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Soundcraft SI Compact 24 Digital Mixer - Complete Review

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♪♫♪♫.............................[Music Playing] The new Soundcraft Compact SI mixer combines the best of analog mixing and digital mixing. Everything is on the surface so that it's a tactile kind of a surface. You can easily move around and control levels. You can control EQ. You can control effects. But, you get to store it all, recall it all, have all the benefits of a digital console. So let's take a walk through the Soundcraft Compact SI Console. First of all we'll go down and take a look at the faders. At the fader level, we have 22 faders on this model. The frame sizes are 32, 24 and 16. And so we're going to look at the 32 model. As you can see there are 22 input channels. If I hit "NB" that will bring up the last 2 microphone inputs, then we have a couple more line inputs, and a couple of effects inputs here. So you have 2 more mics and then four line inputs and in this particular mode they're patched into line inputs on the back and then internally for your effects processors here. So you can see it has moving faders and those faders move fast, very quickly adjustable and it recalls the setting, instantly. Then the next thing...Let's take a look up one particular group of channels here. Okay. You have a "Solo" button as you would on any console...nice large button. Easy to operate. Very well lit. Easy to see. A lot of consoles don't have that capability. Where you have a large button. You can tell if the surface is designed for a live application because there's a lot of real estate here. As with any digital console you have to select the channel to work with it. So we hit the "Select" button. We'll take the "Solo" off. Hit the "Select" button and now the Effects and EQ section applies to that channel. Then we have an "On" and "Off" button. Nice, green "On" and "Off" button. Again, very easy to see. I love that about this console. But these buttons are easy to see, easy to press and they're separated. Then on the input channel, we have a "Signal Present," minus 24 & minus 12 dB so you get nice 4 LED segment metering and also you can see that we have a compressor "On/Off" light right here, the "X," so we can know if we've got a compressor on that channel or not. Then the Pan Control of course, again, very easy to see. So let's take a look now at the EQ and input section. Okay. the first thing we have is on every channel you'll have a full metering capaibility, phase switch. You've got 48 volt Phantom power. Again, easy to see. Your "Gain" and "Trim" switch....another great thing about this console's the high pass filter. You can switch it in and out, again a bright button. And you can adjust the frequency at where you want that high pass filter to take effect. Most of the time I'll run it at 100 Hz for vocal microphones so we're cutting off some of the rumble and the handling noise. But I can punch that in and out if I want to and compare. Then we get to the gate section. You have a full gate section here that you can punch in or out, and you have full, adjustable parameters. Now let me take you quickly over to the display here. And what you'll see is, is that the adjustments are also mimicked on the display. So not only do I have the adjustment that I'm adjusting, but I have numerical values for everything that is associated with that compressor, or in the case of the EQ it will pop up there, and then it drops back, okay? So the full gate, full compression, you have threshold, ratio, gain, everything you'd want in a compressor, and again, all of these are memorized in the setting. So when you do a scene setting or a channel setting those gate and compressor settings are memorized. EQ Section - Again, bright "In" and "Out." I can't recall the number of times I've seen guys run a console and forget that their EQ section was out because they couldn't see the button. So they were working the EQ and it wasn't even taking effect. So there we go. We've got a 4-band EQ section. Highs and lows are fixed frequency, and the mids are adjustable frequency. Excuse me, the highs, mids and lows are all adjustable frequency. But the 2 mids have an adjustable width or adjustable "q" on them. So each...all of these are on every channel and they're also memorized in the scene settings. Now, this has 14 output buses. A lot of you are using a lot of in ear monitors and you take up a lot of buses along with your wedges and along with the Effects Sends. so you can see the bus selectors around here...14 buses...so as soon as I press a button...