First Impressions of the MyMix personal monitor system

I had a chance recently for a quick preview of the new MyMix personal monitor system.


This is the first new personal monitor system I’ve seen in quite a while, and the paradigm is so completely new with MyMix that it took a little bit of time to wrap my head around it. Once I’d made that transition, I was pretty impressed with what I saw.


Here’s how it works: Like any personal monitor system, every musician gets a personal mixer, and that's where the similarities stop. In the MyMix system, every personal mixer has two inputs and a network connector. There is no master "input device." The personal mixers are the input devices. When you network multiple mixers together (up to 8 of them), then you end up with a multiple channel system that comes with an unusual amount of control. Two mixers gives you four channels of audio, five mixers gives you ten channels, eight mixers gives you 16 channels of audio on each networked personal mixer.


The mixing itself is less than entirely intuitive for us old-school analog guys. All of the networked and local inputs show up on the large, clear LCD screen: you scroll through the list using the big knob on the front, push the knob to select the input, and then you’re ready to set gain, adjust EQ (we like this) or add reverb (we really like this!).


It’s a little awkward the first time you try it, but once you’re used to it, it’s pretty easy, and it’s probably the best way to handle a system that has this much flexibility! Fortunately, if there's feedback or other loud things going on, you have an instantly-accessible mute button to save your ears!


The system sounds wonderful. The flexibility is unbeatable. Individual reverb and individual EQ is a bonus feature. The combination of both headphone out and stereo balanced line-level outputs is a plus for wireless in-ear monitors. I wish the inputs had pass-through outputs; without those, we would need to use external mic splitters or Y-cables, and they’re not expensive so that’s more just a hassle than an insurmountable obstacle.


But then they went and added a digital recorder into each mixer! You can record, right there, not at the FOH position, exactly what you’re listening to: up to a 16 channel, multi-track recording as a time-stamped 24-bit WAV file on an optional SD/SDHC card. That is a wonderful surprise! Nice job MyMix! If you’re really creative, use an extra MyMix mixer for your FOH or recording board, and record the track right there.


The individual mixers run $499 each, which is fairly normal for personal monitor mixer. Now here’s where it gets even more interesting: there is no proprietary and expensive “input module,” since the inputs are on each mixer. For your distribution hub, you save hundreds of dollars again: use a standard Ethernet switch (What’s that run? Maybe fifty bucks?). And of course, much of the time, you’ll want to add a handful of Y-cables or mic splitters, but they’re not real expensive either.


This is a good system; it sounds good and it’s well thought out. I’m looking forward to being able to install these systems for my clients!



© 2010 churchsoundguy.com. Used by permission. Permission granted to re-post this article on church or tech-related blogs provided that contact information is included.

Photos © 2010 MyMix Audio.


__________________________________________
David McLain | The Monitor Guy | CCI SOLUTIONS
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MyMix FAQ's:

Question:


Is there a maximum number of myMix units in a system?

Answer:


Yes, the maximum number of myMix on a system is eight.




Question:


How long can I record for?

Answer:


Recording time for myMix systems based on media storage size, manufacturer of SD card and number of units. Times are in hours:minutes (rounded).

Storage
Size

Number of myMix units



1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8


1GB

00:30

00:19

00:14

00:12

00:10

00:08

00:07

00:06


2GB

01:00

00:39

00:29

00:24

00:20

00:17

00:15

00:13


4GB

02:00

01:18

00:58

00:48

00:40

00:34

00:30

00:26


8GB

04:00

02:37

01:57

01:36

01:20

01:08

01:00

00:52


16GB

07:52

05:12

03:56

03:06

02:35

02:14

01:58

01:44


32GB

15:44

10:24

07:52

06:12

05:10

04:28

03:56

03:28

These times are approximates only. Check display of myMix unit for actual time available.




Question:


What is the largest SD card supported?

Answer:


32GB SD card




Question:


We are a band with four musicians, how many myMix do we need?

Answer:


We highly recommend one myMix per musician, and have found in our testing with musicians that once they experience the ability to create their very own mix they aren’t very excited about going back to previous monitoring methods. That doesn’t mean you can’t share a myMix. Just know that you will be forced to compromise your ideal mix, the very problem myMix aims to solve.




Question:


Can I use the headphone outputs and the line level outputs at the same time?

Answer:


Yes. The signal being fed to the headphone and line outputs are identical. So if you want to use an in-ear monitoring system in addition to wedges, go for it.




Question:


We are four musicians with seven mics/instruments, but the keyboardist needs three channels. There are only two inputs per myMix, how would we connect his third input?

Answer:


If one of the musicians is only using one of his inputs simply plug the keyboardist’s third input into a spare channel.




