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June 2017 Giveaway

Allen & Heath Qu-Pac Rackmountable Digital Mixer Reviews

4.5 stars based on 12 customer reviews
Questions about the Allen & Heath Qu-Pac Rackmountable Digital Mixer?

Questions about the Allen & Heath Qu-Pac Rackmountable Digital Mixer?

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  • from San Jose CA May 12, 2017

    Allen & Heath FTW!

    This thing is amazing, it took me a while to get used to the interface but once I did it made perfect sense. I am much more used to the Mackie and Behringer/Midas interfaces, but this was not a difficult adjustment. The added security sign-in feature for multiple levels of access is nothing less than brilliant, especially in this area where there are plenty of tech-savvy individuals who might want to satisfy their curiosity by seeing what we are doing and possibly causing problems. A&H does this on all of their other digital PA products, so it makes sense to keep doing it.

    I almost picked up the Qu-SB, but having the touch screen and emergency access to functionality is great. I've had tablets tank on me at gigs, and having a solid backup plan is SUPER valuable. Worth the $$ difference.

    What initially sold me on this product was the super low latency as compared to anything Behringer has put out. I have only used this in a studio situation so come back and ask me that question again once I've used it live a few times. I have attached it to my laptop and have successfully streamed multitrack audio both directions, which opens up a world of opportunities for live performance and multitrack recording of every gig. I haven't tried to stream multitrack to/from the USB drive port yet but it looks really easy to do.

  • from Chicago, Illinois December 25, 2016Music Background:
    Lead vocals & guitar

    IEM & Our FOH FANTASTIC System and very Portable

    Did alot of research on various boards, was using the Presonus 16.4.2 and we were never happy with my mix.
    The QU-PAC knocked our socks off the sound quality and pre-amps are 2nd to none, fantastic user freindly apps too. My band play 100+ shows a year and we've had 0 issues with this board THANK YOU Allen -Heath you made our job so much easier. I "highly recommend" this system to the working musician, a great buy and this can be used at any level, Pro/Semi Pro/Beginner!

  • from Jackson NJ December 3, 2016Music Background:
    Rock and Roll

    My first Digital Mixer!

    I am just a local working musician on the Jersey shore. Clubs, weddings, all private events and municipal work. The band is typical 5 pieces, guitar, bass, drums, keys, and sax. I am the front man lead singer and only guitar player. We NEVER use a soundman. I do it myself from the stage. QSC mains and subs, everything mic'd up to a Allen and Heath mix wizard analog board. Great board for the hard working musician. But this Qu-Pac digital took my breath away! No I am not a professional soundman. However, I know what sounds good! This mixer came to my house Fed-Ex at 12;30pm, by 2pm I was familiar enough
    with the mixer to through it in my rack and go to a gig that night. The band was blown away by how good the vocals sounded. The pre-amp are fantastic, the vocal pre-sets are amazing. I admit I didn't use all the features. I had no ipad I used the mixer direct! The reverb effects were great. I went out of the main L&R into my drive rack PA, came out of the mix outs to 3 monitors and we were floored! I am extremely excited. Today I bought a router and hooked it up and messed around with the app on my ipad. It's fantastic! Thank-you Dylan and Sweetwater who nursed me through this buying experience, cause I was afraid to say the least! I never expected to do a gig the same day I got the thing. Anyway my analog board is up for sale.
    Thank-you Allen and Heath! Thank-you for thinking of the working musician. Can't wait to start recording the bands live shows and then mixing on my home computer.

  • from October 31, 2016Music Background:
    Musician, Music Producer and Sound engineer

    QuPac as monitor mixer

    I bought a QuPac to use as a IEM monitor mixer for my band. Works like a charm.
    I've soldered a split for sending microphones to the QuPac and to FOH, keeping all options open to mix our in-ears as well as giving a LR-mix if our soundguy is not happy with the desk at the venue we're playing.
    Connecting via USB to Logic for playback of 1 stereo and 3 mono tracks + the ability of recording the show i multitrack or even do a virtual soundcheck in a snap.
    I've connected a AR84 expander to my QuPac for direct output of our 4 channels of backtracks and for inputs that won't need to be shared with FOH (ambience for IEM, com-mics between band members and engineer).
    It travels in a 8he rack with a stage router, our IEM transmitters, the split and our guitar preamps.

  • from October 22, 2016Music Background:

    Unbelievable value for size and price!

    As an independent audio engineer, having the ability to take my own console in and easily drop it into the house system in any convenient location is a blessing.

