After spending the last few years mixing with large boards like the Avid C24 and the Allen & Heath GL2400, it's been frustrating to go home and mix with a trackpad. If you're like me and are starting a home or project studio of your own, you may not have a great deal of space or money to start with. Still wanting to use a control surface that offers many of these larger board's features, I decided to try the Avid Artist Mix. I was surprised that it let me control almost any function in Pro Tools! The EUCON protocol, accessed via ethernet, is fast and efficient. This device is particularly appealing for those of us who may want to start small, but keep the option open to expand in the future. Multiple Artist series modules can be connected to give me up to 36 channels if I want. Plus, I can either use them all seperately or as one complete unit. I also like the controls themselves. They have a professional look and feel about them. The Artist Mix offers the functionality of the larger consoles I'm used to, but packaged in a unit that is smaller and less expensive.
I've been waiting to fill the space between my keyboard and computer but nothing really caught my eye like Euphonix has. I have been researching specs and dimensions on many pieces and could not find the right size, interface, or Mac integration that I needed. The MC Mix puts professional control in the hands of the home studio producer. You can configure four MC Mix units together, plus one MC Control, for a total of five units working together. That equals 36 faders and one touchscreen for complete control over your DAW.
Changed my workflow dramatically!
Artist Mix - Awesome
This is a great product . Very easy setup and works great with Pro Tools 11. The motorized faders work nicely and too navigate the system is very easy.
Responsive and Easy To Use Control Surface
I previously owned a ProjectMix I/O and decided to upgrade to two Avid Artist Mix control surfaces since I wasn't really using the analog portion of the ProjectMix I/O.
While I knew the Artist Mix units would be an upgrade, I didn't know how much of an upgrade they would be. Very responsive and accurate to a 0.1dB when moving the faders. There is much more that can be done with the Artist Mix units after reading the manual.
The only downside was initially the connection accuracy. Eucon works better with its own network. So I added a cheap 5-port ethernet gigabit ethernet switcher and a second network connection on my PC. For others who might be looking to purchase a similar setup, make sure you use the supplied crossover cables if you are using a PC. While the connections will work with regular Cat 5e/6 cables, the connections are not always made with regular cables after a cold boot. It's simple to restart Eucon if a connection is not made and can even be done while Pro Tools is running but the crossover cables seem to increase the probability of the connections being made properly.
The artist mix units greatly simplified mixing and surprisingly also increased the speed of bounces since bounces send signals to the control surfaces. That was a good surprise.
Sweetwater could not have been easier to work with on the purchase. I would recommend Sweetwater above all other pro audio stores.
Overall, I'm a very pleased customer for both Sweetwater's service and the quality of the Artist Mix units.
I LOVE this controller, its so easy to use,and Its very capable, it puts the Command * to shame, and feels similar in a sense to The C/24 and SSL 900 in DAW focus mode, that its was nothing to learn. I just graduated with a degree in audio Engineering, and will put the Artist MIX, my gear, and knowledge to work, formyself!!
Avid Artist Mix
OK. So I've been running PT's 11 for about 6 months. Obviously the best DAW out there. However, when I moved up to Pro Tools, I also moved OUT my analog mixing console, which was a good mixer, but obviously now obsolete with the enormously new mic pre's I have in my RME, UA Twinfinity, and several other rack mounts I purchased from Sweetwater. The Artist Mix control surface changed everything about how I record, mix, and edit. I never imagined a control surface could be so useful. Let me tell you why, in case you don't have at least one of these yet.
First, the motorized long-throw faders are absolutely beastly. These make automation so simple and natural. Just cruise along in either record or edit modes (or any mode, for that matter), and make your fader adjustments as you go. I have now discovered a whole new meaning for dynamics added to tracks. I am now using fader automation for instruments, vocals, everything, and what a difference in my mixes. They literally come to life. In my opinion, just having these incredible, accurate faders is well worth the price.
But that's just the beginning for the usefulness of this control surface. Now add automation in panning, assign the control knobs to plug-ins of any kind, use the many modes of the Artist Mix -- Amazing.
