Best Audio Mixer
Top 10 Best Audio Mixer in India | 23rd Sep 2020
Reviews, Comparison and Buying Guide
What is Audio Mixer?
In the most basic terms, the audio mixer, or mixing console as it’s sometimes called, combines audio signals, processes them, then routes them to wherever they need to go. Nowadays, many different devices offer some mixing capabilities. Even tablets and smart phones teamed with the right apps and interfaces can perform some mixing functions. And of course, all DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) software includes mixing capabilities.
Why Audio Mixer?
The mixer is an essential item in live music, and also in many studios. It is also one of the bits of audio gear that seems to intimidate those who are unfamiliar, due to the seemingly endless controls.
Best Audio Mixer | Buying Guide : Things to consider while buying a Audio Mixer
In this buyer’s guide we’ll be addressing three basic types of audio mixers:
- Recording mixers, also referred to as studio mixers
- Live sound mixers, also referred to as PA mixers or sound system mixers
- DJ mixers
Since many mixers support both live sound and recording functions, the distinction between these two types isn’t always clear. Today there are numerous audio mixers that will meet both your onstage and recording needs.
Mixer Terminology— Key Mixer Terms
As you shop for a mixer, you’ll run across terms that may be unfamiliar. To help you decipher the specs and features you’ll be reading about, we offer the following glossary that’ll help you navigate through all that information.
The channel is the basic ‘unit’ of the mixer. It is also the reason that many are intimidated by the mixer, as the channel controls are repeated many times over the mixer surface (providing the arsenal of complex looking knobs and faders). The truth is that if you understand one channel, you basically understand how a mixer works. Imagine it a bit like a water pipe. Water enters the mixer at the input, and then travels down through the various parts of the channel to the fader, before being sent to the outputs. The various parts of the channel are described below.
These are where the audio sources are connected. These can be anything from a line-level signal, such as that from a keyboard or piano, to microphones. Usually, you’ll have both a ¼” jack input for line signals, and an XLR connection for microphones.
The insert is a connection that allows a piece of equipment to be plugged in directly after the input, so that it is unaffected be any of the other processes further down the channel. the most common use for an insert is to connect a compressor or gate. Here, the insert is a stereo jack, which both sends and returns the signal, to and from the connected device. Commonly, an insert has a separate send and return socket, however.
Gain controls the input level of each individual channel. Here you can set this so that individual sound sources do not cause the channel to overload and distort.
EQ allows the user to change the frequency curve of a sound. For instance, if a sound source is very bright, the high frequencies can be turned down. A 3-band EQ will allow you to boost or cut high, mid and low frequencies separately.
The auxiliary sends can be used for various things. Put simply, turning an auxiliary send up will adjust the level of a channel’s signal that is sent to the auxiliary send output. The desk here is pitched as a live desk, so these are generally used as ‘monitor send’ controls’. That is, you connect the sends to monitor speakers at the front of a stage, so that the band can here what they are playing more clearly. Aux sends are also used to send channel audio to an effects unit. When used with a common effect like reverb, it allows the engineer to adjust the level of effect of each individual channel, using just one effects unit. When used in this way, the FX unit output would be connected to the aux return inputs on the mixer. If these do not feature, the FX unit would be routed down an input channel or channels.
Short for ‘Panorama’, this controls whereabouts in the stereo field the sound will be heard. So, turning it all the way to the left will send the signal completely to the left output, and the turning it to the right, to the right output. The area between allows the signal to be more accurately placed by vary the level sent to each of these outputs accordingly. When using a multi-bus mixer, these pan controls are more important. Often, routing to buses involves pressing a button on the individual channel, but these buttons will correspond to 2 outputs (i.e. 1&2, 3&4, 5&6, 7&8). In this case, to route to bus 1, the user would press the 1&2 button, and turn the pan all the way to hard left. To send to bus 2, the pan would be turned to hard right.
These allow the engineer to mute individual channels. In essence, it stops the channel being sent to any outputs. It’s common to see ‘solo’ buttons here too. These mute everything other than the soloed channel, or channels.
These control the level of each channel to be sent to the outputs (bus, or master). These are the main tools for control the ‘mix’ of sounds to go to the PA or recording device.
These control (you guessed it) the level of signal being sent to the main outputs. In the case of a live set-up, this would usually be the overall level being sent to the PA system.
This is where everything ends up- all of the channels, mixed, adjusted and tweaked, ultimately will come out of these connections to be amplified. On a mixer with buses, you’ll also see both bus faders and bus outputs, too. The mixer may look scary if you haven’t used one before, but they’re remarkably simple. And, in the right hands, can be the hub of your performance and recording.