    One of the companies I work closely with owns about 7 A&H Qu series consoles. As a result, I am very familiar with the product. As soon as the announcement of the Qu-Pac dropped, I knew I was going to need to own one. When I discovered it's price point, I was even more convinced. At the time, I owned a Behringer X32 Rack, which was solid enough, but given my experience with the Qu consoles, and my familiarity with the Qu workflow, I knew this would be better suited to my applications. I quickly sold my X32 and picked up a Qu-Pac.

    I regularly find myself in dingy, poorly maintained venues, with sad worn down PA systems. With the Qu-Pac (which I always throw in the back of my car just in case), I am able to easily patch into the house system wherever may suit the venue, and take my iPad into the house and construct a mix with all the conveniences of a digital console. Additionally, I find all of these tools can breath a bit of life into the aforementioned sad and worn PA systems.

    Join the Qu, I certainly have.

  • from Georgia October 21, 2016Music Background:

    Great functionalisty

    I already own the QU-16 for my home studio and wanted a solution for live use. The form factor is great and racked up I have access to a 32 channel board with incredibly clean pre-amps, great effects and 10 montitor mixes. I can record right off the board as well! Awesome

  • from Rockford January 15, 2016Music Background:
    Sound Engineer

    What I've been waiting for

    Exactly the right product for so many situations. Works precisely as intended. Advanced features, small package.

  • from Naples, FL September 3, 2015Music Background:
    Gigging vocal jazz group

    Qu-Pac is fantastic digital mixer

    In the summer of 2014 I did my research and put together my own digital rig to use on performances. Several components including my Mac Probook were used and it worked well for the 2014-15 performance season. After ~50 gigs we had enough experience to say it was a vast improvement over basic analog mixer, BUT we did have several issues ... like components freezing up during use so I started to look at digital mixers. After researching the category I settled on the Allen & Heath Qu-Pac as a replacement to a component based rig and I couldn't be happier. The Qu-Pac approach is much cheaper and has proven much more reliable through our 20 or so sessions we have used it on so far. I love the fact that I can stream all 16 tracks to a USB stick and mix down the session later on my DAW. I also love the reverbs in the Qu-Pac. Bottom line, if you want a quality mixer with the ability to record, but this gem - it's a keeper.

  • from Houston , Texas April 11, 2015

    Sound and Video Productions Manager

    Work great and easy to use

  • from Birmingham, AL February 14, 2016Music Background:
    Gigging Musician / Sound Engineer

    Pretty Amazing Mixer

    We've been using the Qu-Pac for about 4 months now. We migrated to this mixer from a Presonus 24.4.2 for our portable gigs-- mainly attracted by the small form factor and the quality of the sound and UI from its big brother, the GLD-80, which we use for a permanent set-up. The sound quality is what you'd expect from A&H. The updates are welcome, and address many needs and wants that we experience on a week to week basis. We like having a set of controls on the front, as well as having the connectors on the back, which facilitates the unit being permanently wired in our rack case. The scenes, digital recall on all aspects, as well as the solid integration with the A&H expanders are excellent.

    However, they missed a few things that would have made it 5 star. The most glaring is the inability to assign any "channel" to any input, like its big-brother, the GLD-80. This really hurts us from some of the instances where the stage layout requires us to use a slightly abnormal configuration where we need to move inputs from the digital snake (we use the AB168 with the Qu-Pac) to the back of the mixer. This then requires us to have to reconfigure the iPad UI for the new arrangement. It's not a deal-breaker, but it definitely knocks off a half-star, since they're touting full power of the digital snake.

    The reliability of the unit has been great, and the other issues we have had have either been addressed in the firmware updates, or are in the process of being addressed in future updates. The A&H support team is great. We're about to purchase a second one for our band to have as a backup (just in case).

  • from Sanford, FL February 27, 2016Music Background:
    Performance, Commercial Installation/Repair

    Great for Certain Applications

    Once you get over the form-factor and interface, this little box has just about everything most of us need - and carries the great sound of the latest generation A&H products. I've primarily installed and set these up in more static situations (churches, schools, restaurants, etc.), which I feel is where the unit really shines.

    Once you take the time setting up your necessary scenes, custom UI's, and a few critical functions on the softkeys (which can be a little time-consuming, but I've certainly seen FAR worse UI's on compact digital units), you have strong piece of gear which anyone can use. The ability to control what functions are available through 3 tiers of use "login" is great if the unit is going to be used by those of varying knowledge. With a quick run through the manual, and a solid hour to get acquainted, all of this unit's capabilities can be reached mostly within 3 menu jumps. Despite some minor shortcomings on customization, the UI is quite intuitive and *most* functions can be found with a little common sense. From box to running live with some scenes, I'd say 1-3 hours for most folks - not bad for having such limited real-estate. *NOTE: A&H store the rack ears in a concealed box at the bottom of the box, it's entirely possible to miss them, of if you (GASP) throw the box away, lose them forever (and they are not cheap to replace).