Now I want to talk about the absolute freedom this piece of hardware adds to my workflow. I work with an assistant engineer for a lot of my sessions. But as I am also a songwriter, I work a lot in my studio by myself. This is where the arming of tracks for recording and - this is really a WOW - the external footswitch feature that allows me to enter record mode without being in front of my console. Now I can be doing a vocal track, recording from my keyboards, or doing a guitar track completely seamless and effortless. Just arm a track (or tracks) directly from the Artist Mix panel (no need to use my mouse at all for these functions, or touch the keyboard), hit the space bar to start the transport, and when I want to start recording, just hit the footswitch, and start recording without missing a beat. Might seem like a simple feature at face value, but what a difference it makes when recording solo. I also use it when I'm recording live with my band. Previously, it was very difficult to record live on the keys while recording multiple live tracks, and I didn't even try it. Now, start up the band with everybody in record, and hit the footswitch on my track when I want to record my parts. I am so glad I added this to my studio. It costs a little money, but the value and functionality will pay for itself in one session.
In addition, the attention to detail and hardware quality is impeccable. No cheap plastic crap on this unit. My only problem now is deciding which Artist series hardware I will be adding next. Probably the Artist Transport, but I can easily see my studio with four of the Artist Mix units all connected together for 32 tracks of automation. This equipment is worth every penny I've spent on it. Go AVID! Nothing else even gets close to the features, functionality, and quality. You just cannot go wrong.
Moving Faders plus control over essential mixing parameters
This a great design and it works as claimed. The EUCON protocol is brilliant, and so far (after three weeks) this product has been pretty reliable. I am using it with Logic Pro X and Cubase (7.5). It is designed so so you can recall DAWs and even go back and forth among the e two last. The Artist Mix has changed the entire mixing process for me, from a clinical, tedious routine, into an organic and musical experience. It doesn't pass audio, but rather manipulates the DAWs controls (levels, panning, and other features in its automation, even plugins) allowing the user / engineer to MUCH more easily and spontaneously work the mix in real time. Since I've been mixing with it, my mixes have come much faster, and are audibly cleaner and sweeter sounding.
Its connection to the computer is via network (rather than USB), which makes it fast and accurate. The resolution of the faders and knobs is excellent. The strip isn't a full console but provides the most useful features, along with flexibility that (in some manner) a static console can't (without additions). It's become indispensable for me.
It takes a short time to get used to, but within a few sessions - and some time to think between - I was able to adapt to it, and conform it to my manner and workflow. I purchased two of these, which doesn't cover all tracks on all projects, but the design permits quick selection of blocks of tracks and individual tracks. In Logic it is possible to solo multiple tracks, but I'm still working on this in Cubase.
I'd suggest adding an Artist Transport, which is also useful and terrific. There's an Artist Control too, but having 16 tracks make more sense for me. If you've been mixing using a mouse, trackball and keyboard to access your DAW's automation, having to stop the transport to alter various levels, and rewinding to hear the changes - then think about using your EARS, The Artist Mix has changed the way I mix.
Highly recommended, and my apologies for any typos.
Perfect for me
This is the ideal control surface for me I have two and it makes life so better.
Really great once setup!
This unit is really good once you get Eucon setup and working right. I was worried that Avid dropped support for Artist Series with no updates in over two years but they just released a new bug fix update recently and have also announced that they are coming out with an all new update of Eucon that will add even more features and improvements to the Artist Mix series. With that said, I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and I feel much better now with the multiple controllers I have purchased.
A great tool
I had a hard time telling exactly what this was and what it would do based on the descriptions and the pictures. It is a great, solid piece of equipment and provides a nice tactile interface with the ProTools software. I am sure I will learn more as explore further. Would highly recommend.
Exactly What I Needed!