Analog vs Digital vs Software Mixers
Analog mixers have been around for nearly as long as there have been audio recordings and PA systems. Beginning in the 1990s, digital mixers began entering the pro audio world. Since then, their capabilities have grown as has their affordability. Beginning in the early part of the 21st century, software-based mixing became a reality as computers grew more powerful and related hardware was developed. We’ll take a brief look at each type’s capabilities, strengths, and weaknesses.
Despite the greater versatility of their digital brethren, analog mixers remain popular due to their generally lower cost and ease of use. Since their functions are controlled by physical knobs, faders, and switches, their operation can be somewhat more intuitive than digital soundboards. The downside of their reliance on physical controls is the analog mixer’s generally larger footprint—a disadvantage in crowded home studios and on cramped stages. Many people find the analog mixer’s signal and hardware routing easier to grasp at a glance since everything’s physically present rather than being hidden in the menus of a digital soundboard’s many status screens.
Both analog and digital mixers are capable of transmitting very high quality sound. The quality and design of their electronic circuits—especially the mic preamps—and in the case of the digital mixer, its analog to digital converter (ADC), have the biggest influence on sound quality. Most sound engineers agree that mics and speakers with their inherently greater degree of coloration and distortion are the biggest barriers to absolute sound fidelity. That said, well-designed mic preamps that boost the microphone’s output without adding coloration or distortion are critical to good sound. High-quality circuitry and components in the mixer’s gain stages and signal routing will minimize the hiss that inevitably occurs with analog mixers.
For instant changes to signal routing, flexible and extensive signal dynamics, and an amazing array of effects possibilities, a digital mixer is hard to beat. With the touch of a button, preprogrammed routing and effects can be triggered that would be impossible for even a talented octopus to accomplish on an analog audio mixer! Some digital boards are compatible with software plug-ins that extend their tone-shaping capabilities even further. They also can ride herd on dreaded feedback, preventing the howls and squeals before they even start. Another nice feature is automatic gating that silences channels with little or no signal passing through them.
One of the huge advantages of digital mixers is their ability to save and recall mixes. Many use USB flash drives or internal memory to store settings from past performances. This makes the set up in a venue that’s been saved dead easy. Even in a new venue, recalling mixes from similar venues can be a big time saver during sound checks. Some digital mixers let you pre-program mixes using a laptop computer, so when you get to the gig only fine-tuning tweaks to the sound are needed. Some advanced digital mixers have motorized faders that respond to saved configurations.
One potential downside of digital mixers grows out of their versatility. Their enormous flexibility comes with a price: The learning curve for mastering all the possibilities your mixer offers can be steep. That said, like any complex digital device, it’s usually not essential to learn every function—the ability to save the settings and configure the interface to your needs can help you cut through its complexity.
A suitably configured laptop, mixing software, and a compact control surface can get you into the mixing game without the larger space and budget concerns of standard analog and digital mixers. Music production software is available to accomplish just about everything by way of signal processing and routing that you can achieve with a physical mixer. Today there are simple audio mixing apps that allow you to do basic audio mixing using your IOS or Android smartphone or tablet.
Used for recording, software mixers let you easily integrate virtual instruments, samples, drum loops, and much more into your productions. Most mixer applications support advanced MIDI functions, and using a computer-based digital audio workstation (DAW) opens up an enormous world of possibilities including the use of a MIDI controller keyboard to create and record your music.
If you’re looking for a mixer to handle your live performances and your main and monitor speakers are unpowered, a powered mixer eliminates the need to transport and set up separate power amplifiers to drive them. Powered audio mixers are available in a wide range of sizes and configurations. They can handle everything from a solo acoustic singer-guitarist using one or two mics, an acoustic-electric guitar, and modestly sized speakers, to a full-blown band with a full array of mics, electric instruments, and hefty main and monitor speakers.
Powered mixers offer most of the bells and whistles you’ll find on unpowered mixers in terms of routing options, effects processing, EQing, and much more. As with any mixer purchase, you’ll need to calculate the total inputs and outputs you need as well as the necessary power to drive your PA speaker cabinets and stage monitors.
With their multiple turntables and/or CD players, DJs have a unique set of mixing needs to keep their music flowing seamlessly. DJ mixers are specially configured to meet those needs with the right inputs to handle DJ gear and integrate with PAs and club sound systems.
You’ll find DJ mixers vary considerably in their capabilities. Simple, low-cost units may have just two or three inputs and outputs and offer basic EQ/volume controls and crossfader operations that allow mixing the output of a couple turntables or CD players. More sophisticated DJ mixers add features such as kill switches for instant control over certain frequencies, hamster switches that reverse crossfader channel operation, and metering that displays clipping (distortion) and output levels. Mic inputs and talkover switches allow the DJ to easily communicate with the audience.
