Minimal mixers



From @MengQiMusic


I’d love to see a video of this matrix mixer in action
I’ve wanted a matrix mixer for a while


I decided to go for the nonlinear circuits cluster. This one looks great for routing but it does lack attenuation.


Since Chess is referenced, this led me to ponder an actual chess board with pieces that would initiate some kind of control signal when moved. It would be neat to play an actual game of chess that happens to trigger events for each move.


probably a lot more out there on that.
this just came up first for me.



Conversation about mixers with Tony Rolando and Divkid,

I like the theory of a distributed mixer.


I’ve been using this small Rolls 3 channel stereo mixer for a few years.

They also make a passive mixer that is handy to have around.


Distributed mixers from Grant Richter:

"Perhaps using the classical model of a mixer serves your workflow, but I think it creates a traffic jam.
"Joshua Holley and I thought of putting distributed mixing channels all over a modular, low noise and chainable with the “Expand” input. The Malekko/Richter XMIX was the result. Stackable distributed mixer/crossfader module, DC coupled and very accurate.
“Not that I have anything against modules that look like mixing boards. But you could have a little stackable mixer channel right next to your fave modules.”


I like a balance of “distributed mixing” and a centralized final mix. Distributed is great for sub-mixing elements or voices, or for modulation. Having some sort of final mixer is great for performance, managing stereo image, and bussing effects.

At the moment I’m using a combination of LxD, Optomix, VCAs as distributed, and a Frap Tools CGM system for the final mix and output.



something similar would be possible -digitally- with an er 301 and a grid…an idea for the upcoming SDK?


i guess the 2-channel version has been out since last year. i like the layout, included isolator and per-channel HPF. i love VU meters, but they seem a little excessive on a mixer like this. i think green/orange/red clipping leds would be sufficient for my needs.


I agree those VU meters are fancy, but kind of silly given the spare nature of everything else. While I often really like the general aesthetics of these kinds of mixers, how do folk around here actually make any use of these? Is everyone here mainly a DJ?

I may have even said this already somewhere above, but not only would I be stymied by the RCA jacks (the devil’s connectors if ever there was), but many have none or at most one send, which would render it entirely useless for me. If only we could get something with that general look/shape/layout, 1/4" connectors, 6-8 mono/stereo channels and 2 aux sends. If only! And why is it that mixers that currently meet that spec all have the input/output jacks on the face panel instead of at the back? Does thinness reduce shipping costs by that much more than squatness?

Also, would that we could be freed from the tyranny of master faders, entirely unnecessary and the source of bad habits in the case of a performance.


you might want a Sonosax SX-ST configured to your needs. Costs the price of a recent car, though.


£1,450 for a feature sparse 4 stereo pair mixer? (Or £1,600 for the “premium” version, no details on what the extra £150 gets you.)

I realize these are hand built, and quite lovely to look at… but my music won’t sound any worse over many minimal mixers costing far less.

Also, unparalleled flexibility for FX integration seems a bit rich for “you can turn the returns into a buss insert”


i only post these things as a reference for what simplicity in a mixer can look like. dj mixers appeal to me as they are targeting live/performance use. is it overpriced? maybe. guess it depends on one’s needs. i’m unlikely to buy something like this as it doesn’t check all the boxes for me. but it’s fun to look at and think about what the right mixer could be.


Yeah, when the list price is “please call for the latest price,” good trigger for me to put the internet down and walk away.

Certainly an impressive mixer, although, I’m not sure it’s really intended for standing at a table performing a set with synths and effects. I’ve made do with a Zed14 for nearly a decade, I can continue with no issue. But minimal (or even moderately stylish) in its appearance it isn’t, and it takes about a quarter of my desk surface, which seems entirely unnecessary.


I hope I’ll be able to share my new mixer very soon, which should fit into this discussion somewhat. It’ll not be exactly minimal, but a 5x5 active matrix mixer with a bunch of extras like VCAs, envelope followers, etc. should appeal to some that were looking at a more standard mixer so far. Pictures and more detail to follow once it’s in my hands, which will probably take till end of the month or so.