I have what might be some brutally dumb questions, but this community seems surprisingly patient.
So I have been on classic analog console mixers in my main studio since time began (right now I have a 32-channel mackie). Given that it never leaves the house, i am cool with that, and have lots of patching options from various outboard gear (including lots of Elektron obviously) to the mixer.
But recently the old mackie is showing her age, and been considering my digital options, no real specific board yet but there seem to be decent options that are not complete highway robbery like digitals used to be. So what should I expect, in general terms?
—is a digital mixer basically a replacement to my soundcard as well or does it depend on model? Seems like every single one has a link to your computer, but that doesn’t always mean its gonna be seamless
—if it is, I would imagine onboard can handle the AD/DA fine but passing to my computer, most seem to be a standard USB, maybe firewire but not much of that - can a slightly above average CPU/RAM windows machine handle so many high-K audio channels being passed to/from it at once?
—do digital mixers allow “offfline” mixing and audio playthrough?
—with all the automation and sexy menus and filters and motor faders, should I expect more breakdowns?
What has been y’all’s experience?