southsounder wrote:If you mix OTB you well eventually have to use one more pass of A/D somewhere, unless you're still working with cassettes or are passing a reel-to-reel mixdown directly to your mastering engineer (who will still be converting it back to digital, again assuming your final distribution format includes CD and/or MP3).
OTB really shines when you have a lot of outboard signal processors that you want to use during mixing. Depending on the summing mixer you choose, the summing box itself can also color the signal to a greater or lesser degree. Dangerous' summing boxes fall in the later camp. That can be desirable or not depending on your personal preferences.
I've always mixed OTB, but to me unless you're really into the EQ on a specific console using an actual mixer in the age of DAW based automation doesn't make any sense. On my previous consoles I always set the faders at 0 and bypassed the EQ since even halfway decent EQ plugins sound way better than anything short of stupid expensive mixers - certainly better than the EQ on my Mackie 8.bus at least.
So why have a huge desktop drawing massive power and generating heat in a cramped control room when you're really only using the mixbus portion anyway? Plus, remember you're paying for the case, the pres, the EQ, the faders, etc. If you're going to spend X, better to spend it all on exactly what you need instead of a bunch of shit you'll just bypass anyway. OK, I'll admit having 6' of mixer does look cool - I'll give it that much at least.
I picked up a Rascal Tonebuss, which is pretty colored, and couldn't be happier. I run 16 outs directly from my D/A's to the Tonebuss, and I feed the mixed signal directly to the A/D on my old DAW. So far I've been doing any mastering-ish processing directly on that computer - mostly because I know Sound Forge so well, and still prefer it to the 2 track editor (Peak Pro, yech) on my main DAW.
Know that there really is no right or wrong way to go on this kind of thing, again it all boils down to personal preference. Maybe the best way to go about it is ask yourself what it is you think you're missing from your current setup?
I will say that spending a lot of money to add converters and a clean summing mixer when you're already pretty happy with the mixes you're getting ITB might end up being a disappointment. I know that's certainly a common enough tale over on GS.
No real, big size console for me. I've considered it, but it's not for me. Costs too much money, space and no recall was also a deal breaker. Taking pictures of channel settings is a thing of the past
For me it was about colorration and the supposed small increase in headroom.
And about outboard processing, well that's something which I'm still considering. Was planning on building my own 1176 as it's easy to build and parts are
Readily available and trying to find some second hand gear on Ebay etc.
i'm still fairly new to summing and still trying to get mixing in general, but here is my experience regarding summing and dangerous music.. hopefully it will help you with your decision..
d-box impressions in order of importance according to me..
1. the DA.. this to me was not subtle at all vs monitoring on FF800..
2. monitor controller.. great to switch between monitors and with mono switch.
3. the talkback.. although limited, works great for me who has a simple mic setup in another room..
4. lastly the summing.. and because the first 3 points i made are not relevant to the 2Bus, this is probably what your interested in.. I'm assumming there is very little difference in summing between the 2BUS and the D-box. To me this was very subtle vs mixing ITB.. a little more space/depth and headroom but nothing that blew me away.. possible reasons are maybe my ears aren't experienced enough or maybe what others say is true in that you need at least 16 channels of summing to hear the difference.. I don't know..
Lastly, if what you want is color, then if the d-box is anything like the D-bus, you won't find color.. my chain is
D-box>ADL 600>UBK Fatso>API 5500>Burl B2 AD> DAW.
and what gives me the most color is the UBK FATSO.. the least is D-box..