Question:


If we connect our instruments/mics directly to myMix, how do we get the signal to the FOH console?

Answer:


There are a few of ways to get your inputs to a console. You can use a Y-cable coming from the source where one end of the Y-cable plugs into your myMix and the other plugs into the console. Or, if you have a stage splitter box, you can connect the source to the split and send one output to myMix and the other to the FOH console. Depending on the situation you can even use an additional myMix as the FOH mixer and completely eliminate the console and snake.




Question:


What kind of headphones do you recommend, is there something special to look for?

Answer:


Headphone selection is a very personal choice. Besides the obvious preferences you may have regarding brand, size, color etc, you should look for headphones that have an impedance rating between **** and *** to ensure you have enough level to satisfy your tastes. During our beta testing, when musicians opted to monitor through headphones, we witnessed everything from high end studio headphones in use to the cheapest stock mp3 player headsets. The Master Equalizer in myMix allows you to dial in the stereo output to maximize your particular headphones.




Question:


Our singer uses an in-ear system, but our guitar player wants to use his wedge, can we use both for myMix?

Answer:


Absolutely. The great thing about myMix is that it doesn’t limit you to a silent rehearsal environment where everyone is forced to use headphones. Again, the Master Equalizer in each myMix unit lets your guitar player optimize his wedge and your singer dial in his in-ears.




Question:


Can I plug my guitar directly into myMix, or do I need a guitar amplifier?

Answer:


You can, but it isn’t recommended. The impedance of the myMix inputs is really for mic and line level sources, not instrument level sources. In our experience we have found very few guitar players who prefer the sound of a direct guitar sound over an amp or even an amp modeler. So we would suggest some of the following alternatives: use a mic on your amp and plug it into myMix, use an amp modeler directly into myMix, use the recording output or your amp (if it has one) directly into myMix, or plug your guitar into a direct box, then into myMix.




Question:


Does myMix require an Ethernet switch?

Answer:


A system that only uses two myMix units does not require an Ethernet switch. Simply connect the units directly to each other with an Ethernet cable. Three or more myMix units require an Ethernet switch.




Question:


What type of Ethernet switch do I need for a myMix system? I want to buy a POE switch for myMix, what should I look for?

Answer:


myMix uses standard, off-the-shelf Ethernet switches, not pricey proprietary switches used by other products. You can use either standard switches, or, if you want to completely eliminate the power supply, you can use a switch that provides Power-Over-Ethernet (POE). While POE switches are more expensive than normal switches they provide an additional level of convenience. Just make sure the POE switch you choose is capable of providing 15 continuous (not max) watts to each myMix connected to the switch. We’ve found that you really need to pay attention to the specs provided by the POE switch manufacturer. If you aren’t sure, contact the manufacturer and make sure the switch is capable of providing a continuous 15 watts to each myMix. Due to the constantly evolving nature of network products we have a hard time recommending any one particular POE switch. We can, however, confidently say that you get what you pay for.




Question:


Can I use have a myMix system where some units are powered by the included power supply and some are powered by POE?

Answer:


If you are using a switch that is half POE and half non-POE it is no problem to mix them on a system.




Question:


I see a lot of switches with 4 POE ports and 4 non-POE ports. Are there any POE switches with 8 POE ports?

Answer:


They exist, you just need to take a little time to search. Most computer supply retailers carry a wide variety of switches at numerous price points. We can’t stress enough the need to check the specs and make sure you are getting 15 continuous watts to each myMix requiring POE.




Question:


How do I save my settings to profiles?

Answer:


Once you have recalled a profile, any change you make to your myMix is automatically updated in the current profile. So, you don’t really have to do anything to save your settings.




Question:


Why would one ever want to select Input type Mono, and not just leave dual mono and simply not using the spare input?

Answer:


Because in mono only one input channel appears in every unit. It just keeps the user interface free of any extraneous unused channels.




Question:


How does the master EQ work?

Answer:


The Master Equalizer is a four band parametric with selectable high and low shelving, adjustable Q and frequencies. It affects both the line and headphone outputs.




Question:


Do I need the master EQ?

Answer:


If you didn’t understand any of the language in the answer to the question above, then you don’t need it. If you do understand, then you will realize the Master Equalizer gives you the opportunity to ring out wedges, add bass to sub-par headphones, liven up a dull set of in-ear buds, or even tune a main PA system to a room. Save it in a different profile so you don’t have to repeat the process every time you change output devices, or rooms.




Question:


How many effects are on myMix?

Answer:


There is one global effect in myMix that has the option of small, medium, or large room or hall reverbs, or adjustable delay. You can send as much of each channel into the effect as you desire on the main mix page.


FAQ © 2010 MyMix Audio. www.mymixaudio.com.