Best Audio Mixer for Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by cineapple, Jan 20, 2009.

  1. cineapple macrumors regular

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    #1
    Can anyone recommend a good audio mixer for the Mac Pro? I primarily use the Mac Pro as my Final Cut Editing system (as well as listening to music), so it would be great to finally get balanced audio. I just got a pair of KRK speakers, which can accept XLR, TRS, and RCA.


    Are there any recommended mixers that can work directly with Final Cut Pro?

    Here are a couple that I have been curious about...(posted in an earlier thread I started)


    http://www.apogeedigital.com/products/duet.php
    (looks like a great piece of equipment, but no XLR, or Firewire)

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/480535-REG/Edirol_Roland_M_16DX_M_16DX_16_Channel_Digital.html
    (I would rather have the cheaper 10-channel version, but this has Optical I/O)


    http://www.alesis.com/multimix8firewire
    (It is looking like this has everything I need, and the biggest bang for the buck)

    Thanks!
     
  2. cineapple thread starter macrumors regular

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  3. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #3
    do you want an audio interface or a mixer?? the big difference is that a mixer would have a mix buss and summing amps. (and please stop bumping)
     
  4. cineapple thread starter macrumors regular

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    #4
    Just looking for a good mixer that has firewire In, and preferably XLR out.

    Stop bumping, what are talking about?!? Sorry to disturb you. Only bumped once, well now, twice.
     
  5. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #5
    I'm pretty sure most mixers with firewire are only sending digital through firewire, not receiving them and putting them back onto the channel / fader.

    what are you planing on doing with this mixer?
    I think you're just looking for a good Digital to analog converter with balanced a out.

    and bumping is against the forum rules.
     
  6. cybeross macrumors newbie

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    Jan 11, 2009
    #6
    Ah, I couldn't resist the call for mac audiophiles :). I am a producer/dj, and don't really know how much setups for the two fields can be interchanged. One thing I DO know, is that I personally want a mackie universal control pro. I have used them many times with cubase, but it should be compatible with at least every pro audio app, if not final cut, but either way, that's what I'd want. Basically, from a purely audio point of view, it can automatically assign it's faders intelligently do different tracks in the software, and the LCD labels them accordingly. It also has automated faders with automatic reset, etc, and all the pro features you could need. If you just need an audio *interface*, obviously that is a different story altogether. What do you really need/want it to do?
     
  7. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #7
    Just to clarify, that's just a controller. No audio passes through it.
     
  8. cineapple thread starter macrumors regular

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    #8
    Can you recommend any good Digital to analog converters w/balanced audio out?
     
  9. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #9
    ahh, great question :D

    on more of the top end, theres something like this
    http://mytekdigital.com/products/stereo96dac.htm

    and on more of the low end you can get a external audio interface (either firewire or usb) and get something like this
    http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/FireWire410.html

    It all depends on what price you're willing to pay. Two of the big things to look for in good converter is THD and dynamic range.
     
  10. DJJONES macrumors 6502

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    #10
    get a interface NOT a mixer.

    a firewire mixer isnt like a card.
    youll get better clear sound with a sound card interface sometimes those have so many in's and outs that a mixer is practically unnecessary

    look at any of the motu line
    apogee is nice as well but they are far more expensive for what you get.
    presonus also
     
  11. gotzero macrumors 68040

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    #11
    It sounds like you might prefer a simple soundcard and something like the Mackie Big Knob.
     
  12. DJJONES macrumors 6502

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    #12
    he wouldnt need a mackie big knob if hes going to be using only 1 pair of monitors or speakers.
    even though the mackie bigknob does have in's and out's
    so does any simple sound card.

    most sound card's have a mixing application as well so you can actually use a vitual mixer right on the computer to see what signals are coming in and going out.

    i have a mackie big knob and its basically a overpriced volume knob, some have said that its not even transparent as a presonus central station but i havent noticed this so mehh.
    i have 2 monitor selections and thats all i really use it for, also controlling volume.
    you can do that from your sound card's mixer.

    but i run all my in's right to my sound card, on the rare occasion that i need a in' it is pretty convenient that you can bypass the card and go to the speakers via the big knob.
     
  13. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #13
    agreed, he doesn't need this.
    and the big knob is a lot more sturdy and reliable than the central station. Even if it may not sound as clean.
     
