2A / SSA 2B
9 Votes - 4.13%
Boutique Audio Inward Connections
2 Votes - 0.92%
Chandler Limited Mini Rack Mixer
4 Votes - 1.83%
Manley 16x2 Mixer
6 Votes - 2.75%
Shadow Hills GAMA Deluxe Summing Mic Pre
5 Votes - 2.29%
Speck X.Sum
4 Votes - 1.83%
Tonelux TXP 16X2
10 Votes - 4.59%
Internal DAW Buss
20 Votes - 9.17%
External Digital Console
4 Votes - 1.83%
Large Format Analog Console
32 Votes - 14.68%
Cranesong Spider
4 Votes - 1.83%
Self constructed summing bus
8 Votes - 3.67%
Voters: 218. You may not vote on this poll

Old 12th May 2006
  #1
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

Favorite Summing Buss - Based On Experience

I know we've discussed this a lot here, but there hasn't been a poll yet. So, I thought it was about time.

Please vote only if you have first hand experience with the respective summing buss.

Based on your own experiences please post why you prefer one summing buss over another. If Folcrom is your choice, please post your preferred mic pre, so we can see what are some of the popular combos. And if Large Format Analog Console is your choice, please post which you prefer.

The updated list is fairly complete, but my apologies if your fave wasn't listed. Also please feel free to place a "write in" vote by posting.

With the two updates to the list (including two digital options) this thread can now be an analog vs. digital summing debate. So, have @ it boys!

Plus, a big thank you to Jules for adding the new items.

Cheers,
Charles
Old 12th May 2006
  #2
Lives for gear
 
BradM's Avatar
I think there are two valid choices missing:

1. "DIY summing buss". I think a lot of people are rolling their own passive devices out there and using an external preamp for make-up gain like the Folcrom does.

2. "No external summing box...ITB summing preferred". I'm sure there are users who have tried different summing boxes and consciously still choose to mix ITB for one reason or another (like you said those reasons are another thread altogether). Lately I've been enjoying summing ITB and coloring my 2-mix with an A Designs Audio Pacifica preamp padded at the DI input instead of using my DIY summing box. I hope I'm not derailing this poll by suggesting these two alternatives.

Brad
Old 12th May 2006
  #3
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

Deleted cuz Jules additions make what I posted irrelevant.
Old 12th May 2006
  #4
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Dye
I know we've discussed
Based on your own experiences please post why you prefer one summing buss over another.
I'm not shure if an old little mixing desk counts as a summingbox but in fact I use it as such. It's a Siemens C4 with 12 mono- and 4 stereochannels. As this board is a bit exotic my vote in general would go for a small quality mixer.
Why? Because I like to have some real faders and the possibility for an easy usage of my outboard stuff e. g. with aux sends for parallel processing stuff, nice eqs, etc...
Regarding to the faders I like the sonic quality of signals more by driving the DA hot and lowering it by outboard faders than lowering the bitrate ITB. I do faderautomation ITB though, most betwin +/-3db so the sonic difference to my ears is not that big.

If I'd look for a new summing device it would be probably a more simple box like a Folcrom with a more clean but soft sounding pre maybe something one can switch the character like the Portico or the Flamingo.
Why? Because it's a cool flexible solution soundwise and I like the benefit to smooth/saturate the highs a bit... for this task I've had more success with outboard stuff.

For the benefit of faders I'd seriously look in a system which can grow up like Tonelux or ADT.
Why? This might be the most expensive solution but you can configurate this systems to your personally needs and you are flexible enough to change things later on without damaging to much money, the quality/headroom should also be on the highest level.

Andreas
Old 12th May 2006
  #5
None of the above is acceptable. I require at least -90db stereo crosstalk, 20 to 20k hz and at least -105db THD+noise. I also require a 200k hz bandwidth to avoid all phase shift in the audio band. My balanced discrete/opamp hybrid summing amps measure -134db noise when sourced from one input.

Maybe some of these guys that build this stuff can give up some honest measurements on it. At least we would have something to compare besides another person's opinion.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 12th May 2006
  #6
Lives for gear
 
RKrizman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams
None of the above is acceptable. I require at least -90db stereo crosstalk, 20 to 20k hz and at least -105db THD+noise. I also require a 200k hz bandwidth to avoid all phase shift in the audio band. My balanced discrete/opamp hybrid summing amps measure -134db noise when sourced from one input.