I am a sound arts student and I spend many hours a day at my desk turning knobs and fader and other parameters with my mouse. My workflow was slow and using a mouse all day was time consuming and exhausting. I purchased the Avid Artist Mix in december and have loved every minute of using it. I use it along with Logic Pro and it works in perfect unison with the DAW. I love mixing now, it feels as if I am on a bigger board console and really improves my workflow. The motorized faders work amazingly well and are quite fun to watch when you have many automations on tracks. I highly recommend this product for anyone who wants to make using a DAW more fun and productive.
ABSOLUTELY THE EBST CONTROL SURFACE ON THE MARKET
I've been around the block as it were with control surfaces. I've tried many of them and non to my satisfaction until now. Granted it took me hours just to figure out how exactly to get the Artist Mix (along with the Artist Transport - you will want both) to work in PT 11 and Logic X. Eventually whether by serendipity, luck or just random events, I finally got it working and I can tell you that it has completely changed things for me. My workflow is much better, much faster, much more efficient. Keep in mind if you get the Artist Mix, you want to get the Artist Transport which allows you to have a transport (with record, play, rewind, fast forward, etc.). Without a transport, a control surface is just not much but faders. I have tried Mackie and without any shadow of a doubt, it does not hold a candle to Avid's control surfaces. Eucon has proven itself to be the top dog and I can see now why there was so much hype with it. HUI is out. If you use PT or Logic, or even any other DAW, by all means get this control surface along with the Artist Transport. Just make sure you follow the directions in setting it up so you won't go crazy getting it working.
Does what it says... very well
The biggest advantage of this unit is added speed and efficiency to workflow... I cannot imagine trying to mix and master without it at this point. The small green screens above each channel are very helpful, the faders are smooth and accurate, it makes automation a breeze, and, while it takes a little bit to learn how to manipulate plugins and use the transport controls effectively, after a half hour it becomes second nature and blows point-and-click editing away.
I do wish the shell was somewhat sturdier and the fader knobs not so light-weight, but I've had mine for about 14 months now, have used it heavily, and everything is still in perfect working order.
Would recommend to anyone
Simple, Straight Forward, Effective
This is my 3rd Artist Mix, I now have 24 channels of control surface. I love this unit, it is very simple and delivers exactly what I need when mixing. 24 nice faders.
Eucon is very responsive and Avid did a great job with this used to be Euphonix module.
If you need a powerful, yet easy to use controller that will not push you into bankruptcy, check this baby out
Great piece of gear
This is a nice piece of hardware for any home studio where space is limited. I was pleasantly surprised how well built this mixer was after reading a few negative reviews about it feeling cheap and fragile, thanks Joe for the great advice! The quick response time is a must have for automation, and the ability to switch between DAWS, such as Protools and Logic, with the faders snapping in place is a plus for work flow.
Accurate & Instant
I bought the Avid Artist Mix SOLEY for the motorized & touch sensitive faders & encoders. To me mixing has always been a very hands on task. I mean that literally. I enjoy not needing to use my eyes to set levels and this allows me to not be tempted into doing that.
Some might say its over priced, and I can see why they might especially if they're like me and only bought it for the aforementioned purposes. But with how accurate (.1db) & silent this thing is it puts itself in another league with the competition.
The artist mix has drastically improved my workflow making me act & respond to a mix without even having to think about it. I'm sure over the next few years this thing will pay for itself 10x over!
Avid Artist Mix
This is a really nice rig. The motorized faders have a great feel that put you back in touch with the mix. Full control over EQ, effects, plugins and more makes this a really in depth control surface that can be a very powerful tool. As I already have the Avid Contol it was very easy to plug them both into an Ethernet switch and it was ready to go. Works great for me!
Great Piece of Gear
Very happy with this controller... it was just what I was looking for... nice low profile, doesn't take up much desk real estate and works great with PT 9. My only minor gripe is that it doesn't always connect up with PT upon launch of an initial session. There's times where I have to go into the Eucon settings and click a few things to initialize it but other than that its great.. definitely would recommend.
