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Live Sound Analog Mixing Consoles

Come in many different sizes and configurations for different applications The most common live sound consoles, range between 8 and 52 input channels 8 Ch 12 Ch 16 Ch 24 Ch 32 Ch 48 Ch 52 Ch And vary in number and types of outputs Consoles are sometimes described by the number of Channels, Groups, and Master outputs they have 24 X 8 X 2 (24 Input Channels, 8 Groups and Stereo out) 16 X 4 X 2 32 X 8 X 2

Live Sound Analog Mixing Console

All consoles consist of an Input section, master section and a group output section All consoles basically work the same however some have additional features built in to make it more powerful and to make our job easier

Input Section

Generally once youve learned the different controls of one input channel youve learned all the input channels

Common Inputs Connections

Connections are usually physically inline with the channel strip on the rear panel or they can be on the top panel of the console Mic In XLR Line In Balanced Insert = INS Balanced Direct Out

Input Strip Controls

+48 Switch (Phantom Power) For Powering Condenser mics and Active Dis Polarity or Phase Reverse Switch ( Zero with Slash ) Flips the Phase 180 degrees Pad Switch (Attenuates input signal by a preset amount) Gain pot (Mic Pre Amp) Sets input level to obtain optimal gain HPF Switch ( Preset High Pass Filter 75hz 100hz )

EQ Section

3 Different EQ types Fixed EQ ( Frequencies are fixed at the factory ) Semi Parametric or Sweep Eq Parametric

Fixed EQ

You can boost or cut two or three factory set fixed frequencies Usually High shelving Mid peaking dipping, Low Shelving 10 12khz 2.5 Khz 80 100Hz

Semi Parametric EQ

1 or 2 Sweepable Mids Preset Bandwidth or Q High Shelving Low Shelving

Fully Parametric EQ

Adjustable Bandwidth or Q on all frequency ranges

EQ in SWITCH

EQ Circuit In EQ Circuit Out

Auxiliary Sends

The Auxiliary send routes a split of the incoming signal to an auxiliary bus which can then be used with external devices or used as auxiliary mixes Auxiliary sends can either be pre-fader or post-fader Pre fader for use as monitor sends Post Fader for effect sends Can be use for a separate mix ( Press Feed, Videographers, Recording, separate speaker system )

Pan

Panorama Mono input channels can be faded between left and right main outs and odd and even numbered groups

Mute

Turns channel off post fader Pre or Post Auxiliary depending on the console

PFL / Solo

Pre Fader Listen Pre Fader Level Sends Input Channel Level to the Master Meter and to the headphone Jack Listen wedge when mixing monitors

Fader Section

Master / Group Assign switches, assigns the channel to a particular group or to the stereo master Input Level Meter Shows input level pre fader at all times

Master Section

Subgroup and main output fader controls are often found together on the right hand side of the mixer or, on larger consoles, in a center section flanked by banks of input channels. Matrix routing is often contained in this master section, as are headphone and local loudspeaker monitoring controls. Aux returns are found in the master section Aux Masters are also found in the master section

VCA

Voltage Controlled Amplifier Only found on Higher End Consoles Master controller of input channel faders All functions of the channel fader remain constant No degradation of audio quality

Matrix

A separate mix of the subgroups and stereo mixes sent to a mono out Used for camera Feeds, Recording, fills, delayed speakers etc.

General Mixing Tips

Unity Gain is God when operating mixers Run at Zero on all inputs and outputs for best signal to noise ratio Maintain unity gain during event When adjusting channel input gain keep in mind those adjustments will affect all routing and sends Dont Spill your Beer on the board!