(to camera man -"let's go ahead and pull back") and you'll see that as soon as I press that button, all the faders go down to zero. Well, why is that the case? Notice also that the color changes here to indicate that I'm on a bus. Now these turn into all the bus sends for those channels. So if I want to have my drums sent to the drummer, I just bring those right up on Bus 1 and he's on "In Ear 1" and then on the next bus, Bus 2, I have a different mix, Bus 3 I have a different mix. Again, instantly recalled for each of the Buses, and easily selectable. So it's visual as well as being very easy to operate. All 14 Buses have the complete Gate, Compressor and Equalizer section on them, as well as a full 3rd octave EQ. Now it's very fascinating the way they've done the EQ on this board. So let's take a quick look at it. You remember the selector switch over here? That I had "Input A," and then I had Input B, now if I go to the Buses I've got the Bus masters If I go down here all of a sudden I get to the EQ section. and you can see these markings...31, 40, 50... those are your 3rd octave centers for your EQ. And so I can adjust the EQ on that particular Bus, simply by moving the faders, and then if I flip the "EQ Low," excuse me, "EQ High," now I get the 800 to 16K frequencies and I can adjust those. So again, you don't have to use a small little touch panel display it's very tactile to adjust the EQ and the colors make sure that you know that you're on the EQ section. Okay? So we'll go back to the Input settings again. But again, all the Buses are...14 Buses... they all have compression, limiting, EQ, plus a 3rd octave EQ. Then we have 4 Matrix Sends as well and the inputs will change colors as soon as I select those. So, same thing like the Bus Sends, the Matrix Sends will show up on the motorized faders. So I have 14 Buses, 4 Matrix Sends. And then as we come down here you can see that this is the Master for that Matrix Send or that Bus. lights up and shows that we are in a Matrix mode, this yellow mode and here's the Master for that. Now in normal operation this is going to be the left and right and mono Send. You also have full compression, full limiting and 3rd octave EQ on that as well. So it is full of processing. But it's all easy to get to. Let's go ahead and move up here...and what you'll see is a touch panel display that you can use for Effects. You can use for your EQs and I already showed you how that worked for the compressor/limiter. This has 4 built-in Lexicon on-board processors. If you're familiar with Lexicon processing, it is very natural sounding. So, you get high-quality Effects processing, like Reverb, again, more compression if you want, a delay, echo...and of the ones Lexicon effects, you have here. So you can see you have 4 Effects processors, and you have a tap for each one of those. If we want to go ahead and synchronize those with the music you simply tap to synchronize the Effect with the music, So, again, 14 Buses, 4 Matrixes, 4 Internal Effects processors, 32, 24 or 16 frame size. Then we'll go ahead and take a look at the back side of this... and take a look at the analog inputs and the digital outputs. On the back panel we have 24 microphone inputs. You can see all the way across here. Here are your 16 and here's your full 24 microphone inputs. And, you have 16 analog outputs. All XLR, all balanced. Then you have inserts. You have up to 4 Sends and 4 Returns. Remember, our Matrix and our Effects Sends. And you have your AES digital outputs. right here. Now these outputs can be Masters, here's a mix Left and mix Right, or you can assign them to be direct outs or Effects outs. There's a number of things you can do with that. And of course the first questions that a lot of people ask about a digital console is, "Why aren't there more outputs? Because I've got a 32 channel input console here. I've got more Buses." Well, here's is the key. It's that we have a card, in this particular case on this console a MADI card is installed with fiber out, so I can access all my Ins and all my Outs off of the MADI card, or I can have other cards to plug in to work with other types of digital inputs and outputs. But that's right on the back panel here. You can also go ahead and put this into the Harman HiQ Net DIgital System so it can talk with the other items such as the Crown amplifiers, and other products that Crown has on the IQ Net and use their architect software. So that's a quick overview of the Soundcraft Compact SI Digital Console. As I said a great blend of analog console and digital console. So go ahead and call your CCI Solutions retail products representative and they'll fill you in on more details if you'd like, or advise you on which console is best of the many digital consoles that are out there today. But, an excellent choice is the Soundcraft Compact SI Digital Console. ♪♫♪♫...............[Music Playing]

Video Details

Duration: 10 minutes and 28 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: CCI Solutions
Director: CCI Solutions
Views: 1,421
Posted by: ccisolutions on Oct 18, 2012

Review of hte Soundcraft SI Compact 24 Digital Mixer by Ron Simonson of CCI Solutions illustrates how this little mixer combines the best of both analog and digital mixing. This console has large, lit buttons that are easy to see, easy to press and adequately separated. All settings on the mixer can be memorized. The board is color coded to make it very easy to know where you are working. The back features an IQ-net out which is compatible with many Crown products.

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