Maybe some of these guys that build this stuff can give up some honest measurements on it. At least we would have something to compare besides another person's opinion.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
If you like the way it sounds does it matter what the specs are? Can we slap your summing amp on the back of a Folcrom and achieve significantly different results from mixing ITB?

-R
Old 12th May 2006
  #7
Lives for gear
 
FMNYC's Avatar
 

i voted for the API 8200A but i feel i need to disclose that it's the only one i have any "significant" experience with so it's a bit of a "default" vote for me.

that said, i do love it!

FM

FM simply refuses to just sit and watch you do this to yourself.
Old 12th May 2006
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Matthew Murray's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by RKrizman
If you like the way it sounds does it matter what the specs are? Can we slap your summing amp on the back of a Folcrom and achieve significantly different results from mixing ITB?

-R
Amen.
Old 12th May 2006
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Sharp11's Avatar
 

Unless someone has worked extensively with all the choices listed, the only thing this poll will reveal is which unit person x bought and is happy with etc.

Ed
Old 12th May 2006
  #10
Lives for gear
 
Matthew Murray's Avatar
That may be why Mr. Dye requested experienced votes only... experience would indicate the use of at least two or three of these units, I'd say!
Old 13th May 2006
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Cojo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharp11
Unless someone has worked extensively with all the choices listed, the only thing this poll will reveal is which unit person x bought and is happy with etc.

Ed
Exactly my thought also!

/Cojo
Old 13th May 2006
  #12
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharp11
Unless someone has worked extensively with all the choices listed, the only thing this poll will reveal is which unit person x bought and is happy with etc.

Ed
Yeah, I knew this would pretty much be the case, but @ the same time it would be unrealistic of me to expect someone to have heard all of these boxes. (I guess we'll have to wait on a presumably forthcoming CD from Lynn for that.)

Before posting this poll I read a hell of a lot of the summing threads. Slutz have bought summing busses + sent them back, later purchasing other units. From everthing I read, many here have done their research. And my assumption is that those people who've heard summing busses, or better yet own them, more likely than not put some serious thought into their choices.

I asked for only people with experience, cuz I wanted to avoid a popularity conteset based on a box's feature list or name brand. That wouldn't have been very helpful @ all to any of us. Bassically, I'm hoping to get a sense of what busses are turning out to be faves among those who've tried them.

It's far from scientific, but it'll be educational nonetheless.

(And Mathew, you can call me Charles, Charlie, Chucky, Chaz or Chuck E. Deth, but please don't call me mister. That's my Dad. )
Old 13th May 2006
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
echo unit's Avatar
 

Charlie,

Your entire existance has been based on selling Pro Tools systems for digidesign

because of you, many folks spent endless hours (years) attempting mixing inside a computer. Recording on way overpriced interfaces with substandard analog to digital conversion using a virtual mixing board screen and computer software emulations of real analog audio equipment that use artificial intelligence to mathematicaly approximate something which is real and full of natural random varience. Not only this but you turned many people onto a particular brand of these software emulations made by the company Waves who likely paid you to do so. Waves made the most awful sounding version of the emulations out there which in turn helped a lot of folks in degrading the audio they had recorded in the first place.

Before you published those Mix it like a record ITB articles maybe you should have considered what you were saying.

An out of work digidesign salesman is like music to my ears.

Why in god's name are you even talking about summing outside of a computer?

It goes against all that you have preached in your articles to ask this question here an now.

Are you just discovering now that a computer is not a mixing desk and that mixing desks actually have a purpose besides underpaid engineers playing with all the knobs buttons and lights to impress overcharged clients?

Charlie, since you are such an authority on mixing surely you can tell all of us which the best analog summing box is.


Or let those who know what they are doing enlighten you:

Neve 80 series console!


fuuck
Old 13th May 2006
  #14
My vote is for Echo Unit posting the most useless "information" ever.
Old 13th May 2006
  #15
Gear Addict
 
jfw3's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by echo unit
Charlie,

Your entire existance has been based on selling Pro Tools systems for digidesign

because of you, many folks spent endless hours (years) attempting mixing inside a computer. Recording on way overpriced interfaces with substandard analog to digital conversion using a virtual mixing board screen and computer software emulations of real analog audio equipment that use artificial intelligence to mathematicaly approximate something which is real and full of natural random varience. Not only this but you turned many people onto a particular brand of these software emulations made by the company Waves who likely paid you to do so. Waves made the most awful sounding version of the emulations out there which in turn helped a lot of folks in degrading the audio they had recorded in the first place.

Before you published those Mix it like a record ITB articles maybe you should have considered what you were saying.

