ANALOG vs DIGITAL Audio Mixing
Quotes from the Pro's:
 
"I always mix on an SSL 4000 series (analog) console"
 
    - Chris Lord Alge (studio mixer: Greenday, Nickelback, My Chemical Romance, STP, Switchfoot)
 
 
"One of the ideas for this album was that Daft Punk didn’t want to process digitally. The music had to be recorded digitally because it had to be edited, but a lot of it was recorded to analog tape and then transferred to Pro Tools. For mixing, it all came from Pro Tools at 96 kHz into a 72-input analog console. Sometimes we had to combine in Pro Tools if we had more tracks than faders. But it was mostly mixed to analog and they wanted to process everything in the analog world as well."
 
- Mick Guzauski, (engineer/mixer for the album 'Random Access Memories') 

 

"...mixing in Pro Tools (digitally) is not a good idea... but for editing it's great..."

- Hugh Padhgam, Engineer/Producer (Sting, Peter Gabriel, Sheryl Crow)

 

Despite the digital revolution in the audio industry, many of today's top commercial albums are still mixed on analog consoles. Audio engineers rely on analog mixing to provide the nonlinear musical qualities that digital mixing does not produce. "When you mix through an analog desk you get this life and body to the sound that just doesn't happen when you mix inside the workstation. The separation and imaging from the analog summing is very apparent, especially when your track count gets high" remarks mixer Jay Baumgardner (Papa Roach, Evanescence).

 

"...for Coldplay we recorded the tracks to tape first, then transferred to Pro Tools, (for editing) and then mixed on a Neve (analog) console to get that sound..."

- Danton Supple, Recording/Mix Engineer (Coldplay, etc.)

 

"The biggest difference was that sonically they (talking about digital consoles in general) don't come that close to analog - they're getting there, but I'm not ready to switch yet. They're not as big, warm and natural (as analog)"

- Rob Nevalainen, Monitor Mix Engineer for Bryan Adams

 

"I think it's impossible to get the best out of a recording by mixing 'in the box', with the computer or digital workstation or even with a digital console. The tracks need to be blended together in an analog environment and that means having a decent console. I don't think there is anyway around this."

- Warne Livesey, Producer (Midnight Oil, Mathew Good, 54-40)

 

"...when the budget allows, I much prefer mixing in analog. Analog consoles sound much better than digital..."

- Ed Buller, Producer (Stabbing Westward, Gravity Kills, Eskimo Joe)

 

"Analog has, and always will have, better resolution than digital..." "...digital will never have the resolution of analog"

- Paul Abbott, Mastering Engineer & Writer (E.Q. Magazine, etc.)

 

"Numeric problems in digital consoles can cause several problems. Rounding errors in digital filters act much like analog noise, but at other critical points in the digital mixing process, wholesale wordlength truncations can cause considerable damage, destroying the body and purity of an entire mix, creating edgy sound, which engineers and audiophiles often call 'digititis'."

- Pro Sound News

 

"And then there is the question of sound quality; after all, at the end of the day, delivering the best possible sound is what it's all about and many would argue that the premier analog desks still have the edge in that department, both operationally and acoustically."

- Professional Sound magazine