8 Best Digital Mixers for Live Sound and Home Studio 2020

Best-Digital-Mixer-For-Live-Sound

When it comes time to choose a mixer, your decision will be based on a number of factors. For a studio mixer, you will probably want the perfect balance between features and sonic fidelity. For a live mixer, on the other hand, you might be a little less concerned with fidelity, but might be looking for portability, simplicity of use, and reliability.

Here you will find our guide to the 8 best digital mixers on the market for your home studio or live performances. Analogue certainly isn’t dead, and it can be a great choice for getting a unique and rich sound. However, these days, analogue can be costly, and the quality varies greatly. That is why we have solely focused on digital mixers – so you can get the most out of your budget and your sound.

Check out our top picks below.

QSC TouchMix-8 Compact Digital Mixer

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Key Features:

– Capacitive touchscreen offers a wealth of on-screen information while also providing confident hands-on control
– 120 presets provide real-world live sound settings for commonly-used instruments and microphones
– Anti-Feedback and Room Tuning Wizards simplify complex equalization tasks
– Real-time analyzer (RTA) provides instantaneous display of channel tonal balance and room response
– 4 Aux outputs provide ample monitor configuration options
– 14-channel direct-to-hard drive record/playback — capture and recall performances without the need for an external computer
– MP3 playback direct from USB

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When it comes to a mixer, you don’t need something complicated to achieve pro-quality sound. The QSX TouchMix-8 is the perfect example. It boasts a simple design and intuitive usability that just about anyone can control. If you aren’t looking for a load of channels, there is no reason this 8 channel compact mixer can’t give you everything you need. You get digital live sound mixing capability, loads of effects and superb connectivity. Not to mention, the touchscreen interface is sleek and simple. This is a great option for small scale studios and performances.

 

QSC TouchMix-16 Compact Digital Mixer

 

qsc-touchmix-16

Key Features:

– 120 presets provide real-world live sound settings for commonly-used instruments and microphones
– Simple and Advanced modes offer either basic or comprehensive controls
– Real-time analyzer (RTA) provides instantaneous display of channel tonal balance and room response
– 10 Aux mixes provide superior monitor configuration capabilities
– 22-channel direct-to-hard drive record/playback — capture and recall performances without the need for an external computer

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The next step up in the QSC family, the Touchmix-16 doubles your options and reaches out to musicians and professionals that require a large mixing console in a compact package. You get loads of power and functions without the weight that usually accompanies a mixing desk with this level of professional capability.

The Touchmix-16 is designed to be easy to use, with everything you need laid out in an intuitive format that will allow you to get the most out of your sound. Perfect for amateurs and pros alike.

Wharfedale Pro M16 Digital Mixer

 
Wharfedale-Pro-M16-Digital-Mixer
Key features:
– 16 inputs made up of 12 XLR’s and 4 combi jack’s.
– 10”1 inch touch screen with 1280x 800 resolution.
– 8 internal DSP processors and 8 assignable balanced outputs. 
– WiFi connectivity for control through your mobile devices. 
– Expansion bay for optional interfacing. 
 
 
The Wharfedale Pro M16 Digital Mixer is a multi-functional digital mixing console with lots of great features. It’s small size and lightweight build is a definite highlight – and despite being compact, it doesn’t skimp on audio quality. This user-friendly interface utilises a 4th generation floating point SHARC processor alongside 24-bit/192 kHz conversion for an incredibly high quality output. 
 
All of this is controlled via a premiere touch sensitive 10.1 inch screen with WiFi interfacing, so you can control remotely with your mobile devices. There is a custom layer channel link and group mute function which means it is ideal for live sound. The M16 is very popular among musicians, schools, conference venues, churches, wedding venues, and home users. It is an extremely versatile mixer. 
 
The 9 motorised faders make it incredibly simple to have total control over your sound no matter the situation. If you want a digital mixer that can grow and adapt with you, this could be the choice for you. 

Presonus StudioLive 32SC: 32-channel digital mixer and USB audio interface

If you are a live performer that needs a lot of channels, then the Presonus StudioLive® 32SC: 32-channel digital mixer and USB audio interface might be the option for you. This 32-channel digital mixer still maintains a compact size despite its power, and is definitely punching above its weight. 
 
This road size ready mixer can easily pack away and travel with you wherever you need to go. When you arrive at the venue you will find 40 mix channels, 26 mix buses, and 286 simulataneous processors. All of this gives you total control over you output with supreme studio grade audio quality. 
 
The sound is built around analog circuits that perform in both studio and live environments. The analog XMAX mix preamps provide convenience and digital recall without sacrificing on fidelity. For added convenience you can control remotely via the UC Surface software or included Studio One software. As well as providing a great live mixer, the 32SC is also a mobile recording studio with fully integrated virtual soundcheck. Record all 32 channels to USB or SD card for super simple outputs any time anywhere. 
 
Key features:
– Includes the popular Studio One software package and Studio Max plug-in suite. 
– Remote control from any device. 
– Dual mixing and recording functions for studio and live performance. 
 
 

StudioLive 32SX: 32-channel digital mixer and USB audio interface

Here you have another great Studio Live digital mixer with all the processing power and supreme audio quality that this family are famous for. The 32X also boasts a compact size, and is powered by the dual-core PreSonus FLEX DSP engine. Also with 40 mixing channels, 26 mix buses and 286 simultaneous processors, this is everything you need for both live performance and studio recording. 
 
The split-fader workflow gives you the ability to manage 32 input channels across 2 fader layers, while still giving you access to your mix output on 8 additional faders. While the 32 XMAX preamps and 16 balanced mix outputs pack a load of connectivity and power into a super portable package. In layman’s terms, you can have complete control over your output with nuanced attention no matter where you go. This is a scalable digital mixer that suits beginners and advanced users for a wide range of functions. 
 
Key features:
– Comes with very popular Studio One recording software and Studio Max plug-in suite. 
– Flexible mixing capabilities for studio and stage. 
– Remote control your mixer from anywhere with android and apple devices, or from your laptop. 

PreSonus StudioLive 16 Series III Digital Mixer

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When you opt for the PreSonus StudioLive, you will get a 16 channel mixer with 16 preamps and all the benefits of the Studio One integrated software. You can still use this mixer with other DAW’s but it works best within the PreSonus range. The StudioLive will meet all your needs for studio and live sound, with a built-in SD card slot for multi-track recording and sound checks on the fly. A very tidy package for its price point.

Yamaha TF1 Digital Mixer

You can really unleash your creativity with the Yamaha TF1 digital mixer. The last one on our list of standout mixers has a 16 input digital console that works well with the fluid TouchFlow operation interface. You can easily translate between your creative flow and your output without interruption, whether you’re an expert or a novice. While not boasting as many inputs or channels as some of the other options, there is still plenty to love in the TF1. It brings excellent sound quality and robust construction, from a reputable brand.

Summary – Choose the right Digital Mixer for your mix

So, there you have it. Here we have gathered what we think are the best models on the market when it comes to home studio and live mixing. In our opinion, the real standouts are those from QSC Touchmix 8, based on striking the perfect balance between cost, features and usability. However, no matter which you choose, it is important to find what is best for your personal needs. Consider how many channels you need, what kind of sound quality you are looking for, and what you are most likely to do most with your mixer. We are sure you will find the perfect match amongst this dynamic set of audio powerhouses.