An out of work digidesign salesman is like music to my ears.

Why in god's name are you even talking about summing outside of a computer?

It goes against all that you have preached in your articles to ask this question here an now.

Are you just discovering now that a computer is not a mixing desk and that mixing desks actually have a purpose besides underpaid engineers playing with all the knobs buttons and lights to impress overcharged clients?

Charlie, since you are such an authority on mixing surely you can tell all of us which the best analog summing box is.


Or let those who know what they are doing enlighten you:

Neve 80 series console!


fuuck

Look out! Here it comes.....
Old 13th May 2006
  #16
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by echo unit
Charlie,

Your entire existance has been based on selling Pro Tools systems for digidesign

because of you, many folks spent endless hours (years) attempting mixing inside a computer. Recording on way overpriced interfaces with substandard analog to digital conversion using a virtual mixing board screen and computer software emulations of real analog audio equipment that use artificial intelligence to mathematicaly approximate something which is real and full of natural random varience. Not only this but you turned many people onto a particular brand of these software emulations made by the company Waves who likely paid you to do so. Waves made the most awful sounding version of the emulations out there which in turn helped a lot of folks in degrading the audio they had recorded in the first place.

Before you published those Mix it like a record ITB articles maybe you should have considered what you were saying.

An out of work digidesign salesman is like music to my ears.

Why in god's name are you even talking about summing outside of a computer?

It goes against all that you have preached in your articles to ask this question here an now.

Are you just discovering now that a computer is not a mixing desk and that mixing desks actually have a purpose besides underpaid engineers playing with all the knobs buttons and lights to impress overcharged clients?

Charlie, since you are such an authority on mixing surely you can tell all of us which the best analog summing box is.


Or let those who know what they are doing enlighten you:

Neve 80 series console!


fuuck
You've clearly not been paying attention, EchoBoy.
But I do love the conviction of conspiracy nuts.
Old 13th May 2006
  #17
Gear Maniac
 
echo unit's Avatar
 

Ok then.

Do tell me how I have not been listening.

Did you at some point decide to boycott digidesign?

You helped them in monopolizing thier way into being the standard recording method in the now defunct music business which you put yourself into with great passion did you not?

Don't tell me that ProTools sounds good because I have used it since it was Sound tools and it never sounded any good to me and many others.

Charlie, everyone poops. I don't care if you and Jon Bon Jiovi are next door neigbours and motorcycle buddies. I am not impressed when I see digi pimps asking about analog summing.
Old 13th May 2006
  #18
Lives for gear
 
SoundEng1's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by echo unit
Ok then.

Do tell me how I have not been listening.

Did you at some point decide to boycott digidesign?

You helped them in monopolizing thier way into being the standard recording method in the now defunct music business which you put yourself into with great passion did you not?

Don't tell me that ProTools sounds good because I have used it since it was Sound tools and it never sounded any good to me and many others.

Charlie, everyone poops. I don't care if you and Jon Bon Jiovi are next door neigbours and motorcycle buddies. I am not impressed when I see digi pimps asking about analog summing.

Whoa!!! I see a Monstrous Typhoon coming!!!
Old 13th May 2006
  #19
Lives for gear
 
T_R_S's Avatar
The 48 Bit Mixer Works for me! stike
Old 13th May 2006
  #20
Lives for gear
 
picksail's Avatar
 

I guess our set-up also qualifies as a DIY of sorts.

After we have selected our prefered ProTools Mix Buss plug-ins we then send the signal out to an SSL G384 (clone) then out to the Great River MP2NV. Sometimes the API, Averills with Jenson's, TG2, etc.

What's cool is we can mix and match the pre amp based upon the source material and what 'it's asking for'.

Actually we aren't really summing anything, so please disregard this comment.

Keep in mind that I had become a proponent of the ITB method exclusively for years, until the day when this method became a viable solution. And boy what a difference it has made.
Old 13th May 2006
  #21
Its great to 'cheat' the computer and bypass it somehow.. hanging outboard eq & compression off a summing box can be very satisfying - reach over and tweak an old favorite piece of outboard.. analog return a reverb unit and not HAVE TO convert it to work ITB..
Old 13th May 2006
  #22
thumbsup
eh what Brad said, can you include "other" in the vote?
Old 13th May 2006
  #23
Lives for gear
 
octatonic's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by echo unit
Ok then.