Exactly What A Control Surface Should Be
It really is what the title says. 8 motorized faders and knobs work everytime. Never had a problem with the unit itself. It is a little expensive, but I feel that is the same of almost all control surfaces. The ethernet connectivity is great and really allows for instant communication between the unit and the computer. You really can do everything on this little unit after a quick tutorial: mix, EQ, compress, add reverb, and adjust parameters on almost every plugin we use in Logic.
Great for Automation
This is a great unit if you are looking to get your hands on actual faders. When you're automating parameters this unit makes it really easy and the faders feel great and slide very easy. Moving through the different layers is a breeze too. While it has other great features and you can access a lot through the board I often find it quicker to just use the keyboard and mouse. One thing my old board had that I really miss is a zoom button, seems like using the keyboard for this is awkward.
The last thing is connectivity. When the computer goes to sleep the Mix loses connection. You have to go to system preferences and turn it off then back on. While not a huge deal it is an annoyance worth mentioning.
Overall, it's good, but don't expect it to be a big time saver over the mouse.
Nice device for home studio
This is a nice device to give my home studio a boost. It allows for some nice hands on mixing which I much prefer to doing everything with mouse clicks.
My only complaint is what seems to be driver issues. Sometimes I start everything up and Cubase doesn't recognize it. I am on a mac and will say it seems better with the new mavericks os and updated firmware and eucon software.
Loved it until.......
First off, this whole line is fantastic. Very easy to use and doesn't take up my desktop real estate. Sadly, after only 1.5 years of use, my Avid Artist Mix all of sudden would not power on. I called Avid and since it is out of warranty, I have to pay $60 just to talk anyone in tech support. Looking at other options at this point. This also seems to be a very common issue with these units. Google it.
Over Priced and Over Rated!
This product is VERY Over rated and Over priced. It does work fairly well with Logic Pro, but is lacking good transport control support. You need the MC Control for that. The cheap plastic fader buttons are not secured to the posts and easily come off and they're also using the cheap soft silicon buttons for channel strip functions. There's also way too much function OVERLAP with this product and the MC Mix. Keep in mind that it's another "Made In China" product. I've returned both units to get my $3300 back. It may do what it's supposed to do, but for how long?
Can't get to work with Cubase 8
Bought the Artist Mix along with the Artist Transport a few months ago, with plans to buy another Mix as funds allowed, to have 16 faders total. The functionality, compact design, and aesthetics were just what I wanted to make mixing in the box a more tactile experience. I like how the unit looks and feels; very modern and it matches my Thinkpad, plus, the way the units can be attached side by side makes it seem like they're one continuous product rather than separate units like with other modular DAW controllers (such as the Mackie MCU). Totally sexy and I was so excited to use this with the motorized faders and all. I especially love the bright, sharp little LEDs above each track, that are supposed to display the track names. The build is plastic with a sort of rubbery finish, and is a little more flexible than I'd like when two units are attached side by side, and not built like a tank per sa, but at the same time very light and compact.
That all being said, after four full evenings of trying to make it work, I CANNOT get this unit to work with Cubase 8. I have followed every online tutorial and forum on the topic, as well as Avid's sparse description of how to set it up with Cubase. I've gotten my computer to recognize the units in the Eucon control panel but Cubase can't seem to connect to them. This unit is extremely buggy and not well supported. I don't know why Avid hasn't fixed it after this being out so long. I have a masters degree in engineering, and am good at debugging computer code and circuits for my day job, and if I can't get this to work after 10 hours then the design is definitely not great. I may have to resort to the older, but tried-and-true Mackie but really want this to work. Just know you're rolling the dice with this; perhaps you'll be luckier than I and will be able to get it working, but perhaps not.
Too dependent on Updates to work
I use a extended artist mix at my college. There have been a lot of times where the unit has been dependent on the firmware to update every time, and there are times where the Mac will not recognize the product is connected.
Not as helpful as it looks on paper
This might initially seem like a great buy and a workflow enhancer, but there are several key problems that made it actually slow down my workflow when I'd try to use it. In fact, it was such a workflow killer that I've since decided to sell it secondhand at a big loss.
