Midas Venice f32
Needing a solution for live sound, remote full band recording, and studio recording & mixing, the F32 fits great. I've used the console for all of the mentioned uses and have had an easy time with nice results.
The preamps are solid. I've used them for a variety of sources and with multiple microphones. 58's and 57's have plenty of gain even on quiet/whispery vocals in a live environment. The "punch" characteristic that is talked about with Midas is certainly present and very welcomed on sources such as drums. The preamp do have their own subtle flavor, but they are very useable. (Experience with other preamps: Focusrite, 610, API 512c, Portico, Avalon, & Retro). I was a bit hesitant about the preamps, thinking that I would buy this console, and not be satisfied with it, wanting to upgrade to a rack of API preamps in frustration. Over the last 10 months I have been pleasantly surprised. To my ears the sound does have a low mid presence and punch, but also has a smoothness about it that is comfortable. I would not hesitate to use the f32 for any source.
The EQ section is extremely flexible, although cramped. When in studio and using the f32 for summing, the EQ is very musical and responsive.
The small "meat and potatoes" nature of the f32 format provides 4 mono groups, but as others have mentioned, we always want more. One thing about the group faders that is interesting and possibly helpful for some is the group/Aux fader relationship. Read up on this in the manual. It's a good feature.
I find the routing easy both on the console surface and on the back of the console. Routing for studio monitoring is easy enough as well, despite a more dedicated section for this. The trickiest part for me was developing a ITB -> OTB -> ITB solution for mixdown. I've ended up using two stereo channels for these purposes, but I'm able utilize a hybrid workflow and have been happy with the results. This includes routing audio out of my DAW, through the console and back into the DAW for recording of the resulting two track.
In the live environment, I've used the console as a standard analog desk, and I've also used it as a "digilog" desk, like Midas advertises. I was able to seamlessly integrate plugin compressors, reverbs, delays, etc. with good results. Even with the buffer set low to avoid any major latency issues, I've not had any problems with live integration.
I've had no issues with durability, knobs, faders, lights, or any problems at all. The robust enclosure has been nice for remote and live uses. I've had zero issues with the firewire or drivers.
Overall, I'm very pleased with the Midas f32 as a workhorse style tool. The features are powerful and effective in a compact footprint for an excellent value. I do recommend this to others who are interested in a versatile tool for their music productions.