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.

Makesort icon Model Direct Out Insert DO Gain Control Notes Price It Details
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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Crest HP-Eight TRS

"Balanced XLR outs"

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Mackie Onyx 1220 DB25, Post-Gain, Pre-Insert, Pre-EQ, Pre-Mute, Pre-Fader 1/4" unbal, post-lo-cut, pre-EQ, pre-fader, TS/RR, on ch 1-4 only. Tip is Lo-Z, Ring is Hi-Z. no

DO is also sent to FireWire if mixer has optional...

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Mackie Onyx 1620 DB25, Post-Gain, Pre-Insert, Pre-EQ, Pre-Mute, Pre-Fader 1/4" unbal, post-lo-cut, pre-EQ, pre-fader, TS/RR, on ch 1-8 only. Tip is Lo-Z, Ring is Hi-Z. no

DO is also sent to FireWire if mixer has optional...

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Mackie Onyx 1640 DB25, Post-Gain, Pre-Insert, Pre-EQ, Pre-Mute, Pre-Fader 1/4" unbal, post-lo-cut, pre-EQ, pre-fader, TS/RR, on ch 1-16. Tip is Lo-Z, Ring is Hi-Z. no

DO is also sent to FireWire if mixer has optional...

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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 1604-VLZ Pro 1/4" (+4?), post-EQ, post-fader, impedence balanced, only on ch 1-8. "First click" (-10) insert for ch 9-16 DO. 1/4" unbal, pre-EQ, pre-fader, TS/RR no

The 4 busses have 1/4" outputs. See page 28 of...

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Mackie CR1604 no, "first click" on (-10) insert jack 1/4" unbal, post-EQ, post-fader, TS/RR no

See p. 33 of...

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Mackie CFX-12mkii no, "First click" on (-10) insert jack 1/4" unbal, pre-EQ, pre-fader, TS/RR no

The 4 busses have 1/4" outputs. "Utility Out" mirrors the Main out...

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Mackie SR 24•4 no, "first click" on (-10) insert jack 1/4" unbal, pre-EQ, pre-fader, pre-mute, TS/RR no

This 24-channel mixer has twenty mono input channels/faders and two...

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Mackie SR 32•4 no, "first click" on (-10) insert jack 1/4" unbal, pre-EQ, pre-fader, pre-mute, TS/RR no

This mixer has 28 mic/line mono, and 2 stereo line channels.

The...

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Mackie SR 24•4-VLZ Pro no, "first click" on (-10) insert jack 1/4" unbal, pre-EQ, pre-fader, pre-mute, TS/RR no

This 24-channel mixer has twenty mono input channels/faders and two...

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Mackie SR 32•4-VLZ Pro no, "first click" on (-10) insert jack 1/4" unbal, pre-EQ, pre-fader, pre-mute, TS/RR no

This mixer has 28 mic/line mono, and 2 stereo line channels.

The...

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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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Mackie 1402VLZ PRO 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

See p. 25 of...

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Mackie 1402-VLZ3 no dedicated direct out. use "first click" on (-10) insert jack on first 6 inputs. 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

This mixer has no official modifications. However, previous models...

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Mackie Onyx 24.4 DB25, balanced, post low-cut, post insert, pre EQ 1/4" unbal, post low-cut, pre EQ, pre fader, pre mute, TS/RR no

This 24-channel mixer has twenty mono input channels/faders and two...

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Mackie Onyx 32.4 DB25, balanced, post low-cut, post insert, pre EQ 1/4" unbal, post low-cut, pre EQ, pre fader, pre mute, TS/RR no

This 32-channel mixer has twenty eight mono input channels/faders and...

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Mackie 2404-VLZ3 no, "first click" on (-10) insert jack (post-gain, pre-EQ, pre-fader, pre mute) 1/4" unbal, pre-EQ, pre-fader, pre-mute, TS/RR no

The Mackie 2404 VLZ3 is a 24-channel mixer with twenty mono input...

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Mackie DL1608 none none no

This is a dock for an iPad with 16 mic preamps. Mic inputs 1-12 are XLR...

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