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Moving Fader Automation

A type of mixing automation system that employs motorized faders in addition to or instead of VCA (Voltage Controlled Amplifier) circuits. Moving fader systems have historically been considered preferable to VCA systems due to their better sonic characteristics and ergonomics. When first used, moving fader automation systems sounded better because the alternative method of automating levels requires the use of additional gain stages that usually utilized some type of VCA, which resulted in some signal degradation. Nowadays VCA’s are of high enough quality that they can be effectively used in even the most demanding situations, though there are some engineers who still prefer not to pass their signals through this extra stage. The ergonomic advantages of a moving fader system center around the fact that it’s very easy to know what the automation is doing because it only requires the engineer take a glance at the fader positions, whereas in fixed fader systems one must utilize some combination of computer screens and LED indicators to know the status of individual channels.

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