Do tell me how I have not been listening.
Did you at some point decide to boycott digidesign
You helped them in monopolizing thier way into being the standard recording method in the now defunct music business which you put yourself into with great passion did you not?
Don't tell me that ProTools sounds good because I have used it since it was Sound tools and it never sounded any good to me and many others.
Charlie, everyone poops. I don't care if you and Jon Bon Jiovi are next door neigbours and motorcycle buddies. I am not impressed when I see digi pimps asking about analog summing.
Jeez...
Well I'll give you this- you are one brave man.
To insult a man who is out there trying to make a go of it, and is pretty successful by many people's reckoning, is just great.
The fact you do it behind an internet pseudonym is just even braver.
The fact that your argument is just rhetoric, filled with half truths and wildly incoherent is a bonus.

Oh you big brave man- my heart is all a flutter- please protect me Mr Echo Unit from the big bad Digi-beast and it's evil successful record producer minions.

Send me your address- I have a suit of armour here in your size- and a shining white horse I can let you have half price- one careful owner.
Old 13th May 2006
  #24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Labs
Please dont feed the troll...

Gustav

thumbsup

And remember there is a thing called the ignore button that will let you skip all posts from a member...... I'm just saying....
Old 13th May 2006
  #25
Lives for gear
 
blaugruen7's Avatar
echo unit.
why do you think people are responding in a negative way?
Old 13th May 2006
  #26
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reptil
thumbsup
eh what Brad said, can you include "other" in the vote?
I think @ this point we've pretty much got everybody in there.

But if your choice isn't included, I encourage you to place a "write-in" vote for any buss not listed by posting it's name + why you prefer it.

I would really love to hear what mic pres Folcrom users are choosing. And hear more about why users prefer one box over another.

Thanks, C
Old 13th May 2006
  #27
Mastering
 

The most neutral one I've heard has been the Sumo. Based on compartive files sent in by clients. But ho hum, who wants neutral? If I'm mixing rock, I want character. You can't get character in the box, at least not with the digital summing bus alone. Add some analog outboard to your digital system and you can get great results still mixing "ITB" or even with a digital console, in my opinion. I've also done some objective tests that really seem to point to that conclusion.

Does this mean I'm against analog summing? Not at all. Just pick the summer that has the sound character you like.

If you want character, I vote for the API, it has some magic in it, based on my experience with API consoles. I'm not kidding. The magic is called distortion, but who cares what you call it if it sounds good! By the way, nudge nudge, wink wink----99.99% of the character has nothing whatsoever to do with the fact you are analog summing. It has to do with the analog circuitry, API's discrete opamps, transformers, their architecture If you hear a widening, an improvement over the digital summer, all my objective tests have indicated that it's the analog distortion doing its work. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with saying that. But it does point out that a couple of API modules on the output of your digital summing bus might provide the same results and be a lot cheaper. The sooner that people get out of the mindset that there's something wrong with digital summing and into the mindset that they are looking for "character", the sooner that so many of the purist summers will disappear.

An objective test at matched gains and pans with the Sumo revealed that it is tremendously transparent. Sounded no better or worse than the digital summing bus. Ho hum. Proves there's nothing wrong with digital summing other than that it may be very boring.

Someone should do a shootout, as objectively as possible to prove or disprove the test of two API modules on a digital sum. I'll bet you the modules make it sound better, wider, clearer, EVEN on the stereo output of the digital summer. As soon as you discover that, it should make you question a lot of assumptions.
Old 13th May 2006
  #28
FX smörgåsbord user
 
Charles Dye's Avatar
 

Great post. Thanks, Bob.
Old 13th May 2006
  #29
Yes great post Bob.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bob katz
The sooner that people get out of the mindset that there's something wrong with digital summing and into the mindset that they are looking for "character", the sooner that so many of the purist summers will disappear.
I have been saying for a while that I don't buy into the "bad math" BS about digital audio. To me what is missing from digital is just a little analog love from some transformer etc. distortion. As you said some "character" not summing math fixing.

Now I will add that I track and mix mostly rock and pop projects usually with 40 tracks or less, most times much less so I don't know that maybe analog summing might help a huge 100+ track pop or R&B project. I have heard it does make a difference on large track counts. I am skeptical but I am open to having my mind changed.
Old 13th May 2006
  #30
Gear Addict
 
Psyko/Acoustics's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by echo unit
Charlie,

Your entire existance has been based on selling Pro Tools systems for digidesign
I get the impression from this forum and others that Charles makes his living from mixing commercial records and has done so for some time.

I don't think Chuck E Deth would ever really dignify your post with a complete response in his defence... he's not the bickering type.
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