The Mixer Output Guide

Courtesy of Silent Way Remote Audio Recording and Audio Equipment Rental.

Audio mixer inputs are well documented, but output specifications are buried in manuals. This guide to the poor neglected output describes direct outs, inserts, hidden mods and more.

There are two ways to do a live recording: use a mic-splitter with dedicated mic preamps, or hope that the direct outputs on the house board don't suck. House direct outs are risky if they're post-fader/EQ, inaccessible, bad mic pres etc. Whether you call it a console, mixer, board or desk, plan ahead with this list. Your contributions and corrections are encouraged.

TS/RR: tip=send, ring=return. A "first click" insert is a semi-direct out: an unbalanced 1/4" TS plug inserted half-way will send signal without interrupting it to the mix bus. Plugged all the way in, it is a direct out which interrupts.

Sort the list by clicking on a header. 79 mixers matched current criteria.

Make Model Direct Out Insert DO Gain Control Notessort icon Price It Details
Tapco Mix60 None None no Price It Details
Yamaha MC3210M no no

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Midas XL-200 TRS, post-fader, internal solder mod changes it to pre-fader. Separate TRS jacks, Pre-EQ, internal jumper makes it Post-EQ. no

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Soundcraft Delta Theater Post-fader Switchable pre/post EQ

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Crest Century LM20

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Crest HP-Eight TRS

"Balanced XLR outs"

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Soundcraft Series Two 1/4" TRS switchable pre/post fader. (0dBu, +22 max, 75ohm impedence balanced) 1/4" insert is pre-EQ. no

"DIR PRE" button makes DO pre-fader/pre-mute. 40 channel model is 26/16...

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Midas XL-4 XLR, post-fader. Switchable to pre-fader or pre-insert. Half normalised fully balanced S/R point, switchable in/out and pre/post EQ. yes

"DIRECT O/P" trimpot adjusts DO level, post-fader by default. "PRE FADE...

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Soundcraft Spirit Monitor 2 XLR "split out" (see notes), pre-EQ, pre-fader, pre-input gain 1/4" unbalanced TS/RR, pre-EQ, pre-fader

"Split Out" is simply a y-ed XLR jack connected directly to the XLR mic...

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Roland M-480 None None no

48 mono input (or 24 stereo in) line-level rackmounted mixer with no...

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Mackie 8Bus Series 1/4" unbal (+4?), post-EQ, post-fader 1/4" unbal, pre-lo-cut, pre-EQ, pre-fader, TS/RR no

All busses have 1/4" inserts. Busses have 1/4" +4/-10 switchable...

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Mackie 1402VLZ no dedicated direct out. use "first click" on (-10) insert jack. 1/4" unbalanced, post-trim, post-low cut, pre-EQ, pre-fader, TS/RR. Send= 120 ohm low impedance. Return= 2.5k ohm high impedance. no

Also known as the Micro Series "MS1402VLZ". See p. 26 of...

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Yamaha M2000 1/4", switchable pre/post EQ, switchable pre/post fader ? yes

Aux 6 knob is switchable to become gain control for DO post-EQ/post-...

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Soundcraft Vienna 1/4", switchable pre/post EQ? 1/4" yes

Aux 8 knob is switchable to become gain control for DO. (A seperate "...

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Soundcraft K2 1/4", post-fader, switchable to pre-fader if aux 8 is in Direct Out mode 1/4", Pre-EQ yes

Aux 8 knob on all mono channels are switchable to become gain control...

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Presonus StudioLive 16.4.2 16 ch on DB25 pre-insert balanced 1/4"

Built-in FireWire for "up to 32 channels of recording and up to 18...

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Yamaha PM1000 None None no

Circa 1975. XLRs are pin 2 hot.

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Crest X 20R 1/4" TRS, on first 12 channels, post fader (50 ohms ground compensated) 1/4" TSRR, post-HPF, pre-eq, pre-fader, pre-mute. no

Complex internal soldering mod to make direct out prefader. Aux send...

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Yamaha M7CL Stock with 16 XLR "omni outs" (M7CL-32/48) or 8 XLR "omni outs" (M7CL-48ES). Stock with 16 XLR "omni outs" (M7CL-32/48) or 8 XLR "omni outs" (M7CL-48ES).

Configurable with three...

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ATI Paragon II Monitor 1/4" balanced TRS Separate send and return on 1/4" balanced TRS yes

Dedicated knob for direct out level on each channel.

From the...

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