  14. gotzero macrumors 68040

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    #14
    I figured that because a mixer was asked for, the OP is at least interested in a hardware volume control. I have found quite a few uses for the big knob, and one of the things it controls are the main outs from my computer.
     
  15. cineapple thread starter macrumors regular

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    #15
    What is THD? So would a mixer degrade the sound more than an interface?
    If I was to get a mixer, my local music shop has a pretty good deal on this used one:

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/502483-REG/Yamaha_MW10C_MW10C_10_Channel_USB.html

    Any opinions? Otherwise, I guess I would just go with the M-Audio interface.
    I just got a pair of KRK Rokit 5 speakers, so I want to use them to their full potential, just looking for the best means to do that.
     
  16. DJJONES macrumors 6502

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    #16
    well dont get a mixer, get a sound card.
    i recommend motu by far.

    looks at some there cheaper alternatives.
    do you have a budget?

    a mixer is only necessary if you are gonna record multiple sources at one time or if you want to use all the preamps on them. other wise stay away from using mixers going right to the sound card in and out leads to better recordings and better monitoring.
    thats just my ideal behind it many people have there own ideal on how these things work, but why put a mixer into your signal chain that can degrade or add something to the sound you dont want.


    i think the speculation over the big knob NOT sounding clean is bull.
    just a reason people use when THEY cant get there mixes to translate they blame it on there gear.
    my mixes translate fine with the use of a big knob, whaaddd yahhh kno??? LOL
     
  17. cineapple thread starter macrumors regular

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    #17
    Budget is only around a couple hundred.

    And, so, by sound card, you mean something like the M-Audio break-out box, since there are very few, and only very, very pricey internal sound cards, right?
     
  18. DJJONES macrumors 6502

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    #18
    a firewire card is fine.
    i like those better since you can plug it into any computer that has a fw port and theres drivers for the comp.

    something like this motu might suit your needs
    http://pro-audio.musiciansfriend.com/product/MOTU-UltraLite-mk3-Firewire-Audio-Interface?sku=241882

    but then again what are your needs?

    any recording? if so how many in's of recording?
    how many outs do you need? or just 1 for monitors.

    this would be a good unit for you.

    i personally wouldnt get a pci card just because it sucks when you might want to monitor on another computer and you cant just because there arent any pci slots.

    i wouldnt go with m audio because there very slow to the game with drivers.

    took them over a year to put out drivers for vista with my old pci card.
    after 1-2 months of being pissed after gettting a vista machine i just bought a new card and 8 projects later im mad that i didnt get a better card since the beginning.

    i have a motu traveler by the way, amazing card wouldnt sell this guy for nothing well, maybe for the mk3 new model, but even then its amazing card.
     
  19. cineapple thread starter macrumors regular

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    #19
    My basic need is monitoring audio for editing, and rocking out to 1 pair of speakers 2.1 sound.

    How about the Duet from Apogee?? http://www.apogeedigital.com/products/duet.php
     
  20. DJJONES macrumors 6502

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    #20
    thats perfect for your needs.
    atop that it has a volume control right on the unit.

    if you using 2.1 though you might want to consider the rockit sub.
     
  21. cineapple thread starter macrumors regular

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    #21
    I was really getting into the Apogee Duet, and almost every review
    was outstanding for it, but then in the specs, it has unbalanced output?!?

    How can that be? You would think that such a product would have balanced out! Now, back to square one again....
     
  22. rockinrocker macrumors 65816

    rockinrocker

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    #22
    i have heard this from a lot of people also.

    Are you sure you really need balanced? Just to be clear what that means, the sound isn't any better, it's just more impervious to interference. So if you're running say, 50 ft cables to your monitors or something like that, then yes, you'd want balanced. But if not, it's not actually that big of a deal. Just keep your cable runs short and avoid crossing audio and power cables.

    The Duet does really sound like a good choice for you...
     
  23. DJJONES macrumors 6502

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  24. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #24
    ya, what are the specs.? oh that's right, they're not published anywhere....
    That's my one big issue with this device. What are they hiding. If the were really proud of it they'd publish the (real) specs.
    THD
    Dynamic range
    Other converter and pre amp specs.

    and i think someone asked what THD was. It's total harmonic distortion.
     
  25. rockinrocker macrumors 65816

    rockinrocker

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    #25
    meh. little spec differences aren't really going to make that much difference with this type of entry level consumer stuff anyway. it's much more about finding the features and compatibility that you want, IMO.
     

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