First of all, there are still software issues. The newest software update at the time of my writing (3.1.2) has an issue where the display on both the Transport and the Mix controller goes blank after a few seconds. Once you press a button or move a fader, it turns back on for a few seconds but again disappears a few seconds later. Apparently it has something to do with the "app nap" on Mavericks, but the update is advertised as compatible with Mavericks! I had to call customer support and they told me to go down to version 3.1. This did fix that particular problem, but aside from it being a pain to deal with, there are still other issues.
On my 2013 iMac (the only computer I've tested it on), the controller frequently (i.e. usually) doesn't connect to the computer correctly when I turn the computer and controller on. I'll open ProTools or Logic (or any other program) and the faders won't move and it won't be connected to the computer. If I open the Euphonix software and try to connect the controller to it manually in the setup, it still doesn't work. I've tried to start the controller and computer a million different ways (powering up the computer and then the controller, the controller and then the computer, both at the same time, leaving the controller on while I restart the computer, turning it off when I restart the computer -- you get the idea) and nothing seems to help. I just have to turn on the computer and the controller about 5 times and pray that it works. (That doesn't seem to help either.) Once it works, I leave the computer on for as long as possible so I don't have to go through this whole process again, but after a few days the connection is generally lost and I'm back to square one. This is so annoying!
My final issue isn't actually a bug (as far as I know), but is a lack of functionality. You can't assign any ProTools or Logic (or probably other programs as well, but I haven't tested them) modifier keys to the shift button or to the soft keys on the Artist Series Transport controller! (I'm assuming you use this in conjunction with a Transport controller.) For example, if you want to select multiple tracks at a time from the controller by holding down the controller's Shift button, you can't! You have to use your keyboard's Shift button, just as you would have if you didn't use the controller. The same applies to the Command, Control, and Option keys. But the whole reason I got the controller was to use the keyboard as little as possible while mixing! If you are someone who is already quick with your modifier keys while mixing or editing, this thing is just going to slow you down.
All that said, it's pretty much the only game in town at this price point, (at least until the new Behringer controller starts shipping). The units that are cheaper than this seem to be even less functional, and if you want to make a real upgrade you're going to end up spending maybe 5-10 times as much as you spent on this thing. So in a way, you're kind of stuck with it if you want a modular controller in this price range.
If you DO end up deciding to get this in spite of everything I've said, I'd recommend getting only this Avid Artist Mix and not getting the Avid Artist Transport along with it. Why? Because the main features of the Transport are the transport keys, which are already easily accessible via your computer keyboard's number pad, and the assignable Softkeys, which as I said above aren't actually assignable to the most important keys of all in ProTools and Logic -- the modifier keys! So since you'll be stuck with using the Mix controller in combination with your keyboard in any case, you might as well save the 400 bucks you would've spent on the Transport and just use the Mix in conjunction with your computer keyboard, which already does everything the Transport does (and more).
I hate to write such a negative review, but I was really excited when I purchased this thing and thought it would really help my workflow and it did exactly the opposite. If Avid ever decides to get serious about adding the missing functionality and fixing the bugs then this could become a really great controller for everyone from hobbyists to working engineers, but until that day comes I'd probably recommend staying away from it.
Flimsy, glitchy and way over-priced
Too often need to unplug, power off and on, reboot, etc. To get it recognized. The displays are tiny, and the overall construction has the look and feel of a toy. This thing is worth about half the asking price.
ok at best
I realize we generally use the keyboard, but come on.....no transport controls??? Even behringer and faderport have transport controls on them. I like the idea of an abbreviated control surface, but a great idea would be to make it where it can actually control Pro Tools.
I had high hopes, but unfortunately I feel there was just very little thought put into this device. Here are the major flaws that for me make daily use really unpleasant and inefficient.
Instead of matching Pro Tools' mix window mute and solo button convention, they instead opted for Yamaha-style 'on' and 'off' mode for each channel. Maybe I'm missing something, but I find this unnecessarily confusing and unintuitive. Why wouldn't they just make hardware match the software? Bizarre.