The most sophisticated DJ mixers allow connection of laptop computers and integrate with DJ software applications that extend the mixer’s capabilities.Top-end DJ mixers provide sophisticated EQ controls, the addition of dozens of effects, beat slicing and dicing, and even video and light control.
Line and Summing Mixers
Line mixers as the name implies deal with line-level signals. They’re almost always analog in design and quite simple, usually only providing a single volume control per channel. Used in live settings they can be connected to multiple players used to provide between-set music while freeing up channels on your main mixer.
Summing mixers are often analog in design and are used in studio settings as a way to consolidate and tweak final mixes by injecting warmth into what some engineers consider the “cold” output of final digital mixes. Some top-end summing mixers are equipped with tube technology to restore the analog-like warmth associated with older recording technologies.
Things to Look
Beside the obvious question of your budget, here is a checklist of things to consider as you narrow down that selection of mixers to a short list of those best suited to your situation.
Application: Will you be using your mixer to record, play live, or both? If you want to use it exclusively for recording, mic preamp quality, and the ability to connect external processors are important factors.
For live-sound use, you’ll want to be sure the mixer is compatible with your existing sound system and offers enough connectivity and sound processing to handle your entire band. (See I/O and Channels below for more on this.) Ruggedness is important too—flimsily built mixers won’t handle the rigors of the road for long.
I/O and Channels: Consider how many mics you need to connect. (A miked drum kit can use up five or more inputs all by itself.) If you plan to use condenser mics, you’ll need mic inputs that supply phantom power for them. Also, if your band includes stereo keyboards and other such instruments, you’ll want enough stereo channels to accommodate them. If you plan to connect guitars or basses directly to the mixer, you’ll need sufficient direct inputs for them too. It’s always best to allow headroom by getting more I/O and channels than you currently need. Bands have a habit of growing in terms of both players and gear over time.
Buses and Signal Routing: These functions may be more important where recording is concerned. If you use a lot special-purpose mixes such as feeds to recording gear, monitors, headphones, and external effects mixes, you will need more routing flexibility and signal paths.
EQ Capabilities. How sophisticated are your EQ needs? Generally, studio recording requires finer tweaking of sound to sweeten your mix. Multiband parametric equalizers may be needed to achieve the level of sound quality you want. On the other hand, for simpler live-sound mixing, simple control over bass, mid, and high frequencies is all that’s needed.
Effects and Other Sound Processors: Do you rely on external mic preamps, effects pedals, and other tone tweaking gear to produce the sound you want ahead of the mixer? If so, internal mixer effects and sound processors are less critical. On the other hand, a mixer with onboard effects and sound processing makes for a very portable setup when playing live.
Top 10 Best Audio Mixer – [Updated and Highly Recommended]
Comparison Chart to make your purchase easy
- Premium ultra low-noise, high headroom analog mixer
- 4 state-of-the-art XENYX Mic Preamps comparable to standalone boutique preamps
- Neo-classic "British" 3-band EQs for warm and musical sound
- Studio-grade 24-bit stereo FX processor with 100 awesome presets including reverb, chorus, flanger, delay, pitch shifter and various multi-effects
- FX send control per channel for internal FX processor and/or as external send
- Main mix outputs plus separate control room, phones and stereo CD/tape outputs
- CD/tape inputs assignable to main mix or control room/phones outputsLong-wearing 60-mm logarithmic-taper fader and sealed rotary controls
- High-quality components and exceptionally rugged construction ensure long life.
- For support and queries, please contact_us on: [ 02522672367 ]
- Country of Origin: United States
The console incorporates a studio-grade 24-bit FX processor with 100 awesome effect presets. The 1202FX also has 12 inputs and an FX send control for each channel. Additionally, assignable CD/tape inputs have been incorporated for routing flexibility. Behringer’s innovative and affordable XENYX mixers provide the home recordist and club musician with pristine sound quality and cutting-edge features for very little outlay. The XENYX mic preamp approaches the sound quality, transparency, headroom, and even the dynamic range of boutique-style, standalone mic preamps.
Features / Reviews
Low-noise, high headroom analog mixer
Main mix outputs plus separate control room
FX send control per channel for internal FX processor and/or as external send
Studio-grade 24-bit stereo FX processor with 100 awesome presets
This Analogue Mixing Console is a durable product. The dimensions are – 47 x 41.8 x 20.2 cm.
