Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

All about the tools and techniques involved in capturing sound, in the studio or on location.

Moderator: Moderators

Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Mr. Ted »

Hello all - hope people are doing well.

I have a few simple but quite Newbie questions. I've searched and searched but have not had any luck finding the answers so here goes.

I'm doing some simple amateur recording in my basement, doing all tracking myself. Using a Focusrite 2i2 into my laptop, using Reaper as my DAW.

My questions regard my Mackie ProFX12v3 mixer I recently picked up. Instead of using a multiple-input DAI to do individual drum tracks, my thought and budget tended towards 7, 8 or 9 mics in total around the kit, all into the mixer, then a simple output to the DAI, my thought being that if the mix were pretty good, I could add effects to the entire single drum track and still be ok. I don't want to use the Mackie built-in effects yet, and am looking for a nice, dry, clean mix to start with and practice my recording techniques.

Now, I realize that may not be optimal but it's what my current situation is and I have to work with it. Having said that, here are my questions:

1. Should I be only sending my main ouput(s) to my DAI? I cannot get any signal from them to my DAI unless the FX send is being used (if FX mute is pressed, there is no signal leaving the main outputs), and am instead using the Monitor Send. It sounds ok, but I'm sure I'm missing quality/features by doing this. Anyone know what settings I need to see on my mixer to get that main output working while not using any built-in effects?

2. I currently have 7 mics being used around the kit and going into the first 7 inputs on the mixer. However, is it possible to feed this mixer a total of 12 mic inputs simultaneously? I'm not sure where/how to connect the next few mics and how to then control their levels.

I know for many this is obvious and basic stuff but please bear with me. If anyone could clearly explain the error and idiocy of my ways it would be most appreciated.

Thanks in advance,

Mr. Ted
Mr. Ted
Posts: 3 Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2022 10:04 pm

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Sam Spoons »

Welcome to the forum :thumbup:

What genre are you recording? For many styles of music three or four (or even two) mics are enough to get a great drum sound but in others a mic on every drum (and two on the kick and snare) are the norm. I'm not an expert recording engineer, my experience is with live sound , but I have had excellent results recording live sessions with just two mics, one on the kick mic and an overhead. That said I'm a guitar player and like 'live' sounding recordings and my style doesn't suit all genres.

But, if you record multiple mics on the kit, you gain little (IMHO) if you don't record them to separate tracks. Often it is better to save yourself the hassle and just use a couple of well placed mics.
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 17443 Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 12:00 am Location: Manchester UK
Your karma has run over my dogma

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by blinddrew »

Sam's points are valid, but in answer to your direct questions:
Mr. Ted wrote: Tue Jul 05, 2022 10:16 pm 1. Should I be only sending my main ouput(s) to my DAI? I cannot get any signal from them to my DAI unless the FX send is being used (if FX mute is pressed, there is no signal leaving the main outputs), and am instead using the Monitor Send. It sounds ok, but I'm sure I'm missing quality/features by doing this. Anyone know what settings I need to see on my mixer to get that main output working while not using any built-in effects?

Have you got the 1-2 buttons pressed in (next to each of the faders)? That sends the output of that channel to outputs 1&2 which are your main outputs.

2. I currently have 7 mics being used around the kit and going into the first 7 inputs on the mixer. However, is it possible to feed this mixer a total of 12 mic inputs simultaneously? I'm not sure where/how to connect the next few mics and how to then control their levels.

Nope. You've only got 7 microphone pre-amps on this mixer. It can only handle 12 channels if channels 5-12 are stereo channels and their inputs are at line level.
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 19700 Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Mr. Ted »

So firstly just want to thank you both for the quick replies. You are already helping lift the confusion.

Yes, Sam in response to your reply, I know it's not ideal to think about sending all the mics at once to the mixer but I'm trying to play around with multiple mics located at different positions to capture different facets of the kit/room/cymbals, etc, so I will try to continue with this as an experiment. Sometimes I go off on a tangent before I return to reality, ha ha. But thanks! And in terms of genre, it's everything and anything, but just fun at the end of the day. Really trying to understand the gestalt of drum mics and production this way first.

Blinddrew, I had none of the 1-2 buttons pressed on any channel. I assumed unpressed was "1" and pressed in was "2". If I press them all in, all the channels will be routed to my main outs? What's the difference between only using Main 1 out to my DAI? Do I need to have both XLR cables from those 2 main outs to my DAI?

I understand that I only have 7 mic pre-amps, but is there a way to connect mics to the Line 8,9 or 10 or even the Insert jack? I'm thinking there has to be another way to get more mics in here if possible.

Thanks again to both of you and sorry for my complete ignorance on this!

Mr. Ted
Mr. Ted
Posts: 3 Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2022 10:04 pm

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by James Perrett »

Mr. Ted wrote: Wed Jul 06, 2022 12:25 am ...is there a way to connect mics to the Line 8,9 or 10 or even the Insert jack? I'm thinking there has to be another way to get more mics in here if possible.

