Barrett Jones, FOH engineer for Brad, mixed the band's Record Store Day appearance at Easy Street Records in Seattle on Mackie's upcoming DL1608 mixer.
Seattle, WA (May 1, 2012)—Record Store Day, held last week, gave music fans across the U.S. a reason to celebrate, but for those in Seattle, it also provided a sneak peek of Mackie’s upcoming DL1608 digital live mixer with iPad Control in action, when it provided FOH mixes for in-store performances by Dierks Bently and Pearl Jam side project Brad.
While the mixer isn’t out yet, Mackie launched the DL1608 Digital Live Mixer with iPad Control at NAMM earlier this year, and is planing to launch the DL1608’s Master Fader control app in June with the arrival of the DL1608 worldwide expected later this summer. In the meantime, Mackie has been field testing the app, and that’s where Record Store Day comes in.
FOH engineers Pugs (Dierks Bentley) and Barrett Jones (Brad) used the DL1608 for the first time on April 21, 2012 at Seattle independent music store, Easy Street Records. The live show was part of national Record Store Day, an annual celebration where 700 independently owned record stores collaborate with musicians to celebrate the art of music. Special vinyl and CD releases and various promotional products are made exclusively for the day, and hundreds of artists in the United States and in various countries across the globe make special appearances and performances. That was the case at Easy Street Records, too, which features a small venue with a maximum capacity of 750 people that commonly hosts afternoon shows with touring artists scheduled for headlining shows at larger Seattle venues later that evening.
Both Pugs and Jones had time for only a quick tutorial before their 30-minute sound checks. Normally a FOH engineer wouldn’t touch a digital mixer they’ve never used just minutes before a show (especially since this performance would be streaming live on Sirius Satellite Radio). “Although I had never used this mixer before, it was straight forward, easy to use, and well laid out,” said Barrett Jones.
Given the iPad control aspects of the DL1608, Jones used its ability to control the mixer from anywhere in the venue. “It was great to be able to tweak the monitors from each monitor position on stage with the iPad controller... the ability to mix the show while walking around the floor was really nice,” said Jones.
During the 10-hour day, which featured performances by four bands in total, the DL1608 reportedly performed well and Mackie received hands-on insight from the engineers. Mackie representatives say such real world field tests are “an essential part of Mackie’s product design process. Stress-testing the hardware in a variety of conditions ensures the DL1608 hardware will work reliably for customers.” In addition, real world feedback on the Master Fader control application will shape future updates as it continually evolves through app store updates.
The Master Fader app will be available free in the iOS-App Store in June 2012. Mackie will also soon premiere a DL1608 video podcast series that will cover basics, advanced how-to’s, and tips and tricks. Later episodes will specifically respond to questions that customers pose to Mackie’s Facebook and Twitter accounts. The DL1608 video podcast series will start in May 2012 in iTunes.