Audio mixers are basically recording consoles which are useful in a variety of settings. They’re most commonly used on television studio sets, film studio sets, live music concerts, and music recording studio sets. If you have a premium audio mixer at your fingertips, then you can produce the best quality audio for your films, television shows, music recordings, and podcasts.
An audio mixer works by mixing at least two different audio signals that it receives from other devices. After the signals are mixed, a new piece of sound or music is created. Audio mixing technology has only gotten more advanced over the years. This has allowed music producers to come up with some pretty neat mixes. The best part is that amateurs can also create interesting audio mixes too.
Best Budget Products
So, why don’t more people purchase audio mixers if they’re interested in creating their own music? The simple answer is that audio mixers are usually expensive. They’re enormous pieces of equipment and typically have a large price tag attached to them. However, as the technology has advanced, some manufacturers have been able to design “budget-friendly” audio mixers. Let’s look at some of those now.
Below are the top 5 best budget audio mixers.
1) Mackie PROFX12V2
The Mackie PROFX12V2 comes with 12 channels, so it can be used with numerous applications. To ensure the best performance quality possible, it comes with mic preamps. This is great if you want to do live audio mixing for outdoor shows or any other live event with crowds of people watching and listening. You can also record mixes with the use of the USB interface. The FX Effects engine lets you add effects to your mixes too.
2) Allen & Heath ZEDi-10FX Hybrid
If you’re looking for a cheap compact arrangement for your audio mixer, then try out the Allen & Heath ZEDi-10FX Hybrid Compact Mixer. Whether you want to do audio recordings or live sound mixing, the ZEDi-10FX Hybrid will not disappoint you. It includes USB in and out ports, microphone line input ports, 3 stereo input ports, and an FX input option. You’ll love its sound performance and stylish design. The only downside is some compatibility issues, but that’s all.
3) Mackie PROFX8v2
The Mackie PROFX8v2 is another great audio mixer of the Mackie brand. This particular mixer contains 8 channels and produces the best quality sound out there. You’ll be amazed at how affordable this audio mixer is after you hear its superb sound quality. This audio mixer is very popular with music producers, professional musicians, DJs, and sound engineers. There is a USB interface built into the mixer to make music recording and playback very simple.
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4) Behringer X Air X18
The Behringer X Air X18 is a little more expensive than the previously listed audio mixers, but it gives you a whopping 18 channels, 16 XLR connections, USB input, 12 buses, and a whole lot more. There is even a Wi-Fi module integrated into the device for connecting it to your laptop or smartphone. You’ll have the option of 6 AUX outputs, 4 stereo effects, and a lot more. Overall, the Behringer X Air X18 has a solid construction, great sound, and awesome touchscreen technology.
5) Peavey PVI 6500
The Peavey PVI 6500 features only 5-channel options, but it is one of the most powerful audio mixers on the market that is budget-friendly. If you need to mix audio in order to produce music, then you’ll want this model audio mixer by your side. It is great for creating music at schools, churches, bands, carnivals, or anywhere else that has dozens of people. Bluetooth technology is built into the device. The construction is superior in design.
Tips to Choosing Best Audio Mixer
Do you want to mix audio signals together and amplify the output? If so, then you need to choose the best audio mixer for your amplifier. It takes someone with advanced knowledge of acoustic tools to combine the right mixer and amplifier together. Otherwise, your sound output will be less than satisfying to the audience that has to listen to it.
When you have premade sounds that you want to play, such as from a CD or digital storage drive, then you don’t need to concern yourself with an audio mixer. You simply need to connect the media device to an amplifier and loudspeaker. But if you want to modify several audio signals and amplify the mixture of sounds for an audience, then you need to have an audio mixer that can do it well.
Below are the top 5 tips for choosing an audio mixer for an amplifier.
1) Read the Specifications of an Audio Mixer
Don’t just purchase some random audio mixer because you like the way it looks. It is easy to get seduced by all the knobs and switches on an audio mixer console. They make the console appear as if it is professional and sophisticated. However, do not assume that a fancy looking audio mixer console will have good amplification qualities. Check the specifications of the audio mixer to ensure that it supports amplification, especially power amplification.
2) Try a Power Mixer
Power mixers are stronger audio mixer consoles that can handle more input signals coming from multiple devices. They also eliminate the need for you to set up power amplifiers separately because they can produce the amplification output for you. These are great mixers to use for amplifying acoustic guitar sounds, electric guitar sounds, microphones, and other electric instruments. With just decent-sized speakers, you can blast the output of the amplified signals through them.
3) Read the Reviews
Some audio mixers are better than others. Since you may not be an expert in the fundamentals of audio mixing technology, then you should not rely on your own instincts alone. Read the customer reviews left for these audio mixing consoles on their product pages. You can tell from these reviews whether a console is good for amplifiers or not.
4) Consider the Price
The studio-quality audio mixers cost thousands of dollars. You probably don’t want to spend that much money just to have a decent audio mixer for your amplifier. That is okay because you can find a compatible audio mixer for far less money. Amazon sells audio mixers for a few hundred dollars. In fact, you’ll find many mixer and amplifier combination devices where you get both functions in one device. That may be a more convenient way to take advantage of this technology because you’ll have less equipment to move around when you host events.
5) Choose a Good Brand
When you go shopping for an audio mixer for amplifiers, you need to consider the brand too. There are a lot of unknown or unbranded audio mixers in the marketplace that’ll give you less than satisfactory sounds. That is why you need a name brand audio mixer that has a fabulous reputation for quality. Some good brand names include Allen & Heath, Yamaha, Mackie, and PreSonus. They may even give you a money-back guarantee if you purchase them new.
Since you’re probably new to the world of audio mixing, then you may not purchase the perfect audio mixing console the first time out. But if you follow the tips mentioned above, you should end up with a fairly decent audio mixer that works well with your amplifier.