GREAT SMALL VENUE MIXER
When Wayne recommended this $400 mixer for my barn, paired with QSC 8s, I was... concerned... Soundcraft? Don't they make cheap crap? Well... The unit really is everything it needs to be and more. In fact, its been pressed into service as a small stage unit for a nightclub where we use it for open mics and late night shows.
Open Mics are one of the true tests of a mixer. Some guitars are loud and brassy, others are soft and boomy. Some people sing big and close to the mic, others are too far away and practically whisper. It's freakin impossible, in other words, to make it all sound consistent and as good as it can 2unless you can mix and eq quickly on the fly. Plus: you need reverb for vocals. Trust me. And, Open Mic hosts are performers, not sound pros. It has to be dead easy or it won't happen.
The EFX8 has been solid in this job for about 8 months now. Everything is right there where you need it, easy to make work. The parametric eq is awesome. The Lexicon 'verb makes everyone sound... well, better, anyway. The speakers are ceiling mounted so we have to leave them on all the time, which means we leave the board on all the time (avoid those annoying pops). So far, no problem.
I wish there were more control over the monitor outs. If there is a way to adjust them by track rather than globally, I haven't found it. And I can never remember how to send the effects mix to the monitor. I'm pretty sure its easy. But the manual is pretty easy, but needs to be more a tutorial for newbies. There are videos, but some people (older) just don't learn well that way...
But for $400 (now $370) and a very small footprint, this thing makes mostly dead simple sound really, really great.