Features / Reviews
Ease of operation
Enough input for many mics
Analogue Mixing Console
Kadence 4/8 Channel Line Mixer this is a dual or dc lightweight double four-way MIC/LINE stereo or eight-channel mono input mixer, very suitable for small studio. With low noice, high and low impedance circut design, each road has a volume control alone if you use the LINE Stereo or MONO input switch to Stereo or Mono, pull the Master switch to pull the LINE, the frount panel
Features / Reviews
Low noice, high and low impedance circut design
Dual or dc lightweight double four-way MIC/LINE stereo or eight-channel mono input mixer
- Get legendary sound craft quality from professional microphone preamps
- Work seamlessly with your mac or pc to record, edit, and play projects using your favorite audio software
- Getting a great mix is easy with a familiar channel strip layout that includes eq, aux send, master fader level and rotary headphone volume control
- Sweeten your mix with harman digital signal processing including iconic lexicon reverb, echo and delay
- Designed for singer-song writers and podcasters, the notepad series provides a layout that’s familiar to audio professionals yet easy to learn for beginners
The latest Notepad series mixers make it easy to get legendary Soundcraft sound for your music, podcasts, or videos. Notepad mixers combine professional-grade analog components, HARMAN digital signal processing and a built-in USB audio interface to use with your favorite Mac or PC editing software. Whether you’re a singer-songwriter or a small group of podcasters, Notepad mixers offer brilliant features so you can bring a level of polish to your creative productions that’s sure to impress.
Features / Reviews
Professional microphone preamps
HARMAN digital signal processing including iconic Lexicon reverb and delay
USB audio interface for recording, editing, and playback on your Mac or PC
Like the name says, the profx4v2 is a professional mixer, with convenient features and sound that rivals that of some larger format mixers. Mackie designed the vita preamps with live sound in mind to provide the quality of sound that is lacking in some compact mixers. Each channel features its own individual 2-band eq and 100hz low-cut filter for shaping the sound of your inputs. The readyfx digital effects engine gives you access to 16 different effects including reverbs and delays – mackie even added chorus effects for your guitar. A 5-band graphic eq can be assigned either to your main outputs so you can fine tune the pa or the aux output to easily get rid of feedback in your monitors. If you perform with backing tracks there are inputs for your laptop or mp3 player, a headphone output with individual level control and when you add to all that phantom power for your condenser mics and the convenience of a hi-z input for direct instrument input, you have no reason not to own a profx4v2. Yes, the profx4v2 is exactly what you need for mixing when the gig calls for minimal inputs, but that’s not where its usefulness ends. Since you’ll be mixing from the stage, keep the profx4v2 right next to you and you can use the headphone output with a set of in-ear monitors for your performance and just leave your floor monitors at home. Drummers you can use it for monitoring too – take the aux mix from the front of house board that would have gone to your wedges and plug it in to a channel on the profx4v2. Once your mix is set you have complete control over sound shaping and volume without having to get the attention of the mix engineer. Keyboard players, you can use it to mix your multi-instrument rig straight into your amp onstage.
Features / Reviews
ReadyFX effects engine with 16 effects including reverbs, delays and choruses
5-band graphic EQ for tuning mains or monitors
- PA AUDIO MIXING CONSOLES - STEREO
- Mono/Stereo Output: Mono output is available from Left & Right output jacks when the switch is in ‘Mono’ position.
- Each channel has GAIN, BASS, TREBLE, ECHO, PAN and slide LEVEL controls with CLIP LED indicator.
- Echo section provided with Delay, Repeat & Level controls. Tape section for Record & Playback facility.
Input Channels: Each Channel has separate 1/4” balanced phone jack for Mic & Line & accepts both balanced & unbalanced signals.
Features / Reviews
Each channel has GAIN, BASS, TREBLE, ECHO, PAN and slide LEVEL controls with CLIP LED indicator
Echo section provided with Delay, Repeat & Level controls
A whole new level of intelligence. The Live & StudioMix Analogue Mixing Frames integrate the best in technology featuring PSL Preamps, Oliver FX Enginges, Hybrid Mix Control, Professional BlueBox Connection, Hermetically Sealed Fluid Glide Fades and more to transform the way you look at analogue mixing
Features / Reviews
24-bit Oliver FX Engine
Hybrid Control mixing desk
USB Playback & Recording
Bluetooth 4.0 compatible
Get this Mini 6 Sound and Recording Equipment. Clip LED indication per channel. Signal and clip LED indication for master level. 1/4 TS unbalanced L/R main output.