The 'record' and 'select' buttons are spaced almost equally between faders, making it extremely easily to accidentally to record-enable the wrong channel. There are no additional markings between channels to help you quickly distinguish which channel you are working on.
The IP-based ethernet connection has been extremely unstable for me. I'm fortunate to have an Avid tech available on-site, and even with him setting it up and troubleshooting it I can never count on the connection being consistent over the course of a day. Recently the connection broke in the middle of a basic client tracking session, crashing Pro Tools.
The faders are relatively loud, and they snap up and down each time you go from your DAW to another app. At first it's kind of charming; the three thousandth time they slam down because you want to jump over into izotope RX for a minute it becomes obnoxious.
I'm giving it a one half star boost for it's one redeeming attribute. The screen is bright, concise, and thankfully not the cluttered color mess I've seen on a lot of similar interfaces.
Great concept, poor hardware
Pots feel terrible, touch screen sensitivity is terrible, transport job wheel feels terrible, plastic is extremely brittle. I've seen multiple unit with broken legs/body due to broken, brittle plastic. Software never connects to device automatically. The concept is fantastic, but hardware execution is a complete failure.
Just Doesn't Have It
I've been using the Artist Mix and Artist Control now for 2 years and I have to say that it has not been a good experience at all. Units are not found half the time by the EuControl software. It has been very buggy from day one. I've been all thru the channels of getting it to work with Avid support. It will all a sudden start working for a week and then it acts up again. Constantly having to start the EuControl because it won't start automatically at times. It cuts out during a session at times too. Just tired of having to put up with it. Looking now at other options for a controller. My thoughts...Don't buy.
Used to Work in Pro Tools 8
This little Euphonix/Avid controller worked very well in Pro Tools 8. After updating to Pro Tools 10 and then later to Pro Tools 11 (all updated plug ins), with all the latest Eucon software updates and always the very latest firmware, this unit started having problems with the On buttons/Mute, Solo buttons, and faders. The On buttons are and have always been in Pro Tools 10 Accel and HDX as well as Pro Tools 11 HDX very slow and inaccurate. Sometimes they work better than other times, so they are unpredictable. There is a different time lag from the time the switch is pressed and the time the audio goes on or off.
The solo buttons are just as bad. I had one fader that did not function properly for a year after many updates and now suddenly has started to work like it used to. I now use the latest version of Pro Tools 11 HDX with the latest Eucon software and firmware with Yosemite OS X. The so called mute buttons or what Avid call On buttons are useless, as they are too slow and unresponsive. When I had PT 8 this controller was just fine. I hope the Eucon software is updated again after 3.2.2 to make this thing work again like it did in PT8. I am now looking at other options that work as they should.
Very Poor Software - Broke after 1 year
I bought this about a year ago along with the Artist Control. The software always seems to be at least 6 months behind updates to OS and I am constantly rebooting everything to get it to work. This occurred no mater what software I was running. The power button stopped working after about 6 months on the Mix series so now I have to unplug it physically to turn it off Both also disconnect pretty constantly requiring a reboot. DOES NOT SUPPORT YOSEMITE at of January 10, 2015. I have it and the computer on a dedicated ethernet gig switch. It also take quite a bit of time to learn how to use the knobs. Faders are good but you are also better off using keyboard shortcuts. First purchase with Sweetwater (and I buy a lot) that I really regret making. DO NOT BUY
Stay clear of this unit
I have had to return this product for repairs 3 times now in just a year and half. Poor hardware and software. You have been warned. Check the internet for reviews, it's not just me. I can't believe this thing is sold in stores.
Overpriced cheap plastic
This thing works when it wants to and for 1200 bones it should be made of something of higher quality than pvc plastic. The faders feel cheap as do the buttons and pots. Compatibility is sub par. Having used one of these at school for 9 months I can say that I'd rather just stick with my mouse.