You could always buy more mic preamps - but by the time you've done that you might as well have bought a multiple input audio interface to do the job properly. You can buy an interface with 8 preamps for just over £200 which is expandable to 16 mic inputs for another £150.
User avatar
James Perrett
Moderator
Posts: 12382 Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2001 12:00 am Location: The wilds of Hampshire
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration. JRP Music Facebook Page

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by resistorman »

Mr. Ted wrote: Tue Jul 05, 2022 10:16 pm I cannot get any signal from them to my DAI unless the FX send is being used (if FX mute is pressed, there is no signal leaving the main outputs),

You need to address this first. Something isn't right.
User avatar
resistorman
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 2049 Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:00 am Location: Asheville NC
"The Best" piece of gear is subjective.

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Mike Stranks »

Mr Ted:

Welcome to the forum from me too!

it's clear that not only are you unfamilair with your mixer, you're unfamiliar how mixers work in general. A quiet 30 minutes carefully reading the manual will be time well-spent. Mackie has historically had a good reputation for writing user-friendly manuals so hopefully that's still the case.

One of the key things you need to understand is how a mixer works.. Ignoring the 'stereo' channels (for non-microphone sources) for now, it takes mono sources such as a microphone and using the pan-pots places those in a stereo soundscape which is output from the mixer using the two main outputs - in your case '1' is left and '2' is right in the soundscape. If the panpot for a specic mic is hard left then all of its signal will go to the left main output. It follows that if all your panpots are centred then an identical signal is sent to each output and you are effectively recording in mono. Your outputs are actually designated L and R... You need cables from both outputs into the line inputs on your interface - and these will themselves need to be routed L and R in your recording software.

And while I'm here... no; you can't use the line inputs for mics unless, as has already been said, you buy some standalone mic preamplifiers to connect to those inputs. And no, you can't use the 'inserts' for mics...

Do read the manual and checkout some of Mackie's own videos...
Mike Stranks
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9562 Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2003 12:00 am

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Arpangel »

I’m wondering why you went the mixer route? it’s not the only way, in some situations things can be simplified by using a multiple input interface, external mic-pre’s if necessary, mixing and adding effects in the box, from a cost point of view, it can also work out cheaper than using a mixer and external effects.
A Behringer UMC1820, plus the ADA8200 expander will give you sixteen mic inputs as opposed to the Mackies 8, and only for around an extra hundred quid, download Reaper and you’ll have hundreds of effects for almost nothing.
I use a mixer in my set-up, simply because I mix while I record, using a lot of aux sends for external hardware, that I really want to use, but if you’re starting fresh, this isn’t necessarily the best way to go, if you are set on using a mixer, sounds like you need to learn a lot more, about basically how they work, you won’t get far if you don’t have a night reading the manual, watching a few videos.
User avatar
Arpangel
Jedi Poster
Posts: 11600 Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2003 12:00 am
That’s another thing

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Wonks »

Arpangel wrote: Wed Jul 06, 2022 8:08 am and only for around an extra hundred quid, download Reaper and you’ll have hundreds of effects for almost nothing.

The O/P is already using Reaper. :headbang:
User avatar
Wonks
Jedi Poster
Posts: 13209 Joined: Thu May 29, 2003 12:00 am Location: Reading, UK
Reliably fallible.

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Arpangel »

Wonks wrote: Wed Jul 06, 2022 8:12 am
Arpangel wrote: Wed Jul 06, 2022 8:08 am and only for around an extra hundred quid, download Reaper and you’ll have hundreds of effects for almost nothing.

The O/P is already using Reaper. :headbang:

I’ll reword it, meant to say, you have it already so.
User avatar
Arpangel
Jedi Poster
Posts: 11600 Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2003 12:00 am
That’s another thing

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by The Elf »

This is another one of those situations where a mixer is not really the tool for the job. In this context it adds compromises, complications and restrictions.

That said, you should be able to make a stereo mix of 7 mic's and present these to your interface via the mixer's main outputs, so there's likely a user error going on somewhere in the chain.

Maybe some photos of the mixer and screen shots of the interface's settings?
User avatar
The Elf
Jedi Poster
Posts: 18473 Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2001 12:00 am Location: Sheffield, UK
An Eagle for an Emperor, A Kestrel for a Knave.

Re: Mackie ProFX12v3 - Some Newbie Questions

Post by Arpangel »

Mr. Ted wrote: Wed Jul 06, 2022 12:25 am I had none of the 1-2 buttons pressed on any channel. I assumed unpressed was "1" and pressed in was "2". If I press them all in, all the channels will be routed to my main outs? What's the difference between only using Main 1 out to my DAI? Do I need to have both XLR cables from those 2 main outs to my DAI?

Pressing that button will route that channel to both L/R/Main/1/2 or whatever they are called.
To route that channel to 1 "or" 2 you’ll need to use that channels pan control, it works like this for the mains, and subs.
User avatar
Arpangel
Jedi Poster
Posts: 11600 Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2003 12:00 am
That’s another thing
Post Reply