Features / Reviews
Gain control with 2-band EQ per channel. Built-in echo/delay processor with unique E-delay
Clip LED indication per channel
Has 4 mic/line + 1 stereo input
- Built-in MP3 Player,3 Band EQ per channel,1 Aux , Stereo RCA CD input with control.Headphone output with level control.
- 6 Mic/Line and 1 Stereo Input with High Quality USB MP3 player.High-Quality Microphone Pre Amp.Individual Gain,High,Mid,Bass,Aux,Pan Controls.
- Delay EFX on Board & FX send per channel.Extra Stereo in with volume control.
- 60mm high-precision & long life faders.MIC monitor output and record output.
- 8x2 Segment LED Level Meter.8x2 Segment LED Level Meter.Switchable +48V phantom power.
6 Mic/Line and 1 Stereo Input with High Quality USB MP3 player. High-Quality Microphone Pre Amp. Individual Gain,High,Mid,Bass,Aux,Pan Controls. Delay EFX on Board & FX send per channel. XLR Balanced and TRS Unbalanced Output. Extra Stereo in with volume control. 60mm high-precision & long life faders MIC monitor output and record output. 8×2 Segment LED Level Meter. Switchable +48V phantom power. Built in MP3 music player. Built-in Bluetooth 3 Band EQ per channel 1 Aux send Stereo RCA CD input with Control Headphone Output with level control. The MX Professional AiR 8U Series mixer are the answer for budget-conscious users who refuse to sacrifice sound quality and reliability. Analog Audio Live Professional Mixers with USB and Bluetooth (6 Mono + 1 STEREO track input) embodies this pursuit of design excellence, and incorporates some of the same technologies developed for use in professional consoles, including studio quality preamps, powerful digital processing, and a rugged, reliable construction. The AIR USb series come with built in USB and Bluetooth, where you can directly play songs from the USB and Bluetooth Devices. For installed, recording, or live music settings, the solid construction and flexible design of these consoles lets you shape your sound with confidence, continually delivering peak performance and a level of sound quality and reliability unrivalled in its class.
Features / Reviews
Delay EFX on Board & FX send per channel
Extra Stereo in with volume control
Headphone output with level control
- 4 mic/line inputs, 2 with Class A FET high impedance :: Responsive 3-band, swept mid EQ with MusiQ
- Configurable USB stereo audio in/out :: 60mm professional quality faders
- 1 pre-fade Aux send :: 1 FX send :: 2 stereo inputs
- Separate 2-track record outputs :: 16 Internal Effects
- XLR main stereo outputs with inserts :: 48V microphone phantom power :: DI level switching with Gain Boost
Live or in the studio, ZED60-10FX is an ultra-portable mixer for solo artists and small bands. This mixer is a guitarist’s dream. Two of the 4 mono channels have high impedance jack inputs that can take a normal line level or a low level input from a guitar pickup, so guitars can be plugged straight into the mixer without the need for DI boxes. These inputs have been crafted to recreate the sound of a classic tube preamp in a combo or head amp for incredible definition and warmth. Two stereo inputs are provided for MP3/CD players or keyboards. ZED60-10FX comes with configurable USB audio in/out, making it easy to capture a stereo recording at the gig or in the studio. The mixer is equipped with professional XLR main stereo outputs, a flexible monitoring section with headphone and speaker feed outputs, and 16 stunning FX. Most important of all, ZED60-10FX lives up to the audio and build quality standards that have made Allen & Heath one of the most trusted names in professional audio for more than 40 years. ZED60-10FX has an essential selection of 16 time-delay effects, designed for small groups who don’t want to carry around an effects unit with their gear but who still want great quality FX at their gigs and on their recordings. Our DSP engineers worked hard, crafting and refining beautiful reverb algorithms to enhance every performance. These effects are available nowhere else at this price point – this quality and integration is only available from the ZED-FX. ZED effects are easily controlled using 3 buttons with 9 display LEDs. For example, the ideal delay time can be quickly tapped-in, or the perfect amount of reverb on the lead vocal can be dialled-in. There is one-stop navigation and editing – in fact, it’s just as easy as using effects pedals. To alter effects parameters, the TAP button is held down and the up/down buttons pressed to adjust the specific parameter for that effect, for example, the decay length on PLATE, or the depth on CHORUS.
Features / Reviews
Configurable USB stereo audio in/out
Separate 2-track record outputs
With new advancements in preamplifier, analog-to-digital converters, and DSP processing capabilities, the new breed of digital mixers is destined to become increasingly popular throughout the world.
By now you should have a pretty good idea of the important things to look for when considering a mixer. Armed with that information, you’re now better equipped to find a recording mixing console or portable live sound mixer to match your needs and budget.