The Zen also included dedicated transport buttons for DAW control. All very familiar and workmanlike stuff. One minor point here is that when controlling the analogue channels, the fader provides 10dB of gain above unity and the panel legending is calibrated accordingly. The Select button function can also apply to either the analogue signal paths or the DAW, and that is determined by some more buttons in the master section of the desk, with no fewer than seven different options! The first isolates channels to prevent them being muted when other channels are soloed such as reverb returns , while the second does the same to isolate channels from fader automation data from the DAW.
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The dual-layer, small-format Focusrite Control is the first product created by both companies. It makes the difficult easy by combining short and clean analog signal paths, as well as nearly limitless configuration and routing possibilities, with well-integrated workstation control.
It weighs just more than 40 pounds, measures Both channels and cue signals are individually assignable to the stereo mix bus for up to 16 inputs to mix.
For recording to your DAW, the channels and cue signals are also individually assignable to the eight direct outputs DB Using a combination of four switch positions, direct outs can exit the console post-fader, pre-insert, pre-fader or in Channel mode—directly out of the mic pre section—which is my choice for all mic pre testing.
I would only say that the RTZ had more gain available and was more open-sounding. On the , there is up to 15dB additional gain available using the Channel Trim control if you select the post-fader direct output path. There is also SIP Safe, a way to isolate any channel from muting. I found the monitoring section to be transparent. For the first 16 outputs I wanted panning facilities, so I used the channel and alternate input cue paths, each of which have pan pots. Furthermore, the Channel Trim knobs all aligned perfectly on their detents, indicating good design, manufacturing quality and tight circuit-component tolerances.
The console connects to your computer via a standard Cat-5e cable, or in this case to my hub. After a restart, the console interfaced my rig the first time. The console has analog automation on the eight channel faders. The Select mode section defines the operation of the Channel Select switches for specific tasks in the DAW or analog layers.
But because the whole architecture is understandable, intuitive and malleable, I found the time well-spent learning it. Just as when I reviewed the Audient Zen, the sound of my mixes took a quantum leap in clarity, vividness and stereo width.
From now on, I want to mix only this way! Barry Rudolph is an L. Click on the Product Summary box above to view the Focusrite Control product page.
Focusrite Control 2802 Dual-Layer Mixing Console Review
Control Control - Overview Control is a super-flexible analogue console and an Ethernet-based DAW control surface in one. Precision analogue audio architecture delivers a superb, big studio sound, while Control demonstrates extraordinarily versatile routing capability, with cues and auxes available to provide up to 32 mix inputs and a DAW-integrated two-part in-line-style channel. With an array of superb-quality analogue features packed into its compact frame, Focusrite Control includes capabilities you would expect to find only on large-format consoles. At the front end, eight Class-A microphone preamps deliver clear, transparent performance. Then at its heart is a powerful summing mixer handling up to 32 simultaneous inputs with ultra-low distortion, excellent dynamic range and a frequency response wider than the human ear. High-end analogue design characterises the — implemented with similarly uncompromised components and build quality throughout. Dual Layer Control Technology lets you flip from analogue fader layer to DAW layer in an instant, accessing fully integrated control of DAW faders, auxes, plug-ins, automation, project navigation — and more.
Focusrite Control 2802
Focusrite Audio Engineering