    Sound and Performance:
    The Qu-Pac actually uses the same pre-amps found in the Qu-32, to the best of my knowledge (the Qu-16 uses slightly different), which ultimately means you can expect to hear some pretty great sound coming out of the box. The Qu-Pac has your expected array of utilities (delay, LPF, GEQ, DCA's (4 I think), and even a few matrixes. There are some pretty decent aesthetic effects as well, a rack (a-la Propellerhead's Reason), with the standout being the reverb - surprisingly clean sounding! There's some chorus, and other, slightly more forgettable built-in effects which I don't personally see getting much use, however always great to have the options! Each channel has the anticipated run of channel-strip functions: Preamp, Pad, PEQ, etc. If you are planning to use the Qu-Pac for a live music situation, good luck. You will either need a lot of rehearsal for your scenes, or ninja-fast hands...unless you have an iPad. The control app is critical for making any changes on the fly with any diligence. So unless you already have an iPad, and are anticipating to use the Qu-Pac as I mentioned, stack a few hundred more dollars onto the pricetag.

    Summary (TL;DR):
    Extremely solid construction (don't lose the rack ears); Intuitive, but slow User Interface; requires a lot of custom setup for smooth operation (recommended for static installations); Great sound (same as the Mid-Range of A&H products); USB Scene Storage can be a bit unreliable; Loads of I/O in an "itty bitty living space". There's much more about this unit to talk about, but so little time to fit it in here.

    Judgement: If for personal use or a static installation, then go for it! But bring your iPad and save a headache or two.

  • from New York May 19, 2016Music Background:
    Rock, Progressive Rock

    Good, but there's a few catches

    Overall, I'm quite happy with my Qu-Pac.

    But I do have two fairly major quips that I think potential buyers should be aware of.

    There's at least 2 IOS apps (iPhone/iPad) for this unit that I'd think any buyer of this particular Qu-series would expect to use. This unit is a rack-mount, and though you "can" mix everything without the Qu-You iPad app that provides a virtual mixer, I don't think you'd want to.

    Here's my major quip. The IOS apps are NOT backwards compatible with older versions of the firmware you run on the Qu-Pac. So if you're Qu-Pac has 1.7, all the IOS devices you use with this MUST be running V1.7 of the Qu apps.

    Now that may not sound like much of a problem but... it is very very easy for your IOS apps to get out of sync with the Qu-Pac, and it can be a particular difficult problem to manage.

    Every time A&H releases a new version of the IOS apps, if the app gets "auto-updated" on your iOS devices, (or if you or someone unaware of this issue manually updates the app) you won't end up with a working app until you upgrade the firmware on the Qu-Pac.

    With auto-update, you might even be fine at sound-check and have a massive failure at showtime.

    Worse yet, if you have several people using IOS apps with the tour (performers use the App that allows them to control the monitor mix themselves) it will be early impossible to keep them all sync'd to the same version as the unit's firmware.

    And by the way, I wouldn't want to have to update the firmware at a gig. it can be a challenge. First, you really need a PC to do the download. Second (another gripe with this unit)is that the USB port has been documented as being finicky about brands and formatting of USB drives. I had to try THREE different USB thumb drives before I found one that worked, and I had to back it up, and let the Qu-Pac reformat it.

    It's unclear to my why Allen & Heath can't solve the problem of backwards compatibility. Pretty much the rest of the entire software world provides a reasonable degree of backwards compatibility.

    It's also worth drawing attention to fact that, as I understand it, the apps are ONLY available on IOS. Not on Android phones and tablets.

    The other issue I have with the unit, is that I feel the documentation of the unit itself is poor, and the documentation of the IOS apps is even poorer. Yes, there are video tutorials, but IMHO, they aren't very useful and insufficiently detailed. I was able to figure it out on my own, but if you aren't intimately familiar with mixing concepts, you might find this challenging.

    I can't comment on how this unit compares to its competition as I've no experience with the competition. I bought this basically because it was recommended by people whose expertise I trust.

    And like I said, aside from the "backwards compatibility" issue, I'm quite happy with it though I'm still figuring out the Qu-You IOS app.

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