Small-Format Studio Consoles

Aug 1, 2012 9:00 AM, Mix, By Michael Cooper

Music Production Mixers for Space-Challenged Control Rooms


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Toft Audio ATB08M

The Toft Audio ATB08M features the classic 80B equalizer that was the hallmark of the legendary Trident 80 Series console.

Classic-Analog Revivalists

Fans of the vintage Trident Series 80 console who can’t afford the hefty price or accommodate the large footprint, you’re in luck: The Toft Audio ATB08M is an 8-channel mixer that features the identical 80B 4-band equalizer (plus 80Hz highpass filter) that largely defined the sound of that classic console. Additional features include eight mix buses with outputs, direct outs on every input channel, in-line monitoring (switching the monitor return to the channel fader), eight subgroups (with inserts), six aux sends, eight stereo aux returns and a meter bridge. The aux returns can be used as 16 more inputs during mixdown.

4-, 16-, 24- and 32-channel configurations of the ATB Series console are also available. The 4-channel version, the ATB04M, differs from the others in that it has only two subgroups and two auxes. The meter bridge, switchable to show levels for either the channel inputs or monitor returns, is optional for 16-channel and larger configurations. All outputs are electronically balanced.

Wunder Audio Wunderbar

The Wunder Audio Wunderbar analog console provides three vintage-flavored stereo buses, the outputs for which can be used discretely or mixed together. A 12-channel configuration is shown here.

The Wunder Audio Wunderbar console gives you three vintage flavors to choose from at once: Wunder, Neve and API. Inputs can be routed to one of three stereo buses, each imparting one of these flavors. The Wunder bus is identical to that used in the custom-made, 1971-era Allotrope console owned by John Paul Jones (of Led Zeppelin fame). The Neve and API buses are based very closely on the Neve 1272 and API 312 preamps, respectively; the only differences are some of the components are new. The three vintage buses can be used as mono or stereo subgroups and their signals blended together on the Wunder bus, or they can be used to simultaneously print three discrete stereo mixes (one for each flavor).

The Wunderbar’s 8-channel monitor section can be used for aux returns or extra inputs and can be bused to the three vintage-flavored stereo buses. Every input channel features a transformer-balanced direct out and insert and the Wunder PEQ1-style equalizers (incidentally, one of the best-sounding equalizers this author has ever heard). The modular console is available in frame sizes from 12 to 60 input channels (in 12-channel increments) and features in-line monitoring. Third-party ShadowMix automation is available as an option.

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